Seattle Housing Market – November 2019

This was another interesting month in Seattle real estate.  We don’t see strong price appreciation, but November showed a tightening of the market with a 25% reduction in the total number of homes for sale all while maintaining stronger than average (for this time of year), buyer demand.

#1 – How much??!?!?

  What we care most about is the home prices in Seattle.  Let’s take a look at the median sales price in Seattle:

  Although the opposite of what typically happens, this month we had modest price growth for condos, with a 2% monthly increase and a only a 3% decrease from November 2018.   Houses did the opposite, with a 7% decrease in median sales price from last month and a 3% decrease from November 2018.

  The last time house prices were $725,000 or below was December 2018 through February 2019.  Houses prices WAY back in November 2017 were $727,000.  So essentially, we are at about the same median sales price for houses that we had this time in 2017.

  Condos, which have been seemingly struggling for over a year, outshine houses this month.  At a median sales price of $460,000, we had a 2% price increase from last month, and a modest 3% price decrease from November 2018.   Oddly enough, as of this month, condos have had more stable prices over the last 2 years than houses.  Not a sizable difference, but worth noting.


#2 – How Long??!?!?

The Seattle real estate market slowed down in November.

All Seattle property types took longer to get an offer this month.   Houses took an average of 34 days before they went pending, which is 7 days longer than October, and and 3 days longer than this time last year.   Condos are the slowest!   It takes an average of 42 days for a condo to get an accepted offer, up 3 days from October and 10 days from this time in 2018.

#3 – How Close To List Price??!?!?

Below list price for all property types this month.

  Not a huge change.  Both Seattle condos and Seattle houses dipped one percentage point this month, with houses selling for 99% of list price, and condos selling for 98% of list price.  This is the same as it was this time last year.

#4 – How Competitive??!?!?

   Real estate markets are typically categorized as either a buyers market, a sellers market, or a neutral market.  Months of supply is the main way that we can statistically judge if it is a buyers, sellers or neutral market.  

Traditional Wisdom Says:

  • 0-4 months of supply create a sellers market
  • 4-6 months of supply create a neutral market
  • 6+ months of supply create a buyers market

  Houses are currently at 1.4 months of supply.  That is a dip from the 1.8 months of last month and 2.3 months last year.  We do have a much different real estate environment in Seattle than we had in years past, so it may not feel like as much of a sellers market as it used to, but it is still clearly a sellers market for houses and townhouses in Seattle.   This sharp decrease in months supply is driven by the 25% reduction in total number of homes for sale.

  Condos are a little bit of a different story.  There is currently 3.2 months of supply.  That is still technically a sellers market, but just barely.  Last month and last year we had 3.5 months supply.  Anyone that is trying to sell a condo in Seattle right now can tell you that it certainly does NOT feel like a sellers market, despite the modest price growth.  Combine the long days on market with higher than usual months of supply makes for a seemingly sluggish condo market.

In Conclusion:

  We may not see skyrocketing prices, but Seattle real estate is still alive and well.  We have been on a bit of a wild ride this year, but the Seattle housing market 2019 seems to wrapping up fairly unscathed.   Seattle home prices are still below the peak of May 20118, but remain stable.   Things should get a little sleepier here in December, but I imagine we will end the year out with a soft landing.

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