I wonder if Aubrey Cohen is getting story ideas from reading Seattle Bubble? In the big front page feature article in today’s P-I, Aubrey takes a look at something a that a few home seekers commenting here have talked about: the continued competition for homes in a handful of certain price ranges and neighborhoods.
Erin and Andy Mathias started looking for a new house around the start of the year on the north side of Seattle because it was convenient to work, shopping, parks and other amenities.
They found a good selection, but at least as much competition for anything decent in their price range, up to $350,000.
“We would see a listing the day it came out, try and see the house either that day or the following day, have our Realtor check into it and there were already multiple offers on the table,” Erin Mathias said. “It became a little frustrating after a while.”
Although the Seattle-area real estate market has slowed, buyers still don’t have the advantage over sellers in such areas as North Seattle, West Seattle, Capitol Hill, Lake Forest Park and East Bellevue.
This phenomenon can be seen in the stories from home-seeking commenters here, as well as in our monthly neighborhood months of supply updates.
The article mostly focuses on the few areas around Seattle where sellers still have the slight upper hand, but it does admit that this has become the exception rather than the rule.
Some homes still are selling above asking price with multiple offers, without contingencies for financing or inspection. But those with less-ideal prices and conditions are sitting much longer than they would have a year ago, even in popular neighborhoods.
Despite their relative strength, North Seattle neighborhood inventories over the past seven months have doubled, on average, from the same months a year earlier.
If that sounds familiar, it might be because I said the same exact thing two weeks ago in the March Neighborhood Months of Supply Update. Of course, I didn’t have a spiffy color-coded map to illustrate my point. But don’t worry, we will soon.
(Aubrey Cohen, Seattle P-I, 05.01.2008)