August 26th Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

An interesting dynamic appeared in this week’s data. Seattle locales generally all saw stable, albeit flat, numbers while most Eastside areas saw decreases pending sales. We’ll continue to watch and see if it becomes a trend. Mercer Island’s $2 million and above market improved nicely with a handful of pending sales while small pockets throughout the region showed signs of turning toward a more buyer-favored market.

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

August 19th Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

Balance was the key word this week as many areas saw more new listings than pending sales. And, while a disappointment to some home sellers, balance is much needed to bring stability to our region for the long term…and that benefits us all. 

The Mercer Island $2 million plus market, while still a buyer’s market, improved somewhat this week and was joined by the Redmond $1-1.25 million price point-each now with a 6-month supply of standing inventory on the market. 

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

August 12th Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

Listing inventory has remained stable with about the same number of new listings as pending sales in all areas except Ballard-Greenlake, which saw a decline in the number of available homes for sale; and North Seattle, which had a 10% + increase in the number of homes for sale. Renton, East Bellevue, East Lake Sammamish, Kirkland, Woodinville and Ballard-Greenlake where are hotbeds of activity with a significant increase in pending sales over the week prior. 

Only one area, Mercer Island $2 million and above, was a buyer’s market—with 57 homes for sale and few sales in the past month resulting in a 13-month supply of standing inventory on the market. 

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

July Seattle Area Housing Report

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Monthly Reports

Western Washington real estate brokers see early signs of “a more balanced market”

NWMLS Reports (August 4, 2016) – NWMLS Reports (Aug.4, 2016) – Home prices are still rising but the supply of homes is improving, prompting brokers to suggest some relief is in sight for would-be buyers. “We might actually be starting to move very slowly back toward a more balanced market,” said OB Jacobi, president of Windermere Real Estate, in commenting on July’s figures from Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

The MLS report summarizing last month’s activity shows active listings (including single family homes and condominiums) are at the highest level since September 2015 and the volume of new listings added to inventory topped the 12,000 marked for the third consecutive month.

With inventory shortages apparently easing in some areas, once-sidelined and frustrated house-hunters may be resuming their search, based on the latest statistics. Pending sales for the 23-county service area rose nearly 4 percent compared to a year ago, setting a new high for volume during July.

Member brokers reported 11,657 pending sales system-wide last month, a slight drop from June when they notched 11,995 mutually accepted offers. Despite that dip, the four-county Puget Sound region had its best-ever volume of pending sales for July (8,545), eclipsing last year’s record number (8,248).

“We are experiencing a record breaking market,” exclaimed J. Lennox Scott, chairman and CEO of John L. Scott, Inc. “Last month was the best July in history in the Puget Sound real estate market. We’re in a frenzy hot market with a large backlog of buyers.” He credits improving inventory with spurring sales. “That additional inventory gave us the boost to not only be able to claim an all-time, best ever July, but to also position the last three months as the best in history for [pending] sales activity in the Puget Sound region.”

Some brokers, including MLS director Frank Wilson, expect the robust activity will slow in August as families focus on vacations and back-to-school preparations.

Brokers added 12,178 new listings to the selection during July, which compares to 11,198 additions during the same month a year ago for an improvement of nearly 8.8 percent. At month end, there were 18,287 active listings for sale versus the year-ago figure of 21,069. That represents a year-over-year drop of “only”
13.2 percent; it’s been hovering in the minus-20 ranges for most months since spring 2015.

King, Snohomish and Pierce counties still have less than two months of supply, with double-digit increases in prices compared to a year ago, prompting some buyers to expand their search to outlying areas.

The median price for last month’s 9,466 closed sales of single family homes and condos (combined) was
$350,000. That reflects a jump of 9.6 percent from a year ago when it was $319,250. Within the 23 counties in the report, the median price ranged from $57,950 in Ferry County to $505,000 in King County.

For single family homes (excluding condos), the area-wide median selling price was $358,150, a 9.2 percent gain from a year. King County had the highest median price for single family homes at $555,000. That’s a 14.4 percent year-over-year increase.

Condo prices for July surged 17.3 percent from a year ago, from $260,000 to $305,000. Inventory shortages persist, with less than 1.3 months of supply area wide, and less than a month (0.90) in King County.

Northwest Multiple Listing Service, owned by its member real estate firms, is the largest full-service MLS in the Northwest. Its membership of nearly 2,100 member offices includes more than 25,000 real estate professionals. The organization, based in Kirkland, Wash., currently serves 23 counties in Washington state.

