The median sales price in north end zip codes 98403, 98406 and 98407 jumped from $212,000 in January of 2013 to $285,000 in July (a 34% increase). However, after the 4th of July, the market began to cool off. primarily due to buyer hesitancy given multiple offers on properties for sale in the spring and an increase in interest rates for home mortgages. After the slow down the median sale price had dropped to $222,000 by November.
Some neighborhoods held their gains better than others, most notably zip code 98406, but the current market as a whole looks much as it did at this time last year with respect to home values and sales activity. That’s not altogether a bad thing. A steady, measured recovery is more likely to be a sustained recovery.
Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, predicts that strong job growth in 2014 will continue to drive the housing recovery (see the interview here). The foreclosure crisis is expected to draw to a close, and home values will continue to rise, albeit at a slower pace than they did in early 2013. Most pundits agree that mortgage interest rates, currently hovering around 4.5%, will top 5% by the end of 2014. With housing values and mortgage interest rates on the rise, housing affordability is admittedly beginning to decline. That means it could become more difficult for first time home buyers to enter the market, which could temper the recovery in some areas. The good news is that according to Zillow, an online real estate housing database, the Seattle metro area is predicted to be one of the hottest housing markets in the country in 2014,
Mark Pinto is a top producing Realtor with Windermere specializing in historic and luxury homes located in Tacoma, Lakewood and Gig Harbor. For further information contact Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org.