Appraisal Backup as Bad as Seattle Traffic. Once you have a home under contract, make sure you push all of the right buttons and get that appraisal ordered pronto! Many appraisers have left the industry and purchase and refinancing orders are piling up. You can pay for a rush order, but be prepared to shell out triple the usual cost.
Double-digit Appreciation/Low Inventory Continues. 2016 median prices each month have ranged from 618K to 650K, with one notable outlier: $666K in June. Inventory hovers around 1 month or less, though September saw a tad more inventory than usual. This is a trend to watch.
Transforming Seattle. Various recent articles have documented the many ways in which Seattle is undergoing rapid and dramatic change. These snapshots give clues as to why Seattle-area real estate is undergoing such rapid appreciation. Below are some of my favorite factoids that help illustrate what I am witnessing along the front lines of today’s real estate market.
*Seattle has seen a 25% increase in Chinese buyers (typically cash buyers) in the last year, becoming the US city with the most Chinese buyers.
*The median income in Seattle increased from $70,000 to 80,000 in one year, out-pacing San Francisco.
*Seattle has more cranes than any other US city, toping LA 58 to 40. Bellevue has an additional 20.