My Take on Real Estate – Spring 2019

Just wanted to write out my thoughts on the real estate market as of June 2019.

It’s been an interesting start to 2019 for my partner Mitch and I. We’re on pace to match the transactions from last year, but overall it’s a much more relaxed and laid back market compared to the previous 5+ years.

We definitely see the micro-markets and specific pockets that continue to be hot, but we’re rarely seeing multiple offers or offer review dates. The few times we do see offer review dates, those dates tend to pass without much fanfare. Maybe they get an offer or two, but often times we continue to see those homes on the open market.

In my home community of Issaquah, specifically in the 98027 zip code, here is how May 2019 compares to May 2018;

98027 May 2018 May 2019 Change
Homes / Condos Sold 56 67 +19.6%
Avg Price $845,042 $784,095 -7.21%
Median Price $824,500 $699,000 -15.22%
Avg Days on Market 21.1 31.7 +50.24%
Median DOM 8 10 +25.00%

Those numbers are a little shocking at first, but perhaps the median price drop was affected by a large number of condos selling. If we filter out out the condos, and just show the homes, here is how those numbers look;

98027 May 2018 May 2019 Change
Homes Only 43 48 +11.63%
Avg Price $945,858 $921,278 -2.60%
Median Price $905,000 $777,500 -14.09%
Avg Days on Market 25.2 34.3 +36.11%
Median DOM 8 12.5 +56.25%

In both tables, we’re seeing about a 14-15% median price drop from year to year. Okay, so that’s a pretty small sample size, and I always like to start in 98027 because that’s where I live and grew up and I sort of suspected that listings were taking longer, and I’ve been seeing more price drops, but I wasn’t expecting such a large price drop year over year.

Again, that’s a pretty small sample size and it’s just a single zip code.

What if we pulled in numbers for all of Bellevue, from May 2018 compared to May 2019? Just for homes (no condos), and all of the Bellevue zip codes (98004, 98005, 98006, etc). Here is what that would look like;

Bellevue May 2018 May 2019 Change
Homes Only 127 156 +22.83%
Avg Price $1,422,511 $1,278,560 -10.12%
Median Price $1,309,000 $1,100,000 -15.97%
Avg Days on Market 14.4 33.2 +130.56%
Median DOM 6 8 +33.33%

So these numbers look very similar to Issaquah’s 98027 percentages. From working with our recent clients, we know that people are moving to areas like Kent and Maple Valley to try and escape the high prices. Maybe an area like Maple Valley is benefiting from the dropping prices of Issaquah and Bellevue? Here are the same stats for Maple Valley.

Maple Valley May 2018 May 2019 Change
Homes Only 76 67 -11.84%
Avg Price $575,545 $523,535 -9.04%
Median Price $536,036 $480,000 -10.45%
Avg Days on Market 20.6 20.4 No change
Median DOM 6 6 No change

So from all these charts and numbers, I’d come to a couple conclusions;

  • It’s more of a buyer’s market now than it has been since the Great Recession ended.
  • If you’ve been waiting to buy, I’d start following the market and paying more attention now to see where the market might go in the next 6 to 12 months. If this pace keeps up, this upcoming fall might be an ideal time for buyers. Especially if there is extra unsold inventory from the ‘typically busy’ summer season.
  • With the prices falling in Issaquah / Bellevue, more transactions have occurred, but perhaps that had the opposite effect in areas like Maple Valley, where there were fewer transactions compared to the previous year. Maybe some of those buyers who would have bought in Maple Valley ended up buying in Issaquah and Bellevue.

We’ll continue to watch the numbers and will expand our search as needed. If you’re curious about the trends in a certain area or region (within Western Washington), please reach out to us on our Facebook page,

Thank you. -Jin

image courtesy of City of Issaquah Parks & Recreation page;

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