Market Trends: Third Quarter of 2018
Statistics from the third quarter of 2018 are in and Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty has analyzed the data with a look at the latest market trends in Seattle, the Eastside and Bainbridge Island. While previous reports this year continued along the same narrative—of anemic inventory and meteoric home price growth—this quarter brings a different story, as home price appreciation leveled off and buyers found more options on the market. Below I’ve included links to each report with a summary of key points for single-family homes in Seattle and the Eastside.
Seattle | Single-Family Homes
Inventory is at the heart of real estate conversations in Seattle, as the red-hot market seen in recent years gave way to a more balanced one in the third quarter of 2018. There were 2.7 months of inventory, up nearly 75% compared to last quarter (at 1.2 months) and the closest we have been to a balanced market since the third quarter of 2012. Since then, inventory has remained well below that, dipping down to just 0.4 months in the fourth quarter of 2017.
While some expected an influx of inventory to stall home price growth, the median sales price in Q3-2018 was still up 5.2% compared to this same time last year, though was down on a quarterly basis by 6.8%. As was the case on Bainbridge Island and the Eastside, the average days on market shifted into seasonal norms, with homes selling in an average of 18 days.
Eastside | Single-Family Homes
After record-breaking home price growth on the Eastside, home value appreciation moderated in the third quarter of 2018, with homes rising 7.11% compared to the third quarter of last year. This marked a stark contrast from last year’s report, in which home prices grew double that on a yearly basis. Buyers have expressed a sense of relief at this slowdown in prices, however continue to voice concern over rising mortgage rates, which are expected to increase again before the end of this year.
Slowing home price growth is not due to economic fundamentals—which remain strong—but may be attributed to more choices for buyers and a less competitive environment. At the end of the third quarter, there were just over 1,500 homes available for sale, which was up 61.57% compared to Q3-2017.