2015 was a good year for real estate in the Walla Walla Valley. Here are the highlights:
1. Annual home sales passed the 700 mark for the first time since 2006.
A consistent theme throughout the year was increased home sales. The Walla Walla MLS reported 726* single family home sales in 2015. This was an 8% increase over the previous year’s pace. Favorable interest rates and a gradual easing of credit standards kept buyers active throughout the year.
2. At year end, listings dropped to their lowest level since December, 2006.
Another consistent theme was year-over-year declines in the number of homes listed for sale. The year ended with 305 homes listed for sale and a listing inventory of 4 months. This was nearly 2 months less inventory than we had 12 months ago. Most economists believe that 4-6 months is considered to be a balanced market, equally benefitting buyer and seller. At 4 months of inventory, we begin the new year sitting on the edge of balance and becoming a sellers market.
3. The median sales price experienced an annual gain of 5.5%.
The decline in inventory this past year year, led to a moderate gain in the median sales price. Walla Walla’s median sales price for 2015 was $190,078*.
As we begin 2016, Walla Walla’s real estate market is in a good place. Our market has not faced the extreme inventory lows and high price increases that many parts of the country have gone through. We’ve experienced national trends at more moderate levels and we expect that to continue.
This year, listing inventory will remain in the 3-4 month range. Prices will appreciate at 4-5%. Sales will remain strong but year over year gains will be moderate. Matthew Gardner, Windermere's chief economist, predicts interest rates will stay below 5%. We are looking forward to another good year for real estate in the Walla Walla Valley.
Click here for December 2015 Charts
*WWMLS WA Data
Photo provided by Christina Kennell Photography