Western Washington Real Estate Market Update 2018 Q1

 

The following analysis of the Western Washington real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

 

ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

The Washington State economy added 96,900 new jobs over the past 12 months, representing an annual growth rate of 2.9%—still solidly above the national rate of 1.5%. Most of the employment gains were in the private sector, which rose by 3.4%. The public sector saw a more modest increase of 1.6%.

The strongest growth was in the Education & Health Services and Retail sectors, which added 17,300 and 16,700 jobs, respectively. The Construction sector added 10,900 new positions over the past 12 months.

Even with solid increases in jobs, the state unemployment rate held steady at 4.7%—a figure that has not moved since September of last year.

I expect the Washington State economy to continue adding jobs in 2018, but not at the same rate as last year given that we are nearing full employment. That said, we will still outperform the nation as a whole when it comes to job creation.

 

HOME SALES ACTIVITY

  • There were 14,961 home sales during the first quarter of 2018. This is a drop of 5.4% over the same period in 2017.
  • Clallam County saw sales rise the fastest relative to the first quarter of 2017, with an increase of 16.5%. In most of the other markets, the lack of available homes for sale slowed the number of closings during this period.
  • Listing inventory in the quarter was down by 17.6% when compared to the first quarter of 2017, but pending home sales rose by 2.6% over the same period, suggesting that closings in the second quarter should be fairly robust.
  • The takeaway from this data is that the lack of supply continues to put a damper on sales. I also believe that the rise in interest rates in the finalquarter of 2017 likely pulled sales forward, leading to a drop in sales in the first quarter of 2018.

 

 

 

HOME PRICES

  • With ongoing limited inventory, it’s not surprising that the growth in home prices continues to trend well above the long-term average. Year-over-year, average prices rose 14.4% to $468,312.
  • Economic vitality in the region is leading to robust housing demand that far exceeds supply. Given the relative lack of new construction homes— something that is unlikely to change any time soon—there will continue to be pressure on the resale market. As a result, home prices will continue to rise at above-average rates in the coming year.
  • When compared to the same period a year ago, price growth was strongest in Grays Harbor County at 27.5%. Ten additional counties experienced double-digit price growth.
  • Mortgage rates continued to rise during first quarter, and are expected to increase modestly in the coming months. By the end of the year, interest rates will likely land around 4.9%, which should take some of the steam out of price growth. This is actually a good thing and should help address the challenges we face with housing affordability—especially in markets near the major job centers.

 

 

DAYS ON MARKET

  • The average number of days it took to sell a home dropped by seven days when compared to the same quarter of 2017.
  • King County continues to be the tightest market in Western Washington, with homes taking an average of 24 days to sell. Every county in the region saw the length of time it took to sell a home either drop or remain essentially static relative to the same period a year ago.
  • In looking at the entire region, it took an average of 61 days to sell a home in the first quarter of this year. This is down from 68 days in the firstquarter of 2017 but up by eleven days when compared to the fourth quarter of 2017.
  • Anyone expecting to see a rapid rise in the number of homes for sale in 2018 will likely be disappointed. New construction permit activity—a leading indicator—remains well below historic levels and this will continue to put increasing pressure on the resale home market.

 

 

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s housing market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors. For the first quarter of 2018, I have left the needle at the same point as fourth quarter of last year. Price growth remains strong even as sales activity slowed. All things being equal, 2018 is setting itself up to be another very good year for sellers but, unfortunately, not for buyers who will still see stiff competition for the limited number of available homes for sale.

 

Mr. Gardner is the Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, specializing in residential market analysis, commercial/industrial market analysis, financial analysis, and land use and regional economics. He is the former Principal of Gardner Economics, and has more than 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

Originally posted April 25 2018, 11:00 AM PDT by Matthew Gardner, Chief Economist, Windermere Real Estate

Posted on April 30, 2018 at 2:40 PM
Alysha Sherburne | Category: Articles, Buying, Housing Market, Selling

Seattle Magazine Feature

3 Reasons to Check Out Orcas Island’s Burgeoning Wine Scene

Private label Pét-Nat and irreverent wine temples lay just 100 miles north of Seattle.

Orcas Island Aerial View – San Juan Islands Washington USA

Orcas Island has always drawn visitors with its monumental views, lush parks, and utterly relaxing island vibe. Now, with new wine bars, tasting menus, and sommelier services, the ever-growing food and beverage scene has increasingly become the island’s siren song. Once a place to get away from the hustle of urban life, many of Orcas Island’s best spots are now integrating city luxuries into their DNA—in a decidedly island way.

