Mason County Association of Realtors® members have some new insights on their market this week, following the annual Housing Issues Briefing held in Shelton.

Key industry analysts and leaders identified issues going forward that challenge their markets, as well as some offering encouragement.

James Young, with over 25 years experience in analyzing property markets worldwide both as a consultant and as an academic, noted the importance of people’s positive expectations for the future of housing, and discussed three important factors that influence Mason County’s market: jobs, financing and housing availability.

“The key expectation problem is whether jobs will last,” explained Young. “Labor force participation is low, particularly in Mason County. How will Mason County shift? How do you create a positive message about Mason County? Mason County’s proximity to Olympia and proximity to growth in the Puget Sound has a lot of opportunities.”

Michael Luis, a long-time public affairs consultant for housing, economic development and growth issues, also sees positive signs in demographic and economic trends that will affect housing markets in the years ahead.

“As you look to the future of Mason County, it is critical that you remember that ‘geography counts!’,” said Luis, commenting afterwards on the potential for the Mason County market.

“You need to really understand how Mason County’s unique position in the Greater Puget Sound region and Western Washington drives its attractiveness as a place to live,” Luis added. “Growth pressures will cascade down from Seattle through Pierce and Thurston Counties, and Mason County needs to be ready to capture the opportunity presented by that pressure.”

Video of the 2017 Housing Issues Briefing is on Mason WebTV.