Robust Washington housing market shows no signs of slowing down

by Patrick Regan

The spring real estate market hit with full force in March and showed no evidence of a slowdown despite rising interest rates, according to the latest Northwest MLS data.

New listings, pending sales and the median home price all jumped dramatically in March compared to February within the NWMLS footprint, which encompasses 26 of Washington’s 39 counties.

“Typically, by now, we would start to see rising mortgage rates impacting homes sales and/or prices,” Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere Real Estate, said in a NWMLS news release. “That has yet to happen despite rates rising significantly since the start of the year.”

NWMLS brokers reported 10,059 pending sales during March, a 31% increase from February. The figure is down slightly from 10,863 pending sales the same month last year, likely a product of lower inventory. 

Brokers added 11,197 new listings of single-family homes and condominiums during March, up from 10,562 last year and a 41% jump from February’s figure of 7,920.

“The market is following the normal seasonality of spring,” said J. Lennox Scott, chairman and CEO of John L. Scott Real Estate. “This season brings more resale listings coming on the market.”

The area-wide median price was $638,000 in March, up 16.4% from a year ago and 9% from February.

Northwest MLS figures show prices in King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish counties have soared nearly $200,000 in two years, jumping from a median price of nearly $520,000 in March 2020 to nearly $720,000.

Inventory remains extremely low in those same four counties, with an estimated supply of less than two weeks.

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