Following the release of the latest S&P Case Shiller Home Price Index, the Seattle Times once again proclaimed the decline of residential home prices in the Seattle metropolitan area. Contrary to headlines, however, trendlines give way to a more nuanced story. Some are using the Case Shiller Index to reinforce misleading growth reports, so let’s have a look at the data used to calculate the Index and compare it to results gathered from sales data in the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS).
Earlier this week, S&P Dow Jones released the August 2018 monthly results of their CoreLogic Case Shiller Home Price Index. Until two months prior, the Index had shown Seattle leading the nation in residential (single-family) home prices for 21 months. That run was brought to an end by a surge of prices in Las Vegas; and while prices in Seattle have continued to advance, the pace has slackened in the weeks since.
Statistics from the third quarter of 2018 are here and Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty has crunched the numbers with a look at home price trends in Seattle, the Eastside and Bainbridge Island. While the last few reports continued to outline a trend of low inventory and rapidly rising prices, change is afoot in the Puget Sound region, with home price growth steadying and inventory rising to levels not seen for years.
A recent Seattle Times housing column tackled a topic that is an important key to understanding our local housing market: zoning. As the article outlines, though 69 percent of Seattle’s residential plots of land contain single-family homes (which is about average compared to the nation’s 50 largest cities) it “generally devotes a lot more of its housing to single-family homes,” which is putting more pressure on a city struggling with affordability amidst rising demand.
I was thrilled to lend my insight to the Madison Park Times digital edition this month to discuss the latest market trends in our neighborhood.
Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty presents a look at the housing market trends for the first quarter of 2018, from the shores of Bainbridge Island’s waterfront homes and in-city living opportunities to the Eastside’s most distinguished residences.
I am pleased to present Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty’s review of 2017 market activity in the Puget Sound. William Hillis, our acclaimed Research Editor and Data Analyst, has assembled a year-over-year performance review of eight key counties and 29 regional markets. In addition to market analysis, the report includes a timeline of Seattle’s performance on the S&P/CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index, the “Condominium Conundrum,” landmark sales on the Eastside, the effects of Chinese capital controls and Canada’s restrictions on foreign buyers, and more.
As a recent Mansion Global article outlines, the rewards of investing in overseas real estate are many. It affords an opportunity to learn more about other cultures while diversifying your portfolio and accruing gains over time. Yet with the benefits comes a more complicated transaction process of navigating unfamiliar ownership laws, tax codes, and more.
Though the winter months have historically given way to slowdowns within the Puget Sound real estate market, there was no sign of a slowdown in February 2018, as home prices in Seattle and on the Eastside reached new benchmark values. As Seattle Times reports, “Seattle’s median single-family-home price hit $777,000 in February, $20,000 more than the previous all-time high set just a month prior,” while on the Eastside, “the median cost of a house was $950,000, or $12,000 more than the peak price from two months ago.” According to Northwest Multiple Listing Service data, home prices in every Puget Sound county increased by at least 15%, with many setting record high values.
A recent Seattle Magazine article asks readers, “What would Seattle look like if I-5 was covered?” The question comes as the initiative, which was first introduced to Seattle Public Parks two years ago, was given a $1.5 million feasibility grant by the Washington State Convention Center to explore how Lid I-5 may come to life. If approved, it would improve existing infrastructure and expand the city’s space to build housing, public parks, streets, and more – all over top of Interstate 5.
Though Amazon is keeping its search for the next HQ2 location under wraps, Washington Post recently reported that “in the vacuum, the tiniest shreds of information related to the HQ2 search are being examined with a level of scrutiny normally reserved for the Zapruder film or Bryce Harper’s coming free agency.” As anticipation builds over a murky waiting period, it’s hard not to get swept up in the theories, so here’s a list of 5 Amazon HQ mysteries to consider.
As Seattle has grown over the past decade, it isn’t much of a surprise that the city is now in the midst of a transportation crisis, as new residents to the Puget Sound region and growing employment in the downtown core have led to worsening traffic and climbing commute times. In order to help ease growth management, the Downtown Seattle Association, Sound Transit, City of Seattle, and King County are working together through the formation of One Center City, a partnership to craft a two-decade long plan that will transform “how we move through, connect to, and experience Seattle’s Center City neighborhoods.”
The value of condominiums in downtown Seattle continues to rise, and in 2017, a lack of new construction opportunities and increasing demand for in-city homeownership pushed the median home price of downtown Seattle condos to $625,000, a $100,000 – or 19% – increase from last year. Though the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index has continued to report record gains for single-family home prices, up by nearly 13% in October 2017, it’s key to note that the index does not include new construction or resale condo properties, and hence doesn’t reflect condominium price growth.
Want to know why a 4-mile drive in Seattle now takes nearly an hour? A recent GeekWire feature has the answer, in the form of a time lapse that illustrates just how much the Emerald City has grown over the past three years alone. The footage, which was taken from a camera mounted to the Space Needle, shows the coming and going of buildings all over the city, in what GeekWire calls “an almost cartoonish representation of the massive growth taking place in Seattle.”
The CEO of Redfin, Glenn Kelman, recently asked the question in a feature for GeekWire, and though “he’s convinced skyrocketing housing costs in thriving coastal cities will lead to a ‘mass migration’ of companies and talent to smaller cities in other parts of the country,” which begs the question, will there be a mass “tech exodus” in Seattle?
Seattle’s lack of affordably priced condominiums continues as recent NWMLS data reveals there are only a handful of homes listed below $700,000, which is now the median home price after increasing nearly 20% compared to this time last year. Though some potential buyers feel dismayed at current market conditions, market experts say some are finding relief in unit reservations and presales.
December 21st marked the tenth anniversary of the day Amazon formally announced that it was relocating to South Lake Union, “consolidating the company’s growing footprint into an 11-building campus” much larger than the former Beacon Hill hospital it occupied