In mid-June, readers of our monthly newsletter saw a chart that suggested housing sales were in for a big rebound.
That was quite an understatement!
As you can see above, home sales across the area jumped 35% from May to June. That’s the most homes sold in a single month this year, and the most since we had 432 sold last October. In fact, in all of 2019 we had only three months with more homes sold than June 2020. If you want a year-over-year comparison, in June 2019 we had 447 homes sold — so last month was just 4% off, which is pretty remarkable considering that we’re in the middle of a global pandemic.
Each of the six cities we watch had huge gains in homes sold. Kennewick’s 160 sales was the most there since last October. The 111 sales in Pasco is the most since March. And Richland’s 109 homes sold was its biggest month since last July.
The flip side? Look at all that red on the top line. With so many homes selling last month, our inventory snapshot went down. On Monday (July 6), we only had 499 active listings — 4% below June’s inventory, and 11% lower than July 2019. It’s the lowest number of available homes since we had 497 in April 2019.
What’s it all mean?
We have a serious shortage of homes available for people to buy, which tilts the market heavily toward sellers. Homes that are correctly priced for their area and condition are often selling very quickly and for above the asking price. (Just in the past few weeks, I’ve had a listing that received 10 offers and another that received 12 — both sold for more than the asking price.)
If we don’t get more inventory, it seems inevitable that home sales will drop again. And the homes that do sell will often be on the receiving end of bidding wars.
If you’re planning to sell soon, a market like this doesn’t mean you can overprice your home; if you do that, you’ll get fewer buyers to even look at it. You still have to price the home correctly.
If you’re planning to buy soon, make sure you’re pre-approved for a mortgage (not just pre-qualified) so that you can write a strong offer as soon as you find the house you love. And be ready to move quickly because you’re probably not the only buyers who love it!
As always, get in touch if you ever have questions about the housing market here in the Tri-Cities, or even in your specific neighborhood/town/city.
(*Remember that days on market can sometimes be skewed by how new construction homes are processed in the MLS.)