For any wine lover, or just excited adventurer, here are three good reasons to make the trip north ASAP:

Champagne Champagne
8292 Orcas Rd, Ste A, Orcas Island, WA, 98280

One of the most anticipated openings on Orcas Island over the last year was Champagne Champagne, an “irreverent natural wine temple by the sea.” One look out of the restaurant’s back windows and you’ll quickly understand the use of the word “temple.” Chiseled into the rock side of southern Orcas, Champagne Champagne provides a panoramic view of the Salish Sea, Shaw Island, and passing San Juan ferries.

This little restaurant is the brainchild of Orcas Island native Amelia Carver and her fiancé Brian Crum. The pair returned to Orcas with the desire to showcase the incredible bounty of the San Juan Islands and create an engaging, safe place for people learn about natural wine. Champagne Champagne is a celebration of things the couple loves to eat and drink. That means Gewurztraminer from Oregon’s Analemma Winery, oysters on the half shell, Cru Beaujolais from Juliénas, fried smelts, 12-ounce cans of Montucky Cold Snacks, and endless crudos, ceviches, and tatares.

Champagne Champagne also boasts an adjoining wine shop called the Bodega, which sits somewhere squarely between a typical city corner store and your dream wine cellar. The street-facing shop is small, but mighty, packed with beautiful, value-driven organic and natural wine and beer from small producers and farmers. A one-minute walk from the ferry terminal, the Bodega is a welcomed place to spend time while waiting for the boat home.

Doe Bay Wine Company
109 N Beach Rd, Ste D1, Eastsound, WA, 98245

Orcas native and sommelier Cole Sisson returned to his homeland to open Doe Bay Wine Company after traveling the world slinging wine. Along the way, he met his wife, Stephanie Sisson, an industry professional with a passion for wine training and education. Together, they run the East Sound wine shop. Doe Bay Wine Co.’s selection is world-class, with plenty of traditional bottles, high-quality budget options, local wineries, and even the couple’s own foray into wine—the Orcas Project (the Oregon-grown Grenache Pét-Nat is a must).

A killer selection of wine is a given for any bottle shop that wants to succeed, and Doe Bay does not disappoint. However, what truly sets the shop apart is the couple’s passion for education, which seeps into every offering they have. Throughout the summer, they host a nightly wine tasting for 12 guests from 7:15-8:00PM. The themes change, with options ranging from “Top Grapes of Southern Italy” to “Boutique Producers of the Northwest.” These classes are a chance to explore new regions, ask questions, and bring home interesting bottles. Beyond regular tastings, at any given time of the year, Cole and Stephanie offer trip planning and tours of Washington wine country, wine cellar procurement, delivery throughout the island (including to your tent at Moran State Park), wine dinners, and regular tastings with local producers.

Hogstone’s Wood Oven & Aelder
460 Main St, Eastsound, WA 98245

What started as one obsession-worthy, crowd-inducing pizza place has now become two of the best restaurants on the Island. Both run by Food & Wine’s 2017 Best New Chef Jay Blackinton (who we featured in Seattle magazine in the June 2015 issue), Hogstone’s Wood Oven operates (mostly) from the backyard patio, while Aelder offers multiple course tasting menus from the small interior and open kitchen. While the food differs from one establishment to the next, what both restaurants share the same passion for interesting, highly allocated wine. Constantly evolving, mirroring the food that has made Blackinton famous, the wine list is always entertaining, enlightening, and food-friendly.

Here in the Pacific Northwest, it’s easy to find wine lists that only feature local wineries—and with Blackinton’s focus on hyper local cuisine, one might expect to only find wine made within the state’s borders. However, Hogstone and Aelder both boast some of the best international selections you can find in all of Washington—mixed with some American beauties, of course. Over the past year, wines have included Stanko Radikon’s decade-old orange wine from Friuli, Jean-François Ganevat’s Jura selections, apple wines from Fable Farm Fermentory in Barnard, Vermont, Brooks Winery Oregon Pinot Noir, and the Loire’s incredibly culty Clos Rougeard. Reservations at Aelder are now live, and it opens for the season April 13.

The food coming from Blackinton’s kitchen is reason enough to make the trek to Orcas, but there is so much more to love than just what happens in that wood oven. Go for the pizza; stay for the wine.

