BuyingHousing TrendsSelling July 20, 2018

The Broker’s Perspective: Price Increases

Our brokers are deeply connected to the issues that face local home-buyers and sellers. In this series of blogs, “The Broker’s Perspective” Windermere Stanwood and Camano Island brokers provide insight into current market trends and topics. This week, we discuss Mortgage Orb’s article on the current home price forecast for Western Washington market with broker, Kelly Ruhoff.


U.S. home prices are forecast to increase 4.4% over the next 12 months, however, most of that increase will be driven by price gains in the Western states, according to Veros Real Estate Solutions’ VeroFORECAST report.

“Washington State and Nevada occupy six of the ten highest-appreciating MSAs in the U.S. and the remaining four are in California, Oregon and Idaho,” says Eric Fox, vide president of statistical and economic modeling at Veros, in a statement. “This is the 24th quarter in a row where this index has forecast overall appreciation. Interestingly, the metro markets that are projected to appreciate the most over the next 12 months in this VeroFORECAST release are also among the most populated, while the markets that are expected to depreciate most are all among the least populated. For example, the average population of the top 25 metros is 1.7 million and the average population of the bottom 25 metros is 318,000.”

Metropolitan markets that are expected to see the highest home price appreciation over the next 12 months include Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash. (+11.1%); Olympia, Wash. (+9.8%); Bremerton-Silverdale, Wash. (+9.8%); San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif. (+9.5%); Carson City, Nev. (+9.5%); Reno-Sparks, Nev. (+9.5%); Mount Vernon-Anacortes, Wash. (+9.4%); Pocatello, Idaho (+9.4%); San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, Calif. (+9.2%); and Eugene-Springfield, Ore. (+9.1%).

“There are several factors driving up home prices in the Seattle area, including a thriving economy and a lack of buildable land,” says Economist Matthew Gardner, with Seattle-based Windermere Real Estate. “There is also growing demand for housing thanks to the substantial in-migration of technology workers from the Bay Area who are relocating to Seattle because of the robust job market and relatively inexpensive home prices when compared to those in San Francisco.” Read the full article from 


Kelly’s Perspective

It’s a crazy market, and difficult for potential buyers to navigate. Buyers have little time to think about a purchase – compared to their parents who would advise them to, “Sleep on it.”

Though the average home on Camano is on the market for 44 days, many turn much quicker. It leaves many sellers stressed out as a result – since cash buyers often want to close quickly. Prices have gone up 9 percent on Camano and 14 percent in Stanwood compared to one year ago. Just two years ago the average sale price for a home on Camano was $362, 391 and now it is $459,810. That is almost a $100,000 increase for the average home price.

In addition, the build-able land is hard to find in Stanwood and on Camano Island with the infrastructure buyers are looking to find. Many and most buyers of vacant land I work with want water and septic already installed. Add to that the desire for privacy and most buyers can’t afford the purchase price.

I do have prospective clients who would like to move to Camano Island who both work from home. However, it’s getting more and more difficult for tech workers to get qualified for the view, 3-bedroom, 2-bath home they so desire.

That’s why it takes a patient buyer and organized seller in this fast moving market. As someone who has purchased several homes and sold several more without the use of a real estate agent, I would be afraid to do that today. I see my role as a representative for my clients as more important than ever. Kelly Ruhoff | Windermere Stanwood and Camano Island Broker