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Greater Seattle Real Estate Trends for November, 2016

The sales pattern that led to pretty significant home value appreciation last winter is again falling into place this winter.

To recap what happened last year… in a nutshell, sellers took the holidays off while buyers remained persistent in their efforts to find a home. Over the last quarter of 2015, the inventory of available single family homes fell by 56% while the volume of closed sales only fell by 18%; this led to the most favorable selling conditions I’ve tracked since the recession.

As a result, the median selling price of closed sales jumped to the highest point of 2015, rising from $543,500 in October to $575,000 in December and $585,000 in January (most closed sales in January would have gone under contract in November and December). By last February the median selling price hit $625,000

Looking at the data I’ve compiled to date this year, active inventory is beginning to fall just like last year; both 2015 and 2016 had inventory peak in October then begin to rapidly decline heading into the holidays. Looking one step further. Meanwhile, the volume of pending sales, as of November 1st, was nearly identical to September 1st and October 1st, suggesting buyers may remain active throughout the holidays much like last year.

King County Median Selling Price Nov 2015 to Nov 2016

Unfortunately, crystal balls don’t exist, so it is impossible to definitely say what will end up happening. There are variety of factors that could affect sales. For example, it is yet to be seen if a recent rise in interest rates will dampen or spur buyer demand.

Regardless, it is fair to point out that the data is making this year look like it is shaping up much like last year.

And here are some quick data points to close out with…

In Seattle, the median selling price of single family homes in October came in at $610,000, for a 12.2% increase compared to last October – closed sales rose 6.5% and active inventory rose 7.2%.

In King County as a whole, the median selling price of single family homes in October came in at $550,000, for a 14.6% increase compared to last October – closed sales rose 9.3% and active inventory fell by 1.3%.

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