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August is typically a slower month in real estate as families cram in their last-minute vacations and gear up for “Back to school”. If you look back over the last two years, you may have forgotten this as we have been in a full-on sprint no matter what the month was. This may just be an adjustment back to normal.
In a report summarizing August activity, Northwest MLS figures showed a continued buildup of inventory – nearly double the selection of a year ago. Last month’s sales showed home values continue to appreciate. For single-family homes, year-over-year prices rose about 4.2%.
Brokers added 9,914 new listings (system-wide) to inventory during August, a DROP from July’s total of 11,805. At month end there were 14,683 active listings of single-family homes and condominiums across 26 counties in the NWMLS report. Even though inventory in the King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties region almost doubled from a year ago, the number of homes for sale is still 14% lower than in August of 2019. Despite the surge in inventory, the Northwest MLS report shows there are only 1.84 months of supply and that is down from July’s figure of 2.01 months.
Fewer sales were reported than a year ago, but both PENDING sales (mutually accepted offers) and CLOSED sales improved on July’s figures. NWMLS reported 9,552 pending sales, a drop of nearly 22% from a year ago. Every county except Columbia experienced a decline in pending sales. Activity picked up from July when there were 8,775 pending sales, a gain of 8.9%.
Similarly, the volume of closed sales fell from a year ago. MLS reported 7,998 completed transactions, improving 4.6% from July, but this is down about 24% from the same month a year ago.
Housing numbers are certainly eye-opening, but I believe they are simply indicating that the market is trending back to the normalized conditions that we were seeing before the pandemic.
The resilience is clear as a steady cadence of homes going under contract continues. In the more affordable and mid-prices ranges, demand remains strong as buyers look to get settled before fall. With less than two months worth of inventory, we are still very much in a “seller’s market”.
Buyers are realizing that home ownership is a good hedge against inflation! Buyers have taken a beating in the last couple of years. The market took a slight pause as mortgage rates increased from historic lows. This made sellers come to the market with realistic pricing and price reductions on existing inventory. This has helped the pent-up buyer demand as buyers found homes they could afford. Even if interest rates are higher the continued rise in rent expense still makes owning a home an attractive idea.
I predict prices will drop further as we move into fall, but reports that we are entering a “bear market” are highly exaggerated. The market is simply reverting to its long-term average as it moves away from the artificial conditions caused by the pandemic. With mortgage rates expected to stabilize near 6% alongside steady job creation, home sales should start to rise by early next year.
I expect we will see two more months of the increased selection of new listings coming on the market. Once winter hits, new resale listings will become scarcer until activity ticks up to a high level in March.
Sellers will need to be more realistic about pricing their homes and follow the advice of their mortgage broker regarding the preparation of the home and positioning in the market. Buyers will have more inventory to look at and longer market times may give buyers some leverage that they have not had in the past few years.
Snohomish County reported 1,449 new listings,1,901 active listings, 1,529 pending sales, and 1,100 closed sales. 1.73 months of inventory and a median price of $700,000. This means there is just under two months of inventory in Snohomish County. As interest rates climb we will keep a close eye on these numbers, for now, you can still expect strong offers, traditional contingencies added to the contract, and some waived contingencies at the median price point and in desired locations. Homes may sit on the market a little longer than the prior months in the housing frenzy. Sellers need to price competitively to get their homes sold. Sellers that are not pricing their homes accurately, will result in their home sitting. Overall we are getting back to a balanced market.
Where do we go from here?
Now is still a great time to sell your home as home values are holding strong and we do have pent-up buyer demand, the overpriced homes are tapering off so sellers need to be reasonable in this more balanced market. Buyers are now having increased inventory, giving them options. Buyers have more homes to choose from and we are seeing contingencies and finance options return. Although we are seeing some price adjustments I don’t recommend postponing purchasing, home values are expected to continue to rise in our area. If you think you are saving money by waiting, you should run the numbers. Economists and pundits in real estate all say buy now. The anticipated increase in equity across the next two-to-four years will be astonishing.
Northwest MLS Market Report
Here is my Northwest MLS Market Report for the month of September 2022 (all reports and stats are from the prior month of August 2022). Last month there were only 1.84 months of supply system-wide. Interest rates are still in the bottom 10% of low rates looking back the last 50 years. For the most part, we are getting back to the “Pre-COVID” real estate market which was considered very strong just not like the frenzied market we have experienced the last few years.
We continue to see price appreciation over last year as well as the all too common shortage of inventory in certain locations. But Potential sellers should act now as this is still a good time to put your home on the market. I will continue to follow the market trends and inform you each month as we go into Fall.
Let’s get coffee, chat on the phone, or email back and forth if you have any questions about selling or buying real estate. If you want to know what your home is worth, have interest in a particular area, or want to simply be put on a search to follow the market and home prices just let me know. My team & I have many tools to help you make good investment decisions!
A look at Snohomish County Housing Statistics
June began with:
- 1,449 New Listings
- 1.73 months worth of Inventory
- Median home price of $700,000
Let’s break it down per city:
|CITIES||MEDIAN SALES PRICE||% CHANGE OVER LAST YEAR||MONTHS OF INVENTORY|
What Does This Data Mean?
Inventory levels continue to be an issue in some places. Most places currently have under a 2 month’s supply available, we are still very much in a seller-based market, however, we are moving to a balanced market. A balanced market is said to be when we have approximately 4-6 months” worth of inventory. Due to the ongoing demand for real estate in the Greater Seattle area, I would expect to see a robust real estate market going through 2022 and into 2023. Prices are continuing to increase in the North Sound Region, especially along the I-5 corridor.
What Does This Mean If You Are Buying A Home in Snohomish County
If you are buying a home in Snohomish County you are going to see more inventory available, you don’t have to act as quickly, buyers are out there and very serious, driving up prices in some cases. Sellers will be accepting contingencies again. Buyers looking for single-family homes and condos are seeing increases in prices, interest rates are unknown, and we are still in the 10% of low rates if you look back 50 years. Buyers need their financing in order, pre-approvals available, and please, bring an experienced agent to the table when forming an offer and guiding through negotiations.
This is the perfect time to sign up and receive email notifications when a new home is listed in the Snohomish County real estate market. Email notifications and instant alerts give you an advantage over other buyers looking for homes. Fill out our form below so we can keep you ahead of the competition!
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What Does This Mean If You Are Selling A Home In Snohomish County
If you are selling a home in Snohomish County buyers are eager and shopping. This is still a seller’s market and most sellers are getting their asking price and commonly getting over their list price.
Competition means your home needs to be priced competitively. Double-check to make sure your property is in optimum selling condition.
Check the home valuation calculator to get an estimated value of your home. Contact us to get a comprehensive report. We work closely with sellers to create a marketing strategy that gets your listing in front of buyers wanting to buy.
What’s Your Home Worth?
Instant Online Home Value Report
Month-by-Month Comparison and In-depth Market Reports
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About Amy Wagner – Prime Listings Group
“When You Do What You Love…People Love What You Do”
As a real estate agent, investor and managing broker of Keller Williams North Sound, Amy particularly loves helping people sell their homes fast and teaching and helping people build wealth through real estate investments such as multi-family homes, land development and the fix & flip of houses. She founded Prime Listings Group on the principles of doing better and giving more. We have local experience on our side and we promise to give more than expected. You’ve come to the right place. At PLG you can expect better!
“Great service from the start until closing….”
Amy sold my house quick and for more than I expected. Her whole team was excellent. Great service from the start until closing 10 out of 10⭐️’s!!! Thank you 🙏🏽 Amy Wagner