Early Spring Housing Prices in Fairfax

Ouch. I just checked my “estimated” house value on Cyberhomes. For a while they had been valuing my place at around $470,000. I knew it was way over the market value, but it made me feel good to look at the number. Now it is showing:

Estimate: $385,517 | Your Changes: $0
Estimate Range: $346,965 – $443,345
Change over 2 months = $88,274 decrease
Last Updated: 3/26/2008

Yikes. My house plummeted $88K last month. Well, of course not. Finding the value of a house – especially in this market – is a difficult process without actually going through the process of putting it on the market and finding out what a buyer is actually willing to spend. But I am honestly addicted to checking the numbers on Cyberhomes and Zillow. The updates on Cyberhomes seems to be unpredictable, but Zillow updates about every two weeks or so. Neither are “accurate,” but are interesting to watch when looking for trends in pricing. Clearly Cyberhomes sees things deteriorating in Fairfax. Let’s take a look at Zillow’s estimate:

Zestimate: $408,500
30-day change: -$8,500
Value Range: $375,820 – $428,925
Last updated: 04/07/2008

Well, they seem to agree on the direction of the market early in spring. The magnitude is a different story. Ugh. Down 8K. Perhaps I should buy some puts on my house. Interestingly, the estimated range for Zillow is much tighter (only $53K between high and low) than Cyberhome’s range of $97K between high and low.

It is early in the season. The weather is still unseasonably cold and dreary in Fairfax, not the springy weather that bring buyers out looking for a new place to call home. I am not in the market, nor do I plan to be, to sell my house (well, offer my $1M and we might be able to talk), but it will be very interesting to watch the pricing trend as we enter this highly anticipated real estate season.