The majority of single-family homes sold within Seattle last month went for more than the asking price, an analysis by Windermere Real Estate shows. That trend in Seattle was strongest for two-bedroom houses. Less expensive because of their small size, they're in high demand as "starter homes." They brought an average 100.43 percent of their asking price, Windermere found.
Three-bedroom houses - the largest percentage of sales - on average sold for 100.25 percent of asking. Only five-bedroom houses in Seattle, which as a group are larger and more expensive, sold for less: 97.6 percent of the original asking price. Buoyed by a strong local economy that's been growing at twice the national rate, some 64 percent of all Seattle houses sold within 30 days, Windermere reported.
In other parts of the country, where the economy is more sluggish and foreclosures have started to push down prices, average selling times are 90 days or more.
Plus there are significantly more properties to choose from compared with a year ago. In King County, the number of houses available increased 38 percent in April. The number of condos for sale rose 74 percent as more new buildings and conversions came on the market.
Foreclosures may have added to the inventory total but remain a small factor locally. In March, the last month for which statistics are available, one in every 1,846 King County homeowners was in some stage of foreclosure, compared with one in every 775 nationally, according to RealtyTrak, a California foreclosure-information provider.
The trade association anticipated that final April numbers will show sales nationwide to be the lowest since March 2003. Tighter mortgage-lending standards along with a decline in subprime lending are among the causes, according to David Lereah, the group's chief economist.
Within the four-county, Central Puget Sound region, houses in Snohomish County have appreciated the most, year over year, the MLS found. The county's proximity to King County job centers, plus its relative affordability compared with King, are two reasons for its strong appreciation. However, its price rise has not been as steady as King County's.
Over the past four months, median single-family house prices have fluctuated in Snohomish County, settling at $375,000 in April. That figure reflects a 13.7 percent year-over-year increase. Median means half sell for more, half for less.
House prices in the same time period are up 10.9 percent in King County, 6.9 percent in Kitsap County and 4.4 percent in Pierce County.
King County's median condominium price last month was $295,000, up 19 percent compared with the previous April. Snohomish County's median condo price was $242,500, up 21.3 percent.
King County's median listing price of $525,000 is just 5 percent higher than a year ago. That's likely a result of more properties for sale, thus more competition for buyers.
This information was taken from an article published in the Seattle Times. I am compiling a report to provide to Investors to support why Investing is still a good idea, waiting is not. With prices and rates rising, it still pays to get in the game.