October 2023: In the past months, the purchasing power of potential home buyers has weakened further with rising interest rates and a continued lack of inventory, creating a slowdown in market activity. Active listings in our combined market have remained fairly steady over the past six months at just over 100 homes in our combined markets. At the same time, the number of listings sold has decreased by roughly 20%.
According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at National Association of Realtors®, “The interest rate rises should be over, the Fed will have to consider cutting interest rates seriously. Mortgage rates look to head towards 7% in a few months and into the 6% range by the spring of 2024.” We are seeing evidence of his predictions already as rates have dropped in the past few weeks to the mid 7% range currently.
New Listings: In the month of October, we had 45 sellers put their homes up for sale. There were 22 new listings in Stanwood, and 23 on Camano Island. This is the lowest that we have seen in nine months, and it is about 25% lower than the same time last year.
Pending Sales: The number of homes going under contract in October is up slightly since last year. Our two zip codes saw 42 homes find their buyers this past month, different from 2022 when we had only 36.
Properties Sold: We had 50 homes close and sell in the month of October, the same as last month.
Sale Price: Average sales prices of properties sold in Stanwood and Camano Island are down slightly less than .5% from the previous month but continue to hold above $700,000 cumulatively. They are $676,198 in Stanwood and $751,744 on Camano Island.
Predictions are that more sellers will be bringing their homes on the market as pent-up sellers are motivated by life changes that make it necessary to move. They cannot wait any longer. That means more competition if you wait longer to list your home for sale. Align yourself with a local agent and get your home on the market now while inventories are still low.
Buying a home still remains one of the best investments available. Historically, home values continue to increase if held for five or more years. As rates continue the predicted decline, this might be a good time to home shop before rates fall enough for pent-up demand to flood the market, driving prices upward further.
At Windermere, our responsiveness to the local market, dedication to the community, and commitment to our trade is why we help our clients buy and sell more real estate in Stanwood and Camano Island than any other company.
We are all in, for you.