As we approach the beginning of 2012, let’s look back at the real estate market in 2011, and see how far we’ve come since 2010. Here below is a Concise Market Snapshot from The Cromford Report, and my own short commentary afterward. This snapshot has been re-posted with permission from The Cromford Report.

What do all of those arrows mean?

The first column of arrows lets us know how the Phoenix real estate market is doing today compared to last month. These month-over-month trends are always interesting to look at, but in order to see what’s changed since 2010, we need to look at that second column of green arrows…

Since Forbes magazine told us two weeks ago that “home prices are falling dangerously,” those green arrows must mean we’re still in a buyer’s market and the worst is still to come, right?

Not so much.

According to The Cromford Report, “The background to the trend arrow is colored green if the direction is favorable for sellers, and is colored red if the direction is favorable for buyers. It is colored yellow if the change was zero. If the circle is white, then the statistic is neutral for both buyers and sellers.”

Now, obviously, the term “favorable for sellers” is subjective, but those numbers reported today are certainly more favorable than they were a year ago. And even though The Cromford Report says green arrows are favorable for sellers, I think home buyers can find solace in them, too. After all, haven’t buyers been waiting for home sales to increase? Haven’t they been watching the average home sales price to see when it would start to rise again? Our clients sure have been!

Looking back, the chart above suggests the Phoenix real estate market improved quite a lot in 2011. Now, what is your prediction for 2012?