Seattle Housing Forecast Through Summer 2018: Low Inventory Still a Factor

Recent housing market trends and forecasts for Seattle, Washington suggest that low inventory could remain an issue well into 2018. This could continue to drive home prices north, though possibly at a slower pace than the last year.

Low Inventory Pushing Home Prices North

Back in March, we reported that housing inventory in the Seattle area dropped sharply from 2012 to 2017. As a result of that trend, demand for homes has begun to surpass the available supply, creating seller’s market conditions across the metro area.

Here’s an update to that story: The Seattle real estate market is still very tight, and home prices are expected to continue rising steadily as a result. One recent housing market forecast for Seattle, which extended through the summer of 2018, suggested that house values in the area could outpace the nation over the coming months.

More on that forecast in a moment. But first, let’s get back to the inventory situation.

A recent report from the national real estate brokerage Redfin showed that Seattle has one of the tightest housing markets in the country, where inventory is concerned.

According to the Redfin report, published in May 2017, Seattle is currently one of the “most inventory-constrained metro [areas], as measured by months of supply, but it also has the third smallest amount of inventory, following Oakland and San Francisco.”

The Seattle housing market also experienced the largest decline in inventory between April 2016 and April 2017, out of any metro area tracked by the company. The number of homes for sale dropped by a whopping 35% during that 12-month period. And this comes at a time when demand within the residential real estate market is rising.

Strong Seattle Housing Market Forecast for 2018

Given the current supply situation, along with the high level of demand in the area, there’s no wonder why most Seattle housing market forecasts are predicting additional price gains into 2018.

For instance, the real estate research team at Zillow recently forecast that the median home price in Seattle would rise by 5.5% over the next 12 months. This prediction was made in June 2017 and extends into the summer of 2018.

By comparison, the company projected a more modest 2.6% increase in home values nationwide, during that same period.

Related: Rents are still rising in Seattle

Due to the high level of competition in the Seattle housing market, local real estate agents are advising home buyers to be open-minded and realistic. Home buyers might not be able to check all of the boxes on their wish lists, particularly at the lower end of the pricing spectrum where competition is highest.

Instead, buyers in Seattle would be wise to focus on one or two criteria that are most important to them — like the commute time, or the number of bedrooms — and be willing to compromise on everything else.

Disclaimer: This story contains real estate trends and housing predictions for Seattle, Washington, extending into 2018. These statements and projections were made by third parties not associated with our company. We have compiled them here as a service to our blog readers.

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