June Reporting Roundup: “A Long Way To Go”

It’s time once again for the monthly reporting roundup, where you can read my wry commentary about the news instead of subjecting yourself to boring rehashes of the NWMLS press release (or in addition to, if that’s what floats your boat).

To kick things off, here’s an excerpt from the NWMLS press release…


NWMLS: Listings Inching Up As Sales Flatten

June market stats were published by the NWMLS this morning. The NWMLS press release hasn’t been posted yet, so we’ll cover that tomorrow. On with the stats!

It’s still a bit early to say that we’re turning a corner, but while the overall level of inventory is still at all-time lows for this time of year, the rate of year-over-year change has been getting slightly better every month since December…


June Stats: Inventory Edges Up Despite Record Sales

Now that June is behind us, let’s have our first look at how the month’s real estate stats stack up.

June was a mixed bag. Sales hit their highest level since 2007 in King County and a new all-time high in Snohomish County. Despite this, active listings saw unusually large month-over-month increases in both counties. Foreclosures are still at or near lows…


Case-Shiller Tiers: Only Low Tier Still Below Previous Peak

Let’s check out the three price tiers for the Seattle area, as measured by Case-Shiller.

Between March and April, the low tier increased 1.9 percent, the middle tier rose 2.2 percent, and the high tier was up 2.0 percent.


Case-Shiller: Seattle Price Gains Biggest In Nation Again

Let’s have a look at the latest data from the Case-Shiller Home Price Index. According to January data that was released today, Seattle-area home prices were:

Up 2.1 percent March to April
Up 10.7 percent YOY.
Up 2.5 percent from the July 2007 peak

Over the same period last year prices were up 2.2 percent month-over-month and year-over-year prices were up 7.4 percent.

The Seattle area’s Case-Shiller home price index hit another new all-time high in April, and saw the largest month-over-month gain of all twenty Case-Shiller-tracked cities for the second month in a row.


Record-High Home Prices Are “Affordable” Thanks To High Incomes and Low Rates

As promised in yesterday’s affordability post, here’s an updated look at the “affordable home” price chart.

The “affordable” home price hit an all-time high of $551,493 in May, thanks to increasing incomes and decreasing mortgage interest rates. The “affordable” home price of $551,493 in King County would have a monthly payment of $2,006.

If interest rates were at a more reasonable level of 6 percent (which is still quite low by historical standards), the “affordable” home price would be just $382,986—about $103,000 lower than it is today.


Low Rates Continue To Prop Up Affordability

It was recently requested that I take a refreshed look at the affordability stats, so here’s an updated look at our affordability index charts for the counties around Puget Sound.

As of May, affordability is still not great for home buyers, but it would be much, much worse if not for the current absurdly low interest rates.