Market Trends From Around The Sound: Q4-2023

By RSIR Staff |

The final quarter of 2023 presented a market that has weathered continual challenges throughout the past two years. In October, mortgage rates peaked, hitting their highest rates in over two decades. Although they proceeded to decline, finally dipping below 6 percent, sellers were hesitant to list their homes and lose their lower interest rates, particularly ones who took advantage of the record lows seen in January 2021. Buyers were similarly discouraged by high rates and the lack of inventory. However, those who were determined to find their dream home, despite the obstacles, were rewarded with less competition and more negotiation power.

Additionally, the winter market is typically a less active period in real estate than spring and summer, with more people focused on winding down as the year ends than making any major real estate moves. If rates continue to go down—which is projected, albeit, slowly—then we should see the market thaw as we move further into 2024 and away from the chilly conditions that have affected both buyers and sellers.


Seattle   |   Single-Family Homes 

Sellers participating in the Seattle market in the fourth quarter of the year saw similar sales prices to those who sold in Q4-2022, with a median sales price of $918,000 and an average price per square foot of $538 in 2023’s fourth quarter.

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Seattle   |   Condominiums

There were very few new construction condominium opportunities offered in the Seattle market in 2023, similar to 2022, and this subset of the city’s market saw little year-over-year change.

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Eastside   |   Single-Family Homes 

Buyers looking for their ideal Eastside home in the last quarter of 2023 had to contend with a dearth of inventory at just 0.8 months, which was the second lowest of all the neighborhoods analyzed in this report and down from the 1.4 months of inventory we witnessed in Q4-2022.

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Eastside   |   Condominiums

The Eastside condominium real estate market continues to see upward movement even as other markets struggle to rebound from obstacles like low inventory and hesitant buyers.

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Mercer Island   |   Single-Family Homes 

Mercer Island presents an interesting study in 2023’s fourth quarter, where 12.12% more homes sold from Q4-2022 to Q4-2023 (33 homes versus 37 homes) but a sizable 60% decline in homes listed for sale, from 30 homes listed in Q4-2022 to a mere 12 homes listed in Q4-2023.

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Bainbridge Island   |   Single-Family Homes 

Bainbridge Island remains one of the region’s most desirable enclaves even amidst a slow market challenged by a lack of activity and inventory. The median sales price saw a significant year-over-year increase of 19.42% at $1,433,000 compared to Q4-2022’s median of $1,200,000.

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Kitsap County   |   Single-Family Homes 

(Excluding Bainbridge Island)

In analyzing the past three years’ Q4 median sales prices, we see minimal but steady growth, with the trend continuing this year with a 6.81% increase from $499,000 in Q4-2022 to $533,000 in Q3-2023.

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King County   |   Single-Family Homes 

Despite the lack of inventory, homes still sat on the market for about the same length of time that they did a year ago, averaging 31 days. This indicates that both sellers and buyers were refraining from participating in a chilly market.

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Pierce County   |   Single-Family Homes 

Price growth remained relatively flat with a minimal 2.69% median sales price increase to $878,000 and a 6.09% average price per square foot increase to $505.

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Snohomish County   |   Single-Family Homes 

A year-over-year 46.98% decrease in homes for sale indicates that many sellers were not ready to give up their low interest rates, affecting inventory and leading to less than 1 month of inventory on the market.

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Skagit County   |   Single-Family Homes 

Although there was some price growth in Skagit County, with a year-over-year 13.37% increase in the median sales price to $568,000, it appears that sellers were still hesitant to list with a 26.67% drop in the number of homes for sale.

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Island County   |   Single-Family Homes 

Although the median sales price was slightly higher than last year’s fourth quarter at $582,000, and the average price per square foot was up from $337 in Q4-2022 to $345 in Q4-2023, these minimal increases are welcome but do not necessarily signal any major year-over-year shifts in this region’s market.

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Whatcom County   |   Single-Family Homes 

Whatcom County’s market seems to indicate a lack of both buyer and seller participation in the final quarter of 2023, where there were only 365 homes listed for sale, a 20.31% year-over-year decrease, as well as a 50-day average for the amount of time homes were listed on the market.

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Cle Elum   |   Single-Family Homes 

Patient sellers were rewarded with price growth as the median sales price increased by 33.62% from Q4-2022’s median of $925,000 to $1,236,000.

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