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Around The Block, Magic Touch Edition

At a Glance Home prices increased for the second straight month in May, according to the AP. NHC and NAR may well have a magic touch, with Minneapolis and Atlanta leading the nation in resurging prices. The Dept. of Housing and Urban Development’s monthly “scorecard” says housing is more affordable than it’s been for 10 years.

Renaissance of Rental Bloomberg reports on the “stunning” surge in rental demand in cities recently. The Center for Housing Policy’s reality check: Just because it’s not a house, doesn’t mean it’s affordable.

SPRAWLANTA, cont. Check out the PBS video below for more on how highways have become a public health epidemic in Atlanta, GA (h/t, T4). And Jonathan Hiskes tips us off to news that even suburbanites are growing tired of the highways.

Watch the full episode. See more Need To Know.

Wall Street Reform Success, cont. WSJ has more on the help the financial reform bill provides unemployed homeowners facing foreclosure.

“Securitization” a Dirty Word? For decades, bankers’ ability to bundle mortgages together into guaranteed “securities” led to tremendous market growth and more access to loans for families to own homes. But after the crisis, Edward L. Glaeser wonders whether the whole practice should be reconsidered.

Image: Scott Pollack for Barrons, 

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