Case-Shiller Tiers: Strong But Slowing Monthly Gains

Let’s check out the three price tiers for the Seattle area, as measured by Case-Shiller. Remember, Case-Shiller’s “Seattle” data is based on single-family home repeat sales in King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties.

Note that the tiers are determined by sale volume. In other words, 1/3 of all sales fall into each tier. For more details on the tier methodologies, hit the full methodology pdf. Here are the current tier breakpoints:

  • Low Tier: < $296,017 (up 1.5%)
  • Mid Tier: $296,017 – $471,764
  • Hi Tier: > $471,764 (up 1.4%)

First up is the straight graph of the index from January 2000 through May 2015.

Case-Shiller Tiered Index - Seattle

Here’s a zoom-in, showing just the last year:

Case-Shiller Tiered Index - Seattle

All three tiers were up month-over-month again in May, but with smaller gains across the board than we saw between March and April.

Between April and May, the low tier increased 1.1 percent, the middle tier rose 1.9 percent, and the high tier gained 1.1 percent.

Here’s a chart of the year-over-year change in the index from January 2003 through May 2015.

Case-Shiller HPI - YOY Change in Seattle Tiers

Year-over-year price growth shrank slightly in the high and low tiers, but grew in the middle tier. Here’s where the tiers sit YOY as of May – Low: +10.3 percent, Med: +7.8 percent, Hi: +6.7 percent.

Lastly, here’s a decline-from-peak graph like the one posted yesterday, but looking only at the Seattle tiers.

Case-Shiller: Decline from Peak - Seattle Tiers

Current standing is 15.0 percent off peak for the low tier, 8.5 percent off peak for the middle tier, and 2.7 percent off peak for the high tier.

(Home Price Indices, Standard & Poor’s, 2015-07-28)

0.00 avg. rating (0% score) - 0 votes

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.

25 comments:

  1. 1

    More High Rent Coffin Nails to Destroy What’s Left of Seattle’s Consumer Spending

    That and high gas/food [$5/lb 30% fat burger], $10/2 lb cheese blocks, $4/lb bacon, etc, etc….

    Good news for the economy? LOL

  2. 2
    Matt the Engineer says:

    Pedantic comment: Is a reduced slope of increase from last year “slowing”? What’s a word for accelerating less quickly? “Negative third derivative of price” is a mouthful. Derivative of price = change from last year (up), second derivative is in the change in the change (still going up, as that red line’s sloping upward), third derivative is the change in the change in the change (going down! it’s sloping upward less than last month).

  3. 3
  4. 4
    Blurtman says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 1 – How does Seattle compare to San Francisco?

  5. 5
    Kip Wallbanger says:

    RE: Matt the Engineer @ 2

    Like when a rocket accelerates from dropping its payload after its fuel is spent? ;)

  6. 6
    The Tim says:

    By Matt the Engineer @ 2:

    Pedantic comment: Is a reduced slope of increase from last year “slowing”? What’s a word for accelerating less quickly?

    I think that saying gains are slowing is a reasonable way to describe this.

  7. 7

    RE: Blurtman @ 4
    Good Question

    San Francisco is Completely Hopeless

    Last I heard about their $2200/mo one bdrms, it was 4 to an apartment. At least when the landlord isn’t getting it all there’s some left for fast food, entertainment and booze….they share a couch and play apocalyptic video games together. Togetherness. LOL

  8. 8

    RE: softwarengineer @ 7
    California’s Gas Prices

    And don’t blame it all on taxes, their taxes aren’t that much higher than ours:

    $4.59/gal is the phony environmentalists’ method to get us in hybrids and luxury priced pea cars, when we don’t need to anymore…,they call it cafe standards. How about cafe price gouging? LOL

  9. 9
    wreckingbull says:

    By Matt the Engineer @ 2:

    What’s a word for accelerating less quickly?

    “slowing monthly gains”? Just a wild guess. Oops, 3 words.

  10. 10
    whatsmyname says:

    When you are averaging March-April-May in trend, you are basically looking at April. We know what’s happened since via the MLS numbers. The only thing CSI will do for you is mitigate the “bad news” by eliminating costly new construction and retarding the effective date of the data. But it’s coming sooner or later, (probably in two and a half months).

  11. 11
    Saffy The Pook says:

    I was taught in physics class that the third derivative of distance as a function of time is called “jerk”. Cue snarky comment about our resident trolls.

  12. 12
    Nathan Peterson says:

    By Matt the Engineer @ 2:

    What’s a word for accelerating less quickly?

    POP!

