Real Estate News

No slowdown in South Sound housing market

A “sale pending” sits atop a realty sign outside a Florida home.
A “sale pending” sits atop a realty sign outside a Florida home. The Associated Press

The South Sound housing market remained as hot as the weather in July, as sales continued an upward march last month, rising more than 20 percent in Pierce and Thurston counties, according to new single-family residential data released Wednesday by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

But the hotter real estate market likely has been stoked by a key factor: There still isn’t much in the way of inventory for buyers.

The market is atypical, said Diedre Haines, Coldwell Banker Bain principal managing broker, in a statement.

“We’re not seeing any signs of the typical summer slowdown,” she said, adding that she attributes the lack of inventory as a key factor in what she called “abnormalities” in the market.

The inventory in both counties remained below three months, according to the July data. At the current pace of sales, the supply of homes for sale would run out in about three months.

In Pierce County, months of inventory stood at 2.22 months, compared with 2.18 months in June. In Thurston County, months of inventory was 2.63 months, up slightly from 2.42 months in June, the data show.

In King County in July, where the median price of a single-family residence was $485,000, months of inventory was a scant 1.22 months, the data show.

Meanwhile, here are the July numbers for single-family residences in both Pierce and Thurston counties in the past year:

▪ Thurston County: Closed sales rose 24 percent to 439 units from 354 units. Median prices jumped 8.5 percent to $254,950 from $235,000, which also happens to make the cost of a single-family residence in Thurston County more expensive than in Pierce County. Pending sales rose 18 percent, while the total number of single-family residences for sale fell to 1,102 units from 1,444 units, the data show.

▪ Pierce County: Closed sales rose 23.4 percent to 1,392 units from 1,128 units. Median price rose 5.24 percent to $247,000 from $234,700. Pending sales were up more than 20 percent, while the total number of single-family residences for sale fell to 3,093 units from 3,945 units, the data show.

The Thurston County housing market was so strong in July that for the second consecutive month, sales of single-family residences topped 400 units. That likely will come as a surprise to some Thurston County real estate professionals, because the threat of a state government shutdown at the end of June was thought to put a damper on the housing market. In the end that didn’t happen: 439 units sold last month, compared with 455 in June, the data show.

In Pierce County, the data show, 1,000 or more single-family residences have sold every month since March.

Rolf Boone: 360-754-5403

rboone@theolympian.com

@rolf_boone

By the numbers

Condo data in Pierce County for July 2015/July 2014

▪ Closed sales: Rose to 84 units from 77 units.

▪ Median price: Rose 20 percent to $187,987 from $156,250.

▪ Pending sales: Rose to 120 units from 110 units.

▪ Number of condos for sale: Fell 19 percent to 184 units from 227 units.

▪ New condo listings in July: Rose to 98 units from 86 units.

Condo data in Thurston County for July 2015/2014

▪ Closed sales: Rose to nine units from eight units.

▪ Median price: Fell 12 percent to $99,000 from $112,250.

▪ Pending sales: Rose to 14 units from 11 units.

▪ Number of condos for sale: Fell 40 percent to 37 units from 62 units.

▪ New condo listings in July: Rose to 15 units from 12 units.

Source: Northwest MLS

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