King County Real Estate Market Update | February 2024

 In #King County Real Estate Market, #Thoughts, Seattle Real Estate Market Updates

Hey, I’m Zach McDonald, your real estate agent with Rio Property Associates, and this is my King County real Estate market update for January, 2024.

Welcome and welcome back. We are talking about the King County housing market here. We’re looking at the stats from January, 2024. They were just released here a couple days ago on the northwest, multiple listing service. Now things continue to heat up in King County. We have been seeing home selling over asking price. We’ve been seeing the prices or the median sales price and average sales price both rising here in the spring. And although we are seeing more listings coming on, the market supply is not changing dramatically. So let’s look at what’s going on here in the King County housing market. So last month we had a slight drop off in new listings from last year. So we’re not seeing a massive influx of listings. In fact, we’re still seeing fewer than we were seeing in 2022 and before, but a little bit of an uptick from February.

So that’s a good sign, a couple hundred more listings than the previous month. Now pending sales, we’re seeing a jump in that category. So although we didn’t see much of a jump in the new listings, we did see a jump in the pending sales. So 17.9% jump year over year in the pending sales, and again, more pending sales this month than last month. So we’re still seeing more buyer activity. Again, part of that’s because there’s more listings to buy, right? I think there are not enough listings for all the buyers, and that’s why we’re seeing some of the competition in the market. We’re seeing the multiple offers. We’re seeing prices going up instead of down days. On market is down. So 22 this month versus 32 last month and last year, 34. So we’re still seeing, again, home selling faster than they were selling, and they’re selling for more.

We talked about that as well. So $950,000 median sales price. Last year, the median sales price in King County was 846,650 in the same month. So more than a hundred thousand dollars up on the median sales price. And also 20,000 up from last month. The average sales price is up 13%, 13.1% year over year at just under $1.25 million last year, just a little over 1.1. So almost $150,000 that gets like $145,000 if my quick math is correct. On the average sales price for a house in King County. Last year we were seeing houses selling just over asking price. In the spring, it was the hottest time of the year. It typically is in King County, 0.4% over asking price. Now this year, 3.1% over asking price. Last month it was 1.7. So we’re still seeing homes selling for even more as we continue to head deeper into the spring.

Inventory I mentioned hasn’t changed too much. It’s down about 18.8% from last year. So that means there are 18, almost 19% fewer homes on the market for all the buyers. And that translates to a, as we call it, a supply number of about 1.1 months of supply. What that means is that all the houses will be gone in about a month. If there are no new homes coming on the market. That means we’re in a very low inventory environment. We’re in what we would call a seller’s market, and that’s where the sellers have the leverage in negotiations. And the sellers are the ones that are benefiting really. I mean, if you’re a buyer, you always want the lowest price. If you’re a seller, you want the highest price. So when you see things like low inventory, it’s usually accompanied by higher prices and home selling over asking price, those are signs as well.

So looking at this information and also just living it every single day, maybe a little less over these past few weeks. We just had our fifth kid, so have been maybe not looking at these numbers as much or paying as close of attention, but as I’m just continuing to reflect on what’s been happening and where we’re headed here in King County, I would say that we are, we’re in an interesting place because interest rates are still hovering around 7%. They haven’t really improved that much. In fact, they’re more than double where they were when things started to decline in 2022. And at the same time, prices are vast. Approaching the record highs, we’re not quite there yet, but we’re getting close or at least closer, and that’s with interest rates being higher. So I can only imagine what will change when interest rates do eventually come down, whether that’s towards the end of the year as many are predicting, or maybe that’s early 2025.

Either way, we’re still finding ourselves, seeing the market climbing back and recovering without interest rates changing. If interest rates do change, there’s going to be a lot more competition, a lot more buyers in the market. There will be some more listings for sure, people maybe that are buying and then selling, but I think it’s going to be a madhouse really. I think it’s going to be a crazy frenzy. So this is for buyers. Listen up. If I was a move up buyer and I was going to sell a house and buy a house, I think I’d prefer a market like this. I would’ve preferred a market like 2023 or even 2022, maybe at the end of the year over even now. But I would prefer now over the time when the interest rates are lower, because you are going to have a lot more competition when interest rates are lower, more people can afford to buy, and more people are upgrading their homes.

And that is going to be a cause for more competition. A lot more buyers in the market competing over the same houses. So if I’m looking to upgrade, I want to do that when things are not as hot, because I don’t want to pay a premium for my new house. I do want to get a premium for my other house. So maybe that’s a case of buying something now, holding off on selling and selling later. Or what I did is I just went ahead and sold the property for a little bit less knowing I got a discount on the new one because I didn’t want to bother with renting it out and holding onto it for a little bit. And I think for sellers, I think what it means for you is that you have an opportunity to capitalize on competition. Again, you may or may not be able to sell for as much as a neighbor sold for in 2022 yet, but you’re getting close to those record highs, so you’re not missing out on much if it is time for you to move on.

But at the same time, holding off just a little bit longer is not probably a bad idea either. So I think selling now if it makes sense for your timing, isn’t going to be a massive loss on the record highs. But at the same time, if you are in a place where you don’t need to move right now, holding off a little bit longer is probably in your best interest as well. So hopefully these thoughts are helpful for you. If you got some value out of today’s video, I’d appreciate it if you gave it a thumbs up or shared it with somebody who could benefit from it. And if you have questions about the King County housing market or buying something, selling something, and you want to run it by me, I’d love to be a resource for you.

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