Home values up in parts of Southwest

On average, Twin Cities home values have dropped nearly 10 percent since last year, but some neighborhoods in Southwest have beat the odds.

Kenwood, Linden Hills, Fulton, Lynnhurst, East Calhoun and Whittier all showed an increase in property values the first quarter of this year compared to the same period in 2008, according to a recent report from Zillow.com, an online real estate service.

The areas have been less impacted by lender-mediated activity, such as short sales and foreclosures, as other areas in the city — particularly neighborhoods in North and South Minneapolis.

"The biggest differentiating factor between areas that have done well and areas that have faltered is due to less or more lender-mediated activity in those regions," Mark Allen, CEO of the Minnesota Association of Realtors, said.

Areas that have seen increases in home values tend to have older residents that haven’t leveraged as much as homeowners in other parts of the metro, Allen said. Areas that have decreased in value struggle with lender-mediated activity in the down market. Transactions have fallen, and median prices are down.

Ann Berget, a resident in the Kingfield area, saw the value of her home drop last year — a property she has owned since 1979.

"My home’s value had inched and lurched upward since I’ve had it," Berget said. "I believe that its value has stayed the same in the past, but I don’t think I’d ever had a decrease in value before."

Kevin Riba, a Kingfield resident who has also lived in Linden Hills, said the location and the people who live there are the biggest factors in the increase in home value. Low interest rates play a role as well.

"My theory on why the real estate is holding its own in this neighborhood goes more to the residents, their wanting to live in the city and in the neighborhoods, their current financial station in life and the sheer beauty of this part of Minneapolis and what it can offer its residents," she said.

Home values: First quarter 2009 compared to 2008

Areas seeing rising home values:

Bryn Mawr: Not Available (Over Quarter Change is 2.6 percent)
East Calhoun: 14.2 percent
Fulton: 3.3 percent
Kenwood: 22 percent
Linden Hills: 4.5 percent
Lynnhurst: 0.5 percent
Whittier: 6 percent

Areas seeing home values dropping:

Armantage:  -1.3 percent
Cedar Isles Dean: -0.7 percent
East Harriet: -2.7 percent
East Isles: -2.7 percent
Tangletown: -9.6 percent
Kenny: -7.6 percent
Kingfield: -8.6 percent
Lyndale: -9.2 percent
Marcy Holmes: -1.9 percent
Windom: -9.8 percent