House sellers in the Puget Sound can breathe a tentative sigh of relief as potential home buyers resume their searches after a brief pause in activity. Experts are hoping that this renewed activity is a sign of the market gaining some balance. They do caution that another slowdown could be seen before it picks up again in November due to people vacationing and heading back to school.
According to a report on northwestmls.com, the four-county Puget Sound region is maintaining its strength. Brokers reported 11,657 pending sales for the month of July, a small decline from the 11,995 offers in June. Even with the decrease, this July pulls into the lead as the best one in the history of the area.
House Prices Still Showing Increase
In King County, pending sales for July may have shown a decrease but house prices are still on the rise. Of the 9,446 sales that closed in the month of July, the median price for condominiums and single-family houses was $350,000. This time last year, the median price was $319,250. This shows an increase of 9.6 percent. Although the month still showed an increase in prices when compared to last year, the fast paced increases of the past months seem to be slowing down.
During July, MLS members added approximately 12,178 new listings to the inventory. This was an increase of 8.8 percent over one year ago.
Those seeking condominium living are in for a challenge. The median price rose 17.3 percent compared to July of last year, ringing in at $305,005. This time last year, a buyer could have snagged one for around $260,000. The picture is not much brighter for those seeking a single-family home. Prices increased by 14.4 percent from a year ago, with the median price in King County hitting $555,000. This increase makes it even more important for a buyer to know exactly how much they can afford to spend on a house.
Housing Bubble Rumors
There are whispers among brokers that a housing bubble is just around the corner. Experts don’t agree. While they are quick to point out that no one can predict the real estate market, the do have a good idea about what to expect in the coming months. From their point of view, a housing bubble is extremely unlikely.
A housing bubble occurs when there’s been a significant rise in house prices over a period of time, and these prices reach a point for which the real estate market can no longer sustain the level. Once this happens, the prices begin the decline into what experts call a bubble.
Real estate experts maintain that house prices will continue to rise, and they expect interest rates to rise right along with them. That makes the next three months a hot spot for home buyers. With the slight increase in listings, potential buyers should consider stepping into the waters before listings slow down again just before the end of the year.
Wondering what your home might be worth? Find out instantly with our 15-second home value calculator.