From the U-T:

San Diego County’s home prices rose 7 percent in May from the previous year, the second highest year-over-year increase in the country, according to the real estate website Nationwide, home prices dropped 3.8 percent in the same time period.

The Seattle-based company comes up with its home-value index by looking not only at homes that have sold but also pending sales as well as homes that are not on the market. In San Diego County, the median home price was $375,400, a 1 percent increase from the previous month. Of course, that’s down 30.1 percent from the peak median price of $538,200 in October 2005.

Here is the breakdown of Zillow’s numbers, which it releases every month, and how they compare with other home-price statistics:

How do we rank? In terms of price increases, San Diego County is second only to the Virginia Beach, Va., metro area. When compared with major metro areas, San Diego is No. 1. Next are San Francisco with a 5.9 percent increase, Los Angeles with a 5.3 increase, San Jose and Santa Barbara each with a 4.7 increase. If the list seems a little California-centric, it is. Of the top 10 markets, six of them are in the Golden State.

How about in terms of home price? San Diego has the ninth highest median home price. The most expensive metro area? San Jose at $584,000. San Francisco is right behind at $526,300, followed by Santa Cruz at $507,000 and Santa Barbara at $450,400. Again, if it seems all about us, it is. Of the 10 metro markets in terms of median home price, nine are in California . The metro area with the lowest home price is Detroit at $85,300. Next are Toledo at $94,100 and Dayton at $101,300.

Are some parts of the county doing better than others? Of course. The cities with the top gains from the previous year include Del Mar at 13.3 percent, Poway at 12.4 percent and San Diego at 11.6 percent. Those cities with the largest decreases are Rainbow, which is near the Riverside County border, at 17.9 percent, Rancho Santa Fe at 17.5 percent, and Fairbanks Ranch at 11 percent.

How do these numbers compare with other home-price reports? Last month, MDA DataQuick, which tracks local home sales, reported the median price for May was $340,000, up 15.3 percent from a year ago and a 4.5 percent gain from April. Also, last month Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, which real estate insiders watch closely, said San Diego’s home prices rose 11.7 percent from the previous year, but that data was for April.

With all the numbers up, does that mean we’re out of the woods? Not necessarily, said Stan Humphries, chief economist at Zillow. He predicted it’s going to be a bumpy ride this summer, and perhaps beyond, because there won’t be the federal housing credits to pump up demand.

High unemployment will continue to be a drag on housing, too, because no one is going to buy a new home when they’re out of work. There’s other bad news, too. Zillow said around 28 percent of all San Diego transactions in May were foreclosure resales — the national number on foreclosure sales is 19 percent — and 34.2 percent of all nonforeclosure homes sold in May were sold for a loss.

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