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by Julie Schmit, USA TODAY

STORY HIGHLIGHTS:

- April home prices up 12.1% from year earlier, CoreLogic says.

- Price gains likely to moderate later this year with more inventory
Nevada, California show highest percentage gains.

- The pace of home price increases stayed strong in April with prices up 12.1% year-over-year, CoreLogic says.


The annual increase is the biggest in more than seven years. Prices were up 3.2% in April from March.

"Increasing demand ... coupled with low inventory, has created a virtuous cycle for price gains, says Mark Fleming, CoreLogic chief economist, noting that home price growth continues to "surprise to the upside."

The states with the highest year over year home price appreciation were Nevada, up almost 25%; California, 19%; Arizona and Hawaii, 17%; and Oregon, almost 16%.

A rise in the supply of homes for sale should lead to moderating price gains later this year, says Ed Stansfield, an economist with Capital Economics.

In April, the supply of existing homes for sale grew to 5.2 months, up from 4.7 months in March, the National Association of Realtors says. Realtors generally consider a 6-month supply to be balanced between buyers and sellers.

More listings are expected given that more people think it's now a good time to sell, Stansfield says, and because rising prices enable more people to sell at smaller or no losses.

In April, only two states posted lower home prices year-over-year. Prices were off 1.7% in Mississippi and 1.6% in Alabama, CoreLogic says.

The cities showing the biggest gains year over year for single family homes continue to be Los Angeles and Phoenix, up 19%. They were followed by Atlanta and Riverside, Calif., up almost 17%.

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