The following charts were produced by my friend “TC” who has been monitoring Case-Shiller and California Association of Realtors housing data. Although individual cities topped at varying times, the top-10 and top-20 city composites peaked in a June-July 2006 timeframe.

Case-Shiller data lags by two months and is from March. CAR data lags by one month and is from April. The charts all show home price declines from respective peaks.

Case-Shiller Declines Since Peak Current Data

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Case-Shiller Declines Since Peak Futures Data

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CAR Median Home Prices, Declines From Peak

“TC” writes:

Case-Shiller – March 2009

Home prices continued decline despite an $8000 federal tax credit nationally. Median national prices have now fallen 32% peak-to-trough over the past 3 years or $80,000.

In the 20 cities that Case-Shiller tracks prices have fallen from 11% (Dallas) to 53% (Phoenix). Price declines are highest in CA, NV, AZ, FL and Detroit. In all of the cities prices have now declined back to early 2000 prices and thinly traded futures data points to a bottom occurring in about 15 months.

It is important for readers to know that Case-Shiller uses a Repeated Sales Methodology (RSM) which provides the most accurate housing data available. Additionally, there are two newer columns titled “Price Level” which show both the last time prices were at the current level and what price level prices are projected to decline to based upon the CME Futures market.

CAR – April 2009

Home prices in California mostly stagnated month-over-month resulting in a disappointment for a state now offering $18,000 in tax rebates to purchase a home (7% – 8% the median home value). Median state prices have been more than cut in half and cities have declines varying from 40% to 73% peak-to-trough.

This results in the median Californian having lost nearly $350,000 in just 2 years! In higher rent areas the price drops are even more staggering with Santa Barbara South Coast leading the way with a price drop of nearly $850,000 in only a 1 ½ years!

This data does not use the Repeated Sales Methodology (as Case-Shiller does) and consequently can be biased based upon the sales pool. Additionally, the DQ News data includes the sale of new homes and resales; whereas the CAR data only includes resales.

Thanks “TC”

Unemployment is soaring in 2009 and so will foreclosures, credit card writeoffs, and bankruptcies. That will add to the inventory problems and further price declines. For additional analysis please see Mortgage Meltdown, More Pain To Come.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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