So, it is officially a buyer's market in Pierce County. It is not because prices have dropped, indeed home prices in general have increased, but it is mostly due to the large home inventory currently on the market. We are still far better off than many areas of the country and it is not likely to change substantially. Our area economy is very strong and prices did increase year over year in Pierce, Snohomish and King County.
A buyer's market does not necessarily dictate that the market is bad for sellers. In fact, this condition has many plusses, including many for sellers. The most important thought sellers must get past is what I call "mental equity". Mental equity would be the difference between what your home value was at the last market peak vs. the current real market value for a relatively quick sale. Understanding this can be difficult for some sellers, call me for my thoughts on this.
Let's consider the positive aspects of real estate transactions for all. The obvious is that for a first time buyer, there are many more options to purchase, the interest rates are near historical lows and are dropping, home inventory is high, and there is always a seller that must sell and will at a price that has a major upside potential.
Here are some great examples of how both sellers and buyers can have a mutually beneficial transaction where everyone is happy: Seller upgrades from their first home to a higher value home. Simple, on a percentage basis, if both the first home and the new home price are depressed, then the greater the purchasing and appreciation value the seller and subsequent buyer will enjoy.
Seller from the Northwest must relocate to another city/area. As our market is generally not as depressed as most, you will get the best value from a sale from here to a purchase in a more depressed market.
In a lateral move... for any reason, two story to one story, etc., both sides of the transaction share the same market conditions.
I believe that the market in the Northwest, specifically Pierce County, will improve sooner than most might think. Home interest rates will continue to drop, and, since our area was not as inflated as many other areas, we will continue to bring new buyers to our market from other areas. Barring any other unforeseen local or national problem, we are truly in a fine position in the real estate market.
Many noted real estate experts agree. There are not many valid reasons to "sit on the sidelines" while good opportunities surround us.