The Case-Shiller Index provides a great historical view of home values in the San Francisco Bay Area. This index covers five counties, however does not include Santa Clara County (Silicon Valley). Their “high-priced” and “mid-tier” priced homes is a good representation of Silicon Valley homes. These numbers are for home sales up to April, so minimal impact from Covid-19 is reflected.

Interesting to note that homes have appreciated by 6% on a compound annual basis (CAGR) since 1987, including a Great Recession. You can see the significant advantage of owning a home in the Bay Area compared to the national average. Clearly a benefit of our robust and growing economy.

The chart below breaks-out the difference between three tiers of home prices: high, medium and low. The lower tiers show more variability reflecting a greater impact of lending rules and rates on buyers, especially during the 2001-07 financing bubble.

The next chart focuses on the “high-price” tier home. Note that homes prices do not decline often or by much. Declines of 10% for recession and internet bubble and 27% for the Great Recession. After which values returned and continued growing relatively quickly.

I find the Case-Shiller Index to be the best source for understanding long-term historical home pricing trends. My website at provides more specific pricing trends going back to 1998 for 12 cities in Silicon Valley, from Menlo Park to Los Gatos.

Bay Area prices: 35-year history