Seattle Housing Market Forecast 2017: Double-Digit Growth Ahead?

A recent forecast for the Seattle housing market projected double-digit home price gains in 2017. This is based on research by Veros Real Estate Solutions, a company that specializes in property valuations and analytics.

The Seattle housing market has been hot for the last few years, generating a slew of headlines and media coverage. Home prices in the metro area hit all-time highs earlier this year and have been climbing ever since.

According to the real estate information company Zillow, Seattle home prices rose by 16.7% over the last 12 months. This is based on their proprietary measurement of house values, as of August 1, 2016.

Several forecasts for the Seattle housing market have called for additional — and possibly significant — gains in 2017 as well.

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Positive Forecast for Seattle Housing Market in 2017

Last month, California-based Veros Real Estate Solutions issued a forecast for major metropolitan areas across the country. By their estimation, the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area will have the highest home-price appreciation from June 2016 to June 2017.

According to the report, published last month:

“The top forecast markets are showing appreciation in the 10% to 11% range with the Pacific Northwest and Colorado having a lock on the 8 of the top 10 forecast markets. Seattle, Wash. (+11.2%), Portland, Ore. (+11.1%), Denver, Colo. (+9.9%) and other metropolitan areas in these same vicinities appear very strong over the next year.”

These price projections are based on the company’s latest VeroFORECASTSM, a quarterly national real estate market forecast for the 12-month period ending June 1, 2017.

Of course, this probably won’t come as a surprise to anyone who follows the Seattle real estate market. Rising demand and limited supply have created a strong sellers’ market in our area, fueling dramatic home-price gains and fierce competition among buyers.

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Not Enough Homes Available?

As always, it’s a supply and demand story. Seattle is growing by leaps and bounds, attracting residents from all over the country. The metro area’s robust job market is especially attractive to young, upwardly mobile Americans, many of whom enter the housing market soon after arriving.

From 2000 to 2010, the city’s population grew by 8%, according to the Office of Planning & Community Development. Additional population growth is expected.

Housing inventory has grown more slowly by comparison. Despite a recent uptick in construction activity, there just aren’t enough homes on the market to satisfy the current level of demand. According to Realtor.com, the total number of homes listed for sale in the Seattle metro area declined by 10.8% over the last year or so.

Concerns Over Affordability

Some analysts fear that Seattle’s rapid home-price appreciation could turn it into “another San Francisco,” in reference to that city’s soaring house values. Peter Orser, director of the University of Washington’s Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies, recently told The Seattle Times:

“I look at San Francisco as really an image of Seattle’s future because it has the same land restraints, it has the same driving economy that is hiring six-figure millennials. They’re blood brothers; they’re twins.”

Others, like Zillow’s chief economist Svenja Gudell, claim that it’s not an apt comparison: “I don’t think we will rise to the level of San Francisco anytime soon,” he told The Times.

Speaking of Zillow, they’ve offered a more modest forecast for the Seattle housing market in 2017. By their estimation, median home prices in the city will rise by around 8% between now and this time next year (August 2017).

Related: Three more predictions for Seattle

Different sources, different forecasts. But the general consensus seems clear. House values in the Seattle metro area will likely continue rising between now and the end of 2017, possibly outpacing other metro areas in the country.

Disclaimer: This article includes forward-looking statements (predictions and forecasts) regarding the Seattle, WA real estate market. Such statements were provided by third parties not associated with our company. We have presented them here as an educational service for our readers.

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