7 things to know today and housing market nears 2006 price peak

Good morning, Orlando!

We all have been watching the Orlando-area housing market with great interest in the past year, as sales and median prices continue to increase, and inventory shrinks.

Now, a new CoreLogic report sheds some light on exactly how much activity is taking place not only here in Central Florida, but nationwide as well.

U.S. home prices are up 7.1% in March, data from analytics company CoreLogic shows. And home prices, including distressed sales, increased by 7.5%t in March 2017 in the Orlando metro area compared with March 2016.

Nationwide, home prices will increase by 4.9% year-over-year from March 2017 to March 2018, CoreLogic forecast. The property data provider said its Home Price Index is only 2.8% away from its 2006 peak. The index is expected to reach the previous peak during the second half of this year with a forecasted increase of almost 5% over the next 12 months.

Prices in more than half the country already have surpassed their previous peaks, and almost 20%t of metropolitan areas are now at their price peaks, according to CoreLogic.

Strong job gains, household formation, population growth and still-attractive mortgage rates in the face of tight inventories are fueling a continuing surge in home prices across the U.S., said Frank D. Martell, CoreLogic president and CEO..