Ironically this January started out just like last January, when there were not enough homes for sale to meet the demand from buyers. Last year appreciation soared into the double digits for the first time in years because of this lack of inventory..
The difference between last year and this year? Because of the lack of inventory last year, prices jumped up. The median price for real estate sales on Seattle's eastside this past January was $600,000. In 2013? Median pricing was $513,000. Price per square foot for a home on the eastside went from $228 to $268.
Eastside sellers, this is your time. Buyers are lining up to buy the homes that show well and are priced well. Buyers, it's not going to get less expensive in the future, so it's in your best interest to get out there and start looking now, rather than later. This may sound like hype, but it is the reality of the Seattle Eastside real estate market. It's very simply the law of supply and demand that's at work here.
If you have questions about the value of your home in this market, don't hesitate to contact us. We'd be happy to let you know how real estate is performing in your neighborhood.
But while you are pondering real estate, enjoy Valentine's Day!
Looking for a terrific picture of the state of real estate on Seattle's Eastside? Here it is! Since we're at the beginning of a new year, it's good to see where we've been over the last 5 years. It gives a good indication of where we're headed for 2014.
The above chart highlights the most important trends in real estate over the last 5 years, from 2009-2013. You can find median pricing, the number of homes on the market and the number of home sales per month and by year, and how long the supply would last, based on the number of home sales per month.
Here's how each of the three sections of the chart are set up. Each portion is divided by the years 2009-2013, as you can see along the bottom of the chart. The blue bars show a different month in each of these years. The red line shows the average for the year.
The top portion of the chart has the information everyone seems to want to know first, the median pricing. The fabulous news is how much higher median pricing is now than just a few years ago. On the eastside, the average median price for a home sale was just under $600,000 at $596,848.
The second chart demonstrates why prices have increased so dramatically. It's the law of supply and demand. The supply dropped considerably in 2012 and and 2013, thus increasing demand for this drastically decreased inventory of homes for sale, causing prices to jump. With the amount of inventory at a low point at the start of 2014, we expect listings to move very quickly. Our first listing of the year sold in 24 hours. The home was not underpriced. It was well priced, staged beautifully, and in excellent condition. This type of home is very "hot" right now, as buyers are looking to find great homes.
Another interesting detail to notice on the middle portion of the chart besides the decline in supply, is the number of home sales each year stays more constant, even as the supply changes. The number of sales did increase in the last two years, but not nearly as dramatically as the decline in supply, The increase in sales is a reflection of more buyers feeling comfortable making home purchases.
The lower section shows how much of a supply of homes there is available each month. In 2009, when there were, on average 3400 homes for sale, it would have taken over 6 months to sell all the homes. In 2013, when the Seattle Eastside real estate had so few homes for sale, it would have taken 1 1/2 months to sell all the available homes.
The take away from all of this is how terrific we find the real estate market to be at the end of 2013, which is the start of 2014 market. We have low inventory plus many buyers equaling a high demand for homes, short market times, and increasing prices. If you plan to make a move in 2014, consider doing so early in the year, when the inventory is at a low point. Homes sell in every month on the eastside as you can see from this chart, the competition is far less when there are fewer homes for sale.
If you'd like more specific information regarding your home and/or you're thinking about making a move, feel free to contact us. All the best in 2014!
More condos were for sale in July than any month so far this year, but condo sales were still strong.
Median pricing dropped a bit from June to $272,000. This does not reflect a drop in prices, but only that the median price of the condos sold in July was less than what sold in June.
We expect prices to continue to increase. As an example of what's still happening in the market, we just sold a condo in Redmond in less than 2 days for 10% above the asking price! Not all condos or homes, for that matter, are selling over full price because of the increase in inventory. Our listing was staged beautifully, professionally photographed, and priced realistically. It immediately caught the buyer's attention and the seller received a fabulous offer.
Condos were on the market for less than 45 days. It would have taken less than two months to sell all of the inventory available in July.
Since there still are a number of condo owners "under water" who are waiting for prices to increase even more, expect the market to remain strong, even if inventory increases. We still have a shortage of condos for sale when compared to the demand.
