Brokers report “high velocity” market, but with hope for homebuyers
KIRKLAND, Washington (Feb. 6, 2017) – Western Washington’s “high velocity” market continued during January with the number of pending sales (7,745) outgaining the number of new listings (6,507), according to new figures from Northwest Multiple Listing Service.
“Properties are moving through the market at an unusually fast pace,” remarked John Deely, chairman of the board at Northwest MLS and the principal managing broker at Coldwell Banker Bain. “Although we have a high number of new listings, they are moving into a pending or sold status within the typical 30-day reporting period. This phenomenon causes a low active listing count,” he added.
Brokers added 6,507 new listings to inventory last month (163 fewer than during the same period a year ago), while year-over-year pending sales jumped by 492 transactions for a gain of about 6.8 percent. New listing volume was the highest monthly total since October when members added 7,591 properties.
At month-end, there were 9,752 active listings in the MLS service area, which encompasses 23 counties. That total was 2,605 fewer than the year-ago volume of 12,357, a decline of 21 percent. Only three counties (Ferry, Jefferson and Kitsap) reported improvements in the number of active listings compared to the same month last year.
Measured by months of inventory, the selection is at historic lows in many counties. At month end, there was just under 1.7 months of supply system-wide, which compares to the year-ago figure of about 2.5 months of supply. Both King and Snohomish counties have less than one month of supply.
“If home buyers were hoping that January would start to bring more balance to the housing market, they’re going to be sorely disappointed. The number of homes for sale remains at record lows, and the growth in pending sales tells us that sellers are still firmly in the driver’s seat,” said OB Jacobi, president of Windermere Real Estate.
MLS director George Moorhead echoed Jacobi, pointing to five years ago when buyers could choose from 5,378 listings of single family homes in King County versus last month’s selection of 1,569 listings. “The real question is whether there will be relief in the near future, and the unfortunate answer is no,” said Moorhead, the designated broker at Bentley Properties, citing the combination of new jobs, a shortage of new homes, and a reluctance of sellers to list their home for fear of not being able to find their next one.
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 JANUARY 2017 combined report by neighborhood
INDIVIDUAL NEIGHBORHOOD REPORTS
Downtown Seattle Condos
East Lk Sammamish
Downtown Bellevue Condos
MONTHLY SNAPSHOT REPORTS
© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island | (206) 232-0446 | firstname.lastname@example.org | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.