The April Zillow Real Estate Market Reports cover 365 metropolitan and micropolitan areas. In April, 2012 (55%) of the 365 markets showed monthly home value appreciation, and 266 (73%) of the 365 markets saw annual home value appreciation.
Among the top 30 metros, 27 of them experienced monthly home value appreciation, and 29 of them experienced annual increases with only Chicago (0.2% down) showing declining home values over the past year. Leading the pack in positive monthly appreciation were Sacramento, Las Vegas, San Jose and San Francisco, which experienced 3.4%, 3%, 2.8% and 2.8% monthly home value appreciation, respectively.
Overall, national home values were down 18.7% from their peak in May 2007 and up 6.7% from the post-recession trough in October 2011.
The Zillow Rent Index (ZRI) covers 484 metropolitan and micropolitan areas and shows year-over-year gains for 344 metropolitan areas covered by the ZRI. The rental market remains strong despite decelerating annual appreciation.
Markets that saw extremely strong annual rent appreciation include Denver (9.1%), Boston (5.9%), Portland (5.8%) and San Francisco (5.3%). Demand for rental housing remains strong, and many investors continue to purchase homes (many times lower-priced homes or distressed inventory) and convert these properties into rental units.
Many markets are seeing tight inventory and sharp home value appreciation in part brought on by active investors. Nationally, rents were up 3.9% in April on a year-over-year basis.