NWMLS King County Area Map

Whenever we talk about the detailed NWMLS stats for King County, someone inevitably asks for a map of the various areas. While I have had a map from the Seattle Times posted on the KC Breakouts history page for quite some time, I’ve never been all that satisfied with the imprecise nature of that solution.

So, I created my own map based on some more detailed pdf versions of the maps that I was pointed toward by Greg Perry (thanks Greg!).

I’ve finally finished drawing all the perimeters, and before I do much more work on it, I thought I’d solicit some feedback from you. So what do you think? What would be the best way to display this? What features does the map need? Any and all relevant feedback is appreciated.

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About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market. Tim also hosts the weekly improv comedy sci-fi podcast Dispatches from the Multiverse.


  1. 1
    Greg Perry says:

    Nice job, Tim. Well done!
    Of course, you’ll want to insert the area numbers.

    I think you can have fun with these. Simple 3 color heat maps (Seller/Balanced/Buyer markets) are some of the most effective tools I have for assisting clients (especially Sellers) understand shifting market dynamics. They take the mountain of numbers and reduce them to an effective visual that are very easy to understand.

    Once you get the map the way you want it, consider making it a JPEG so the overlay doesn’t have to load.

  2. 2
    Greg Perry says:

    Man those eastern Eastside KC areas are huge……..

  3. 3
    AndyMiami says:

    People..all you, please contribute. I finally did..whatever you can afford. What Tim has created has hopefully saved many on this website/blog..many dollars.

    Great work Tim…


  4. 4
    WaileaKid says:

    Nice wok. Can you please use live maps instead? I hate GMaps. They are tough to navigate.

  5. 5
    deeplennon says:

    Looks purdy tim. My biggest request would be to ad SnoCo areas if you have access to their specific boundaries. I’ve never seen a map for them before.

  6. 6
    Cascadian says:

    I live in the King County part of Bothell, and I notice that it’s not included in your map. Is there not a breakout area for Bothell, or are we included in Snohomish County despite our location?

  7. 7
    brettro says:

    love it! Maybe in the box that pops up when you click on an area the most recent stats can be displayed- yoy price changes, median price, inventory if data is available at that level. Maybe even in graph form, if possible.

    Another idea is to have an overlay that changes the colors of the area based on the criteria i mentioned. This would give people a very quick snapshot of what areas are hurting the most, and which ones are weathering the storm better than the rest.

  8. 8
    The Tim says:

    Cascadian & deeplennon,

    Snohomish County is next on my list, and yes, for some reason that little chunk of Bothell / Kenmore is included in Snohomish County area 610. I happen to live in that little section as well.

  9. 9
    brettro says:

    oops looks like Greg already mentioned one of my ideas

  10. 10
    Nell Plotts says:

    Because almost all Bainbridge residents commute to Seattle please add that area, if possible.

  11. 11
    singliac says:

    I think that’s the first time I’ve ever heard anyone prefer “live maps” to “google maps.” I forget that I’m in microsoft country. Then we can listen to Seattlebubble podcasts on our Zunes! Haha!

  12. 12


    See the proof:


  13. 13
    The Tim says:

    Hey, I have a Zune (30GB Gen1). They’re not half bad. I think my favorite feature is the fact that it only cost me $85 new.


  14. 14
    Nathan says:

    The outline of the “urban” areas vaguely remind me of Mecklenburg County in yet another strange Seattle-Charlotte dynamic.

  15. 15
    The Tim says:

    I should point out that the horizontal lines extending east to the county border are guesses, as none of the maps I could find actually show the borders of those areas further than North Bend.

  16. 16
    Everett_Tom says:

    Nice work!

    it might be fun to map the “Audacious Flips and Renovations” on this map…

    you know, some of the underlying code to drive features like that might be worthy of a source forge project.. I suspect there’s quite a few programmers in the ranks…

  17. 17
    laxtosnoco says:

    Tim, where did you get the boundaries for the different MLS areas?

    Did you eyeball them based on a physical map or did you get an electronic boundary file from somewhere? I’ve tinkered with GIS maps in the past and would like to be able to this using GIS software.

  18. 18
    The Tim says:

    laxtosnoco, I got pdfs from Greg Perry that showed the boundaries in fairly specific detail, labeling the different streets that made up the borders, etc. From there I used Google’s “my maps” functionality to draw the shapes, which I then downloaded to a kml file and loaded in my custom map on the page I linked in the post.

  19. 19
    Ric Cox says:

    Which of the areas comprise Seattle proper? Does anyone run the numbers each month for condos in Seattle? We’d like to add them to our national Condo Market widget.,

  20. 20
    The Tim says:

    Hi Ric,

    Seattle proper is areas 140, 380, 385, 390, 700, 701, 705, and 710.

  21. 21
    Garth says:


    Are some zip codes split into two areas?

  22. 22
    The Tim says:

    Garth, yes, the NWMLS areas make very little logical sense, and appear to have little or no relation to any other predefined areas. For example, look at zip code 98028, which spans areas 720, 600, and 610 (Snohomish, not yet mapped).


  23. 23
    Garth says:

    That is horrible, I figured they were at most a couple zips each, and there is a great free dataset available from the census for zip code boundaries.

  24. 24
    The Tim says:

    It is indeed. Although I have played around with the zip code geodata, and may be able to get some MLS stats that line up with zip codes. Stay tuned…

  25. 25
    mark says:

    Great job overall.

    The popup area numbers are a pain because you have to click each one to find the one you want. It w/b better to just print them on the map.

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