Volume, prices rise amid home shortage

Posted: July 19th, 2012 by Brad

Low listing inventory and plunging mortgage rates are fueling buyer competition for homes close to job centers, according to brokers who commented on the latest market report from Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

The figures for the 21 counties in the MLS market area show inventory is down sharply from a year ago (declining almost 28 percent), while pending sales (mutually accepted offers) rose almost 22 percent. The volume of closed sales increased more than 20 percent, topping the 6,000 mark for the first time since September 2007.

Since January, median prices are up 12.8 percent system-wide, with nine counties reporting gains of 15 percent or higher (Clallam, Grays Harbor, Island, King, Kittitas, Kitsap, San Juan, Skagit, and Snohomish counties). Grays Harbor topped the list, reporting a 34.8 percent spike in prices since the first of the year.

Several areas scattered around King County reported double-digit gains in both the volume of closed sales of single family homes and the corresponding median selling prices. Those areas included:

Whether upward pressure on values will be a longer term trend remains to be seen. One thing is for sure, buyers are getting less home for the money than they did even six months ago.

Information for this report was sourced from NWREporter.

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