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NAR: Home prices to remain mostly flat next year

Home prices may be set to rise.

Home prices may be set to rise.

A new outlook from the National Association of Realtors says that home prices will remain mostly flat in the coming months, and that those who don't take advantage of low interest rates to make the most of their relocation now may regret the decision later.

Speaking at the National Association of Realtors' annual conference in New Orleans, NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun said that the group expects home prices will finish the year up just 0.1 percent compared to last year, and will grow just 0.7 percent in 2011 before showing significant growth in 2012.

He added that the next few months represented a prime opportunity for families considering relocation because of the combination of low home prices and low interest rates

"Many people will look back to 2010 and say 'I should have bought a home back then,' " Yun said, adding that any increase in home prices hinged on job growth.

Both the NAR and Mortgage Bankers Association have forecast rising interest rates in the coming months. The MBA's forecast calls for rates of 4.4 percent by the end of this year, and 5.1 percent by the end of 2011.