In their February 5th press release, the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) shared optimism for our local real estate market. Pending sales for January 2014 were fairly even year-over-year. While the housing inventory, within the 21 county market the NWMLS serves, experienced modest growth when compared to January 2013, housing inventory is still tight at an area-wide average of 4.5 months. The good news: buyers are still actively engaged and purchasing well-priced homes quickly; multiple offers may even be part of the process, depending on the neighborhood. Sellers need to be cognizant of current pricing for similar homes in their community, to avoid overpricing their properties and lingering on the market. In addition, positive data in the area of unemployment is an economic indicator to continue following. All in all, our local real estate market is showing definite signs it’s in recovery mode! Below is an excerpt of the press release. To read the press release in its entirety, please click here.
Home sales during January may not have been as super as the Seahawks’ performances, but brokers cite several reasons for optimism during 2014…
Following the usual pause during the holidays, activity picked up during January when members of Northwest Multiple Listing Service reported 7,044 pending sales, about even with the same month a year ago, and a jump of nearly 35 percent from December’s total of 5,224 mutually accepted offers.
Inventory, while improving, continues to be a source of worry… Members added 7,342 new listings to inventory during January, improving on the year-ago total of 7,096. With those additions, the selection increased to 19,195 active listings across the 21 counties served by Northwest MLS. That’s up 6.6 percent from the same period a year ago when there were 18,008 listings.
Thirteen counties have more listings than a year ago, but eight counties are reporting declines in total inventory….Area-wide there is about 4.5 months of inventory, an amount at the low end of the 4-to-6 month range most analysts deem to be a balanced market. At this time a year ago, there was about 4.2 months of inventory. The tightest supplies are found in King County (less than 2.5 months) and Snohomish County (3.5 months)…One of the counties with fewer listings is Kitsap, where there is about 5.2 months of supply, down from the year-ago figure of 6.6 months.
Home prices area-wide increased nearly 6.6 percent from a year ago, but dipped from December. The median price for last month’s closed sales of single family homes and condominiums was $255,055, rising from the year-ago figure of $239,300. ). In King County, where nearly one of every four closings occurred, the median sales price was $364,875. That represents an increase of 15.8 percent from the year-ago price of $315,000….Single family prices (excluding condos) increased from $249,200 to $264,995 (up more than 6.3 percent). Condo prices surged 14.8 percent, from $169,000 a year ago to $194,000 for last month’s sales.
Northwest Multiple Listing Service, owned by its member real estate firms, is the largest full-service MLS in the Northwest. Its membership includes more than 21,000 real estate brokers. The organization, based in Kirkland, Wash., currently serves 21 counties in Washington state.