In a recent article on Seattle Times, Mike Rosenberg sat down with Reddit to discuss what’s happening with “Seattle’s sizzling-hot housing market,” from rent hikes and growing home prices, to the condo imbalance and the influence of the tech industry.
The Pinnacle at Alki Announces Priority Presales Event on October 14th
The meteoric rise in local property prices and the stresses associated with buying in today’s real estate market have been well articulated by the Seattle Times, which followed a home in West Seattle through listing to close, and proclaimed that millennials and some first-time buyers are “coming to grips with the reality that they simply can’t save up quickly enough to match the rise in home costs.” Though the market conditions may seem daunting to potential buyers, brokers say unit reservations and presales offer a much needed relief for those that can plan ahead.
According to NWMLS data for September, downtown Seattle values are skyrocketing as the median home price for in-city resale condominiums increased a staggering 35-percent year-over-year. The sharp increase in value is indicative of Seattle’s continued struggle with population growth, rising real estate prices for both renters and buyers, and a supply and demand imbalance with little relief in sight.
Curbed Seattle recently put together a list of “The 25 most expensive Seattle homes for sale right now,” which included a variety of properties, “from waterfront mansions to postcard-view condos.” Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty (RSIR) had five listings make the list, a $13.8 million penthouse in Belltown and a $9.4 million Market Place Tower residence listed by RSIR brokers Scott Wasner and Moira Holley, two NEXUS Seattle penthouses (one offered at $4.9 million and the other at $4.8 million), and Lawtonwood, a $4.89 million estate listed by RSIR brokers Jay Kipp and Jennie Robbs.
Seattle PI Explores The Meteoric Median Home Price Gains, Experts Pipe In
In an provocative article published by the Seattle PI on August 15th, the question of soaring rents and skyrocketing home prices has caused 71-percent of homeowners in Washington to worry about a housing bubble, according to a recent survey by ValueInsured.
In a feature published August 14th, Sightline Institute asks a question on many minds: why does Seattle build apartments but Vancouver, BC, builds condos? As the article notes, “last year nearly 60 percent of new housing starts in the city of Vancouver, BC, were condominiums; meanwhile, Seattle saw no new condominium buildings open.” Seattle’s lack of new condos won’t be changing anytime soon, as reportedly “less than 10 percent of all building slated for downtown Seattle in the next two years will be condos.” So, what gives? Sightline says it all comes down to economics.
Lack of New Construction Inventory Trims Overall Absorption, Only 42 Resale Units Available
With an urban center of more than 70,000 residents, it’s remarkable that only 42 resale homes are listed for sale on the NWMLS with a median asking price of $1,175,000. Just 3 resale listings are available at prices below $500,000 and only 15 are priced below $1,000,000. Now consider that there are 46 pending resales, which means the rate of sales is eclipsing the supply of new listings. July is just a continuation of a trend discovered earlier when the first half of 2017 revealed diminishing affordability and an acceleration of luxury sales in downtown Seattle.
New Construction Struggles to Deliver Inventory Below Median Home Prices
The heat of summer is being felt across the Seattle metro area, especially in housing. The region continues to post new benchmark values for median home prices while a mounting supply and demand imbalance in downtown Seattle is exasperating homebuyers. There are plenty of buyers. The problem is it can take up to four years to migrate a new high-rise from conception to closing. Until then, the result is higher prices, less selection and dwindling prospects for attainable ownership into the next decade.