If you'd like more information about the condo market or your condo in particular, please feel free to contact us. We're here to help!
Finally, there were a few more homes for sale on Seattle's eastside in March, the first month since August of last year!
Did this increase in inventory dampen the number of sales? So far, nothing has slowed down the rate of sales. In fact, the rate of home sales in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, and other eastside cities was higher in March than February. Seventy-eight percent of the homes on the market sold! There is still more than one buyer for each home, so multiple offers remain the norm.
It's been hopping out there in the real estate market on the eastside. We're starting to see some Eastside buyers behave like Seattle buyers. This past weekend, a buyer pre-inspected one of our listings before making an offer. Rumor had it that there were going to be at least 4 offers on the table and this particular buyer wanted to come to that table with a very clean, straightforward offer. Buyers in Seattle have pre-inspected homes for years when the market has been hot. It's not something we've seen as much on the eastside, but we wouldn't be surprised if it continues.
Here are the specifics for March, 2013 as compared to March, 2012:
- 78% of the available homes sold this past March, 44% sold in March, 2012.
- Homes sold in 62 days, down from 109 days in March, 2012.
- In 2012 median pricing in March was $470,000. In 2013, March's median pricing was $560,000. We're expecting median pricing to continue to work its way back up to the higher $500+ range, particularly since inventory is still so low.
It was the biggest monthly percentage gain since April 2012, when King County’s median home price started rising after 19 months of decline.
If you'd like more information specific to your home, don't hesitate to contact us.
In January, buyers were lining up to buy the few available homes on Seattle's Eastside. Sixty-five percent of the homes on the market sold! There were so many buyers that most homes attracted multiple offers and sold for over full price.
For many months now, I've repeated myself. I've been reporting that the number of homes for sale during each of the last few months is the lowest number in 15 years, yet with each month the number has gotten smaller and smaller. The start of 2013 marks the first time the number of homes for sale has dropped below 1000 homes in such Eastside cities of Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, etc, I checked back to 1990, 23 years ago, and this is the lowest, and the lowest by far, number of homes for sale. Traditionally, there are several thousand homes for sale.
Sales, on the other hand, are high. Eastside real estate sales increased by 17% from January, 2012, while the number of homes for sale dropped by 44%. Redmond and East Bellevue continue with the top the absorption rate.* Over 95% of the homes near Microsoft sold last lmonth! There were only 44 homes on the market in those areas and 42 sold!
Fewer homes to buy + more sales = hot market.
Sellers, your ship has come in! But keep in mind, the homes that sell for the best prices are in show condition, not in need of repairs and are priced right.
Buyers, you have more of a challenge in this market. But it can be done. You can buy a home. Be prepared with a strong pre-qualification letter, learn your market, and have a Realtor representing you who is a savvy negotiator in multiple offer situations.
Here are the specifics for January, 2013 as compared to January, 2012:
- 65% of the available homes sold this past January, 24.5% sold in January, 2012.
- Homes continued to sell quickly, in 71 days, which is down from 106 days in January, 2012.
- In 2012 median pricing in January was $470,000. In 2013, median pricing was $514,000.
If you'd like more information specific to your home, don't hesitate to contact us.
*The absorption rate is the percentage calculated by dividing the number of sales by the number of homes for sale.
What a year we had in real estate on the Seattle eastside! December real estate was on fire, just like much of 2012! Just over 1000 homes were for sale, about 1/2 as many as were for sale just a year ago. It's been over 15 years since there have been so few homes for sale in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond and other eastside cities. In a few eastside neighborhoods, every home for sale sold, but the bottom line is in every area most homes were selling, if they were priced right and showed well.
The area with the most sizzling sales activity was near Microsoft, in Redmond and East Bellevue. There was and is a dearth of listings, so every home that was for sale sold! Over 100% of the available homes sold in December! More than likely a few homes sold before they were on the market, causing the percentage of those sold to top 100 percent.
Our listings have been selling in a matter of days with multiple offers. Typically, homes sold for more than full price because of the intense competition and lack of inventory.
