The Housing Shortage is Real
You have heard it before. There is a shortage of homes for sale. To drive that point home, I’ve taken a snapshot of homes for sale. Yes, it is the week after Thanksgiving but this only exacerbated what has been going on for not just months but years. Take a look at the three-year trends I provide on SeattleRealEstateNews.com.
We are running out of homes to sell.
As you can see, the downward trend in listings has been going on for over two years. With a few exceptions, notably for condos in downtown Seattle, this is true for most of the over 50 zip codes you can search there. For example, take a look at the three-year trends in the 98004 zip code of Bellevue, the 98021 zip code of Bothell, and the 98034 zip code of Kirkland.
Note that the spread between the active listings (yellow bars) and the sold listings (blue bars) is increasing. We are literally running out of homes to sell. Keep in mind that the graphs display October 2021 as the latest month. Come back to these housing market trends on about December 8th to see the November data. I promise the trend will continue. The housing shortage is here to stay.
The November 30th snapshots
Let’s say you want to buy a home today in Kirkland’s 98034 zip code (that’s north of downtown). There are three homes for sale, the least expensive is $1,499,000 and the most expensive $1,995,950
If you are interested in buying a home in the Redmond 98052 zip code (downtown Redmond and close-in neighborhoods), you will find four homes for sale ranging from $900,000 to $2,339,500
Looking further north in Bothell’s 98011 zip code (mainly situated in King County), there is just one home for sale, listed for $1,824,990.
Still further north in the Snohomish county Bothell 98021 zip code there are five homes for sale ranging from 1,599,000 to $2,379,990.
If you prefer Woodinville’s 98072 zip code (downtown Woodinville and adjacent neighborhoods), you will find two homes for sale, one for $998,000 and the other for $1,150,000.
Back south on I-405 you will find that in Bellevue’s 98004 zip code (that’s west of 405) there is just one home for sale and it is offered for $4,950,000.
The Seattle area housing shortage is painful.
Bellevue versus Seattle Condos
But let’s say you are looking not for single-family homes but for condos.
In the Bellevue 98004 zip code (west of I-405), there are just four condos for sale, ranging from $628,000 to $17,980,000.
However, In the downtown Seattle 98121 zip code (Belltown and Denny Triangle area) there are 49 condos for sale ranging in price from $370,000 to $4,990,000.
There are exceptions in this housing shortage.
What these condos in Seattle and Bellevue share is that they have been on the market considerably longer than single-family homes. The Seattle 98121 condos average 155 days.
What does the housing shortage mean?
If you are a buyer of or know someone who is in the market to buy, pay close attention at all times. I was able to help an out-of-town family to buy a Mill Creek home at list price. We were notified within minutes of new listings and pounced when we found the right one. I will set up a search for you and run an instant analysis. Just because this is mainly a sellers’ market, you do not want to overpay.
If you are a seller or know someone who is in the market to sell, the timing could not be better. Just because we are in the Holiday Season with weeks of Seattle winter blah ahead, is no reason to wait. You have virtually no competition. This is no invitation to overprice your home. With so few homes on the market, greed is spotted easily. As my past listing clients can tell you, my designer listings get attention and sell fast.
Don’t be discouraged by the housing shortage. This too shall pass.
Published originally as the 130th issue of The View from the Street.