Walla Walla Real Estate Update – September 2018

Walla Walla Valley home sales slowed in September which is typical during this time each year as many buyers focus on summer vacations and back to school activities.

Inventory declined during the month and remained 8% below the number of homes listed for sale a year ago.  Low inventory levels have been caused, in part, by sellers who were excited about the prospect of receiving good offers on their property but were reluctant to list for fear of not being able to find their next home.

In spite of low inventory levels, Walla Walla has experienced a strong market through the first nine months.  At month end, annual closed sales were 6% ahead of last years pace.  The seller’s market continued to put upper pressure on prices.  Year-to-date, Walla Walla’s median price has increased by 9% over the previous year.

We expect activity to pick up this fall prior to the Holiday Season as both buyers and sellers look to make changes and/or additions to their real estate holdings before year end.

September’s Listings: 277*

The month ended with 2% fewer listings than the previous month and 8% fewer than the number of homes listed for sale 12 months ago.

Septembers Closed Sales: 67*

Closed home sales declined 21% from the previous month.  But as mentioned above, this is typical for the month of September.  Closed sales were just 6% off the total for September of last year.

September’s Median Price: $257,500*

The months median price had a slight drop of 1.3% from the previous month but was significantly up from last September’s median sales price of $209,500.

View the full Monthly Statistic Charts

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on October 12, 2018 at 2:46 PM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – August 2018

August 2018 Monthly Stats Header Image

 

Hot weather and smoky skies did not slow home sales in August.  The month tied June for the most monthly home sales of the year in the Walla Walla Valley.  But a decline in pending sales and an increase in listing inventory suggested the market had slowed just a bit.  Pending sales – homes under contract but not yet closed – stayed even with the previous month but were down 18% from the pace set earlier in the summer.  However, at month end, annual sales were still 7% ahead of last years pace.

Listing inventory grew during the month to the highest level in 10 months, but remained historically low for our market.  The number of homes listed for sale was down 6% from the number available 12 months ago.

As reported in previous months, low inventory continued to put upward pressure on price.  The month’s median price was 13% higher than in August of last year.  However, rising interest rates and home prices have not yet damped buyer’s demand for Walla Walla valley homes and our year is on track to be the 2nd most active annual market in our MLS’s history.

August’s Listings 284*

The month’s listing inventory grew by 7% over the previous month but there were still 6% fewer homes listed than were available 12 months ago.

August’s Closed Sales: 84*

Monthly closed home sales increased by a single sale over the previous month and were within 1 closing of the number that closed in August of last year.

August’s Median Price: $261,000*

The month’s median sales price held level with the previous month but was 13% higher than the median price for the same month of last year.

View the full Monthly Statistic Charts

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on September 14, 2018 at 9:49 AM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – April 2018

 

April became the most active month for real estate this year.  The month’s 77 home sales made it one of the busiest Aprils ever for the Walla Walla Valley.  By month end, closed home sales had surged 12% ahead of last years pace through the same reporting period.

At the same time, enough new listings came on the market to replenish those that sold.  The month ended with the same number of listings as the previous month.  Inventory remained low, but this trend may be shifting.  For the second month in a row, the Walla Walla Valley had more listings than the previous year.  Listing inventory experienced a year-over-year monthly gain of 1%.

The seller’s market continued for Walla Walla as buyer demand remained strong, especially for homes under $400,000. While most buyers would have preferred more homes to look at, Walla Walla maintained just enough inventory to keep price increases moderate.  Through the first four months, Walla Walla’s median price increased 4% over the same period a year ago.

April’s Listings: 252*

The month ended with the same number of listings as the previous month, and there were 3% more homes listed for sale than were available 12 months ago.

April’s Closed Sales: 77*

Monthly home sales jumped 37% over the previous month and 57% over April of last year.  This was one of the most active Aprils in Walla Walla’s history.

April’s Median Price: $226,362*

April’s median price declined by 5% from the previous month.  On the year, Walla Walla’s median price is 4% higher than the same period of last year.

Click here for April 2018 Charts.

*WWMLS WA Data

 

Posted on May 14, 2018 at 3:36 PM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – February 2018

Photo by Christina Kennel

 

Through the first two months of the year in the Walla Walla Valley, closed home sales have held steady with last years pace. Buyers were active during February with new contract signings; pending sales – homes under contract but not yet closed – grew by 17% over the previous month. However, buyers choices were limited. Listing inventory remained low. The number of homes listed for sale was 7% lower than the number available at the same time last year.

