[Source: Catherine Reagor, Arizona Republic] — Valley homeowners have watched their property values plummet with a sense of shock and horror during the past year. But the gut-wrenching drop could be over as early signs of the market finally hitting bottom have appeared in some areas. On Sunday, The Arizona Republic’s latest Valley Home Values report will show prices dropped in every Phoenix-area ZIP code during the first eight months of 2009. A closer look at the numbers, though, reveals newer communities on the outer edges of metropolitan Phoenix are seeing smaller declines in home prices this year compared with 2008.
Those areas, including neighborhoods in Buckeye, Gilbert, Queen Creek, and Surprise, were the first to experience the housing market’s collapse. Those former housing hot spots could be the first to recover.
Older areas closer to downtown Phoenix, including many central Phoenix neighborhoods, suffered the biggest home-price hits this year. Most of these areas were the last parts of the Valley to see housing values tank, but they could bounce back more quickly because many of the neighborhoods are popular with people who want to live closer in. [Note: Read the full article at Worst may be over for metro Phoenix housing.]