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Seattle's Housing Market: The Great Reversion

CEO Khai Intela
We now have a new moniker for the current state of Seattle's housing market: "The Great Reversion." While it may seem like our city is losing its real estate momentum, there's more to the story....

Seattle Met

We now have a new moniker for the current state of Seattle's housing market: "The Great Reversion." While it may seem like our city is losing its real estate momentum, there's more to the story. Let's dive deeper and explore the latest trends in Seattle's housing market.

The Perspective Shift

The market may feel like it's stagnating after the bonkers competitive pandemic years, but compared to 2019, inventory is still tight and prices are still higher than they once were in some areas. According to Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere Real Estate, "The ‘Great Reversion’ continues with the number of homes in the tri-county market of King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties up 106 percent from a year ago." However, it's worth noting that current inventory levels in King and Snohomish counties are still around 13 percent lower than they were in September 2019 prior to the pandemic-induced market shift.

Rising Neighborhoods

1. Queen Anne and Magnolia

Queen Anne and Magnolia September 2022 median sale price: $896,000 Price growth year-over-year: 15.02 percent

As we mentioned in last month's State of Real Estate report, these northern neighborhoods live and die by their single-family home sales. Despite a dip in August, last month showed a year-over-year price growth for single-family properties of 34.58 percent. Queen Anne and Magnolia continue to be highly sought-after areas.

2. West Seattle

September 2022 median sale price: $765,000 Price growth year-over-year: 8.51 percent

Earlier this year, West Seattle experienced a flirtation with a median sale price near $900,000. However, it has now settled back into more reasonable territory. Nevertheless, the solid price growth indicates that there is still high demand in the area.

3. SoDo and Beacon Hill

September 2022 median sale price: $714,000 Price growth year-over-year: 7.85 percent

Inventory of available properties in SoDo and Beacon Hill is one of the highest in the city, yet it hasn't hindered year-over-year price growth. Despite a decrease from earlier this year, the median sale price is still quite high compared to September 2021. These neighborhoods remain attractive to homebuyers.

Falling Neighborhoods

1. Belltown and Downtown

September 2022 median sale price: $560,000 Price growth year-over-year: -11.81 percent

The core of the city, including Belltown and Downtown, currently has over four months of inventory, the highest in Seattle. This surplus puts buyers in a favorable position. Belltown and Downtown especially suffered during the pandemic, and while the return of businesses and tourists has been positive, the housing market still requires more time to recover.

2. Southeast Seattle

September 2022 median sale price: $745,000 Price growth year-over-year: -5.34 percent

Southeast Seattle, encompassing areas such as Columbia City, Rainier Beach, Rainier Valley, and Seward Park, saw significant growth during the pandemic as residents sought affordability. However, the recent data indicates a reversion in prices, suggesting a shift in demand.

3. North Seattle

September 2022 median sale price: $840,000 Price growth year-over-year: -4.82 percent

North Seattle, designated by the NWMLS as everything north of Portage and Union Bay, and east of I-5, typically ranks among the most sought-after real estate spots in the city. While the modest price decline may not seem impressive, considering the area's previous milestone of breaking the $1 million mark earlier this year, it appears to be a reasonable adjustment.

Despite the fluctuations in different neighborhoods, Seattle's housing market retains its allure. The Great Reversion may have brought some changes, but the city's real estate scene continues to be dynamic and resilient. Whether you're buying or selling, it's essential to stay informed about the latest trends and make decisions based on the unique characteristics of each neighborhood.

Remember, the housing market is a reflection of various factors and can be unpredictable. The key is to approach it with a balanced perspective and enlist the expertise of professionals in the field.

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