South King County Homes Gaining Value Fastest

As promised last week, it’s time to take an updated look at how King County’s sales are shifting between the different regions around the county, since geographic shifts can and do affect the median price.

In order to explore this concept, we break King County down into three regions, based on the NWMLS-defined “areas”:

  • low end: South County (areas 100-130 & 300-360)
  • mid range: Seattle / North County (areas 140, 380-390, & 700-800)
  • high end: Eastside (areas 500-600)

Here’s where each region’s median prices came in as of May data:

  • low end: $235,000-$420,000
  • mid range: $309,950-$645,000
  • high end: $485,000-$1,137,000

First up, let’s have a look at each region’s (approximate) median price (actually the median of the medians for each area within the region).

Median Price of Single Family Homes Sold

The low end regions are gaining the most lately, up 19.8% year-over-year and 6.7% month-over-month. The middle tier was up 17.4% YOY and 3.3% MOM, while the high tier gained 5.2% YOY and 0.9% MOM.

Next up, the percentage of each month’s closed sales that took place in each of the three regions. The dotted line is a four-month rolling average.

% of Total King Co. SFH Sales by NWMLS Area

The share of sales that are taking place in the cheapest parts of the county has been falling fast over the last few months, down from 34.7% in April to 31.3% in June. This goes a long way toward explaining why the median price has shot up so much over the last few months.

As of June 2013, 31.3% of sales were in the low end regions, 35.2% in the mid range, and 33.5% in the high end. A year ago the low end regions had less of the share and the high end more: In June 2012 the low end made up 29.8% of the sales, the mid range was 35.1%, and the high end was 35.1%.

Here’s that information in a visual format:

Bank-Owned: Share of Total Sales - King County Single-Family

Finally, here’s an updated look at the percentage of sales data all the way back through 2000:

% of Total King Co. SFH Sales by NWMLS Area since 2000

There haven’t been many times since 2000 that the middle tier has had the most sales, and even fewer times that the low tier has simultaneously had the least sales. We’re definitely still in an odd market right now.

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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.