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January housing activity slow but with some encouraging indicators

February 9, 2024

In keeping with seasonal patterns, real estate activity was slow during January, but there were some encouraging indicators according to the latest market summary from Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS).

For the 26 counties in the report, the volume of closed sales rose 3% year-over-year (YOY), with median prices up 6.5%. The number of new listings added to the database (4,954) increased slightly from the year-ago figure of 4,925.

MLS members reported 3,364 completed transactions last month, a gain of 100 sales when compared to January 2023. Brokers in King County accounted for 1,033 of January’s systemwide total (about 31%).

The area-wide median price for homes and condos that sold last month was $593,500, while in King County it was $760,000, the priciest among the counties in the report, and edging out San Jaun ($757,000). Snohomish County reported a median price of $700,000.

Single family homes that sold last month in King County had a median sales price of $849,850; for condos, the median sales price countywide was $495,000. Within the sub-areas of King County, homes on the Eastside commanded the highest median price. At the other end of the price spectrum, homes and condos in the Southwest map areas of the county sold for a median price at $549,950.

King County Snapshot – January 2024

Sub-area# Active ListingsMonths of Inventory# Closed SalesMedian Price
SW King1781.21147$549,950
SE King2731.29211$650,000
N King471.1242$810,000
All areas, King Co1,8421.781,033$760,000

Inventory continues to be well below the 4-to-6 months range industry experts often cite as a barometer for a balanced market. For the Northwest MLS area overall, there was 2.11 months of inventory at the end of January.

Buyers could select from 7,085 active listings in the MLS database at month end. That marked a decrease of nearly 14% from twelve months ago. House hunters looking to buy in King County could choose from 1,842 active listings. Brokers added 1,875 new listings during January.

King County’s supply was even more depleted at 1.78 months. Snohomish has the most constrained supply with only 0.84 months of inventory. Looking at property types within King County, there was 1.6 months of inventory of single family homes (a decline from twelve months ago when inventory stood at 2.1 months), and 2.4 months of condos, down from 2.8 months for the same month a year ago.

Information and statistics compiled and reported by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service.
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