Spring is here so let’s see how the numbers are looking. For the month of March, inventory remains high in Seattle at 52.43% compared to same time last year. Year-over-year pending sales dropped 27.76%. In fact, from January to March 08, we have seen a consistent drop in closed sales over the same time last year. However, in March, median price for Seattle condos increased by 4.11%.
Days on market remains longer than same time last year for all the neighborhoods. Months of inventory in Belltown/downtown has recovered from early this year. In January, Feburary and March, the months inventory has been shrinking from 14, to 8.3 to 7.6. It looks like we are moving from a buyers’ market gradually to a balanced market in Belltown/downtown. Kudos to those buyers who picked up great deals in January.
Summary: More property is on the market and staying on the market longer than last year; however, sellers are not slashing prices nearly as much as some had expected. Most homebuyers are taking a little bit longer to decide on their purchase knowing that there is not as much urgency. Sellers on the other hand are still holding on to the prices they believe their condos ought to command and in some cases are making a symbolic reductions in the price but rarely more than 10%. For the sellers who can wait, they are opting to rent out their condo to capitalize on the strong rental market.
Flashback: I was curious how many readers were right about their prediction on the market for March 08 compared to Fall 2007? 22% of SCR voters were right that the market will perform the same in March (~5% change in median price) compared to September 07 but sell at a slower rate. About half of the poll takers incorrectly predicted in October that the pricing in the spring would drop by up to 30%.