S&P Home Price Indices methodology tracks 20 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and shows large differences in the magnitude of decline between regions across the country. Below are a few points on the DC housing market from the data:
- Washington, DC increased 8.4% from market bottom in 2009
- Washington, D.C.’s December 2011 index level indicates home prices are still about 80% above their 2000 levels.
- At peak, Washington, D.C.’s "low-tier" market saw a level of 296.75, which means average prices were almost 200% above their January 2000 level.
- The "high-tier" market was up about 125% versus 2000; while still significant, high-tier homes a bit more than doubled in price, whereas low-tier almost tripled.
- From their peak, Washington, D.C.’s low-tier homes are down 43.2%, the mid-tier market is down 31.0%, the high-tier market is down 19.4%, and the aggregate market is down 28.4%.
When evaluating the relevance and impact of these numbers for your neighborhood it is important to remember that S&P methodology defines the "Washington metropolitan statistical area" (MSA) as substantially large, including parts of three states and the District of Columbia:
- Washington, DC
- Maryland - Calvert, Charles, Frederick, Montgomery, and Prince Georges counties.
- Virginia - Alexandria City, Arlington, Clarke, Fairfax, Fairfax City, Falls Church City, Fauquier, Fredericksburg City, Loudoun, Manassas City, Manassas Park City, Prince William, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Warren.
- West Virginia - Jefferson county.
Throughout the year the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices are published on a two month lag to offset delays in sales price data from county deed recorders. The indices are the leading measures for the U.S. residential housing market, tracking changes both nationally as well as in 20 metropolitan regions.