Though January has statistically marked a slower time in the King County housing market, that was not the case in 2018, as Seattle Times reports that Seattle broke a price record in January. No area was “left untouched” in gains, as price increases neared 20-percent in the Emerald City. Seattle’s median home price reached $757,000, a number which surged above the previous record set in the summer of 2017.
The condominium market saw an even greater increase, as the Times says “condo prices surged 23 percent from a year ago.” In downtown Seattle, condo sales decreased by nearly 30-percent while prices were up 8.1% on average, a symptom of increased demand for homeownership amidst anemic inventory.
January’s sales results indicate that buyers who hoped the market would cool in 2018 will likely not receive their wish, and show that “buyers can’t afford to be picky about when they shop anymore” as competition heightens with would-be buyers incubating in rentals and new residents flocking to the area’s lucrative tech jobs.
As the Times reports, “altogether, King County’s median price of $628,000 has roughly doubled since it fell to $315,000 in January 2012.” And given strong market fundamentals in the Puget Sound region, that growth is expected to continue.
Many potential buyers are taking advantage of condominium presales opportunities, which provide an attractive alternative to competing in a heated resale market. That’s especially true for those whom already own a home and need time to organize for the move and sell an existing property. In a presale, a buyer typically invests a 5-percent non-refundable deposit to lock in a purchase price but will not close for another year or two during the construction process. This provides plenty of runway to organize financing and also ride up the additional equity gains (in both homes) as it would seem, prices continue to rise. Furthermore, some developers are willing to accept reservations for future presales, which is essentially a presale of a presale. In this scenario, a prospective buyer makes a fully refundable $5,000 deposit to open escrow on a new home that’s still in planning, awaiting final entitlements and not yet ready to finalize the specifications or pricing.
NEXUS is currently 90-percent presold with occupancy late 2019. Prospective buyers are encouraged to visit NEXUSseattle.com for additional details, or visit the Sales Center located at 2609 1st Avenue in Seattle.