Originally posted by  DYLAN JOFFE  of Seattle MagazinePosted 

Posted on March 22, 2018 at 4:49 PM
Alysha Sherburne | Category: Articles, Lifestyle, San Juan Islands

Western Washington Real Estate Market Update Q4 2017

 

ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

The Washington State economy added 104,600 new jobs over the past 12 months. This impressive growth rate of 3.1% is well above the national rate of 1.4%. Interestingly, the slowdown we saw through most of the second half of the year reversed in the fall, and we actually saw more robust employment growth.

Growth continues to be broad-based, with expansion in all major job sectors other than aerospace due to a slowdown at Boeing.

With job creation, the state unemployment rate stands at 4.5%, essentially indicating that the state is close to full employment. Additionally, all counties contained within this report show unemployment rates below where they were a year ago.

I expect continued economic expansion in Washington State in 2018; however, we are likely to see a modest slowdown, which is to be expected at this stage in the business cycle.

 

HOME SALES ACTIVITY

  • There were 22,325 home sales during the final quarter of 2017. This is an increase of 3.7% over the same period in 2016.
  • Jefferson County saw sales rise the fastest relative to fourth quarter of 2016, with an impressive increase of 22.8%. Six other counties saw double-digit gains in sales. A lack of listings impacted King and Skagit Counties, where sales fell.
  • Housing inventory was down by 16.2% when compared to the fourth quarter of 2016, and down by 17.3% from last quarter. This isn’t terribly surprising since we typically see a slowdown as we enter the winter months. Pending home sales rose by 4.1% over the third quarter of 2017, suggesting that closings in the first quarter of 2018 should be robust.
  • The takeaway from this data is that listings remain at very low levels and, unfortunately, I don’t expect to see substantial increases in 2018. The region is likely to remain somewhat starved for inventory for the foreseeable future.

 

 

HOME PRICES

  • Because of low inventory in the fall of 2017, price growth was well above long-term averages across Western Washington. Year-over-year, average prices rose 12% to $466,726.
  • Economic vitality in the region is leading to a demand for housing that far exceeds supply. Given the relative lack of newly constructed homes—something that is unlikely to change any time soon—there will continue to be pressure on the resale market. This means home prices will rise at above-average rates in 2018.
  • Compared to the same period a year ago, price growth was most pronounced in Lewis County, where home prices were 18.8% higher than a year ago. Eleven additional counties experienced double-digit price growth as well.
  • Mortgage rates in the fourth quarter rose very modestly, but remained below the four percent barrier. Although I anticipate rates will rise in 2018, the pace will be modest. My current forecast predicts an average 30-year rate of 4.4% in 2018—still remarkably low when compared to historic averages.

 

 

DAYS ON MARKET

  • The average number of days it took to sell a home in the fourth quarter dropped by eight days, compared to the same quarter of 2016.
  • King County continues to be the tightest market in Western Washington, with homes taking an average of 21 days to sell. Every county in the region saw the length of time it took to sell a home either drop or remain static relative to the same period a year ago.
  •  Last quarter, it took an average of 50 days to sell a home. This is down from 58 days in the fourth quarter of 2016, but up by 7 days from the third quarter of 2017.
  • As mentioned earlier in this report, I expect inventory levels to rise modestly, which should lead to an increase in the average time it takes to sell a house. That said, with homes selling in less than two months on average, the market is nowhere near balanced.

 

 

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s housing market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors. For the fourth quarter of 2017, I have left the needle at the same point as third quarter. Price growth remains robust even as sales activity slowed. 2018 is setting itself up to be another very good year for housing.

 

 

 

 

Matthew Gardner is the Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, specializing in residential market analysis, commercial/industrial market analysis, financial analysis, and land use and regional economics. He is the former Principal of Gardner Economics, and has more than 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

 

Posted January 29 2018, 11:00 AM PST by Matthew Gardner, Chief Economist, Windermere Real Estate

Posted on February 7, 2018 at 9:49 AM
Alysha Sherburne | Category: Articles, Buying, Housing Market, Selling, Uncategorized

2018 Housing Forcast

There have been many forecasts published right now for 2018, for politics, the economy, the weather, and so much more. Here is what I expect to see in 2018.

 

Interest Rates: Interest rates continue to be a great topic of discussion, with most predicting a rise. While the rates may rise a bit, I believe they will average around 4.4% for a 30 year fixed mort- gage by the end of the year.

