The housing market has had an up-and-down year. But, according to Freddie Mac’s most recent Multi-Indicator Market Index, it’s been more up than down. In fact, the index – which looks at purchase applications, payment-to-income ratios, the local job market, and the proportion of on-time mortgage payments to determine the strength of local markets across the country – found the national housing market up 5.39 percent on a year-over-year basis. Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, said the good news is that overall the housing market continues to improve but he expects housing to continue taking two steps forward and one step back. According to Nothaft, this pattern should continue until the broader economy sees better growth, labor markets tighten, and household formations pick-up and bring more first-time and move-up buyers into the market. Some of the most improved states over the past year include Nevada, Illinois, Florida, California, and South Carolina. More here.