As We Head into Winter, Seattle is Named a Favorable Market to Buy a Home

Just a few months ago it would’ve been hard to believe, but according to Puget Sound Business Journal, a recent Zillow report names the Seattle metro region “the third best large market in the country in which to buy a house this winter.” Behind only Orlando and Boston, the cooling housing market and seasonal trends in Seattle indicate now could be a great time for buyers that have been waiting on the sidelines to officially move into the market.

As Aaron Terrazas, senior economist with Zillow says, “the housing market always slows down in the fall,” however “this fall and winter are shaping up to be more favorable for buyers who have struggled to buy for several years amid red-hot competition.”

Terrazas also points out that rising mortgage rates “chip away at affordability.” As mortgage rates continue to rise—with additional jumps anticipated in 2019 and 2020—now is a great time to lock-in still favorable rates as buying power continues to weaken.

Inventory is up in the Puget Sound’s four-county metro region, up 37% in September 2018 compared to a year earlier, according to date obtained by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service. All of these factors combined mean that the winter season could be the time for you to make your next move.

🌬️🏘️WHAT TO MAKE OF SEATTLE’S MARKET COOLDOWN, ARTICLE DATED SEPTEMBER 17, 2018.

U.S. EXISTING HOME SALES REBOUND MORE THAN EXPECTED IN OCTOBER 2018

There has been an increase in sales and, in effect, decrease in inventory that began in October. I believe the market is stabilizing. The trend graph below represents the number of homes For Sale vs Sold in King County through November 2018:

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The trend graph below represents the number of homes For Sale vs Sold in SEATTLE through November 2018:

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The trend graph below represents the number of homes For Sale vs Sold in BELLEVUE through November 2018:

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Home prices in Seattle have not stalled out. They are continuing to increase year over year, but at a slower pace than before. 

SLOWER (NOT LOWER) HOME PRICE GROWTH

Above: Multi-year price trends show the seasonal pattern of selling prices, which have tended to peak between mid-spring and early summer. Note the resurgence in November 2016 following the imposition of the Vancouver foreign buyers transfer tax on home sales. These data are for King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties—those factored into the Case Shiller Seattle Home Price NSA Index.

Above: Multi-year price trends show the seasonal pattern of selling prices, which have tended to peak between mid-spring and early summer. Note the resurgence in November 2016 following the imposition of the Vancouver foreign buyers transfer tax on home sales. These data are for King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties—those factored into the Case Shiller Seattle Home Price NSA Index.

To further illustrate this point, residential sales data was compiled from the NWMLS for the areas covered by the Index in the indicated months. Although these data are not equivalent to those surveyed by Case Shiller, they accurately represent the prices that buyers and sellers of single-family homes have encountered in the market. These data show that far from falling, median selling prices continue to rise—just not as quickly—among the areas of this region covered by the Index.*

*Selling data for “Lake Washington Eastside” comprise transactions in the following communities: Beaux Arts, Bellevue, Clyde Hill, Hunts Point, Issaquah, Kirkland, Medina, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Redmond, Sammamish, Woodinville, and Yarrow Point.

*Selling data for “Lake Washington Eastside” comprise transactions in the following communities: Beaux Arts, Bellevue, Clyde Hill, Hunts Point, Issaquah, Kirkland, Medina, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Redmond, Sammamish, Woodinville, and Yarrow Point.