Since the real estate crash, the market has been slowly gaining momentum. Homeowners are feeling more confident as their equity is starting to increase. From 2013 to 2014, the average sales price in King/Pierce County has risen 8.3%.
On the other side of the coin, mass amounts of 1st time homebuyers entered the market. Recent graduates now have a steady income and mortgage rates have remained low – a healty incentive for any potential home buyer. So many homebuyers have entered the market, in fact, that the demand for homes rose increadibly and the supply couldnt keep up.
What this high demand created was craziness. In places close to Seattle and Bellevue, it was common to recieve multiple offers by day 3. I've heard as many as 18 offers! People would offer above list price by $50,000 or more, they would wave the inspection contingency (keep in mind many Seattle homes are older and it is likely they have aging issues), $100,000 earnest money and more!
In the South Sound area, we did see above list price offers, multiple offers, and many within a week of the home being put on the market.
ENTER LATE AUGUST/SEPTEMBER
Across the board, things have slowed. People took their last minute vacations and are getting kids ready for school again. I've spoken with many agents who have agreed that showings on their listings have all slowed WAY down. I have seen this slowing on my listings as well, and the further out from the Seattle epicenter, the slower they get.
So what does this mean? For sellers, it means sticking it out, or making some agressive moves before the holiday season hits. There are simply less buyers in the market, so you need to make your home stand out and attract one of those few buyers.
For buyers, this means there is somewhat limited inventory, but you may not be competing with 10 other buyers. You may negotiate significant price drops and for the seller to pay closing costs.
It's amazing how it all goes back to supply and demand. The market will bear what the market will bear.
How has housing looked in your area?