After two years of hectic housing market conditions and short supply, Seattle-area home buyers are finally getting some good news as home prices have slowed and mortgage rates seem to have stopped rising.
These trends and reports have a lot of folks wondering the same thing:
Could we see a buyer’s market in Seattle in 2024?
That’s a hard prediction to make, given all of the variables involved. That said, it’s likely that Seattle will continue to remain a seller’s market this year.
Seattle Housing Market Sees Tight Inventory
If you keep up with housing market trends in the Seattle area, you’ve probably heard that the real estate scene has cooled down. But after a a short period of eased market conditions, Seattle’s market continues to be “very competitive” according to RedFin.
One of the main reasons for this: tight inventory.
According to a recent report, the Seattle-area real estate market has experienced significant supply shortages over the recent pat. That report showed a 29% decrease in the number of active real estate listings within the Seattle area.
At this point, any kind of inventory growth is a win for buyers. However, experts predict a housing market recovery in Seattle in 2024, as interest rates dip slightly and a few more homes may come up on the market.
Supply levels remain tight across the Seattle metro housing market. Among the nation’s major cities and metro areas, the Seattle area currently has one of the lowest levels of real estate inventory.
As of early 2024, there is very little inventory available for buyers (a 2.52-month supply, according to one source).
We still have a ways to go before we approach a “balanced” real estate market in the Seattle area. But in the meantime, buyers could have an easier time finding and purchasing a home, in 2024 if housing supply inches up.
Selling Prices Have Declined
For more evidence that the Seattle real estate market is downshifting in 2024, we can look at the number of price reductions. In this context, a “reduction” occurs when sellers reduce their asking prices, after initially listing the home at a higher price.
According to RedFin, Seattle’s median selling price was $774,125 as of early 2024, marking a 0.94% decrease year-over-year. Granted, that’s not a significant decrease, but it’s still lower than last year, nonetheless.
Is a Buyer’s Market Possible in 2024?
All of this brings us back to the question we started with: Could we see a Seattle buyer’s market in the near future?
Given the current supply-and-demand situation in the area, a classic buyer’s-market scenario doesn’t seem likely. That’s due to the ongoing supply shortage.
Inventory is also still very tight in the Seattle real estate market, and that’s not so great news for home buyers. Supply levels remain very low by historical standards.
A classic or “textbook” buyer’s market occurs when supply levels greatly exceed demand. In other words, it’s when there are many more homes for sale than buyers seeking them. That’s not the current situation within the Seattle-area real estate market.
However, the potential gain in inventory, albeit very marginal, may give home buyers a few more properties to choose from, while putting pressure on sellers. Higher housing costs, meanwhile, have reduced the number of qualified buyers.
So we might see a new kind of real estate market in 2024. Buyer’s could gain some negotiating leverage in spite of the ongoing supply shortage.
Ready to Apply For a Mortgage?
Do you have questions about rates this week and home loans? Or are you ready to apply for a mortgage to buy a home? If so, Sammamish Mortgage can help. We are a local mortgage company from Bellevue, Washington, serving the entire state, as well as Oregon, Idaho, and Colorado. We offer many mortgage programs to buyers all over the Pacific Northwest and have been doing so since 1992. Among our programs includes the Diamond Homebuyer Program, Cash Buyer Program, and Bridge Loans. Contact us today with any questions you have about mortgages.