 

National Home Sales: We should expect that home sales will continue to increase, and demand will exceed the inventory. Still, the inventory should begin to increase due to the rise of new home construction.

 

Home Buyer Profile: The millennial home buyers are going to continue to increase, particularly in the less expensive markets. Last year, millennials comprised of 34% of the buyers nationally.

 

Local Market Forecast: We too have been experiencing an increase of millennial buyers. With the strong economy and dramatic growth in Puget Sound, these folks are looking to Orcas and the San Juan’s as an optimal getaway. The homes here look enticingly affordable compared to what is available in the Seattle market currently. Our inventory is continuing to shrink, and unless some- thing dramatic happens nationally, the local market should continue to remain strong. However, unless we begin to see new inventory, we may experience a slow down in the market, as buyers struggle to find what they are looking for, and they appear willing to wait for the ‘right’ property. Please stop by the office, or give us a call, and we will be happy to discuss this further with you .

 

Sincerely,

John Dunning, Designated Broker/Owner

Posted on January 9, 2018 at 10:03 AM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Buying, Housing Market, San Juan Islands, Selling

2018 Homeowner Resolutions

 

As the excitement of the holidays wind down, we find ourselves at the point of making resolutions for the coming year. And, while ideas such as eating healthy, exercising and losing weight tend to be at the forefront of our minds, let us not forget to also set goals as homeowners. Having a plan for the year ahead can help you optimize your finances, save you money and ensure your home is well-maintained. Here are a few areas to focus on:

 

Examine Your Finances

Once you have established how much money is coming in, you can concentrate on where it is going out. In aspiring to be debt free, see if you can find a way to maximize your mortgage. Evaluate your property tax, assessed value and homeowner insurance. If you have questions about these, talk to a professional and educate yourself about options.

 

Save Yourself Cash

If you are considering home updates this year, do your research and set a budget. Knowing how much you have to work with will help you to prioritize and not overspend.

 

Maintain Your Home & Value

Create a maintenance schedule for the year and include items like changing CO2 batteries, replacing furnace filters, winterizing sprinklers and planning deep cleans. In addition, create a punch list of things that need to be fixed and stop putting them off. Separate those that you can do yourself from those that will require a professional.

Once you have a plan in place be sure and stick to it, and you are guaranteed to enjoy a happy home in 2018.

 

John Dunning

Designated Broker/Owner

Posted on December 26, 2017 at 2:34 PM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Financial, Home Improvement, Maintenance | Tagged , , ,

Thanksgiving Planner

 

We have reached that time of the year again that is all about getting together with family and sitting down to big, elaborate meals. And while we are supposed to be happy and celebrating, many people are simply thankful to get through the holidays in one piece. Why must the holidays be so stressful? Good news, they don’t have to be! Want to know the easiest way to bypass the stress: have a plan. Simple right? Not exactly, but it’s amazing how much a thorough plan can transform your holiday season. With Thanksgiving being only a week away, let’s go through the next week; breaking up preparation tasks to make it all feel less daunting.

 

The Week Before

 

Collect your recipes and create a shopping list.

Still don’t know exactly what you’re making for the big feast? Time to get that sorted. Go through as many recipes as it takes, but remember, not every dish needs to be fancy and complicated. Sometimes the simplest option is the best.

Clean out your refrigerator.

Figure out what needs to get eaten over the next week to create as much storage in your fridge as possible. Are there items that can get used in some of your recipes? Are there things that simply need to get tossed? Keep in mind that you will want to maximize the amount of storage containers you have on hand. This will make life much easier as you move the through the week.

 

Weekend Before

 

Dedicate this last weekend to preparations.

This is your time to do the shopping. Hit the market early, and give yourself plenty of time to shop. Chances are you have a big list, and it’s no fun trying to get everything in your basket while racing the clock. And while you are out, consider picking up extra storage containers that you can fill with leftovers and send home with guests.

Clean the house.

If you are hosting, you will want your home to sparkle and shine for guests coming to visit. Take the time to do a thorough clean this weekend, and prepare spare rooms with clean linens and supplies. It’s easy to do some touch up cleaning right before everyone shows up, but doing most of the chores now will save on time and stress later in the week. Even if you are going away for the holidays, having a clean house to come home to is a nice treat after a busy weekend.

Make the big stuff.

