EducationMarket UpdateNWMLS Press Release September 12, 2023

September 2023 Seattle Housing Market Update

NWMLS Northwest Multiple Listing Service

Northwest MLS housing market “still lacks direction”

*NOTE* – the data we are looking at is from the full month of August. The NWMLS comprises 26 of Washington’s 39 counties, mostly in the western part of the state.

Here are my bullet points from the newest press release from the Northwest Multiple Listing Service:

  • Prices on homes that sold during August rose 2.5% from a year ago, marking the first year-over-year (YOY) increase since January.
  • The number of new listings was down about 17.8% compared to August 2022.
  • The number of pending sales during August was down about 25% compared to last year.
  • Brokers and other industry-watchers point to upticks in mortgage rates as the culprit for declining sales.
  • The average interest rate on a 30-year home loan reached 7.23% as of August 24, the highest rate since 2001, but it subsequently dropped to 7.12% for the week ending September 7.
  • Along with forcing buyers to sit on the sidelines, the escalating rates are a deterrent to would-be sellers who bought or refinanced home in recent years and don’t want to swap their 3% rate for a 7% mortgage.
  • Active listings at the end of August were down more than 21.5% compared to a year ago.
  • Over the next two months home buyers will experience the best selection and availability of homes for sale until March 2024, due to the reduced number of homes that come on the market over the winter months.
  • Home prices will rise after the first of the year, particularly in the more affordable and mid-price ranges.
  • Inventory levels are still well below pre-pandemic averages, so the market remains tight.
  • Some hopeful homebuyers are turning to new construction where some builders are offering discounts or other incentives. About 25% of builders have been cutting prices to bolster sales.

To read the full press release, click here.