Did You Buy a Home Before 2005? Congratulations!

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Congratulations. It likely is finally worth as much as you paid for it – if you don’t factor in inflation.

New figures Thursday from the Federal Housing Finance Agency show home prices in Arizona ticked up by 5.1 percent between the first and second quarters of the year. That now translates to a boost of more than 18 percent from a year earlier.

That puts the prices, as measured by the agency’s index, at about where they were in the first quarter of 2004.

But the report also shows that those who jumped into the market in the middle of the bubble still have a long way to go to break even.

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Worst off are those who bought at the top which, according to the FHFA, was the second quarter of 2006 for Arizona. On average, the prices being commanded now are nearly 32 percent below where they were at that time.

Even those who thought they were getting in as prices dropped in 2008 are still underwater, price-wise, to the tune of 17 percent.

So who’s best off?

Obviously, anyone who has been a long-term owner is seeing a price recovery.

Owned since the same time in 1998? Odds are your property is worth 62 percent more now, in constant dollars, than it was when you bought it.

As to the post-bubble environment, the report shows the best time to have taken the plunge was two years ago when home prices in Arizona bottomed out. Since then, prices, on average, are up statewide by about 34 percent.



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