Q3 2019 Reports: Market Update

Q3 Market Snapshot for Seattle and the Eastside

 

Q3 was the most stable and balanced market we have seen in years. With very low mortgage interest rates compelling buyers to act and fewer homes for sale than we saw last fall (when a flood of homes came to market), buyers and sellers are each finding their own place in a more equitable real estate arena.

 

Approximately 41% of homes for sale in Q3 sold at or above their listed price. This segment was on the market for an average of just seven days and included the most highly desired and well-priced properties in mainstream price points. Of the remaining homes for sale, just over one third underwent a price reduction before resulting in a sale. That number increased steadily as we moved deeper into Q3, ending the quarter with an average of 43% of listed homes with sales occurring following a price reduction.

 

From a home buyer’s perspective, the best properties sold quickly and at a premium. Of the homes that remained on the market, there was ample room for negotiation to a fair price. Q3 home sellers were generally more informed and more likely to price realistically from the start and adjust quickly if they were off target.

 

This more balanced market afforded many more consumers the ability to comfortably complete a sell/buy transaction and with enough time and space to thoroughly conduct due diligence on prospective properties.

 

Click or scroll down to find your area report:

Seattle | Eastside | Mercer Island | Condos | Waterfront

 

Is it a Buyer's or Seller's Market?

 


SEATTLE

The Seattle in-city real estate market slowed from a racetrack inferno to cruising speed over the past year and a half. Prices softened an average of 2% in Q3 with the Central Seattle region feeling the biggest impact (down 7.6% from Q3 2018). The Ballard-Green Lake region had the highest number of Q3 sales (582) while the Lake Forest Park-Kenmore area boasted the most affordable cost per home square foot ($340). When it comes to returns, Lake Forest Park-Kenmore, South Seattle, and Richmond Beach-Shoreline were nearly tied for the strongest five-year growth trend at 73.9%, 73.3% and 73.2% respectively.

Seattle Q3 2019 Recap

Click here to view the complete report for a neighborhood by neighborhood breakdown of Average Sale Price, size, and number of homes sold.

Seattle Report

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EASTSIDE

Stimulated by announced expansion from the top names in tech, the Eastside is the place to be right now. Buyers found far fewer homes for sale—nearly 25% less—in Q3 than they did just one year ago. Sale prices in Kirkland, bolstered by recent announcements from Google and Tableau, were up an average of 15.4% over Q3 2018. Prices near the Microsoft campus, where the Spring District is coming online, where up 3.2%. The West Bellevue market saw a lower Median Sale Price which was attributable to fewer high-end sales in Q3 this year compared to last year. All in all, the Eastside had a very good quarter. Home sellers should be pleased with their returns and home buyers should feel good about purchasing in a robust market.

Eastside Q3 2019 Recap

Click here for the full report and neighborhood-by-neighborhood statistics!

Eastside Review

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MERCER ISLAND

Mercer Island experienced continued slowing in the luxury market with fewer waterfront sales (5) than typical in Q3. Conversely, many moderately-priced renovation-ready homes transacted this quarter bringing the overall Q3 Median Sale Price down 4% to $1,678,000. The Island is finally beginning to see a moderate number of building and remodel applications submitted after a two-year lull sparked by major changes in the city’s residential building code. The North End had the highest average cost per square foot ($620) while Mercerdale ($435) was most affordable. First Hill had the shortest average market time with just 5 days and East Mercer had the longest (117 days). Demand remains steady and we expect well-priced, turnkey condition homes to continue to do quite well as we move further into the fall market.

Mercer Island Q3 2019 Recap

Click here to view the complete report for a neighborhood by neighborhood breakdown of Average Sale Price, size, and number of homes sold.

Mercer Island Report

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CONDOS – SEATTLE & EASTSIDE

Competition from new and pre-sale buildings, aging structures, a larger percentage of affordable units transacting, and urban flight have contributed to the 12.3% Median Sale Price decline in Seattle to $438,500 (from $500,000 in Q3 2018). To be fair, the Five-Year Median Price Trend shows prices up 71.9% since Q3 2014, giving most condo owners a nice cushion to fall back on.

The Median Sale Price was down 1.9% on the Eastside to $471,000 from $480,000. An extremely low number of resale units for sale, coupled with many of the same attributes impacting the Seattle condo market, contributed to the slight softening seen in the Eastside condo market.

Recent changes in Washington condo laws will eventually bring more condos and townhomes online in the next economic cycle, but potential buyers may have to wait 5-7 years to see that morph from concept to reality.

Check out all of these factoids and more in the full condo report.

Condo Report

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WATERFRONT

Seattle had 13 private waterfront home sales in Q3, the highest of which was a $10.6 million Laurelhurst estate on a shy acre with 150 feet on the water. The Eastside (Bellevue-Kirkland) had nine sales in Q3, including a $15.4 million 1925-built Yarrow Point home on 1.15 acres with 100 feet along the water’s edge. Further east, Lake Sammamish had eleven waterfront sales in Q3 ranging from $2.0-4.5 million.

