Seattle home sales rise in spite of mortgage rate constraints

by Emily Marek

Despite year-over-year increases in interest rates last month, the housing market in the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) region saw a 10% increase in closed sales, according to the organization’s latest market update.

Condominium sales also increased annually with 858 units sold, a 15.6% increase year over year.

Furthermore, the median home price increased in 23 out of 26 counties in the NWMLS region, with the highest median sales prices seen in San Juan ($1,055,000), King ($875,000) and Snohomish ($738,000).

“The increase in year over year sales transactions signals that buyers and sellers are beginning to adjust to the higher interest rate environment,” Mason Virant, associate director of the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington, said in a press release. “Despite interest rates increasing back into the low 7% range, year-over-year inventory levels have improved dramatically relative to April 2023. It may take four to six months to be realized, but higher levels of for-sale inventory should soon have an impact on stabilizing price levels.”

There was a nearly 21% year-over-year increase in active listings in the MLS in April, with inventory increasing in 23 out of 26 counties. New listings, meanwhile, increased by 31.9%, with 9,636 properties added to the database during the month.

Given the pace of sales, the NWMLS region had a 1.68-month housing supply in April. That’s up 10.4% from April 2023, when there was a 1.52-month supply. Inventory was slightly lower in many of the counties in and around the Seattle metro area, including Snohomish (0.83 months), King (1.27 months), Thurston (1.47 months) and Pierce (1.48 months).

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