 

View the full July 2016 Report by neighborhood

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

MONTHLY SNAPSHOT

Click on each report below to view an overview of the regional data:
Seattle Metro
Eastside
King County
Mercer Island

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the North

August 5th Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

Fewer new listings this week have moderated sales activity to date in August, following a very frothy July–very typical for our market here this time of year. After benefiting considerably from this spring’s run up on home prices, sellers would do well to price conservatively now to capture the ‘back-to-school’ home buying crowd before fall sets in.

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Western Washington Real Estate Market Update

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News
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ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

Washington State continues to see strong employment growth, outpacing national numbers with an annual rate of more than 3%. Interestingly enough, despite these substantial job gains, the unemployment rate remains stubbornly high at 5.8%. However, I’m not overly concerned about this because it’s largely due to a growing labor force rather than a declining job market. This means that those who are unemployed who had previously stopped looking for work are now resurrecting their job searches because they have confidence in the economy.

I expect to see a modest drop in the unemployment rate through the balance of the year, and believe we will continue to outperform the nation as a whole with above-average job gains.

HOME SALES ACTIVITY

  • There were 22,721 home sales during the second quarter of 2016, up by 4.4% from the same period in 2015. We finally saw a much-needed increase in listings, which…

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July 29th Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

Several locales softened a bit this week with North Seattle showing the only significant uptick in sales. South Seattle and Mercer Island saw a considerable increase in new listings coming to market but sales were flat. Overall, a typical market for end of July in Seattle.

 

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

July 22nd Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

Renton, South Bellevue, Mercer Island, Kirkland, Central Seattle, Ballard-Greenlake, and North Seattle all showed an strong uptick in sales activity benefiting sellers. East Bellevue $1-1.25 million entered the buyer-favored realm this week while Mercer Island, South and West Bellevue maintained their buyer’s market in the $2 million + price point.

 

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

July 15th Seattle Area Housing Report

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Weekly Stats by Neighborhood

Sellers again took favor in nearly all markets across the region as buyers returned en mass from vacations or time away. The only segment of the market favoring buyers this week is the $2 million + price point in South and West Bellevue, Mercer Island and Kirkland.

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

 

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate

June 2016 Seattle Area Housing Report

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Monthly Reports

Market showing signs of adjusting, but buyers still see double-edged sword

NWMLS Reports (July 6, 2016) – Home sales around Western Washington continued at a torrid pace during June, but a 10 percent year-over-year increase in new listings has some brokers with Northwest Multiple Listing Service suggesting a little relief may be emerging.

In the meantime, “We have a long way to go to catch up with the demand,” stated Mike Grady, president and COO of Coldwell Banker Bain. Citing reports of projected job growth in the region (pegged at 70,000 new employees) but only 8,000 new residential units in the same forecast, he said this imbalance is rippling to outlying counties. Inventory is now shrinking at a greater rate in some of the outlying counties than in the tri-county area of King, Snohomish and Pierce counties. Pending sales in some of these areas sales are rising at a faster clip, noted Grady, a past chairman of the MLS board. “It’s as if the splash in the center of Seattle’s pond is finally making ripples to the outlying counties,” he concluded.

Lennox Scott, chairman and CEO of John L. Scott, Inc., described the market as “frenzy hot” in June, but suggested there was a “short breath of fresh air for homebuyers.” He credits the combination of more inventory coming on the market and lower interest rates with bringing some “welcome relief to the backlog of buyers who have been waiting to purchase a home.”

There were fewer multiple offers for each new listing, according to Scott’s analysis of the latest data, but he said 80 percent of new listings are still selling within the first 30 days in price ranges where 90 percent of the sales activity is taking place. That, he said, contrasts with a “healthy” (more balanced) market with only around 30 percent of listings sell in the first 30 days.

Northwest MLS members reported 11,995 mutually accepted offers last month for a 4.73 percent increase over the year- ago volume of pending sales. For the four-county Puget Sound area, brokers reported 8,869 pending sales, the highest total for the month of June since 2005.

New listing activity improved compared to a year ago with 12,759 sellers putting their home or condo on the market. That’s a 10.2 percent improvement from twelve months ago and marks the largest number of new listings added in a single month since March 2010 when brokers replenished supply with 12,994 new listings. Last month’s additions brought the number of total active listings up to 16,838 properties. A year ago, across the 23 counties in the report, buyers could choose from 20,333 listings.

With only 1.7 months of supply system-wide (for single family homes and condos combined), inventory is well below the four-to-six-month level many industry analysts use as an indicator of a balanced market. Both King and Snohomish counties have barely more than one month of supply.

