There has been a lot of chatter about the housing market in Seattle "correcting", "stablizing" and even "crashing". What does that mean and what's really going on? For several years homeowners in Seattle have watched their equity grow double-digits annually in most areas. Anyone with a deed could sit back and count their duckets as tales of bidding wars dominated the media. The headlines changed in May of 2007. Suddenly there was inventory where before there was nothing for sale. The number of new listings coming out per day quadrupled. Finally! Buyers had their pick of homes and could negotiate with sellers and get whatever they want. Right?
Well, you'd think that by reading the Seattle Times. The reality, however, is that we're finally seeing the brakes slowly pause the incredible growth we've seen in the last six years. Most experts and economists will agree that correction is healthy and necessary. Can we really expect our homes to double in value every 5 years?
What I'm experiencing now is a slightly more level playing field for buyers. Hot houses in desirable neighborhoods continue to draw multiple offers. Overall listings are taking a bit longer to sell which means that agents and sellers need to go the extra mile to create the kind of activity that came easily as recently as earlier this spring. Buyers may find that they have more choices and a little more time to ponder their options.
Here's a link to the Seattle Times piece: http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis.cgi/web/vortex/display?slug=homesales06&date=20070706&query=seattle+real+estate+market