There is little doubt that home prices nationally are sinking faster than the Cowboys. But the one thing that no one has been able to identify is what’s going on here – where we live. In the past month, I’ve seen these headlines about Dallas home prices and sales: “Dallas-Fort Worth foreclosures rising,” “Pre-owned home sales drop 33 percent,” “New report shows rise in Dallas-area home prices,” and “U.S. new home sales fall to slowest pace in 18 years.”

Which is why we devised the Advocate Home Price Snapshot, which tracks the average home sale price in the 23 ZIP codes where we do magazines (and a huge, massive tip o’ the cyber hat to Coldwell Baker’s Ron Burch, who assembled the numbers). No need to try and wade through figures and statistics and try to make sense of a national or regional study; just look for your ZIP code. Can’t get much more local than that.

The good news is that Lake Highlands seems to be holding its own (and I go into more detail in the January magazine). Call it a flight to affordability, but two of the three ZIP codes in our neighborhood showed an increase in the average sale price of a single-family home from 2007 to 2008. In East Dallas and Lakewood, on the other hand, three of the five ZIPs showed declines.

The big winner? Preston Hollow, where three already pricey ZIPs showed double-digit increases.