National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicts home prices rising by 15% over the next three years.

Mr. Yun is widely known for his optimistic predictions. Home values have plunged a third or more, leaving millions of Americans owing more than their mortgage, so any talk of rising home prices is welcome news. If the values increase, they might feel comfortable enough to buy a bigger home or retire to a smaller one. This helps everyone from real-estate agents to business' selling everything for said house, from furniture to paint.

"Builders need to add more," Mr. Yun said at the annual conference. "We need to moderate the price growth." Builders are dealing with increased costs and don't want to build too many homes, just in case the economy drops. One factor holding up construction: Small homes are having difficulty getting financed from local lenders. Supply remains relatively scarce as builders are not building as many homes as in past years.

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