Local Market Update – March 2017

Home prices are growing faster in our region than anywhere else in the country. After a brief slowdown last month, home prices in February jumped to new record highs. The reason? The lowest number of homes for sale on record. The surge in prices came well ahead of the normal seasonal spring uptick, adding even greater urgency among buyers competing for already severely limited inventory. It remains to be seen if the predicted hike in interest rates will help moderate the market. For now, sellers are calling the shots.

Eastside

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The Eastside, always the most expensive area in King County, set a new price record in February. The median price for homes sold in February soared 12 percent to $832,000. That’s nearly $100,000 more than the same time last year. With less than one month of available inventory, this seller’s market is expected to continue for quite some time.

King County

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A recent trend of slowing price growth reversed itself in February. The number of homes for sale in King County was at its lowest point since 2000, when records first started being tracked. That is down 25 percent from a year ago. The deep shortage of inventory resulted in a sharp increase in prices. The median price of a single-family home was up 9 percent over last year to $560,000.

Seattle

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The median price of a single-family home in the city increased 5 percent over a year ago to $675,000, another all-time high. Prices here have nearly doubled over the last five years. While areas of King County outside of Seattle are more affordable, prices there are growing even faster. The median price of homes in North, Southwest and Southeast King County all increased by double-digits in February.

Snohomish County

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After a softening of price increases over the past few months, Snohomish County saw record high prices in February. The median price of a single-family home jumped 15 percent as compared to a year ago to $412,500. With less than one month of supply in the county, brokers expect prices to remain strong.

The Perfect Storm for Home Sellers

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Thinking of listing your home? Sellers today stand to benefit from a perfect storm of market conditions that are delivering the greatest possible return on investment.

  • Record-Low Inventory: Fewer than 1,600 single-family homes were on the market in King County last month, an all-time low.
  • Record High Prices: Prices are at historic highs, and are rising faster than anywhere else in the country.


So, why not just wait and see if prices go even higher?

Just like with the stock market, it’s impossible to time the housing market. However, experts have predicted price increases to slow this year, and prices here are already showing signs of moderating.

In addition, interest rates are expected to go up this year. A majority of the members of the Federal Reserve’s rate-setting board predict there will be three more increases coming in 2017. These increases will cause mortgage rates to rise, which means buyers will only qualify for less expensive homes. This reduced purchasing power starts slowing buyer demand.

It’s the perfect time to list your home. Are ready to get started?

A Windermere Real Estate broker can prepare a valuation of your home based on current market conditions, walk you through the process, and answer any questions you may have. Contact your broker today to get started.

Windermere Foundation By the Numbers

For the past 28 years, the Windermere Foundation has been helping those in need in our communities through donations to local organizations that provide services to low-income and homeless families. In 2016, the Windermere Foundation raised over $2.2 million in donations, bringing the total to over $33 million raised since it started in 1989.

Last year, 35 percent of the donations to the Windermere Foundation came from agent commissions. That’s because every time you use a Windermere agent to buy or sell a home, they make a donation to the Windermere Foundation. The other 65 percent came from additional donations made by Windermere agents, employees and the community. Because of these donations, the Windermere Foundation was able to fulfill 664 grants and help 410 organizations that provide help to those in need.

And every dollar donated is put to good use! As you can see from the infographic below, even small donations make a big impact and help us fund things like food bank meals, school supplies for underprivileged students, and resources for children in crisis.

If you’d like to help support programs in your community, please click the Donate button.

 

To learn more about the Windermere Foundation, visit http://www.windermere.com/foundation

 

This article originally appeared on the Windermere.com blog.

2016 Windermere Foundation Recipients

Every year, the Eastside Windermere Foundation, with representatives from each of the 12 Windermere Real Estate offices on the Eastside, comes together to select the grant recipients of the Eastside Windermere Foundation.

In 2016, we chose a record number of 19 organizations to receive grants created from the support of every Windermere Real Estate transaction from the Eastside. These grants will provide services and support for the community.

Below is a full list of the local organizations the Eastside Windermere Foundation was able to support this year.

