Prices in half the 315 markets covered by Local Market Monitor were flat through the first half of the year, but the slow takeoff only means most homeowners can expect steadily higher home prices during the next few years.
Part of the reason is that many markets are still under-priced relative to local incomes, some by 25 percent and more. In these markets, prices fell too far and buyers can now get a lot of house for their money.
Foreclosures still cloud the data in places like Phoenix, Las Vegas, and a good number of California and Florida markets. The value of the average home bears little relation to the bidding wars for cheap foreclosed properties.