There is plenty of food that can be cooked and assembled ahead of time, and the weekend is perfect for scratching the most time consuming of these off your list. For starters, make your pie crusts. Even if you make the filling later, having a crust ready to go is a huge relief. Pre-cook it and put it in the freezer until the night before. And if you want, cook the whole pie on Wednesday night so all you have to do is reheat on Thursday. Other great options for making ahead are the cranberry sauce, toasted nuts, stock for stuffing and casseroles. Also, if you are making your own bread for the stuffing, doing that over the weekend gives it plenty of time to dry out over the coming days.

 

The Final Week

 

Less is more.

The less you have to take care of on the last few days before Thanksgiving the happier you will be on the day itself. For those of us with full time jobs, this is especially true. Still, taking care of a few small things will allow you more time to relax and visit with family on the big day. So, on the days leading up, after dinner of course, go ahead and pre-chop those vegetables that you will need for your side dishes. Take your turkey out of the freezer and get the brine on it a couple of days. Do a little extra tidying around the house and put some extra seasonal décor. Find a clear, designated area for drinks and appetizers, then set the dining room table for your guests (eating on the couch for a night or two is perfectly acceptable).

All of this may seem like a lot to accomplish in the last week, but if you do it, you will thank yourself later. Thanksgiving is not about spending your whole day slaving away in the kitchen; it’s about having time to spend with the people you love. So plan ahead, stop stressing, and be thankful to have so many people who want to spend the day with you.

Posted on November 15, 2017 at 9:00 AM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Lifestyle

Real News – Article 5

WINTER PREPARATION FOR YOUR HOME

With the early onset of winter weather, it seems an appropriate time revisit some home maintenance tasks. Though we go through these changes every year, sometimes it is nice to have a reminder of what needs to be examined before the temperatures changes too dramatically.

First off, since our heating systems are about to get a lot more use (if they are not already), let’s be sure everything is in good working order. If you have a gas or oil furnace system, have someone come out to inspect it to be sure everything is in good working order. And don’t forget to check those air filters. If you use electric heaters, keep the area around these clear, thus avoiding potential fire hazards. For those with a wood stove, have a chimney sweep come out and do a thorough clean. It is recommended to do this annually, before the cold season if possible.

Other areas of note: examine your insulation, particularly if you have an attic, and feel for spots where cold air may be leaking through. Changing out insulation now will help you heat your home more efficiently all winter long. Weather stripping may also need to be replaced to keep cold air from seeping in around doors and windows.

Outside your home, make sure that hose bibs are covered up and hoses stored away for the season. Gutters should also be cleaned out, especially  after all the leaves that have been falling off trees recently. And speaking of trees, take a look around the house and note any branches that could cause problems under heavy snow or wind conditions. Better to take preventative measures than have problems later on down the road.

Finally, stock up on emergency supplies such as first aid, flashlights, batteries, blankets, water and extra food. For those of you living in the higher elevations, such as Buck Mountain, this is extremely important. We have already had our first winter warning on Orcas, so don’t delay in checking these items off your To-Do-List. A prepared home is a happy home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

John Dunning, Designated Broker/Owner

Posted on November 8, 2017 at 9:15 AM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Home Improvement, Maintenance

What is the Windermere Foundation?

The Windermere Foundation was started in 1989 by the owners of Windermere Real Estate, which is based in Seattle. Since its inception, the Foundation has raised more than $33 million to support it’s mission: helping low income and homeless families.

The Foundation began in Washington, but now has grown to serve the 10 western states. Currently, there are more than 40 major organizations that receive significant funding from the Foundation. These organizations provide emergency assistance, and youth and children’s programs.

As part of the Windermere organization, each of our brokers donates a portion of their commission from every transaction to the Windermere Foundation. Each of us is proud to support the Foundation. A portion of the funds that we donate comes back to our office to enable us to donate directly to local organizations within our community that support the same cause as the Windermere Foundation: helping local families right here on Orcas.

 

We have a local Foundation Representative, Elyse Van den Bosch, who works directly with the local non-profits to assist in their applications for funding. We have supported organizations such as the Funhouse, Orcas Family Connections, OPAL immediate housing needs, the Food Bank, and each of the various early childhood programs, to name just a few.

In addition to our broker commission donations, our office has also coordinated various fundraising and volunteer activities to raise additional money for our local non-profits that assist families and children in need.

