Dr. Obvious: High or low end, Bay Area home values continue to climb

In most parts of the country, inexpensive starter homes are making the greatest gains in value for buyers.

But once again, the Bay Area is running counter to national housing trends — high-end homes and entry-level homes are appreciating at nearly the same rate.

San Jose owners buying into the lower third of the market saw an 18 percent return last year, while high-end buyers saw a slightly higher 18.9 percent appreciation, according to real estate marketplace Zillow.

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The robust annual gains for Bay Area home valuations have vaulted far beyond normal returns for homeowners and investors. Historically, San Jose homes have seen values grow between 7 percent and 8 percent per year, according to Zillow statistics.

During the last five years, values for San Jose homes at both ends of the market have nearly doubled. Starter homes values have been driven up 88 percent, while luxury homes, with a median value of $2.1 million, have appreciated 74 percent.

Palo Alto appreciates slowly now. High end SJ might not be high end BA

define slowly.