Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for June 2022

Housing statistics from Northwest Multiple Listing Service for June show signs of a shifting market, creating opportunities for some buyers. Compared to a year ago, NWMLS brokers reported a healthy jump in inventory, double-digit drops in both pending and closed sales, and the smallest year-over-year increase in prices since June 2020.

Northwest MLS brokers added 14,223 new listings of single family homes and condos to inventory during June, up from both May, when they added 13,075 homes system-wide, and a year ago, when they added 13,111 properties to the database. Last month’s total was the highest volume of new listings since May 2019 when brokers tallied 14,689 new listings.

At the end of June there were 13,405 active listings of single family homes and condominiums. That’s more than double the inventory of a year ago and the best selection since October 2019.

With the uptick in months of supply of inventory, we reached nearly six weeks (1.48 months) by the end of June.

Both pending sales and closed sales declined from a year ago. MLS members reported 8,937 pending sales during June, down 27.5% from the year-ago total of 12,328, and down 3.8% from May.

Closed sales also fell from a year earlier (down about 17.2%), but last month’s total of 9,047 completed transactions nearly matched May’s volume of 9,096.

The latest MLS report shows area-wide prices rose about 10.4%, from a median price of $589,000 to $650,000. On a percentage basis, that is the smallest year-over-year (YOY) gain since June 2020 when prices rose around 5.7%.

King County had the second highest sales price last month, coming in at $851,000. That represents a 9.1% increase from a year ago, but a slight decline (3.4%) from May’s figure of $880,000.

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Source: NWMLS 7/6/2022

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for May 2022

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NWMLS members added 13,075 new listings to inventory during May, up 9.7% from a year earlier and the highest monthly number since June 2021.

At the end of May, buyers could choose from 8,798 active listings system-wide, up a whopping 59% from a year ago when there were only 5,533 properties in the database. That is the largest selection since September 2020 when there were 9,099 single family homes and condominiums offered for sale across the 26 counties served by Northwest MLS.

“The significant increase in the number of homes for sale has some speculating that the market is about to implode, but that is very unlikely,” stated Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere Real Estate. “What’s more likely to occur is that the additional supply will lead us toward a more balanced market, which after years of such lopsided conditions, is much needed.”

Even with the healthy uptick in inventory, there is still less than one month of supply area-wide (0.97 months). Twenty of the 26 counties in the report are showing more than a month of supply, with the tightest inventory (0.85 months or less) in the four-county Puget Sound region.

Both pending sales (mutually accepted offers) and closed sales during May were down from a year ago, but up from the previous month.

Pending sales declined about 11.7% from twelve months ago but increased 8.2% compared with April. Members reported 10,563 pending sales of homes and condos last month, up from April’s figure of 9,760, but down from the year-ago total of 11,969.

Closed sales dipped slightly from a year ago (down about 3%) but rose 9% from April. Members completed 9,096 sales last month, which was 278 fewer than a year ago. May’s total outgained April by 752 transactions.

Buyers can expect to pay more for homes and condos, although the increases may be moderating. Last month’s system-wide median price of $660,000 was up 12.8% from the year-ago figure of $585,000. Comparing percentages, that was the smallest YOY increase since December 2020 when it was 12.2%.

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Source: NWMLS 6/6/2022

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for April 2022

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Rising interest rates and inflation, coupled with slight improvement in inventory, may bring some normalcy to Western Washington’s frenzied housing market suggest some brokers with Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

Last month’s sales of single family homes and condominiums across 26 counties in the report had a list price to sales price ratio of 107.8%, which was down from March when it reached a 12-month peak of 108.2%. A year ago, the ratio was 106.6%.

Member-brokers added 11,681 new listings of single family homes and condos during April, the highest number since last July when 12,916 listings were added. Only two counties, King and Jefferson, had year-over-year drops in inventory.

At month end, the selection of homes and condos in the database totaled 6,514, the highest level since September 2021 when there were 7,757 total active listings.

Notably, the number of new listings (11,681) surpassed the number of pending sales (9,760), to help boost inventory. Pending sales were down about 7.8% from a year ago and down 3% from March.

Commenting on April’s improvement in total inventory compared to a year ago, James Young, director of the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington, suggested “This is evidence that interest rates are having a cooling effect on some parts of the suburban market and along the I-5 corridor.”

Area-wide prices for single family home sales (excluding condos) in King County also increased, climbing nearly 20% from a year ago, from $830,000 to $995,000.