  13. 13
    Matt the Engineer says:

    By The Tim @ 6:

    By Matt the Engineer @ 2:

    Pedantic comment: Is a reduced slope of increase from last year “slowing”? What’s a word for accelerating less quickly?

    I think that saying gains are slowing is a reasonable way to describe this.

    RE: The Tim @ 6 – Hmmm… gains are slowing. To gain is to increase, and a slowing of an increase would be a deceleration (second derivative of price). But this isn’t a deceleration, it’s a decrease in the rate of acceleration (third derivative of price). Right? Maybe “accelerations are slowing”?

    Note: I’m actually fine with what you wrote, because the masses won’t know the difference. But I’m enjoying the discussion.

  14. 14
    ess says:

    Imagine, a low tier for housing almost at 300K. Now that Is exciting news (for those who own). For those who rent and want to buy – not so great.

  15. 15

    The website Says “No Comments”

    When I open it there are 14 comments, same anomaly with “open communication”.

  16. 16
    The Tim says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 15 – I noticed this, and I believe I have fixed it.

  17. 17
    scaredy cat says:

    Still shows 16 momentarily before switching to no comments for me on FF.

  18. 18
    The Tim says:

    RE: scaredy cat @ 17 – If you’re still seeing it, I suspect your browser has cached the offending javascript. Try clearing your cache. In Firefox I think it’s Ctrl+Shift+Delete.

  19. 19
    AxlRose says:

    RE: Matt the Engineer @ 2 – well you got the pedantic part right.

  20. 20
    Mike says:

    By softwarengineer @ 7:

    RE: Blurtman @ 4
    Good Question

    San Francisco is Completely Hopeless

    Last I heard about their $2200/mo one bdrms, it was 4 to an apartment. At least when the landlord isn’t getting it all there’s some left for fast food, entertainment and booze….they share a couch and play apocalyptic video games together. Togetherness. LOL

    Now you understand why people moving here find Seattle so affordable.

    I’ve seen some of these shared 20-something living situations in big cities and for someone used to ‘cheap suburban luxury’ of a place like Ballard it’s really eye opening. I thought I lived in some sketchy places in my 20’s but once you’ve seen 4 people paying $3,200/mo to share a converted garage next to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway that’s something else entirely. The ‘last tenant in’ would usually end up paying more rent, often $1000 or more for a spot in a place like this. You tell them they can move to Seattle and split a nice 2 bedroom with only ONE other roommate, total shared rent $2K – that’s a deal. Of course many of them end up moving to Portland instead (now known as West Willamsburg due to all of the Brooklyn transplants) and paying almost nearly as much. The more business oriented folks usually end up picking Seattle however, which in turn drives the somewhat higher rents even higher.

  21. 21
    scaredy cat says:

    Tim, thanks didn’t clear cache but no longer seeing it

  22. 22
    Gabe Sanders says:

    Let’s keep in mind that these charts are the national average. Each market continues to be local and there are wide degrees of variations.

  23. 23
    The Tim says:

    By Gabe Sanders @ 22:

    Let’s keep in mind that these charts are the national average.

    Completely false. As I stated in the very first paragraph of the post:

    Let’s check out the three price tiers for the Seattle area, as measured by Case-Shiller. Remember, Case-Shiller’s “Seattle” data is based on single-family home repeat sales in King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties.

  24. 24
    ess says:

    Please recall that the market generally determines the rental price of an abode. Of course, government interference, such as rent control may skew a market one way or another. The consensus amongst most economists is that rent control forces the majority of rents higher, for a majority of renters, while benefiting a small class of “winners” that secure a rent control apartment. Yes the rents are very high in cities such as San Francisco or New York City, but also recall that those cities have very low vacancy rates. In other words – people are willing to pay those rents and will sacrifice to do so. They may not like it – they may have to double or triple up, they may have to dedicate a larger portion of their income to those rents, but high demand in an area of limited supply dictates that behavior. So by that matrix, rents in places such as Seattle, San Francisco or New York City are not overpriced, because tenants are willing to pay the amounts being asked. A rental unit is “overpriced” if it remains vacant for months on end, while similar units are rented immediately.

  25. 25
    mmmarvel says:

    By softwarengineer @ 8:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 7
    California’s Gas Prices

    And don’t blame it all on taxes, their taxes aren’t that much higher than ours:

    $4.59/gal is the phony environmentalists’ method to get us in hybrids and luxury priced pea cars, when we don’t need to anymore…,they call it cafe standards. How about cafe price gouging? LOL

    And in Houston we’re paying $2.36 a gallon for gas.

Leave a Reply

Use your email address to sign up with Gravatar for a custom avatar.
Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Please read the rules before posting a comment.