Acres of Diamonds

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This grant provides women and children transitional housing and support programs to rebuild lives from domestic abuse and/or substance abuse.

Assistant League

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This grant goes to the Operation School Bell program that provides basic items of clothing to low-income students, grades K-12.

Attain Housing

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This grant provides affordable housing to homeless families with children as well as case management for setting financial and social goals.

Backpack Meals

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This grant provides weekend meals to Bellevue School District students who are homeless and would otherwise go hungry.

Bellevue LifeSpring

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This grant supports the Breaktime-Mealtime Program which provides 80,000 meals to children during school breaks.

Birthday Dreams

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This grant provides birthday celebrations for homeless youth, specifically through their Birthday-in-a-Box Program.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue

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This grant supports Project Learn after school and summer camp programs at three low-income housing Clubhouses.

Congregation for the Homeless/Valley Renewal Center

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This is a first-time grant recipient. This grant provides food, toiletries, clothing, blankets, etc. to homeless families.

Eastside Academy

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This grant pays for food expenses for homeless and poverty-level students while they attend this alternative school.

Eastside Baby Corner

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This grant provides essentials like diapers and formula to economically disadvantaged children from birth to 12 years.

Hopelink

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This is a first-time grant recipient. This grant supports the Pantry Pack Program which provides lunches to poverty-level children in the 36 Lake Washington School District schools.

Imagine Housing

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This is a first-time grant recipient. This grant will target under 18-year-olds in their Support Services Program that provides affordable housing and life skill case management in East King County.

Issaquah Community Services

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This grant will provide emergency aid in the form of utility payments to low-income families in the Issaquah School District.

Kindering

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This grant provides developmental support, screening, and early intervention therapies to very young children of homeless families.

Lifewire

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This grant supports the Hotel-Motel Voucher Program which provides emergency short-term stays in hotels and motels for victims of domestic violence.

Mamma’s Hands

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This grant supports three Houses of Hope that house mothers and children from abuse and homelessness and helps them develop individual plans to bring changes to their lives.

Royal Family Kids Camp

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This grant supports summer camp for abused, neglected, and abandoned foster children age seven to 11.

Treehouse

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This grant supports the Little Wishes Program which allows foster care youth to participate in extracurricular arts, athletics, and other educational experiences.

Youth Eastside Services

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This is a first-time grant recipient. This grant supports YES Lifeline, a service that provides free mental health counseling and substance abuse treatment to low-income East King County youth and families.

Local Market Update – February 2017

The local real estate market remains very hot with extremely low inventory and prices that are rising faster than anywhere else in the country. However, that rate of price growth appears to be cooling from last year, dropping to its slowest pace in three years. Predictions of more interest rate hikes may further limit price increases. Those considering to sell their home may want to take advantage now of this perfect storm of record-low inventory and record-high prices.

Eastside

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Click image to view full report.

Those looking to buy a home on the Eastside continue to face rising prices and strong competition for limited inventory. With less than a month’s supply of homes, properties here are getting snapped up as soon as they come on the market, and often sell for well over asking price. The median price for homes sold in January climbed 14 percent compared to a year ago to $793,000.

King County

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Click image to view full report.

Buyers scrambling to beat increasing interest rates have depleted an already record-low supply of homes. Fewer than 1,600 single-family homes were on the market in King County in January, beating December’s all-time low. The median price of a single family home was up 7 percent over last year to $525,000, but that is the cheapest home prices have been in 11 months. Time will tell whether that price moderation is an anomaly or the continuation of a trend.

Seattle

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Click image to view full report.

After months of robust increases, Seattle home prices slowed down in January. The median price of a single-family home in the city inched up 3 percent over a year ago to $635,000. Some areas of the city even saw small price drops. That should spell good news for buyers, yet razor thin inventory continues to make it a solid seller’s market.

Snohomish County

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Click image to view full report.

After months of double-digit price increases, Snohomish County may be starting to experience the same market softening as King County. The median price of a single-family home in Snohomish County rose 8 percent as compared to a year ago to $410,000. Tight inventory continues to be a problem. There are 40 percent fewer homes on the market here than the same time last year.