Closed sales of homes and condos slid from year ago, from 8,791 to 8,344 for a drop of around 5.1%.

“We are starting to see signs of impact from the significant rise in mortgage rates earlier this year, such as an increase in active listings and months of inventory creeping higher, but the full impact will likely not be felt for a few months,” said Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere Real Estate.

Commenting on growing inventory of single family homes (up 27% from a year earlier), Young suggested higher priced homes requiring a mortgage “are feeling some heat from recent interest rates.”

The NWMLS report shows there was about three weeks (.78 months) of inventory of single family homes and condos combined at the end of April. By this metric, that is the highest level in nearly 18 months. MLS data show there was .80 months of supply in October 2020.

Despite the improving inventory, and in spite of rising interest rates, brokers report brisk activity and are not seeing prices ease much.

“One thing that has not been impacted by rising financing costs is home price growth,” Gardner said, pointing to double-digit gains in nearly every county, “including a whopping 27% in Snohomish County, the highest by far in the four-county Puget Sound region.”

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Source: NWMLS 5/5/2022

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for February 2022

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Multiple offers “the norm” for home buyers, but may ease with uptick in listings

Multiple offer situations are the norm for today’s home buyers, but some brokers with Northwest Multiple Listing Service suggest February’s improving inventory and a slowing pace of price increases may ease some of the competitive pressures.

Commenting on the latest statistical report from Northwest MLS, representatives of the service expressed optimism for the housing market as pandemic-related restrictions ease, but also uncertainty due to the global economic crisis around Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Northwest MLS brokers added 7,920 new listings to inventory during February, a 6.8% improvement from a year ago, and a gain of more than 33% from January’s total of 5,927. Pent-up demand led to big month-over-month gains in pending sales and more shrinkage in overall supply.

Sellers system-wide accepted 7,697 offers on their homes during February, about the same number (7,724) as a year ago, but a 21% jump from January’s volume of pending sales (6,350). Fourteen of the 26 counties in the MLS report had fewer pending sales than a year ago, a likely consequence of tight supply.

Closed sales also reflected 2022’s slower start compared to a year ago. Member-brokers logged 5,147 closed sales during February, a drop of 665 units (down 11.4%) from a year ago. This year’s volume of completed transactions through February is lagging year-ago totals by 12.6%.

Prices continue to trend upward. The area-wide median price for last month’s closed sales of single family homes and condominiums was $585,000, up 14.3% from a year ago, and up 5.4% from January.

Prices for single family homes (excluding condos) rose at a smaller rate, about 12.2%, increasing from $535,000 a year ago to $600,000 last month.

Industry analysts believe conditions will probably continue to favor sellers.

At the end of February, there were 3,461 total active listings in the MLS database, up from January’s total of 3,092 for a gain of nearly 12%, but down about 19.5% from twelve months ago when inventory included 4,298 listings of single family homes and condominiums.

Measured by months of supply, there was about 19 days (0.67 months) at the end of February. That was the highest level since September 2021 when the MLS reported 0.75 months of supply.

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Source: NWMLS 3/7/2022

Spokane Association of Realtors® Home Sales Report for January 2022

Source: SAR MLS 2/22

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for January 2022

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Northwest MLS brokers see signs of busy spring market despite slow January

A frigid first week of January, surges in coronavirus cases, and depleted inventory were among factors brokers from Northwest Multiple Listing Service cited for last month’s slower than year-ago sales.

In newly released statistics for January, the MLS reported 6,350 pending sales of single family homes and condominiums during January, about 1,000 fewer the same month a year ago for a drop of 14%. The year-over-year (YOY) number of closed sales also fell, dropping from 5,896 completed transactions to 5,085 for a decline of nearly 13.8%).

Broker-members added 5,927 new listings during January, nearly 1,000 fewer than the same month a year ago, but an improvement on December’s volume of 4,617. Only five counties reported YOY gains in new listings.

Last month’s pending sales outgained new listings to further shrink inventory. At month end the selection included a meager 3,092 active listings, down more than 30% from a year ago. There is about 2.5 weeks of supply (0.61 months) across the 26 counties served by Northwest MLS.

King County had the steepest drop in active listings, shrinking nearly 59% from a year ago, followed by Jefferson County, down 40%, and Snohomish County, down more than 35%.

