Case-Shiller: Seattle Home Prices Rise Early in February

Let’s have a look at the latest data from the Case-Shiller Home Price Index. According to February data, Seattle-area home prices were:

Up 0.6% January to February
Up 12.8% YOY.
Down 17.3% from the July 2007 peak

Last year prices fell 0.3% from December to January and year-over-year prices were up 8.7%.

Home prices in Seattle rose between January and February for the first time since 2007.

Here’s an interactive graph of the year-over-year change for all twenty Case-Shiller-tracked cities, courtesy of Tableau Software (check and un-check the boxes on the right):

Seattle’s position for month-over-month changes shot up from #19 in January to #3 in February. Only San Diego and Portland saw home prices rise more between January and February than they did in Seattle.

Case-Shiller HPI: Month-to-Month

Hit the jump for the rest of our monthly Case-Shiller charts, including the interactive chart of raw index data for all 20 cities.

In February, nine of the twenty Case-Shiller-tracked cities gained more year-over-year than Seattle (one less than January):

  • Las Vegas at +23.1%
  • San Francisco at +22.7%
  • San Diego at +19.9%
  • Los Angeles at +18.2%
  • Atlanta at +16.1%
  • Miami at +16.0%
  • Detroit at +15.5%
  • Tampa at +13.4%
  • Portland at +13.3%

Ten cities gained less than Seattle as of February: Phoenix, Chicago, Dallas, Minneapolis, Denver, Washington DC, Boston, Charlotte, New York, and Cleveland.

Here’s the interactive chart of the raw HPI for all twenty cities through February.

Here’s an update to the peak-decline graph, inspired by a graph created by reader CrystalBall. This chart takes the twelve cities whose peak index was greater than 175, and tracks how far they have fallen so far from their peak. The horizontal axis shows the total number of months since each individual city peaked.

Case-Shiller HPI: Decline From Peak

In the seventy-eight months since the price peak in Seattle prices have declined 17.3%.

Lastly, let’s see what month in the past Seattle’s current prices most compare to. As of February 2014, Seattle prices are right around where they were in September 2005.

Case-Shiller: Seattle Home Price Index

Check back tomorrow for a post on the Case-Shiller data for Seattle’s price tiers.

(Home Price Indices, Standard & Poor’s, 04.29.2014)

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About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market. Tim also hosts the weekly improv comedy sci-fi podcast Dispatches from the Multiverse.


  1. 1
    mike says:

    It’s looking as though this winter’s decline was seasonal and not the start of another slide. I stand by my assessment that we may well have another year of double digit appreciation in the core neighborhoods in Seattle and on the Eastside.

  2. 2

    Its Real Estate List Price Boom Time Along the “Open Border Pundit” West Coast

    And Seattle’s paying Canon $24M to revitalize the Mariners….time to buy Mariner wear and display your fan approval.

    I noticed many Seattle real estate businesses offer quick purchase turn-around with cash only purchases. It sounds like they’re getting better deals [or they wouldn’t be doing it] and making more flipping them too. So when you finance that home you may be buying from “cash only” dealer price specialists, you may want to spend your cash instead [if you have it].

    My advice, become one of them if you need to purchase and you have the necessary cash laying around. Same thing with dealer priced used cars….GSA auctions offer the best quality in my book….

  3. 3
    ARDELL says:

    RE: mike @ 1

    It’s been hovering in the 10% range as to best case scenario, so still has the potential to be higher single digit with an overall median of roughly 7%. Not quite as dramatic as same period last year…to date.

  4. 4

    Tim, REDFIN’s In the News

    “…Redfin’s findings come around the same time as new home sales have begun to lag in the U.S. Sales of single-family homes fell by 14.5% to an eight-month low in March, with just 384,000 units sold. Experts have blamed slow sales on bad weather, low home inventory, rising mortgage rates, and a rise in vacant homes (homes that are under repair or being rented). Whatever the case, one thing is certain — buyers today are at a distinct disadvantage when it comes to finding a home that meets every point on their checklist….”

    They blame the weather, how about do a Toyota….blame the car mats….

  5. 5
    mike says:

    RE: ARDELL @ 3 – I’ve been watching prices in a specific segment – 1940’s to 1960’s era roughly 2000 sq ft homes with 1.5+ baths and there seems to be quite a bit more pricing power this year pushing into the $600K+ range for 98117. This was highly unusual a year ago but it’s becoming more the norm over the past few months. In category I believe we may already be 10% over last years prices.

  6. 6
    ARDELL says:

    RE: mike @ 5

    Agree, and on a somewhat broader scale geographically. But I think when you take that and average it out by year end, the net result won’t be double digit for the year…only 10% for “high season” months and not the others. That will bring it more into the just under 8% range for 2014 as a whole, at best.

  7. 7
    goblue72 says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 4 – Most of those unhappy homeowners are unhappy because they didn’t do any homework when buying their home – they didn’t order a home inspection (which you can easily do as a pre-inspection if you want to be able to waive the contingency on your offer), they didn’t explore the neighborhood, and they want more room. The last one being the kind of thing everybody whines about. Add on that the subset of buyers who bought during the boom years and are still suffering.

    Also, those are nationwide trends. The 2000s housing bubble where we saw fairly uniform nationwide trends in the residential RE market was an outlier. Wall Street shenanigans using CDOs/MBSs to package together “underwritten to fail” loans into unregulated shadow market loan pools with AAA stickers slapped on top by bought and paid for ratings agencies (and then layered with some sweet cream of CDS on top just to make the whole dogpile even more explosive) turned what were once regional markets into a single unified casino.

    We are now returning to normal. (which will likely take another 5 years, given post-WW2 historical trends for developed economies recovering from banking crises). Regional market conditions are back in the drivers seat. Housing markets in tech centers like Seattle and SF as well as strong market cities like NYC, Boston, DC, LA, etc. – will thrive. Locations that had big suburban tract developments during the boom far exceeding regional demand (I’m looking at your Las Vegas) are going to continue having a hangover as the investor funds that swooped in to buy those subdivisions out of foreclosure start to dump their inventory on the local market. And struggling economies in the rust belt (Cleveland, Buffalo, Rochester, Detroit, etc.) will return to their declining ways.

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