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Posted: May 09, 2011

Your Home Value May Be Way Down

Zillow.com says a drop in home values isn't hitting Sandy Springs, GA, where this house sits and one city where home values have continued to increase.
Zillow.com says a drop in home values isn't hitting Sandy Springs, GA, where this house sits and one city where home values have continued to increase.

By Veronica Waters

Atlanta, GA None —

Your home value may be down--way down. 

Real estate site Zillow.com says home values fell an average of 3% in the first quarter from the previous quarter, and in metro Atlanta, it was worse--4.4%. 

The 3% drop in the first quarter of 2011 is the largest decline since late 2008 and is blamed on foreclosures pushing values down.  Prices are decelerating in large part because the many foreclosed properties that often sell at a discount force other sellers to lower their prices.

Metro Atlanta was among those with the sharpest yearly declines: home values dropped 17.3% year-over-year.

Zillow chief economist Stan Humphries now believes while there will continue to be some bounceback this year, prices nationwide won't hit bottom before 2012.  Demand is picking up, but a slew of foreclosures will keep supply outpacing demand--and home prices may drop another 7 to 9% before bottoming out.

Some notable exceptions:  Home values went up year-over-year in some cities including Alpharetta (5.8%); Berkeley Lake (1.5%); Johns Creek (7.5%); Milton (10%); Roswell (8.2%); Sandy Springs (7.7%); Social Circle (4.8%); and Walnut Grove (5.1%).

Milton, Sandy Springs and Social Circle were among the rare areas in Georgia which saw actual gains in home values in the month to month, quarter over quarter and year over year.


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