Home prices in the Twin Cities and beyond continue to rise, but at a much slower pace. The latest S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city composite home price index showed home prices during November fell 0.1 percent from the previous month, but rose 4.7 percent compared with last year.

Prices in the Twin Cities metro fell 0.7 percent from October to November, but were up just 1.5 percent from November 2013 to November 2014.

This natonal report paints a more dour picture of house prices than the local report, which has shown annual median prices increases of 5 to 8 percent depending on the month. The discrepancy is all about statistics. Case-Shiller is an indexed, three-month average that compares repeat sales of the same house. The local report is a median based on all sales that happened during the month.

There was better news today about new home sales. A national report showed that new home sales in December rose to the highest level in more than six years, increasing nearly 12 percent from November to December. Here's a link to that report from the U.S. Census Bureau.