Homeowners in the Seattle area who are contemplating listing their home – but aren't completely convinced that now is the time to sell – should take a look at some recently released statistics. The numbers show that home values in the Puget Sound region and within King County continue to skyrocket. In fact, home values in the metropolitan Seattle area in November posted their largest monthly gain since June 2007! And, to show just how fast home prices are rising, they’re up 20% from a year ago.
Even if you’re not selling right now, you have reason to smile. That’s because home values in general have been on the rise here for nine straight months. And there’s more…
When broken down city-by-city, several communities within the Seattle area saw double-digit increases in home values in the year-to-year comparisons. In fact, some are getting very close to the listing prices during the housing boom in 2007. Amazingly, in Medina, the average home value now sits at a whopping $1,464,200! That's up 12.2% from a year ago, and it’s only 3.2% below the highest level it ever reached five years ago.
Although the median home value in cities like Mercer Island, Redmond, Seattle, and Kirkland varies greatly, each of those areas also posted double-digit gains, meaning the value of homes in all price ranges are increasing. For example, the median home value in Mercer Island in November was $821,000 (up 11.1% on an annual basis). That's more than double the median home value in Kirkland, which was at $370,000 in November, but Kirkland also saw double-digit increases when compared to November 2011 (up 10.7% from a year ago).
So, regardless what size home you have, or which community you live in, if you own a home in the Puget Sound area, chances are it's worth more now that it was this time last year. Within the city limits of Seattle, the story is more of the same. The median home value in Seattle was $387,600 in November. That’s 11% higher than it was this time last year.
But it’s not just prices that are on the rise. The number of sales is going up, too! Sales of houses and condos were up 33.9% in Seattle and up 17.1% in King County in November when compared to a year earlier.
So, can Seattle keep up this pace? Economists say they expect home values to continue to rise in 2013 thanks to a few factors. Reduced inventory coupled with higher demand means that buyers in the Seattle area may have to outbid the competition to purchase the home they want. That's good news for sellers, who control the bargaining chips when it comes to negotiating.
For buyers, the steady increase in home values means they may have to pay more than they had hoped to, but they can have confidence that the home's value will increase over time. And as home values continue to rise, it also helps out homeowners who aren't looking to sell. For example, borrowers who are underwater with their mortgages will be released from negative equity as the housing market and home values continue to increase.
So, it's a win for everyone involved!
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