The steady stream of foreclosures being released on the market continues to deflate home values throughout Pierce County. But this pricing situation has created an opportunity, especially in the Parkland/Spanaway area, for first-time homebuyers and investors.

“A lot of first-time homebuyers are buying in our area because you can get a lot more home for your money,” said Julie Collison, owner and designated broker of Collison Realty LLC. “Also there are opportunities for investors to pick up rental properties very cheap. Some of them may require work, but once you do the work on them, it will bring the value right back up.”
Larry Bergstrom, president of Crescent Realty Inc., said he also is seeing movement from these two types of buyers, adding that homes under $200,000 are moving quickly.

And according to regional statistics, finding a home in this area under $200,000 should not be a problem for buyers.

During the last six months, the Northwest Multiple Listing Service reported that 218 Parkland single-family homes and condos sold for an average price of $155,345, down more than $26,000 from the same time period during 2009. In Spanaway, there were 394 single-family homes and condos sold during the last six months. The average price was $178,982, down more than $29,000 from the same time period in 2009.

While the numbers seem drastic, the average price drop from two years ago is not as extreme compared to some places, like Puyallup and Tacoma, according to NWMLS statistics.

Click here or pick up the Aug. 22 issue of BE to read the full story.