Spring buying pushes home prices higher in most cities

Home prices rose in most major cities for the first time in eight months this spring.

The latest Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller index released today says home prices were up in 13 of the 20 markets it tracks from March to April.

Washington, D.C., saw the biggest price increase -- a hefty 4.0% -- followed by San Francisco, Atlanta and Seattle.

That’s an improvement over the March survey, which showed home prices had fallen back to 2002 levels.

But Washington remains the only city in which home prices are up over the past year.

Overall, home prices in the 20 cities rose 0.40% from March to April, but are down 4.00% from April 2010 to April 2011.

David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Indexes, was cautious in his analysis of those numbers.

The "seasonally adjusted numbers show that much of the improvement reflects the beginning of the spring-summer home buying season," Blitzer said in a statement. "It is much too early to tell if this is a turning point or simply due to some warmer weather."

Here are the city-by-city results from the April survey.

Change in April Home Prices

Market March-April Change One-year Change
Atlanta 1.60% -3.50%
Boston -0.20% -4.20%
Charlotte -0.30% -6.60%
Chicago -0.40% -8.60%
Cleveland 1.20% -6.80%
Dallas 0.50% -4.00%
Denver 1.50% -4.10%
Detroit -2.90% -7.50%
Las Vegas -0.70% -6.20%
Los Angeles 0.30% -2.10%
Miami -0.20% -5.60%
Minneapolis 0.40% -11.10%
New York 0.80% -2.80%
Phoenix 0.10% -8.80%
Portland 0.10% -9.20%
San Diego 0.40% -4.30%
San Francisco 1.70% -5.50%
Seattle 1.60% -6.90%
Tampa -0.40% -7.70%
Washington 3.00% 4.00%

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