The market remained a clear sellers market, especially for homes under $400,000. Low inventory levels continued to put upward pressure on price. During the first two months, Walla Walla’s average sales price increased by 2.5%. Going forward, our listing supply should get a boost! Typically, more sellers list their properties for sale during the spring months. We expect listings to grow in March which will alleviate some of the pricing pressure.

February’s Listings: 232*

The month’s listings held steady with the previous month but ended 7% below the number of homes available for sale at the same time a year ago.

February’s Closed Sales: 39*

Typically, February’s closed sales slow from January’s pace. That is what happened again this year. Closed sales declined by 25% from the previous month but were up 15% ahead of the closed sales for February of last year. YTD, closed sales are on pace with last year.

February’s Median Price: $224,000*

The Median sales price held steady with last month. However, the average sales price increased 2.5% over the previous year. What happens to listing supply will determine how much upward pressure pricing face as we go forward.

Click here for February 2018 Charts.

*WWMLS WA data

Posted on March 14, 2018 at 9:24 AM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – January 2018

An uptick in Walla Walla Valley home sales in the final three months of 2017 pulled down housing inventory to its lowest point in more than 15 years. But listing inventory improved a bit early in the year. Some sellers, wanting to capitalize on continued buyer demand, listed their homes early in January. As a result, listing inventory grew 3.5% during the month.

January’s median price ($222,750) pulled back a bit from 2017’s median price ($227,517) but low inventory levels will continue to put upward pressure on prices. The prospect of higher prices and potentially higher interest rates continued to fuel buyers motivation.

Although 6 sales shy of last January, closed home sales got off to a steady start in the new year. What happens to sales going forward will depend on whether or not listing inventory can keep up with buyer demand.

 

January’s Listings: 234*

The months listings grew 3.5% over the previous month but was still 5% below last January.

January’s Closings: 50*

The month’s closed sales settled from last month and was just 6 sales behind last January’s pace.

January’s Median Price: $222,750*

The month’s median price settled 8% from the previous month but was 6% higher than last January.

Click here for January 2018 Charts.

*WWMLS WA Data

 

Posted on February 14, 2018 at 3:27 PM
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Walla Walla Real Estate – 2017 Year End Report

 

2017 finished 2nd best for home sales in the Walla Walla Valley.

The Walla Walla MLS (WWMLS) reported 799* home sales in 2017 finishing just 5% behind last years record setting pace. Low interest rates kept buyers active despite fewer homes on the market making 2017 the 2nd best year for home sales in WWMLS’s history.

At year’s end, listings declined to their lowest level in over 12 years.

The year ended with just 226* active WWMLS listings, 16% fewer than last year. Throughout the year the Walla Walla Valley maintained approximately 2 months of inventory and ended with just 1.8 months of inventory for the cities of Walla Walla and College Place.

The median sales price experienced an annual gain of 6%.

Lower inventory levels continued to put upward pressure on prices in 2017. The median sales price increased to $227,517*, a 6% increase over the previous year. The Walla Walla Valley experienced a seller’s market, especially for homes below $400,000.

Click here for our 2017 Year-End Charts.

 

Walla Walla Real Estate 2018 Forecast:

So what will 2018 bring? To help answer that question, here is a summary from Windermere’s Chief Economist, Matthew Gardner:

Existing Home Sales

In 2018 we should expect existing home sales to increase by 3.7%. In many areas, demand will continue to exceed supply, but a modest increase in inventory will help take some heat off the market. Because of this, home prices are likely to rise by 4.4%.

Housing Bubble

Matthew continues to be concerned about housing affordability. Home prices have been rising across much of the country at unsustainable rates and, although Mathew still contends we are not in “bubble” territory, it does represent a substantial impediment to the long-term health of the housing market. If home price growth begins to taper, as predicted in 2018, that should provide some relief.

Interest Rates

Interest rates continue to baffle forecasters. The anticipated rise that many have predicted for several years has yet to materialize. As it stands right now, Matthew’s forecast is for interest rates to rise modestly to an average of 4.4% for a conventional 30-year fixed rate mortgage – still remarkably low when compared to historic averages,

Click here for Matthew’s forecast.

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on January 15, 2018 at 2:07 PM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – October 2017

 

October’s closed home sales rebounded from the previous month making it the third busiest closing month of the year for the Walla Walla Valley. Homes sales pulled within 8% of last years pace. October’s new listings replaced the number of homes that closed during the month keeping month-end numbers on par with the previous month. However, the trend of monthly year-over-year listing declines continued. At month’s end, there were 14% fewer listings than were available 12 months ago. Lower inventory levels this year has put upward pressure on prices. Year-to-date, the median price has increased by 5% over the previous year.

