25 September 2009

Chart of the Day

Where do we stand with the US residential real estate?

Whilst the Case-Shiller index has improved over the past few releases, yesterday's single-family home price dropped 2.3% in August.The stock market sold off on the news.

today's chart illustrates the US median price of a single-family home over the past 39 years. Not only did housing prices increase at a rapid rate from 1991 to 2005, the rate at which housing prices increased – increased. That brings us to today's chart which illustrates how housing prices are currently 30% off their 2005 peak. In fact, a home buyer who bought the median priced single-family home at the 1979 peak has seen that home appreciate by a mere 4%. Not an impressive performance considering that three decades have passed. Over the past two months, single-family home prices have resumed their decline and remain (until proven otherwise) in an accelerated downtrend.