Appreciation: Good News And Bad News For Seattle Residents

September 20, 2016
Last updated:
February 14, 2022
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Seattle is a very popular city, which is why homes are so expensive here. The online real estate database Zillow notes that Seattle is one of the most highly searched-for locations in the U.S.

Many of those searching are coming from the pricey San Francisco Bay Area. Some of those are drawn by a combination of good job prospects in the tech industry and lower prices than the Bay Area and Silicon Valley.

What are some good and bad things about Seattle that area residents should know?

Seattle home equity is favorable for current home owners

The effect of this migration into the city has been a sharp increase in prices. According to Zillow, home prices in Seattle increased 13.4% over the past 12 months and now sit at $900,084. And experts predict prices will rise at a healthy rate this year too. This is great news for current Seattle home owners, whose equity is increasing passively!

The influx of new home buyers, together with current residents’ desire to stay in the area, has contributed to these rising home prices—and rising rents. What does this mean to the other current and prospective residents of Seattle?

RelatedSeattle home prices report

Seattle housing costs may become a barrier to new buyers and renters

The change also means that renters and incoming buyers could soon be priced out of the housing market. A “typical” rental in Seattle is over $2,197.

For renters considering a move to home ownership, waiting can be costly. Even if mortgage rates remained the same and did not increase, any price increase will raise the monthly cost of the same home. If rates were to rise by just .25%, the difference in cost would still be significant enough compared to the prices and rates today.

Today’s Seattle Mortgage Rates

The projected cost of rentals should cause some concern as well. Even though landlords don’t always ask for the maximum amount of rent the market will bear, renters should always be aware that the time will come when the landlord will either raise their rent to market prices or sell the property to take advantage of the appreciation their property has enjoyed. Neither scenario is an attractive one for renters.

Although there are no easy answers to the dilemma, anyone who does not own their home and who plans to remain in the Seattle area would be well advised to begin the process of becoming a homeowner as soon as possible. If you can find an available, affordable, and desirable home in Seattle right now, understand that you’ve already overcome the most difficult task.

Getting approved by a lender for a mortgage is relatively simple and painless, and can often be completed in a very short period of time. Anyone who can document income and assets and who has a reasonable (not flawless) credit score stands a very good chance of getting approved for mortgage financing with as little as 3% cash down.

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Need a Home Mortgage Loan?

Will you need mortgage financing to buy a home in Seattle? We can help. Sammamish Mortgage has been serving buyers across the Pacific Northwest since 1992 including WA, OR, CO, and ID. We offer a wide variety of mortgage programs and products with flexible qualification criteria. Please contact us today with any financing-related questions you have.

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