Case-Shiller: Home Prices Fall Nationally and in DC

by UrbanTurf Staff

The latest Case-Shiller report released this morning showed that seasonally-adjusted home prices fell 0.7 percent nationally between October and November 2011, and have dropped by about 3.7 percent since November 2010. For the first time in the past several months, the index reported that home prices in the DC area decreased on a monthly basis (-1.1%) while increasing ever so slightly between November 2010 and November 2011 (0.5%).

Case-Shiller November 2011

From the S&P press release:

Detroit and Washington DC were the only two cities to post positive annual returns of +3.8% and +0.5%, respectively, in November. While positive, both cities saw these annual rates fall versus October’s data.

While home prices in the DC area fell on a monthly basis, a closer look at the data reveals that the drop was actually just in the lower price tier of homes in the area. Between October 2011 and November 2011, area prices increased in the middle tier (homes between $293,756 and $457,827) and the high tier (above $457,827), but fell notably in the low tier (under $293,756).

The drop in local home prices breaks a trend of monthly home price gains in the DC region. Prior to this report, prices had shown monthly increases (based on the index) in eight of the last nine months.

When considering the Case-Shiller findings, recall that the index is based on closed sales and home price data from several months ago. Another thing that is important to note is that the main index only covers single-family home prices, so co-op and condo prices are not included in the analysis that is widely reported. Chicago and New York City are two of the cities where Case-Shiller provides a separate index for condo prices, but DC does not have a similar index.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly when considering the conclusions of the index, the area covered by Case-Shiller can only very loosely be described as the “DC area”. According to the site, the following cities are included: DC, Calvert MD, Charles MD, Frederick MD, Montgomery MD, Prince Georges MD, Alexandria City VA, Arlington VA, Clarke VA, Fairfax VA, Fairfax City VA, Falls Church City VA, Fauquier VA, Fredericksburg City VA, Loudoun VA, Manassas City VA, Manassas Park City VA, Prince William VA, Spotsylvania VA, Stafford VA, Warren VA, Jefferson WV.

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/case-shiller_home_prices_fall_nationally_and_in_dc/5028


  1. gina said at 11:29 am on Tuesday January 31, 2012:

    so if it’s only for SFH, it implies that SFH under 293K lost value, but all other’s increased.

    Where are the SFH under 293K in DC?

  1. Mark Wellborn said at 11:48 am on Tuesday January 31, 2012:


    Case-Shiller has a very liberal definition for its DC coverage area, including cities in West Va. and Pennsylvania. (See the full list in the article.) So, while there are not that many single-family homes in DC proper priced under $293,000, the property type does exist in sections of the more far-flung areas.

    Hope this helps.

    Mark Wellborn

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