A comparison of counties in the listing service report shows only about half of them have more than one month of supply, and these areas tend to be in more rural areas. King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties all have less than two weeks of supply. Kitsap County is slightly better with 0.58 months.

Last month’s prices were up nearly 14.9% from a year ago, climbing from $483,250 to $555,000. Five counties reported price gains of 30% or more, led by Okanogan at 46.3%. Other counties with price increases of at least 30% were Chelan, Kittitas, Pacific, and San Juan.

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Source: NWMLS 2/7/2022

Spokane Association of Realtors® Home Sales Report for December 2021

The Spokane market continues a sales pace similar to last year and to have more demand than supply, however inventory is beginning to see modest growth.

Source: SAR MLS 1/22

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for December 2021

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Northwest MLS brokers end 2021 with depleted inventory, rising prices, weather disruptions

Severe shortages of inventory, record-low temperatures and snow restrained December housing activity around Washington state beyond expected seasonal slowdowns, according to a new report from Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

Summary statistics from the MLS show the volume of new listings added area-wide dropped 12.3% during December compared with the same month a year earlier. Year-over-year inventory, pending sales, and closed sales all fell by double digits. Only prices rose – up 17.4% overall for homes and condominiums that sold across the 26 counties in the report.

The median price for last month’s closed sales was $572,900, up from twelve months ago when it was $488,000. Prices for single family homes (excluding condos) surged nearly 17.5%, from $502,247 to $590,000. King County was one of only three counties where the single family price change was under 10%; prices there rose from $740,000 to $810,000. A dozen counties had price jumps of 20% or more.

Northwest MLS brokers reported 8,017 closed sales last month, a drop of nearly 1,000 transactions from the year-ago total of 9,008. Eleven counties had double-digit declines, including King (down 16.3%) and Snohomish (down 17.6%). October was the only other month during 2021 when year-over-year sales fell.

Despite hurdles (including pandemic-related), Northwest MLS brokers tallied 107,354 closed sales during 2021, an increase 12.1% from the previous year when they notched 95,760 closings.

Even though the number of pending sales, at 5,850 overall, declined more than 15% from a year ago, they far outstripped the number of new listings (4,617), contributing to the meager month end inventory. In fact, a search of NWMLS records going back a decade indicates the 3,240 active listings of homes and condos area-wide is the first time the selection has dipped below 4,000 listings. A year ago, buyers could choose from 4,739 active listings while in November there were 4,621 properties in the MLS database.

Stated another way, there was less than two weeks of supply (0.40) at month end. Inventory was even more sparse in seven counties, with Snohomish having the most acute shortage at 0.20 months. Other counties that fell below 0.40 months were Clark (0.26), King (0.27), Island (0.29), Pierce (0.32), Thurston (0.31) and Kitsap (0.38).

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Source: NWMLS 1/6/2022

Spokane Association of Realtors® Home Sales Report for November 2021

The Spokane market continues a sales pace similar to last year and to have more demand than supply, however inventory is beginning to see modest growth.

Source: SAR MLS 12/21

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for November 2021

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Northwest MLS brokers not seeing much seasonal slowdown, say buyers still need to be bold

Historically soggy weather and the onset of holidays did not deter thousands of buyers and sellers during November, based on the latest report from Northwest Multiple Listing Service. Numbers for new listings, pending sales, and closed sales were comparable to year-ago totals, while prices rose a little more than 15%.

Northwest MLS figures show 8,571 pending sales across 26 counties last month, nearly matching the year-ago total of 8,584 mutually accepted offers. The 8,976 closed sales marked a slight improvement on twelve months ago when MLS members tallied 8,875 completed transactions (up 1.14%).

Twenty of the 26 counties in the NWMLS report added more new listings during November than a year ago, but with demand outstripping supply, inventory was meager in many areas.

Area-wide, there were 4,621 active listings of single-family homes and condominiums at month end, down nearly 29% from a year ago when there were 6,505 listings. The selection at month end amounted to about two weeks of supply (0.51 months). Five counties had even less supply: Snohomish (0.24 months), Thurston (0.35) King (0.38 months), Clark (0.39) and Pierce (0.44 months).

The Northwest MLS report shows prices within Seattle are essentially the same as a year ago: $765,000 for November’s closed sales, compared to the year ago figure of $760,000. Elsewhere, for example, for the Eastside and Southeast King County map areas, prices jumped more than 26% from a year ago.

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Source: NWMLS 12/6/21