Inventory of condos is more meager, hovering near 1.1 months area-wide. In both King and Snohomish counties there is less than a month of supply (0.80). For single family homes only, there is 1.82 months of supply – and even less than that level in all four central Puget Sound counties.

Not surprisingly, prices continue to escalate. In fact, a recent report from CoreLogic, a property analytics company, indicated home prices are rising faster in Washington than in any other state in the nation.

Last month’s 9,805 pending sales across all counties in the MLS report had a median selling price of $350,000, which is nearly 8.9 percent higher than the year-ago figure of $321,500. Seventeen of the 23 counties experienced double-digit increases, led by Grant County (up 24.9 percent), Jefferson County (up 24.4 percent) and Skagit County (up nearly 23.8 percent).

In King County, which accounted for about 40 percent of the sales, the median price surged 13.3 percent from a year ago, rising from $450,000 to $510,000. For single family homes only (excluding condos), prices in King County rose 14.7 percent, from $500,000 to $573,522. Condo prices skyrocketed nearly 22 percent compared to a year ago. The median sales price last month was $350,000; twelve months ago the buyer of a median-priced condo in King County paid $287,000.

Buyers are seeing rapidly-rising prices as a double-edged sword, according to George Moorhead, the designated broker at Bentley Properties. “On one hand, the market is a fabulous investment and a way to secure monthly housing costs,” he explained, but added, “On the other side, prices and scarce inventory are getting out of hand. For the first time, we’re hearing a common theme,” he stated. Buyers are willing to make “huge sacrifices,” such as significant concessions on a home’s square footage, in order to be closer to jobs and good schools, he said, and they’re foregoing once-desired “core features” for their family’s home.

Moorhead, a board member at Northwest MLS, characterized the current market as a “vicious cycle” and “predatory” but different than what led to the 2007-2008 housing crash, in part because buyers are making large down payments instead of relying on zero down programs. The high down payments (achieved at times by borrowing from family) are sometimes made to help cover the difference between the sales price and appraised value. When coupled with concessions on the “needs” or “wish” lists, Moorhead said these sacrifices are creating a market that cannot be sustained.

In the short term, activity continues at a brisk pace, and now Brexit (Britain’s vote to exit the European Union) may contribute to an uptick in home sales, according to some brokers and industry-watchers.

“Demand for U.S. real estate could rise,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors®. He attributes uncertainty before the Brexit vote as the likely reason the Federal Reserve decided not to raise interest rates in June and said the U.S. could face an influx of foreign buyers looking to pull out of the U.K.

Windermere president O B Jacobi agreed the U.S. housing market could end up benefitting from Brexit. “Uncertain economic times almost always lead to a ‘flight to safety,’ which means global capital pouring into the United States bond market at an aggressive rate. This ultimately drives down mortgage rates and makes it cheaper for home buyers to borrow money,” he stated.

On the flip side, Jacobi acknowledged in markets like Seattle this could also cause housing affordability to take another hit. “Lower interest rates will likely draw more buyers into the market, compounding already competitive conditions, and driving up home prices even further,” he noted.

“While the world is watching Brexit, oil prices and political theatrics, the average American still needs to transfer, take a new job, receive orders to a new duty station, move to a smaller or one-level home, or purchase a bigger home to accommodate growing family needs,” Wilson remarked, adding, “We continue to see good traffic at open houses, multiple offers on correctly priced homes, and people excited about the next phase of life that a new home brings.”

Despite the challenges, Scott believes the market is encouraging for owners who have been considering a move. “It’s a cause and effect situation: they find a home to buy, then put their home on the market, thus adding to inventory.” He believes the best opportunity for buyers to purchase will be within the next four months because of expected improvements in inventory and lower interest rates.

Northwest Multiple Listing Service, owned by its member real estate firms, is the largest full-service MLS in the Northwest. Its membership of nearly 2,100 member offices includes more than 25,000 real estate professionals. The organization, based in Kirkland, Wash., currently serves 23 counties in Washington state.

 

View the full June 2016 Report by neighborhood

Individual Reports

SEATTLE
West Seattle
South Seattle
Central Seattle
Queen Anne
Ballard/Greenlake
North Seattle
EASTSIDE
South Bellevue
Mercer Island
West Bellevue
East Bellevue
East Lk Sammamish
Redmond
Kirkland
Woodinville
Renton Highlands

MONTHLY SNAPSHOT

Click on each report below to view an overview of the regional data:
Seattle Metro
Eastside
King County
Mercer Island

© Copyright 2016, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Statistics provided by the North