Thurston home sales rise again, but not their prices

The BusinesJuly 3, 2013 

  • REAL ESTATE NUMBERS

    Thurston County single-family residence data for June 2013/2012

    • Sales rose 12.4 percent to 335 units from 298 units.

    • Median prices fell 1.21 percent to $225,000 from $227,750.

    • Pending sales rose 13.9 percent to 418 units from 367 units.

    • Total listings fell 11.4 percent to 1,159 units from 1,309 units.

    • New listings in June rose to 467 units from 431 units.

    Thurston County condo data for June 2013/2012

    • Sales fell to six units from nine units.

    • Median prices rose 1 percent to $104,500 from $103,500.

    • Pending sales fell to seven units from 11 units.

    • Total listings fell 9.2 percent to 49 units from 54 units.

    • New listings in June rose to 15 units from 12 units.

    Source: Northwest Multiple Listing Service

Thurston County home sales rose 11 percent in June, another month of year-over-year gains in the housing market, according to Northwest Multiple Listing Service data released Wednesday.

Home sales rose 11 percent to 341 units last month from 307 units in June 2012. It also was the sixth consecutive month-over-month gain in home sales, the combined single-family residence and condominium data show.

Here is how monthly home sales have grown since January: 189, 200, 264, 270, 332 and 341.

But while sales are on the rise, median prices were flat in June compared with $226,000 in June 2012, the combined data show.

Although home sellers are on better footing in this market than in past years, the market hasn’t completely shifted in their favor because buyers are still sensitive about prices, Washington Realtors Association president Mark Kitabayashi said.

Other factors that might have dampened prices last month include the recent increase in mortgage interest rates — making the cost of borrowing money a little more expensive — and higher inventory levels, allowing buyers to be choosier about a prospective home.

Inventory levels remain low, but new listings have outpaced last year’s listings since March.

In June, 482 listings hit the market, compared with 443 in June 2012.

Re/Max Professionals principal managing broker Dick Beeson also said there’s likely an unwillingness to bid prices up in Thurston County because the market isn’t as hot as in Pierce and King counties.

The median price of a single-family residence in King County hit $427,500 in June, 12.5 percent higher than in June 2012.

Still, homes are selling in Thurston County, and consumers are more confident about the economy than they were, Kitabayashi said.

Some lots are sold before the houses are even built, he said.

Rolf Boone: 360-754-5403 rboone@theolympian.com theolympian.com/bizblog

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