Residential real estate is heating up in the Puget Sound region as spring buyers hunt for homes in a market where demand exceeds supply. In February, the inventory of single-family homes and condominiums was just over a 1.2-month supply in King and Snohomish Counties and a 2.1-month supply in Pierce County. The number of active listings is dramatically lower than the same time one year ago.
As low interest rates continue to draw buyers, the narrow inventory is creating market conditions where sellers may receive multiple offers. Case in point, some Seattle neighborhood homes are seeing bidding wars and cash offers.
“This is the best market for sellers since 2006,” said Paul Cantu, owner of Cantu Real Estate Group in Wallingford, reports The Seattle Times. One of Cantu’s clients received eight offers on their Ballard home, and a Rainer Valley seller got four bids.
Distressed homes that have finally gotten through foreclosure processing are beginning to add to the overall housing inventory. Foreclosure activity for Seattle-Bellevue-Everett climbed slightly by 0.80 percentage points year over year in January, based on a new report from CoreLogic.
Foreclosures for Seattle-Bellevue-Everett accounted for 2.36 percent of outstanding loans in January 2013, compared to the national average of 2.9 percent. But the number of mortgages delinquent by 90 or more days went down by 0.68 percentage points, comprising 5.89 percent of all outstanding mortgages. Glenn Crellin, associate director for research at the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies at the University of Washington, credits the drop in delinquences to rising home prices, reports the Puget Sound Business Journal.