San Diego home prices on the whole declined again last month, as measured by the median price per square foot.

But the aggregate decline of .2 percent masked a disparity — the median price per square foot was down 5.2 percent for condos but up 1.3 percent for detached homes.

I’ve always said that the detached home series is the more reliable indicator of the two, largely because there are more detached homes sold and thus a larger sample size.  So why the dour headline?

Two reasons.  First, while detached home prices by this measure may have been up from the prior month, they were still lower than they were during the stimulus-laden spring-summer period, implying that we may be trending down from that level.  And second, changes in supply and demand suggest price weakness, or at least a distinct lack of price strength, ahead.  I’ll go more into this latter subject in my next post.

Please contact Rich Toscano at and follow him on Twitter at

Rich Toscano has been observing the housing market for Voice of San Diego, with the occasional prolonged absence, since 2006. Follow him on Twitter at...

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