Market Trends from Around the Sound: Third Quarter 2018

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. Below you’ll find a link to each of the reports with some key insights from the Seattle single-family and condominium markets.

Seattle | Single-Family Homes

Inventory is very much at the center of real estate conversations in Seattle, as the frenzied market of the past few years is trending toward a more balanced one that is more reflective of typical, seasonal trends. In the third quarter of 2018 there were 2.7 months of inventory, up almost 75% from the second quarter (at 1.2 months) and a remarkable 156.4% on an annual basis. This represents the highest number of homes for sale that buyers have seen in the Emerald City since the third quarter of 2012. Since that time, months of inventory has averaged well below that, sinking to a meager 0.4 months in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Though supply is healthy, home values continue to appreciate, up 5.2% compared to the third quarter of last year, when the median sales price was $770,000, though down on a quarter-by-quarter basis by 6.8%. As was the case on the Eastside and Bainbridge Island, the average days on market has leveled off into historic norms, with homes selling in an average of around three weeks.

Seattle | Condominiums

Just as we saw in the Seattle single-family home market, the number of homes for sale is dominating condominium discussions as well, with 2.7 months of inventory available in the third quarter of 2018, the highest number reported since the same quarter of 2012. Since that time, inventory has continued to wane, with numbers well below 1 month in nearly every quarter since the beginning of 2015. Given that there were few options for buyers, it doesn’t come as a surprise that condominiums in the city have sold at or above list price on a regular basis since 2014, when buyers could negotiate lower terms.

While some would expect that inventory growth would contribute to an increase in the average days on market, condominiums are selling in an average of 18 days, a figure that has remained in the teens since the first quarter of 2017, which saw an average of 23 days on market.