Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Real House Prices

by Bill McBride on 11/25/2008 05:33:00 PM

Earlier today I posted the Case-Shiller monthly house prices, the house price-to-rent ratio, and the house price-to-income ratio.

Here is a look at real house prices using both the Case-Shiller national index and the OFHEO purchase only index.

OFHEO released their Q3 house price index today showing:

U.S. home prices fell 1.8 percent in the third quarter of 2008 from the previous quarter, according to FHFA’s seasonally-adjusted purchase-only house price index, which is based on data from repeat home sales. This decline was greater than the 1.4 percent decline in the prior quarter and the largest in the purchaseonly index’s 17-year history. Over the past year, prices fell 6.0 percent between the third quarter of 2007 and the third quarter of 2008.
Note: there are a number of difference between OFHEO and Case-Shiller (See House Prices: Comparing OFHEO vs. Case-Shiller), but the main reason for the difference is OFHEO doesn't include many of the really bad loans (subprime and Alt-A) that were sold through Wall Street. OFHEO is GSE only loans.

Real House Prices Click on image for larger graph in new window.

This graph shows the real house prices based on both OFHEO Purchase Only index and the Case-Shiller national index. (Q1 1999 = 100)

Both indices show prices are falling (although I think Case-Shiller more accurately reflects what I'm seeing in the market), and both indices show real prices are still significantly above prices in the '90s.

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