Green Lake Real Estate Update, October 2014
Kris Murphy and Daniela Dombrowski are Seattle Greenlaker sponsors and real estate brokers who live and specialize in the Wallingford and Green Lake neighborhoods. They practice out of the Keller Williams Greater Seattle office located on the corner of Stone Way and N 45th St.
We all hear so much about real estate every day, but in this article we are focusing on a much more local and focused area so you may get a true picture of what is happening with your home’s value. In our statistics we have captured just Green Lake and Tangletown (see map). Finally, we break out single family homes including townhomes because analyzing condominiums yields different results and trends.
Comparison 1st – 3rd Quarter from 2013 to 2014 (Jan – September)
The Green Lake upturn started earlier than in many other Seattle neighborhoods so 2013 was a very hot year in real estate and continues to be very competitive in 2014. However, home sale numbers were down by 21.74% this year caused by a shortage in inventory, leading to increased bidding wars and continued price appreciation. The median sales price rose 15.2% this year from last with the average sales price landing 4.8% over the list price, and we have seen escalations as high as 20% over market for certain properties. Average days on market were down only slightly, but only because listing agents almost always held the property on market for at least 1 week before looking at offers, giving the market a chance to discover the property and compete for it.
|Home Sales 1st – 3rd Qtr compared to last year||2013||2014||Difference||%|
|Number of Closed Sales||207||162||-45||-21.74%|
|Average Days on Market||21||19||-2|
|Median List Price||$530,000||$589,000||$59,000||+7.69%|
|Median Sales Price||$536,000||$617,500||$81,500||+15.2%|
|List to Sales Price Ratio||101.1%||104.8%|
What the trends are telling us
The following charts capture all of Green Lake real estate trends over the last 15 months. This bar graph tells us how many homes were available for sale (light green), how many went under contract (red line) and how many sales closed each month (dark green). We can see with the light green bars there were clearly less homes for sale this year, yet buying activity was strong from Jan 2014 to present (see red line). Yet, actual closed sales (dark green) are fewer than last year due to the lower supply in active listings. Intense bidding wars and price increases are how these statistics played out in the marketplace.
In this chart the green line represents the average list price of a home while the red line shows the final sales price. This picture is a bit erratic and the September numbers show an average list price far greater than the resulting sales prices. It is not unusual after an extreme sellers’ market for sellers to get emboldened and shoot for the moon with their pricing. But eventually buyers push back and prices stop escalating so rapidly causing the market to become more balanced.
Finally, this chart illustrates months of inventory. It is derived based on a calculation dividing the number of homes for sale by the number of homes that went under contract in a given month and attempts to project how many months it will take for the entire available inventory to sell. Anything under 2 months of inventory represents a sellers’ market, and in our case, most of the time we were under 1 month of inventory which translates into a “crazy sellers’ market”. Certainly, that is what we have been experiencing this last year as real estate brokers.
This Too Shall Change
We are seeing indicators of a changing market and certainly that is bound to happen. But in Green Lake we are experiencing only a small softening at this time. The true test will come in the early months of 2015 after our usual holiday lull. Will buyers continue to be out in full force? Will more sellers be bringing their homes to market thus bringing up housing inventory numbers? Will interest rates start rising as we have been hearing for some time now? Currently, 30-year mortgages are back below 4%, but for how long?
Barring any unforeseen major changes, we expect the strong housing market to continue in the Green Lake area, but perhaps not as dramatic as this year. The strength of our local economy continues, Green Lake attracts exciting new businesses adding to our urban walkable offerings, our schools are quite desirable and commuting from Green Lake to almost anywhere is a breeze. All these factors contribute to keep making Green Lake real estate a desirable commodity besides being the neighborhood we all love to live and thrive in.
Keller Williams Greater Seattle
1307 N 45th St, Suite 300
Seattle, WA 98103