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Greater Seattle real estate trends mirror last year - prices spiked through holidays

Well it happened again. This holiday/winter season ended up mirroring last year’s, when sellers took the winter months off, buyers remained persistent, and prices spiked.

Last year, at this time, the median selling price of single family homes in Seattle jumped 8.7% over the course of two months from December ($575,000) to February ($625,000). Keep in mind, that the closed sales referenced in February were largely the result of buyers and sellers that entered purchase and sale contracts in December and January.

Fast forward to this year, and we see that Seattle’s median selling price jumped 5.2% over the course of two months from $629,925 in December to $662,500 in February.

In general, prices continue their ascent due to a variety of factors, though none may be bigger than our job market which has people from across the country setting down roots in our state. Here’s a recent article from the Seattle Times discussing census data that showed Seattle ranked fourth in the nation for population growth


As far as the price gains go, it has now been more than five years of gains for King County since bottoming out in February of 2012. It’s easy to wonder when things will flatten out or regress, but there’s been less than 1 month supply of homes available in Seattle for 11 of the past 12 months. This is way below the 4-6 month level analysts point to as a neutral market, which suggests we still have a ways to go before getting back towards a neutral market.

Some quick hits of the data…

Seattle’s median selling price grew 6% year over year, sales grew 7.35%, and inventory dropped 16.37%. In King County as a whole, prices grew 8.7% year over year to $560,000, sales grew 1.6%, and inventory dropped 25.4%.

To repeat… demand grew while inventory dropped… that’s a simple economic recipe for rising prices.

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