In 2012, 7300 homes sold on Seattle's eastside. Even with fewer homes for sale in 2012 than in 2011, more homes actually sold in 2012. In 2011, 5440 homes sold. In 2012, most of the homes sold were priced between $500-$750,000. The second most popular price range for homes in Eastside neighborhoods was $350-$500,000. Market time was really short by the end of 2012. It would have taken about 2 months to sell every home for sale, which was half the time it would have taken to sell off all of the available inventory in 2011.
Here are the specifics for December 2012 as compared to December, 2011:
- 46% of the available homes sold this past December, 17% sold in December, 2011.
- Homes continued to sell quickly, in 63 days, which is down from 106 days in December, 2011.
- In 2011 median pricing in December was $460,000. In 2012, median pricing was $506,000.
The median price of $506,000 listed above reflects the median price of the sales in December. The median price for homes sold in all of 2012 was $525,399, up from $502,784 in 2011. The chart below shows the median pricing for each of the last 5 years. As I've mentioned in previous posts, it makes more sense to look at the trendline (the red line) for the year then to just compare one month to another. It's clear that for the first time in the last 5 years, we are seeing a solid trend with price increases.
The fabulous activity in the 2012 eastside real estate market should continue into 2013. We've started the year with our listings selling just after the ink is dry on the listing and it's posted on the internet. With supply at an amazing low and demand still very high, there are multiple buyers for homes.
Seattle is on a strong path forward because of our strong economic footing, according to Jed Kolko, the chief economist at Trulia:
On the other hand, metros like Seattle, which came in second on the list of cities with the highest asking-price recovery, are on a smoother path to growth because of their strong economic fundamentals, he said.
If you'd like more information specific to your home, don't hesitate to contact us. Have a wonderful 2013.
Will there be any condos available to buy on Seattle's eastside in 2013? If we look at the chart, it sure looks like the number of available condos could disappear! Right now, if no more condos were to come on the market, it would take less than 2 months to sell those currently available. We really expect condos to be on the market next year, but it's clear we'll start out with little for sale.
The number of condos for sale in Bellevue, Kirkland, Issaquah, Redmond, Sammamish and other eastside cities has been cut in half since March of this year. That's a huge drop in a short amount of time.
Not as many condos sold this past month when compared to other months of this year. However, because the number of condos for sale is so small, 56% of the condos on the market sold last month.
Median pricing has increased from last year by $20,000 to $242,000.
We do expect the number of condos for sale to stay low in 2013 as many are still hoping to recover some of the value of their condos before making a move.
Stay tuned to the first of the year, which is just around the corner. We'll do a wrapup of this year's condo sales on Seattle's eastside.
Have a great New Year!
In the third quarter of 2012, almost 30% of the homes that sold in the cities of Bellevue, Redmond, Kirkland, Sammamish, Woodinville, Issaquah sold for over full price! The demand by buyers for homes and the lack of inventory is creating this huge uptick in competition for a home. When more buyers are competing for the same house, the offers often have to be for more than full price to stand out from the competition. Many homes are now getting multiple offers and many, almost a third, are now selling for more than the asking price.
We've recently sold several listings in which the selling price was over $20,000 more than the asking price! In one instance, the home had come on the market only hours before. The buyers didn't want to take the risk that another offer would be written before the seller had time to respond, so they offered over full price. Another home sold within 48 hours. Three buyers made offers for that home.
As you can see in the above chart, the homes that sell for more than full price, sell for about 3% above the asking price, with the range from just a hair over asking price all the way to 22.5% above the asking price!
Twenty-one percent of the homes sold for full price. This means 51% of the homes on the eastside sold for full price or more!
The homes that sold above full price only lasted on the market, on average,16 days. Homes that sold for full price were on the market for about a month.
But what about the other 49%? (Not to be confused with the 47% that was talked about in the election)
Why did half the homes sell for less than full price if the market is so hot? More than likely, one of these reasons was the cause:
You can't change the location or the fact that there is competition for a particular home. But when selling a home, you need to maximize your buyer attraction by pricing your home well, having it in stellar condition, and presenting it well to the buyers through fabulous marketing.
