Inventory Remains Low, but Sales Strong in the Seattle Four-county Region
I found an interesting report that slipped by my desk that I wanted to share from the NWMLS regarding January home sales in the Pacific Northwest.
There is very limited inventory out there right now. In fact, in King County the inventory (SFR and Condo) is only 1.41 months (a year ago the amount was 2.09 months). In Snohomish County the inventory is only 1.56 months (compared to 2.80 months a year ago). For the entire State the NWMLS reports that there is only 2.48 months of inventory (and this covers over 23 counties in Washington State) as compared to 3.82 months of inventory a year ago.
Despite the lack of inventory, there are still a large number of homes transacting. For instance, in the King/Pierce/Snohomish/Kitsap County region there were 5,420 properties PENDING. This was the 4th highest total of PENDING sales in the last 17 years. If there were more inventory, it makes one wonder if sales would actually be higher than 5,791 (which was the PENDING total for January 2015 — the highest amount of pending sales ever in January over the past 17 years).
To put it another way, sales are down 15% in King County from a year ago, but inventory is down over 31% for that same period. A “balanced” market for buyers and sellers is closer to 4-6 months of inventory. The current status of 1-2 months of inventory keeps our current market strongly a SELLER’S MARKET.
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