What to Know When Buying a House in Washington State: 2022 Update

Published:
February 10, 2018
Last updated:
January 17, 2022
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Timing your home purchase can be helpful to ensure you’re getting a great deal. That said, if you work with a seasoned mortgage broker, any time can be a good time to buy in Washington. 

Washington State experienced a strong seller’s housing market in the last few years, due to rapidly increasing home values and uncertain market rates for buyers. But with prices expected to continue increasing, buyers can take advantage of rapid growth in home equity in 2022.

Here are three important updates to consider when buying a house in Washington State in 2022.

1. Home prices in Washington will give new owners an increase in equity

You probably already know that home prices in Washington have risen steadily over the last couple of years. It has generated quite a few headlines. In fact, house values in Washington have risen more over the last couple of years than almost any other state in the country.

This is especially true within the Seattle metro area, which saw huge gains over the last few years. But most other cities have experienced steady price growth as well, despite the fact that Seattle home prices have plateaued over the past few months.

According to the real estate data company Zillow, the statewide median home value steadily rose to $563,890 by January 2022. That was an increase of 22.8% from the same time a year before. Looking forward, the company’s economists predicted that the median home price for Washington may see some similar increases in median home value, but other areas, like Seattle, would remain stable.

Compare the median home prices in several Washington State neighborhoods from January 2021 to January 2022, according to Zillow:

CityJanuary 2021January 2022
Bellevue$1,187,056$1,321,493
Seattle$804,504$888,202
Kent$423,000$591,857
Tacoma$390,944$473,206
Spokane$319,905$373,168

So, should you buy a house in Washington now, or wait until next year? Current trends and forecasts make a strong argument for buying sooner rather than later. Some prices have plateaued and interest rates are low.

2. Mortgage rates continue to remain low

As of January 2022, mortgage rates are still relatively low. It is forecasted that the rates should remain low throughout 2022, though they are expected to rise slightly over the course of the year

As of January 2022, the average rate for a 30-year fixed home loan sits at 3.11%.

View Washington State Mortgage Rates

3. Housing inventory still below “normal” in most markets for 2022.

Inventory is still low for home buyers planning to buy a house in Washington in 2022, and that has been the trend for the last 10 years or so. This trend could continue over the near future, as the current inventory is nowhere near enough to accommodate the high demand among buyers.  

A balanced real estate market has about five to six months worth of supply. That means it would take five to six months to sell all of the homes currently listed for sale, assuming that no new ones came onto the market in the interim. This is also known as the market absorption rate.

Many of the real estate markets across Washington State had less than a two-month supply of homes for sale, as of January 2022. In the Seattle metro area, where housing demand is particularly strong, currently, less than a two month supply exists. However, new condo projects are currently being built, and many more are on the way.  This should ease the inventory crisis as well.

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Want to Get Pre-Approved For a Mortgage?

Being pre-approved for a mortgage loan can help you narrow your home search, and could increase your chance for success. Sammamish Mortgage can help. We are a local mortgage company based out of Bellevue, Washington that has been serving the entire state since 1992, as well as Oregon, Idaho, and Colorado. We can help you determine which one of our mortgage programs is right for you. Contact us today with any questions you have about pre-approvals and home loans.

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