Prices Rising on Seattle Condos? Lack of Real Estate Inventory Driving Sales, Prices Up

Real Estate Agent with -Coldwell Banker Danforth

The Seattle Times documented some recent changes in the Seattle condo market, specifically looking at the recent changes in the new construction market.  While there are few "new" construction condos in downtown Seattle (most of the newest buildings were finished a few years ago), there are plenty of condos in newer buildings that are still developer-owned, and have never been lived in.

The number of these developer-owned units has decreased significantly this year, with just a couple hundred condos left available out of the thousands that were built during the upswing of the market.  Some of the developers are actually raising prices as demand continues to increase and quality available condos become scarce.  Most of the choice condos within each building have already been purchased, so many of the remaining units have poor views or other less-than-desirable features.  Those high-quality units that still do remain are fetching full price in many cases.

From the Seattle Times:

Of 2,500 new condos delivered in downtown, Belltown, Lower Queen Anne and South Lake Union during the market's darkest days, fewer than 250 developer-owned units remain unsold, according to county records.

There's more unsold inventory in downtown Bellevue, where more than 350 condos in two giant projects, Bellevue Towers and Washington Square, still haven't sold.

But Bellevue Towers, like Escala, raised prices 1 or 2 percent earlier this year on some models that were close to selling out.

That's what's supposed to happen in a healthy market, says researcher Glenn Crellin of the University of Washington's Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies.

© - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, Coldwell Banker Danforth

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