Oct. 23 Housing Market Update: Home Sales Slow, Like Most Octobers

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October 2023 market update graphic

Call it the Autumn drop. Call it the “school’s back in session” drop. Call it whatever you want, but a Tri-Cities’ real estate market certainty is that sales activity starts to slow down at this time of year.

2023 is no exception, as you can see above. We had a sizable drop in sold activity last month, and a small drop in home prices. Inventory, on the other hand, is holding steady.

This is important for sellers: Now is the time to be patient. I’ll explain more below. Let’s dive in.

Tri-Cities Sales Activity Last Month

We had 264 closings in September, a 21% drop from the month before. You can see that all-red line in the middle of the market stats: Closings dropped last month in all six cities we track.

As I said above, part of this just the normal seasonality of our market. But that’s not all. Mortgage rates have been hovering around record highs over the past month, and that’s keeping a lot of buyers on the sidelines.

Not only did we have fewer homes sell last month, but they sold more slowly, too. Our median days on market is at its highest (slowest) point in the past six months. Homes took longer to sell last month in every city we track except for Richland.

And that’s why sellers need to be patient now. With school back in session, the holidays approaching, and high mortgage rates, I wouldn’t expect an influx of buyers in the near future.

Tri-Cities Home Prices

Median prices went up almost $37,000 in Richland last month, but that wasn’t enough to offset lower prices for homes that sold in Kennewick in Pasco. Overall, our median price dropped by $10,000.

We’re now at nine straight months where prices have stayed in between $415K and $435K. And it’s been since January 2022 that prices have stayed in between $400K and $450K.

The median list price of those homes that sold last month was $425,000, so homes are selling at about 99% of list price.

Tri-Cities Available Homes for Sale

Our inventory of homes for sale went up just a tiny bit when we did this month’s snapshot. We passed 800 homes on the market for the first time in at least five years. The 808 homes for sale is up 21% from this time last year.

We currently have 3.1 months of inventory — still considered a sellers market, but very different from six months ago when we had 2.1 months of inventory.

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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About The Author
Cari McGee

My husband and I came to the Tri-Cities in 1994, and we thought it would be a temporary stop on our way to larger cities. He was a television sports anchor at the time, and we planned to go wherever the "next step up" took us. Twenty-plus years later, we're still here and we've loved every minute of it! We have two children now, and we've found the Tri-Cities area is a wonderful place to raise a family. It's a great place to do outdoorsy things -- I like to hike Badger Mountain or run along the river path. I also love reading ... by a cozy fire in the winter or a beautiful picture window in the summer (with the A/C on!). I've been a licensed Realtor since 2004. I earned my managing broker's license in 2016, which means I can run my own brokerage, or create a team of real estate agents and supervise them, which is exactly what I did when I formed the Cari McGee Real Estate Team in 2018! We have administrative and marketing personnel, as well as additional agents to serve you. I became a director of the Tri-Cities Association of Realtors Board of Directors in 2016, became Secretary/Treasurer of the organization, and was elected to Vice President in 2019. Want to talk about real estate? Click here to schedule a meeting with me!

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