Centrally located to the Seattle-Bellevue metro areas, Mercer Island had five private waterfront sales ranging from a $10.1 million, 2002-built North End home with 124 feet of waterfront on one and a half acres to a $3.6 million, mid-century Eastside home with 85 feet on the water and just over half an acre.

This top-level overview of the entire Seattle-Eastside private waterfront market, including Mercer Island and Lake Sammamish, provides a glance into the trends occurring in our region over time. Interesting, and certainly insightful, it in no way replaces an in-depth analysis on waterfront value provided by a savvy broker with years of local waterfront experience.

Waterfront Report

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ABOUT WINDERMERE MERCER ISLAND

We earn the trust and loyalty of our brokers and clients by doing real estate exceptionally well. The leader in our market, we deliver client-focused service in an authentic, collaborative and transparent manner and with the unmatched knowledge and expertise that comes from decades of experience.

 

 

© Copyright 2019, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Information and statistics derived from Northwest Multiple Listing Service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Posted on October 15, 2019 at 9:37 am
Andrea Iverson | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Q2 2019 Reports: Market Update

Q2 Market Snapshot for Seattle and the Eastside

 

Changes in the home lending environment drove down mortgage interest rates in Q2 to their lowest levels in years, giving buyers more buying power for their money and stimulating demand for available homes on the market.

 

The number of homes for sale is up markedly, especially in Seattle, as is the number of closed sales, with low interest rates and high local incomes taking much of the credit for the market activity. Sale prices have remained modest as buyers feel more cautious about overpaying for a home at or near the cyclical market peak.

 

As stated in earlier reports, the market has much to offer buyers and sellers this year. We believe those looking to make a move in the next few years should do so this year when they can still secure incredibly affordable mortgage financing. Today’s buyers should be prepared to stay in their home at least five years. Home sellers moving to lower cost regions may also benefit from selling now. We know that every situation is unique, and we are here to help you evaluate your personal real estate holdings and purchase strategy.

 

Click or scroll down to find your area report:

Seattle | Eastside | Mercer Island | Condos | Waterfront

 


SEATTLE

The number of homes for sale continued to rise across Seattle. West Seattle and Richmond Beach/Shoreline experienced the greatest velocity in number of sales. Seattle’s overall Median Sale Price was up 4.8% from Q1 to $760,000, but down 5.2% from Q2 2018. The Average $ Per Square Foot was down 5.1% from Q2 last year to $436. North Seattle, Queen Anne/Magnolia and West Seattle all performed better than the average in Q2. Seattle homeowners have seen a 61% increase in the Median Sale Price over the past five years.

Seattle Chart

Click here to view the complete report for a neighborhood by neighborhood breakdown of Average Sale Price, size, and number of homes sold.

Seattle Report

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EASTSIDE

The Eastside cities of Bellevue, Kirkland, and Redmond have become the epicenter of tech growth planned over the next few years. Recent announcements from Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Microsoft, coupled with light rail coming in 2023, have made the Eastside the place to be. The Eastside’s Median Sale Price was up 1.9% from Q1 to $945,000, but down 1.6% from Q2 2018’s peak of $960,305. The five-year Eastside median price trend is up 53% since 2014.

Mercer Island rebounded in Q2 from a poorly performing Q1 while Kirkland and South Eastside fared better than average. A total of 2,334 Eastside home sales closed in Q2, up 1.2% from Q2 2018.

Eastside Chart

Click here for the full report and neighborhood-by-neighborhood statistics!

Eastside Review

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MERCER ISLAND

Mercer Island’s Median Sale Price rallied back up in Q2 to $1.8 million after lower than typical sales drove it down to $1.53 in Q1. Eight waterfront sales contributed to the overall increase, as did the total sales velocity of 101 homes sold in Q2—the highest number of sales than in any of the preceding eight quarters.

Mercer Island Chart

Click here to view the complete report for a neighborhood by neighborhood breakdown of Average Sale Price, size, and number of homes sold.

Mercer Island Report

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CONDOS – SEATTLE & EASTSIDE

Seattle’s condo Median Sale Price was up 5.1% from Q1 to $483,500, but down 7.9% from a peak of $525,000 in Q2 of 2018. The Average $ Per Square Foot was $580. Condos in West Seattle and Lake Forest Park/Kenmore performed best in Q2.

The Eastside’s condo Median Sale Price was up 4.3% from Q1 to $480,000, but down 2.1% from the $490,500 median of Q2 2018. The Average $ Per Square Foot was $453. West Bellevue and Kirkland Condos performed well above condos in other Eastside markets.

Check out all of these factoids and more in the full condo report.

Condo Report

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WATERFRONT

A significant number of private waterfront homes transacted in Q2 2019—fourteen on the Eastside, eight on Mercer Island, and eleven each in Seattle and Lake Sammamish. The highest Q2 sale was a 1998 Yarrow Point home on 115 feet of waterfront sold at $14,250,000 after 22 days on the market. The lowest sale was a 1945 Kennydale area home on 53 feet of Lake Washington waterfront for $1,075,000 on the market for 64 days.