Being a part of this community is very important to all of us. We take great pride in the fact that our office has put thousands of dollars back into our local community, and we look forward to continuing to do so. If you have questions about the Windermere Foundation, or whether your organization may be a candidate to receive funding from the Foundation, please contact Elyse for more information: elyse@windermere.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

John Dunning, Designated Broker/Owner

Posted on October 11, 2017 at 10:37 AM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Financial, Lifestyle, San Juan Islands

Autumn has arrived on Orcas

There is nothing like stepping outside, taking a deep breath, and pulling your jacket just a little closer around yourself. I haven’t worn a jacket in months – oh the joys of summer. But I can’t resist the smile that emerges on my face as the goose bumps rise. Maybe it has to do with how fresh the air feels, maybe it’s because the island has made it through the summer rush, or maybe it simply has to do with the fact that I love getting to put on my beloved boots and sweaters again.

Don’t get me wrong, I love summer as much as the next person. Sun and heat are two of my favorite things, but this summer was particularly dry for the San Juan Islands and I for one am tired of the color brown. For the last few months everything has just felt dusty and dirty – not something those of us from the great ‘north-wet’ are used to. I miss the green. And so, the return of the rain is something I welcome with open arms.

There is also this miraculous slowdown that happens post-Labor Day. September is still a busy month on the islands, but nothing compared to July and August. It just has an entirely different feel. Now, not only is it easier to get on a ferry last minute, but going to Island Market is no longer a hassle, and everyone is so much more laid back. It’s as if the islands have been holding their breath for two months and are finally able to exhale. Locals stop and chat on the street again, without that wild look in their eyes that says, “I am going to lose it on the next person that asks what times the whales go by”. Yes, that is a common question, and no, the whales do not share their schedule with us bipeds, so please stop asking.

After the breath of September, the islands start churning again, with all kinds of activities suited to the shift of seasons. Savor the San Juans runs from the first day of fall through the first week of November and brings with it many events and opportunities to enjoy the flavors of island life. The Orcas Island Film Festival runs the first weekend in October and has become quite the affair over the last few years, bringing in award winning films from around the world. There are also a slew of lectures, classes, and farm tours that happen through the end of the year. And the holidays out here, truly magical.

As the days begin to cool and the darkness stretches longer than the day, all I can think about is being curled up on my couch with my dog; a fire burning in my woodstove; mouthwatering smells emanating from the slow cooker; hot apple cider warming on the stove. Fresh pressed cider is everywhere on the islands right now and will be the majority of what I drink for the next couple of months, interspersed with some hot chocolate and homemade hot buttered rum. Oh yes, the season of coziness is upon us. Welcome back autumn.

 

Alysha Sherburne | Office Manager

Posted on September 22, 2017 at 9:11 AM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Lifestyle, San Juan Islands | Tagged , , ,

Real News – Article 3

In a past article I discussed where our Buyers are coming from, but in this article, I think you might like to see how our 2017 sales market stacks up against last year at this same time….

The total number of Orcas sales has increased from 42 in 2016 to 53 this year to date.  But that doesn’t tell the whole story, because the price points where the sales have occurred are significantly different year-to-year.

The 2016 and 2017 number of properties sold between $150 and $350K are very similar.  But, starting at $400K thru $550K, there have been almost twice as many sales in 2017.  Interestingly, homes priced in the $600K range sold better in 2016 with the $700K range being very similar year-to-year.

The real change is from $800K and up.  Last year there were no sales in the $800K range but there have been a number of sales this year.  2016 sales between $900K and $1,400K were stronger than 2017, but 2017 exceeded from $1,500K and above.

What can we draw from all of these statistics? Honestly, no real pattern other than the availability of inventory is our largest determinant of what sells.  We have a shortage of properties currently on the market, and yet many buyers are still coming into our offices on a daily basis, still looking for their dream home or second home.  Isn’t this just the way it always happens?

For those owners who have been hesitant to list their Land or Homes, we haven’t seen a better time than now!  And that isn’t just hyperbole.  We are approaching our prime selling season of the year.

People visit Orcas during the summer, fall in love with the Island, return home to mainland America, and start trying to figure a way to make our home their home. They return in September with money in pocket, ready to make their move.  It’s just the way this business works.

Enough of statistics….we wish everyone a wonderful fall in the Islands and hope to see many of you in the office, where the coffee is always on and the conversation interesting and friendly.

Until next time,

 

John Dunning, Designated Broker/Owner

 

Posted on September 19, 2017 at 3:39 PM
Windermere Orcas | Category: Articles, Buying, Housing Market, Selling