Brought to you by
KIRO Radio's Tom Kelly digs deep into the Puget Sound real estate market
Real Estate

Puget Sound homes remain a popular target

Slight gains in local property inventories are being countered by rising interest rates, continuing the brisk competition for Puget Sound homes.

The average home sale in King County jumped to $457,903 in May, according to the Northwest Multiple Listing Service. The average in Snohomish County was $309,102, $234,875 in Pierce County and $286,870 in Kitsap County.

The NWMLS reported double-digit gains in several key indicators it tracks for the 21 counties in its service area. Compared to a year ago, the number of new listings climbed 16 percent, pending sales increased about 10 percent, closed sales jumped nearly 22 percent, and prices rose more than 13 percent. Despite gains in listing activity, inventory remains tight.

According to Freddie Mac, the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.91 percent this week, up from last week when it averaged 3.81 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.67 percent.

"It has been refreshing to see more listings coming on the market, but with overall inventory remaining low the competition among buyers is still fierce for homes that are priced properly," said Kathy Estey, managing broker at John L. Scott in Bellevue.

Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?

It may be two to three more years before prospective homebuyers get a break from escalating property prices and tight supply, according to experts speaking this week at a National Association of Real Estate Editors conference.

That is the time frame for institutional speculators, who currently are dominating the market, to pull out of their investments and still make a profit, explained Bill Rayburn of the mortgage technology firm FNC.

Top Stories

  • Get Out of Jail Free?
    Why Seattle firefighters won't face felony charges in alleged homeless beating

  • Goats!
    Seattle deploys one of its most popular work crews to clean up the city

  • Buying Season
    Here are four ways to ruin your chances at that new home
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Mortgage Calculator
Enter Your Details & Click the Calculate Button
Loan Amount $
Annual Interest Rate %
Term of Loan Years
Number of Payments
Monthly Payment $
Brought to you by

This is not a commitment to lend. Terms subject to change without notice. Applicant must qualify to receive credits. A division of Pinnacle Capital Mortgage Corp. WA CL 81395, Equal Housing Lender, MLO 70765.
Listen to the show
Hear Real Estate Today on KIRO Radio
Join Tom Kelly every Sunday at 9am on KIRO Radio to talk Puget Sound real estate.

Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from MyNorthwest.com
In the community
Do you know a student who stands out in the classroom, school and community?
Help make their dreams come true by nominating them for a $1,000 scholarship and a chance to earn a $10,000 Grand Prize. Brought to you by KIRO Radio and Comprehensive Wealth Management.

Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.