Despite what the national headlines might be telling you about today’s housing market, here in the Tri-Cities things are doing just fine. Based on our numbers these past couple months, we’re not seeing sellers sitting on the sidelines. Buyers seem to be coming back to the market, too.
Overall, our housing inventory (the number of homes for sale) is holding steady, home prices went up last month, and the number of closed sales was up just like we normally start to see this time of year. Let’s dive in to some details below!
We are not seeing the price drops that many other parts of the country are seeing. In fact, our home prices were up 4.9% last month — the third straight month of rising home prices. The median sales price of homes that closed in February was $435,000, which is comfortably in line with where our prices have been for the past 14 months.
A year ago, the median sales price was $450,000, so we’re down about 3.5% from that.
In fact, while we’re talking about Tri-Cities home prices, take a look at this recent graphic from a national real estate company called John Burns Real Estate Consulting:
You’re looking at resale prices (in other words, existing homes — not new construction) compared to last year’s peak. Prices in many big markets across the west are down, but Kennewick is in green. And they don’t just mean the City of Kennewick, they mean our entire market. At the moment, our home prices aren’t following the trends happening in many other cities.
In non-COVID years, we typically see the number of homes for sale dropping by about 8-10% per month at this time of year.
But just like last month, our inventory barely dropped at all. The 599 total homes for sale is just 1% off last month’s number. And over the past two months, inventory is only down 3%. Some of that is because homes are taking longer to sell. But it’s a good sign that sellers aren’t sitting on the sidelines and we hope it continues in the coming months.
Compared to this time last year, we have 93% more homes on the market right now. Compared to March 2020 (just barely pre-COVID), inventory is up 16% right now.
All of the above is influenced by the fact that mortgage rates early this year were down more than a percentage point from their highs back in October/November. Well, those rates are rising again, so we’ll be keeping an eye on how that impacts buyers and sellers.
And that’s a look at this month’s Tri-Cities housing market! As always, please drop us a note if you ever have questions about what’s happening around town or in your specific neighborhood.
(*Remember that days on market can sometimes be skewed by how new construction homes are processed in the MLS.)
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