Do you plan to buy a home in Seattle sometime in 2017? If so, we have an important Seattle house hunting tip for you: Be prepared for competition.
Recent reports from a number of sources indicate that the Seattle real estate market is still very competitive, as we head into 2017. While home-price appreciation is expected to slow down to some degree in 2017, competition among buyers will likely remain high. That’s because local housing inventory is well below what is considered to a “balanced” market.
Seattle House-Hunting Tip for 2017: Be Prepared
Home buyers entering the market this year should be prepared to act quickly and decisively, due to a high level of competition. This is one of our top house-hunting tips for Seattle home buyers in 2017.
When it comes to supply and demand, a “balanced” housing market is generally defined as having five to six months of supply. But regional MLS officials recently reported that the Seattle area had less than one month worth of inventory, heading into 2017.
According to a January 5th report by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS), both King and Snohomish counties reported less than a month of inventory in December.
“Buyers pursued homes aggressively all through November and December with little to no slowdown amid fears of rising interest rates and worsening inventory levels,” said MLS director George Moorhead. “Inventory levels have dropped to their lowest level, which makes buyer frenzy even more intense…”
How to Be a Well-Prepared Home Buyer
This brings us back to our #1 house-hunting tip for Seattle home buyers. Anyone planning to buy a home in the area during 2017 should be prepared for a high level of competition, due to an imbalance between supply and demand.
So what does “prepared” mean, exactly? For one thing, buyers should have their financing arranged before entering the Seattle real estate market. For cash buyers, this means having bank statements to show that the funds are in the bank. Home buyers using mortgage loans should get pre-approved before house hunting, to increase their competitiveness.
(In a related article, we’ve covered the importance of mortgage pre-approval when house hunting in Seattle.)
Home buyers should also be familiar with current real estate market trends, including recent sales prices within the area where they want to buy. This will help you make a strong and timely offer, when you find a home you wish to purchase. Use websites like Zillow and Realtor.com to research recent sales prices in your desired neighborhoods.
Download Our 2019 Seattle Buyer’s Guide
This 66-page guide offers insight into the current real estate market, and provides a wealth of tips relating to house hunting, mortgage loans and more.
Best of all, you can download the Seattle home buying and house hunting guide for free, to start reading it immediately. Click here to get your copy.
Contact Us if You Need a Mortgage Loan
Sammamish Mortgage has been serving home buyers across the Seattle metro area for more than two decades. We are a family-owned company located in Bellevue, Washington. We offer highly competitive rates on a variety of mortgage products. And, as you can see, we go to great lengths to educate our customers!
In this tutorial, we discussed the importance of getting pre-approved before house hunting in Seattle. We can help you with this as well. Please contact our knowledgeable staff to start the pre-approval process, or with any financing-related questions you have.