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Home prices and moving activity dropping earlier than usual

A new report says that the usual winter real estate slowdown is happening earlier than normal.

A new report says that the usual winter real estate slowdown is happening earlier than normal.

While moving activity and home sales generally decline as winter approaches, a new report says that slowdown appears to be coming early this year.

According to Clear Capital, home prices across the country dipped 0.2 percent during the third quarter of the year compared to the previous quarter. And while prices still remain significantly higher than 2009 levels, they show a deceleration of the market.

"Compared to the softening quarterly gains we saw last month, the latest results of our Home Data Index indicate a substantial price correction has taken place in many major markets," said Dr. Alex Villacorta, Clear Capital's senior statistician. "With the effects of the recession still being felt by homebuyers and sellers, the lack of demand is causing strong markets to lose their upward momentum."

Not every market experienced falling prices. The two strongest performing markets during the previous quarter - Birmingham, Alabama and Bridgeport, Connecticut - each saw prices rise by more than 8 percent.

Home prices across the country have been depressed by a bloated inventory of available homes, forcing sellers to compete with each other for sales. According to the National Association of Realtors, there was an 11.6-month supply of available homes in August - roughly double the five- to six-month supply found in a healthy market.