Homes continued to sell at a brisk pace in October throughout the South Sound due to the lack of homes for sale and strong buyer demand increasing sales prices by double-digit percentages across the region.
The increases in median sales prices of single-family homes and condominiums combined versus October 2019, by county, were Pierce, 18.1 percent; Thurston, 13.5 percent; Lewis, 26 percent; Grays Harbor, 15.6 percent; and Mason, 14.9 percent, according to figures released Thursday by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS).
October median sales prices of homes and condos, by county, were Pierce, $425,000; Thurston, $391,400; Lewis, $327,500; Grays Harbor, $248,500; and Mason, $333,325.
Dick Beeson, managing broker at REMAX Northwest in Tacoma-Gig Harbor, said finding and buying a home now is the toughest he’s seen in 40 years.
“Interest rates are incredibly low. Inventory is incredibly low. And anxiety is incredibly high among buyers,” he said in the NWMLS release.
“Sellers are struggling, too,” Beeson said. “They worry they’re leaving money on the table by accepting an offer within days of their property coming on the market. But brokers know that in this market, if a seller doesn’t receive an offer within a short time after the property is listed, the home is most likely overpriced.”
Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere Real Estate, noted that 14 of the NWMLS’s 23 counties have less than a month of supply of homes for sale and that four months is considered a balanced market.
“This is what is allowing home prices to escalate at double-digit rates,” Gardner said in the release.
In the South Sound, only Lewis County had more than a month of inventory, at 1.37. Thurston had the least inventory in South Sound, at 0.44 months.
NWMLS counties are mostly in Western and Central Washington.