What’s Happening in the Local Market?
The year 2020 will certainly be one to remember, with new realities and norms changing the way we live. This year’s real estate market is certainly no exception; challenging what many thought possible. Here’s a look at four key areas that are defining the Walla Walla Valley’s real estate market this year.
Housing Market Resilience – The economy was put on pause this spring due to the Covid-19 health crisis. Yet, Walla Walla’s market quickly rebounded to pre-pandemic levels. At the end of August, closed home sales were within 2.5% of last year’s numbers and buyer demand remained at an all-time high.
Record-Breaking Mortgage Rates – Historically low mortgage rates are another 2020 game-changer. Low rates have been one of the big motivating factors for bringing buyers back into the market. The average rate reached all-time-lows on multiple occasions this year and they continue to hover in record-low territory.
Continued Home Price Appreciation – One of Walla Walla’s key drivers for home price appreciation this year is our historically low inventory. At the end of August, the number of homes listed for sale had fallen 40% from the number of homes available for sale 12 months ago. Although sellers are making their way back into the market, buyers are scooping up homes faster than they are coming up for sale. This strong demand has pushed prices higher. Through August, the Walla Walla Valley’s median sales price had increased 9% over 2019’s median price.
Increased Affordability – Even as home prices continue to rise, affordability is working in favor of today’s homebuyers with the low interest rates off-setting rising home prices.
All in all, the Walla Walla Valley remains an attractive place to own a home.
Walla Walla Valley Home Stats for August
August’s Listings: 191*
August’s Closed Home Sales: 65*
Closings dropped 19% from the previous month and were 16% fewer than the number that closed in August of 2019. Yet closings through the first 8 months of 2020 were only down 2.5% from the same time period of 2019.
August’s Median Sales Price: $306,000*
The median price increased 11% from the previous month and was 5% higher than the median price for August of 2019. Year to date, the median price has increased by 9% over the previous year.
Watch weekly economic updates with Matthew Gardner – Windermere Chief Economist
*WWMLS WA Data