The Eastside and Lake Sammamish both had a very moderate supply of inventory in relation to the number of sales that occurred. Seattle and Mercer Island still had more homes on the market than recent demand has dictated, although the volume of sales in Q2 improved the oversupply of inventory, heating up these markets to their highest levels in some time.

This top-level overview of the entire Seattle-Eastside private waterfront market, including Mercer Island and Lake Sammamish, provides a glance into the trends occurring in our region over time. Interesting, and certainly insightful, it in no way replaces an in-depth analysis on waterfront value provided by a savvy broker with years of local waterfront experience.

Waterfront Report

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ABOUT WINDERMERE MERCER ISLAND

We earn the trust and loyalty of our brokers and clients by doing real estate exceptionally well. The leader in our market, we deliver client-focused service in an authentic, collaborative and transparent manner and with the unmatched knowledge and expertise that comes from decades of experience.

 

 

© Copyright 2019, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Information and statistics derived from Northwest Multiple Listing Service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Posted on July 15, 2019 at 11:33 am
Windermere Mercer Island | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

New Real Estate Excise Tax (REET) Rate for 2020

We Want YOU...to Know About the Excise Tax Change

 

Now that Washington State Senate Bill 5998 has been signed into law, our local real estate excise tax—the tax paid when you sell a property—will be getting a facelift in 2020. The flat rate of the past will make way for a new tiered system which gives owners a tax cut on the first $500,000 of home value, keeps the current tax rate on the next $1 million of value, and then increases it sharply after $1.5 million.

 

The good news is that taxes will go down for the vast majority (~93%) of sellers in King County. Sellers of luxury homes that fetch more than $1.56m, however, will be paying more—much, much more in the case of multi-million dollar home sales.

 

Wondering how the changes might impact your bottom line when it comes time to sell? Scroll down or check out our quick reference worksheet

 

2020 CHnages to King County Excise Taxes

 

DETAILS & BACKGROUND

 

The previous flat state REET tax of 1.28% (1.78% after the 0.5% local portion is added) will be replaced on January 1, 2020, by the following rates (total REET after King County local portion is shown in parenthesis):

 

1.1% (1.6%) – Portion of selling price less than or equal to $500,000

1.28% (1.78%) – Portion of selling price greater than $500,000 and equal to or less than $1.5 million

2.75% (3.25%) – Portion of selling price greater than $1.5 million and equal to or less than $3 million

3.0% (3.5%) – Portion of selling price greater than $3 million


These thresholds may be adjusted again in 2022 and every four years after that using a formula for calculating value trends.


The current state real estate excise tax rate has been the same since July 1, 1989 while the local portion of the rate has been managed by each jurisdiction individually. You can find the full details in this Real Estate Excise Tax historical rates chart provided by the Department of Revenue.


The state provides a summary of the history and use of the real estate excise tax in Washington State detailing changes over the years. Currently, the bulk of the estate tax (92.3%) goes to the General Fund. Beginning January 1, 2020, and ending June 30, 2023, revenue distributions must be as follows: 1.7 percent must be deposited in the Public Works Assistance Account; 1.4 percent must be deposited in the City-County Assistance Account; 79.4 percent must be deposited in the general fund; and the remaining amount must be deposited in the Education Legacy Trust Account. Beginning July 1, 2023, and thereafter, revenue distributions to the Public Works Assistance Account increases to 5.2 percent. You can find the full law and definitions in Chapter 458-61A WAC (Washington Administrative Code).

 

SO WHAT’S THE BOTTOM LINE?

 

If you sell for $1,561,258 or less in King County, you will pay the same or less (up $900 less) in REET after 1/1/20. This is great news for most property owners in King County and across the state. Because the rate states the same on the portion of the selling price greater than $500,000 and equal to or less than $1.5 million as it currently is, all the savings comes in the portion below $500,000. This begins to whittle away as you creep above $1.5 million and into the higher tax rate of 2.75% (3.25%).


If you sell for more than that amount, you’ll be paying more–often much more. You can see from the quick reference chart below that the seller of a $2.5 million property will pay an additional $13,800, while a $5 million sale will cost an extra $55,550 and a $10 million sale a whopping $141,550 more.


Everyone will have a different take on the new tax rate, but if you have a valuable property and contributing more to the state’s coffers isn’t part of your charitable giving strategy, selling in 2019 might offer significant savings. On the other hand, selling in 2020 and beyond funds education and public works at greater levels than ever before, and that benefits everyone.

 

EXCISE TAX QUICK REFERENCE WORKSHEET


 

 

MERCER ISLAND


We earn the trust and loyalty of our brokers and clients by doing real estate exceptionally well. The leader in our market, we deliver client-focused service in an authentic, collaborative and transparent manner and with the unmatched knowledge and expertise that comes from decades of experience.

 

© Copyright 2019, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island. Originally posted on Windermere Mercer Island’s “Local in Seattle” blog.

Posted on June 7, 2019 at 12:20 pm
Windermere Mercer Island | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , ,