3rd Quarter 2012 Report on Homes and Land in the Sequim Area
The volume of sales in both the vacant land and residential markets held steady but we saw upward trends in the median price for both homes and land in the 3rd Quarter. Using median sale price data to evaluate changes in real estate values has its flaws, but the signs of life we’ve seen this quarter and this year for that matter are encouraging. Anecdotal reports from other markets around the country and now our hard data have us believing that we are truly on the mend.
Residential Report – Home Sales in the Sequim Area*:
Median sales price – UP!.
The median price of a home selling in Sequim rose to $234K which is the highest since the 4th quarter of 2009. It is a 10% increase compared to last quarter and an 8% increase over the 3rd quarter of last year. Team McAleer’s median sale price was $319K and the average was $405K.
Number of Sales – holds steady.
The number of home sales held steady in the 3rd quarter keeping pace with the increase in volume we saw in the second quarter. There are currently 532 homes on the market in Sequim and we have been consistently selling 37/month over the past 6 months. Those numbers do not put us into what economists consider a “balanced” market, but we are certainly doing better now than we were.
Portion of the market taken up by Distressed Sales – rises slightly.
At 16% of the total market, distressed sales are certainly still a factor and will continue to be for a few more years, but they are not having the devastating effects they had during the worst of the downturn. We will continue to track distressed sales (foreclosures, short sales and bank owned properties) and report back the effect they are having on the overall market.
*The Sequim area is defined generally as the Sequim School District boundaries which go as far east as Discovery Bay and west to Blue Mountain Rd. and Lewis Rd.
Comparing final List Price to Sale Price of homes that have sold.
Here’s an interesting look at the median asking price of the homes that have sold compared to the median sales price on a year to year basis. Keep in mind that this does not take into account THE ORIGINAL asking price of these sales nor does it account for the listings that were WITHDRAWN or EXPIRED from the market and never sold. This is simply a look at how close to the final asking price sellers may have gotten when they sold on a year to year basis. This analysis is based upon residential home sales in the Sequim are only.
YEAR Median Asking Price Median Sales Price % of final asking/sale $
2003 $185K $180K 97%
2004 $235K $226K 96%
2005 $289K $285K 99%
2006 $299K $290K 97%
2007 $299K $290K 97%
2008 $280K $273K 97%
2009 $259K $248K 96%
2010 $245K $230K 94%
2011 $222K $210K 95%
2012 $230K $218K 95%
The take-away here is that although there are slight adjustments in final list/sale price percentages which followed the softening of the market, it has really stayed relatively high throughout. The homes that sold were priced aggressively enough to procure a buyer and that buyer was, in the end, willing to pay within a reasonable range of the final asking price.
We also really like seeing that turnaround in the median sales price for 2012. I would comment on that further, but I don’t want to jinx it.
LAND REPORT – 3rd Quarter of 2012 sees modest increases in volume and sale prices.
Number of total land sales- remains low.
The volume of sales remains low (about 9/month) and compared to the over 500 parcels currently for sale, we’ll need to see some higher demand before we are confident that values have reached the bottom.
Median Sales Price of all land sales- jumps this quarter.
The sales volume remained low, HOWEVER, the median sales price increase to $88K was very encouraging. Last quarter’s median price of $51K was a bit of an anomaly with the bulk sale of bank owned lots in one of Sequim’s failed developments, but the $88K median sales price was still the highest in 6 quarters. The median sale price of land will be very interesting to track in the coming quarters.
Median asking price of all Active parcels – holds steady.
The median asking price held at $87K. My guess is that will fall, but the increase in the median sale price we saw this past quarter may be a sign that things will improve for raw land more quickly than I expected. Simple principles of supply and demand point to further drops in values however. I do hope that I’m wrong.