Like most of the country, buyer demand remained strong in Walla Walla. Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says “The stock market run-up, along with the continued stretch of home growth and mortgage rates under 4 percent, have kept buyer activity at a very robust level.”

October’s listings: 298*

Listings held steady with the previous month but ended down 14% from the number of homes available 12 months ago.

October’s Closings: 75*

Closing increased 7% over the previous month and 25% over October of last year.

October’s Median Price: $227,500*

The median sale price increased 9% over the previous month and was 6% higher than October of last year.

Click here for October Charts.

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on November 15, 2017 at 11:52 AM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – September 2017

September’s closed home sales slowed in the Walla Walla Valley. At month’s end, closings were 12% below last years pace. As we have reported, the slowdown in existing sales has been the result of a supply problem not diminished demand. Listing inventory, especially for homes below $400,000, remained low. September ended with 13% fewer homes listed for sale than were available in September of last year.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says “demand continues to overwhelm supply in most of the country, and as a result, many would be buyers from earlier in the year are still in the market for a new home.”  This remained true for Walla Walla.  The number of pending sales – homes under contract but not yet closed – held steady with the previous month.  Home prices have increased modestly. This year the median sales price has increased 4.5% over last.  While we expect annual homes sales to remain a bit behind last years pace, we believe buyers will remain active as we head towards the end of the year.

September’s Listings: 300*

The month ended within 1% of the previous month’s listing total but remained 13% below the number of homes listed for sale 12 months ago.

September’s Closings: 68*

Closings fell behind the previous month’s pace by 16% and ended 29% lower than the number of sales that closed in September of last year.

September’s Median Price: $209,500*

The median price was 9% lower than the previous month and was 11% lower than the median price of homes that closed in September of last year.

Click here for September’s charts.

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on October 11, 2017 at 12:37 PM
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Walla Walla Real Estate Update – August 2017

Photo Copyright Christina Kennell

 

August tied June for the highest number of monthly closings this year in the Walla Walla Valley. Yet, home sale still lagged 9% behind last years pace. Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist reports that feedback from Realtors continues to confirm that the slowdown in existing sales is the result of a supply problem and not one of diminished demand. This is certainly true for Walla Walla. The number of homes listed for sale at the end of August had dropped 21% below the number listed exactly a year ago. The pace of new listings is not catching up with what’s being sold, especially for homes priced below $400,000.

Lower inventory levels, especially in the lower price ranges, have created a sellers market and pushed prices upward. This year, the median sales price for Walla Walla has increased 5% over last year.

With autumn at the doorstep, we expect buyer demand to remain strong as we head towards winter.

August’s Listings: 303*

Listings declined by 5% from the previous month and 21% below the number of homes listed for sale 12 months ago.

August’s Closings: 81*

Closings increased 16% from the previous month and essentially pulled even with closings in August of last year.

August’s Median Price: $230,000*

The median price declined 2% from the previous month but was 7% higher than August of last year.

Click here for August’s charts.

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on September 15, 2017 at 2:46 PM
Firm - Windermere Walla Walla | Category: Market Trends | Tagged , , , ,

Walla Walla Real Estate Update – July 2017

Monthly home sales slowed in the Walla Walla Valley, yet July became the 3rd busiest closing month of the year. Through the first 7 months of the year, Walla Walla’s home sales were 10% behind last years pace. Strong buyer demand has been hampered this year by a low supply of listings. The month ended with 16% fewer active listings than were available 12 months ago.

Due to low listing inventories, Walla Walla has experienced a sellers market and prices have moved upward. Through July, Walla Walla’s median price has risen 5% over the previous year. Yet, price increases have not dampened buyers enthusiasm largely due to interest rates which have remained low.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist says “Market conditions in many areas continue to be fast paced, with few properties to choose from, which is forcing buyers to act almost immediately on an available home that fits their criteria.” We have found this to be true in Walla Walla, especially for homes priced below $400,000.

July’s Listings: 319*

Although the trend of year-over-year listing declines continue, July experienced a 12% increase in listings over the previous month. This is the highest monthly listing total of the year.

July’s Closings: 68*

Closings declined 16% from the previous month and ended 17% below July’s closings of a year ago.

July’s Median Price: $235,500*

July’s median price dropped 5% from the previous month and was 3% lower than the median price for July of last year. On the year, prices are trending up. Walla Walla’s median sales price has increased 5% over last year.

Click here for July’s charts.

*WWMLS WA Data

Posted on August 14, 2017 at 12:50 PM
Firm - Windermere Walla Walla | Category: Market Trends | Tagged , , , ,