Our local real estate market took some interesting turns in 2018, as the frenetic conditions of the first half of the year gave way to a more balanced environment in the third quarter. Data for the fourth quarter of 2018 has arrived, so before we turn our attention to the new year and what lies ahead, let’s take a look at the market trends that closed out 2018.
Until recently, the Seattle real estate market headlines didn’t seem to change much, each remarking upon the area’s unprecedented home price growth and highly competitive climate for buyers. The past few months, however, have given way to a slightly different narrative, as increasing inventory and a less frenetic environment have pushed the market closer to a neutral one (though still decidedly in favor of sellers). Below we’ve outlined how these new market trends are playing out in the local real estate market with a look at Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty’s recently released market report for the third quarter of 2018.
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As stated recently in a Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty (RSIR) blog, “The main cause of Seattle’s urban evolution is, first and foremost, that people want to live here.” That fact is reflected in the constant stream of people moving into the city. Earlier this year, The Seattle Times reported that Seattle grew 18.7 percent in the last decade, gaining 114,000 people and ranking as the fastest growing city in the nation. That growth is expected to continue through the next several decades; and by 2035 the expected population of Seattle will gain another 120,000 residents (and another 115,000 jobs).
An international organization of high profile property professionals, The Counselors of Real Estate® (CRE), recently published a report detailing the most pressing trends and issues affecting real estate. The “Top Ten Issues Affecting Real Estate™ 2018-2019” highlights five short-term and five long-term national and global topics that are having a direct impact on the real estate market. In a quick summary, we wanted to share the issues they thought were most pressing.
While it's true that home prices have continued to rise throughout the Seattle-Metro area, there are also some new and interesting statistics to go along with rising median prices. Realogics Sotheby's International Realty recently released their second-quarter market trends report for 2018 and we wanted to share a few statistics that jumped out at us.
The record high housing prices in Seattle have been in the news for over a year and a half now. "Seattle's median home price of $830,000 is up 14 percent from a year ago and sets a record after holding steady at the previous high of $819,000 in March and April" states The Seattle Times. Despite new and increased inventory in May, single-family home prices continued to increase further, still - arriving at the current $830,000 median.
The home values in the Seattle area are at an all time high. The median price for a single-family home in Seattle is $777,000 and $950,000 on the Eastside. The Seattle Times recently reported that "Both Seattle and the Eastside have smashed home-price records as the region's market continues to be brutal for homebuyers even before the peak spring season kicks off."
While the S&P CoreLogics Case-Shiller Home Price Index showed San Francisco and San Diego starting to catch up to Seattle for single-family home prices in the months of September and October 2017, our Puget Sound region ended the 2017 calendar year at a 16th consecutive month leading the nation. "In December, Seattle led the way with a 12.7 percent year-over-year increase," states The S&P Dow Jones official report.
Winter in real estate is notorious for lower inventory, and often lower prices, but it may just be one of the better times of year to buy. Most real estate news during the winter is akin to lowering median prices, a slow in construction, and a dip in overall housing inventory. However, even with all of these things popping up in news headlines across the nation; Seattle's housing market continues to come out on top.
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Realogics Sotheby's International Realty presents a look at the housing market trends for the third quarter of 2017, check out all the details across the sound; from in-city Seattle living opportunities to the Eastside’s most distinguished residences.
Seattle | Single Family Homes
Prices continued to exceed seller’s expectations in Q3-2017, as the median sales price reached $881,000, a sharp increase compared to last year’s $786,000 average. View report here.
Seattle | Condominiums
The average sales prices for condominiums in Seattle as a whole increased by 11.6% compared to the third quarter of 2016, while the value of condos in the downtown core continues to skyrocket. View report here.
Eastside | Residential
Despite cooling autumn temperatures, the market on the Eastside is red hot, as the region’s same-quarter sales in the third quarter of 2017 remained steady from 2016 and the days on market decreased to 18 days. View report here.
The Silicon Forest welcomes one more company to the grove. The top search engine in the Chinese language, Baidu, has opened an office in downtown Bellevue in an effort to expand its reach in the world of artificial intelligence and cloud computing.