If you have questions about how to have your home be one of the 51% that sells for full price or more, feel free to contact us!
On September 29th, Go to Your Seattle Eastside Supermarket and Donate Food to The Eastside Month of Concern for the Hungry
Please think about shopping and donating to the drive on September 29th all over the eastside at supermarkets in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Issaquah, Woodinville and Sammamish. The Eastside Month of Concern for the Hungry campaign to fill Seattle-Eastside food bank shelves is happening this weekend. Many supermarkets all over the eastside will have volunteers ready and waiting to pick up food and cash donations for such Eastside institutions as Hopelink, the Emergency Feeding Network, the Issaquah Foodbank, and The Mercer Island Foodbank. Food bank shelves are a little barer this time of year and the need for food on the eastside has only increased over the last few years.
Part of living in a home in a neighborhood is part of being in a community. Help your community out by donating even a little to those who are less fortunate.
How was the real estate market on Seattle's eastside in August?
The market has been" steady as she goes!" This is a very good thing. We are experiencing a great real estate market that has followed a trend over the last few months and is far better than last year at this time.
The number of homes for sale has hardly changed at all. Ok, there were 8 fewer homes for sale in August, but that's just a drop in the bucket. And as we mentioned in a recent, the exact same number of homes were for sale in both June and July!
Did the number of homes for sale increase?
No, It hardly changed, but it did decline slightly. This had little impact on the market.
Did the number of sales increase?
Yes, by 6%. So we had about the same number of homes for sale, but more homes sold in August. This sounds good to me.
Did prices continue to increase?
Yes, they have continued to increase, but only slightly. Median pricing in July was $512,000. This August it's $520,000. Last August median pricing for the eastside was $506,000.
This is the third month in a row that median pricing has been up for the year. Again, this is a great trend!
The Seattle Times gave a very positive picture of the entire King County real estate market, which includes Seattle and the eastside cities of Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Issaquah, Woodinville, and more. Glenn Crellin of UW's Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies said:
But for now, he added, the local market looks healthy. Rising prices are giving more formerly "underwater" homeowners — who once owed lenders more than their homes were worth — equity in their houses again, he said.
How did this past August compare to August of 2011?
- 38% of the available homes sold this past August, 20% sold in August, 2011.
- Homes sold in 63 days, which is down from 85 days in August, 2011. Homes are selling more quickly.
- Last year median pricing in August was at $506,000. This year, median pricing was $520,000.
- Homes sold within 4% of the original asking price. Last year homes sold within 7% of the asking price.
Is the Seattle eastside market strong? Yes, particularly compared to last year when there were almost 1000 more homes for sale! Add that to the fact that almost 1/3 more homes sold this past August than in 2011!
How does all this information impact you, if you're a seller?
Know how quickly homes in your area are selling. If your home is on the market for longer than the competition, there's a good chance your home is overpriced.
We recently spoke with a seller and told him the last few homes in his area in his price range sold in 2, 5, and 11 days. If his home is on the market for about 10-12 days with no offers, then his home will be overpriced for the market. Pricing a home correctly is the most important thing you can do as a seller. The next most important thing to do is hire someone who will guarantee you"ll have professional photography. Your home will have about 3 seconds to grab a buyer's attention on the internet, so make that 3 seconds work for you. If your home has lousy photos, you could potentially lose a good buyer. Make sure your home is decluttered, staged with your own furniture and good staging advice or with staged with the stager's furniture. As a seller, you're painting a picture for the buyer of how "cool" and wonderful it would be to live in your home, so set the stage, literally!
How does this information impact you as a buyer?
There is enough turnover in the supply each month for buyers to learn what values are in the marketplace. Find out what's available in your price range in your areas so you'll be prepared when the right home comes up. In some areas, multiple offers are the norm. In others, there may be some flexibility in the price. But if it is a well priced home that shows beautifully, expect it to sell quickly and for close to, if not, full price.
If you'd like more information specific to your home, don't hesitate to contact us.