Seattle Has the Hottest Real Estate Market in the U.S. - By Far

Posted by Casey Losh on Thursday, November 9th, 2017 at 4:15pm.

Prices for homes across the United States have been on the rise throughout 2017. Most markets are seeing growth in demand and an increase in average selling prices. Washington State, and more specifically, the Seattle area, has far exceeded the growth of other real estate markets. Prices around Seattle are on the rise, and demand doesn't show any sign of tapering off in the near future.

The average selling price of a single family home in the Seattle area has gone up 13.5 percent in only a year. When you compare that with the national average increase in home price, which is 5.9 percent, it's easy to see how Seattle's growth outpaces most other places. Looking nearby to Portland, Oregon, which currently holds the second place for real estate growth nationally, the growth in home value has been about a 7.6 percent increase. Seattle's is nearly twice this figure.

Demand Still Outpaces Supply Around Seattle

For 11 straight months, Seattle has held the first place position for fastest growing real estate values. Currently, there are very few homes for sale on the Seattle market, while population increases and a growing job market both put pressure on the housing market. There are plenty of rentals, with new units being built even now. However, with the exception of some suburbs, there is very little new construction of single-family homes taking place around Seattle.

In order to live close to where they work, the professionals moving into Seattle can expect to pay $730,000 for a home. That was the average single-family home cost in August, 2017, and that price is likely to continue to increase in upcoming months. In order to find more affordable housing, Seattle workers may have to accept a commute of 90 minutes each way, or more. Even then, properties in nearby counties still average between $300,000 and $450,000.

Prices Around Seattle Are Historically High

For a long time, economists and real estate professionals compared housing values to where they stood before the Great Recession began in 2008. In some areas, housing prices are only now rebounding to where they were nearly a decade ago. Seattle has already moved past that point of reference.

After a period of rapid growth in the mid-aughts, housing prices took a tumble around Seattle, as they did nationally, due to the recession. Local prices around Seattle dipped to their lowest recent point in 2012 and have been on the rise ever since. In fact, in the last five years, home costs have gone up roughly 79 percent from that low point. They're even 20 percent higher than where they were before the Great Recession hit.

What the Market Means for Local Homeowners

For those who want to sell their local real estate, right now is a great time to do so! The demand for housing of all kinds in the area is incredibly high, and the value of homes is very strong. Even those who purchased their homes at the height of the last major real estate bubble in 2006 will likely see some gains in their home value on the current market. Most properties will sell in very little time, so sellers should be ready to move quickly after listing their homes.

For buyers, the current market means that patience is a must. After a pre-approval for a mortgage, buyers should look at places priced below their maximum potential mortgage. That way, there's room for them to make an offer over the asking price. For many buyers, it may take some time to find a property and make a successful offer. Moving quickly when new places come on the market and making sure you know what you're looking for can make the housing hunt process a little easier.

Leave a Comment