Current zoning restrictions in various parts of Seattle are under discussion, as Seattle’s City Council has just begun what promises to be a debate on whether to upzone neighborhoods that have historically been reserved for single-family homes. Seattle Times has been keeping a close eye on the topic in a series of recent articles.
With effect from the October 2018 Case Shiller Home Price Index press release, Seattle officially dropped out of the nation’s top three residential markets by home price growth: “Las Vegas, San Francisco and Phoenix reported the highest year-over-year gains among the 20 cities [subject to the Case Shiller Index]. In October, Las Vegas led the way with a 12.8 percent year-over-year price increase, followed by San Francisco with a 7.9 percent increase and Phoenix with a 7.7 percent increase.” At 7.36 percent growth over the past 12 months, Seattle was not far behind; but the monthly result on the index (-1.05 percent) remained negative for a fourth consecutive month.
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.
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.
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.
Following the release of the most recent “Emerging Trends in Real Estate” report, Curbed put together a list of “The 10 top emerging trends that will shape real estate in 2018,” from demographic and economic considerations to the lack of inventory and workplace of the future. In response to the article, I have put together a list of questions generated by the article that will be key to consider as we say goodbye to 2017.