Bob’s Bugle – Real Estate Newsletter – July 2008

 

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Bob Chapman
Managing Broker

Windermere Real Estate
Lake Stevens, Inc.

9327 4th St. NE, Ste #3
Lake Stevens, WA 98258
USA
Ph: (425) 268-2940
Fax: (425) 335-1838

Contact Me


Bob's Bugle Real Estate Newsletter July 2008REAL ESTATE NEWS & INFORMATION

 

July 10, 2008

*Housing Market Becoming More Balanced as Sales Climb to Highest Level in 10 Months*

KIRKLAND, Wash. (July 7, 2008) – Home sales around Western Washington last month reached the highest level since August 2007 as market conditions continue to favor buyers, according to a new report from Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

Prices in most counties were down compared to a year ago, but up slightly compared to May. Inventory showed signs of returning to a more balanced market.

Northwest MLS members reported 6,470 pending sales system-wide during June, the highest volume since August when members notched 7,751 pending sales (offers made and accepted, but not yet closed). Compared to the same month a year ago, pending sales were down nearly 30 percent. Eleven of the 19 counties in the MLS service area reported increases in the number of pending sales last month from May.

Members added 13,187 new listings of single family homes and condominiums to inventory (the fewest number since February). With those additions, the number of active listings in the MLS database totaled 50,143, about 10.9 percent more than a year ago. On a percentage basis, there has not been a year-over-year change this small since December 2005 when inventory rose just 2.3 percent from December 2004.

Abundant inventory tends to favor buyers, but the local market is more balanced than most parts of the country. Of existing homes available for sale, the National Association of REALTORS reported a 10.8 month supply for May at the current sales pace.

An analysis of the Northwest MLS database for June activity shows a 5.9 month supply in King County, a 6.7 month supply in the 4-county Puget Sound region (King, Snohomish, Pierce and Kitsap counties), and a 7.4 month supply system-wide (19 counties).

EXISTING (excl. new construction)

All Areas
Inventory
Pending Sales
Month Supply
June-08
40,308
5,425
7.43
June-07
35, 503
7,696

4.61

 

4-County

June-08
26,722
3,967
6.74
June-07
22,730
5,754
3.95

 

King Co.

June-08
12,868
2,175
5.92
June-07
9,880
3,242
3.05

Many housing experts say a 6-month supply creates equilibrium being buyers and sellers.

“Home buyers are starting to get off the fence and into the market, drawn by drops in home prices in many areas and armed with greater access to affordable mortgages,” commented Richard Gaylord, president of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). “Today’s buyer plans to stay in a home for 10 years, which is a good strategy for building long-term wealth” Gaylord said in a news release issued by NAR in late June.

Prices for sales of single family homes and condominiums (combined) that closed during June dipped 5.7 percent from twelve months ago. The median price for last month’s completed sales was $314,900, down from the year-ago median of $334,000, but compared to May, prices rose about 1 percent.

In the four-county Puget Sound region, the median selling price for last month’s completed sales was $340,000. That’s down about 6 percent from a year ago when the median price was $361,900. It is unchanged from May.

Prices for single family homes (excluding condos) that sold last month dropped 7.8 percent from a year ago, while condo prices crept up slightly (0.80 percent).

Condo prices in King County, where about two-thirds of the sales occur, rose about 5.3 percent last month compared to a year ago. From May to June, condo prices increased about 2.5 percent.

Western Washington’s housing market continues to fare better than most metropolitan markets around the country, buoyed by a relatively healthy economy and growing population.

Along with ample inventory, house-hunters have access to a broad array of financing options. Rates on 30-year mortages averaged 6.35 percent last week, reversing a pattern of five straight weeks of increases, according to Freddie Mac. A year ago, rates on 30-year mortgages stood at 6.63 percent.

Brokers also point to FHA-insured loans and higher loan limits as an option for first-time home buyers and people with flawed credit. Such loans require only a 3 percent down payment and allow borrowers to use gift money for down payments and closing costs. In February, as part of a stimulus package approved by Congress, the FHA increased the loan cap in the Seattle-Bellevue-Everett metropolitan area from $362,790 to $567,500.

