The October release of the Case-Shiller index showed that San Diego home prices declined by 1.5 percent for the month.  This is a steep drop by recent standards — it’s been fifteen months since we saw a monthly index change of more than 1.5 percent in either direction.

Here is how the index price tiers have fared since the early-2009 trough. 

Unusually, the decline was nearly identical between the price tiers (1.5 percent for the low and middle tiers, 1.6 percent for the high tier, and 1.5 percent for the aggregate index).

Zooming out, the following charts display home prices since the peak and the start of the decade, respectively.

The Case-Shiller index is in a sense always “yesterday’s news” because it lags by a couple of months.  But it can be interesting because it distinguishes between price tiers (irrelevent in October, due to the uniformity between tiers) and because it can provide a more reliable confirmation of what we might already have suspected based on preliminary data.  In this case, the October Case-Shiller index confirmed my belief that home prices were dropping — but it also demonstrated that prices were dropping faster than I thought.

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...

Leave a comment

We expect all commenters to be constructive and civil. We reserve the right to delete comments without explanation. You are welcome to flag comments to us. You are welcome to submit an opinion piece for our editors to review.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.