Scarcity of homes for sale is still the number one problem.
The scarcity of homes for sale is not new. As the chart below illustrates, the last year with appreciable levels of inventory was 2014. For some areas, the last year with decent inventory was 2013. The meager supply of homes continues to frustrate buyers on both sides of Lake Washington and points north and south.
Scarcity of homes for sale varies by Zip code
The year 2017 ends much the way it started: with low inventory. The advice I gave 12 months ago, in January 2017, bears repeating.
The lack of homes is most severe close to major employers like Amazon in Seattle or Microsoft in Redmond. Check out the Zip codes that interest you the most from over 50 Zip codes for King and Snohomish counties. This information is valuable for buyers and potential sellers.
Advice for Buyers
- Look early and consistently.
- Be flexible with your search criteria.
- Watch for price reductions (overpriced properties).
- Go see as many homes as you can.
- Don’t be afraid of making an offer.
- Get pre-approved with a lender.
Advice for Sellers
- If you thought of selling, don’t wait.
- Don’t overprice your home.
- Prepare your home to sell fast and high.
- Make your home irresistible on the web and social media.
- Evaluate all offers carefully. Price is not the only consideration.
- Remember, in this market, as the seller you are in the driver’s seat.
Will inventory improve in 2018?
Most forecasts say that there will be a slow but steady improvement. In some areas, this is already happening. One of my buying clients bought a desirable home in South Everett at list price after some seller concessions.
My hope is that inventory never sinks to the lows of the Cheese Shop in Monty Python’s Flying Circus.
First published by Gerhard as his
December 2017 View from the Street Newsletter.