Referrals are a “very” important part of my business. Please let me know of anyone that you know who may be considering Buying or Selling real estate – or please give them my name and contact information!

Thank You!

Bob Chapman

Bob’s Bugle Real Estate Newsletter July 2008

Statistical Summary by Counties: Market Activity Summary for June 2008

June 2008

Single Family Homes

+ Condos

LISTINGS

PENDING SALES

CLOSED SALES

New Listings

Total Active

# Pending Sales

# Closings

Average Price

Median Price

King

4974

15831

2549

2148

$502,727

$400,000

Snohomish

1961

7173

915

739

$356,423

$329,450

Pierce

1969

7949

1051

862

$297,890

$259,250

Kitsap

618

2765

250

242

$335,700

$269,950

Mason

210

973

70

62

$205,697

$194,000

Skagit

277

1347

124

127

$318,752

$259,950

Grays Harbor

214

1024

101

69

$192,628

$160,900

Lewis

180

833

64

42

$198,355

$180,000

Cowlitz

178

832

80

68

$214,708

$195,000

Grant

184

718

106

78

$193,164

$164,500

Thurston

640

2171

359

322

$269,531

$247,000

San Juan

66

429

18

12

$914,799

$501,250

Island

287

1257

88

104

$344,094

$274,977

Kittitas

128

723

51

39

$312,394

$266,000

Jefferson

107

590

42

29

$295,238

$289,000

Okanogan

93

503

35

31

$194,513

$186,000

Whatcom

501

2252

328

242

$325,542

$279,000

Clark

160

835

86

69

$269,013

$244,900

Pacific

79

475

22

23

$203,196

$155,000

Others

361

1463

131

71

$202,828

$190,000

MLS TOTAL

13,187

50,143

6,470

5,379

$383,444

$314,900



4-County Puget Sound Region Pending Sales (SFH + Condo combined)
(Totals include King, Snohomish, Pierce & Kitsap counties)

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

2000

3706

4778

5903

5116

5490

5079

4928

5432

4569

4675

4126

3166

2001

4334

5056

5722

5399

5631

5568

5434

5544

4040

4387

4155

3430

2002

4293

4735

5569

5436

6131

5212

5525

6215

5394

5777

4966

4153

2003

4746

5290

6889

6837

7148

7202

7673

7135

6698

6552

4904

4454

2004

4521

6284

8073

7910

7888

8186

7583

7464

6984

6761

6228

5195

2005

5426

6833

8801

8420

8610

8896

8207

8784

7561

7157

6188

4837

2006

5275

6032

8174

7651

8411

8094

7121

7692

6216

6403

5292

4346

2007

4869

6239

7192

6974

7311

6876

6371

5580

4153

4447

3896

2975

2008

3291

4167

4520

4624
4526
4765
  

This information is from the Northwest Multiple Listing Service which is the largest full-service MLS in the Northwest. Based in Kirkland and owned by its member brokers, it currently encompasses more than 2,100 companies with approximately 31,000 sales associates. Together, they serve 19 counties, mostly in western Washington, plus Grant, Kittitas and Okanogan counties in the central part of the state. NWMLS recently added service to Clark County with the opening of an office in Vancouver.

Bob’s Bugle Real Estate Newsletter July 2008, copyright 2008. All material contained herein is owned and protected. Any attempts to reproduce this information without the express written consent from the owner will be prosecuted.

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Let a trained professional Windermere agent, Bob Chapman, assist you in your Snohomish County real estate home or vacant land buying or selling transaction.

This Snohomish County real estate website page also has a home loan or mortgage calculator.

Please visit the links pages in the navigation bar. There you will find links to:  Snohomish County & Washington State School Districts information which includes the official websites of School Districts in Snohomish County and Washington State; The official Washington State government website, Snohomish County & City government websites and Valuable Real Estate Informational and Resource links.