With February in the books, let’s take a look at the local housing market stats for the month. Short story: If home buyers were hoping things might start to look better for them, they were disappointed. There is still almost no supply and plenty of demand.
Here’s the snapshot of all the data as far back as my historical information goes, with the latest, high, and low values highlighted for each series:
Sales decreased just a bit from a month earlier in both counties, and were basically flat from a year ago. Listings dropped to yet another new all-time low in both counties. Foreclosures are still at their historic lows.
Next, let’s look at total home sales as measured by the number of “Warranty Deeds” filed with King County:
Sales in King County fell 2 percent between January and February (a year ago they rose 17 percent over the same period), and were down just slightly year-over-year.
Here’s a look at Snohomish County Deeds, but keep in mind that Snohomish County files Warranty Deeds (regular sales) and Trustee Deeds (bank foreclosure repossessions) together under the category of “Deeds (except QCDS),” so this chart is not as good a measure of plain vanilla sales as the Warranty Deed only data we have in King County.
Deeds in Snohomish fell 7 percent month-over-month (vs. a 9 percent increase in the same period last year) and were perfectly flat from February 2016.
Next, here’s Notices of Trustee Sale, which are an indication of the number of homes currently in the foreclosure process:
Foreclosure notices in King County were down 41 percent from a year ago and Snohomish County foreclosure notices were down 32 percent from last year.
Here’s another measure of foreclosures for King County, looking at Trustee Deeds, which is the type of document filed with the county when the bank actually repossesses a house through the trustee auction process. Note that there are other ways for the bank to repossess a house that result in different documents being filed, such as when a borrower “turns in the keys” and files a “Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure.”
Trustee Deeds were down 24 percent from a year ago. Still basically bouncing along the bottom.
Lastly, here’s an update of the inventory charts, updated with previous months’ inventory data from the NWMLS.
Inventory fell 10 percent between January and February in King County, and was down 26 percent from a year earlier.
In Snohomish County it was the same story: Listings down 5 percent month-over-month and down 33 percent year-over-year.
Record low levels for both counties. Again.
Note that most of the charts above are based on broad county-wide data that is available through a simple search of King County and Snohomish County public records. If you have additional stats you’d like to see in the preview, drop a line in the comments and I’ll see what I can do.
Stay tuned later this month a for more detailed look at each of these metrics as the “official” data is released from various sources.