Summary: Thinking of getting into the Seattle real estate market in 2020? If so, you’ll want to be as informed as possible about the market and what steps to take to ensure a successful transaction and a great deal. Read this guide to gain some valuable tips about buying in Seattle.
Do you plan to buy a home in Seattle sometime in 2020? If so, we have an important Seattle house hunting tip for you: Be prepared for competition, but also consider this a great time to buy based on a cooler market and lower mortgage interest rates, making buying a home in Seattle more affordable today compared to years past.
Recent reports from a number of sources indicate that the Seattle real estate market is still very competitive, as we head further into 2020. While home-price appreciation stalled in Seattle in 2019, competition among buyers still remains high. Plus, home prices are on the rise yet again in Seattle, which means home prices will be more expensive in a few months compared to where they are now. That’s because local housing inventory is well below what is considered to be a “balanced” market.
Seattle House-Hunting Tip for 2020: 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 2020.
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 has barely one month worth of inventory right now. That’s essentially the situation in surrounding King County as well. Overall in Washington State, the situation isn’t that much better with about a 1.5-month supply worth of available housing, including in Snohomish, Pierce, Kitsap, and Thurston.
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 2020 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.
In Seattle, the average home price is currently $752,100 and is expected to rise 3.9% over the next year.
Mortgage Rates Are Still Very Low
As you may know, the interest rate charged on your mortgage has a direct impact on the overall cost of the home loan. And right now, mortgage interest rates in Washington are extremely low and have actually been gradually decreasing over the last few months. In fact, they recently hit an all-time low at 3.29%
That, coupled with the fact that housing prices in Seattle have also dipped slightly, makes this a potentially great time to enter the market as a buyer. However, as mentioned above, prices are expected to increase, so you will likely be seeing lower prices today for homes than you will in the near future.
Download Our Winter 2020 Seattle Buyer’s Guide
You can also prepare for your house-hunting experience by downloading our exclusive and highly informative e-book, the Seattle Home Buying Guide.
This 23-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.
Need a Home Loan in Seattle?
Will you need mortgage financing to buy a home in Seattle? We can help. Sammamish Mortgage has been serving buyers across the Pacific Northwest for about 28 years. We currently lend in all of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Colorado and offer a wide variety of mortgage programs and products with flexible qualification criteria. Please contact us today with any financing-related questions you have.