The February Real Estate Market Recap

Long time Ballard resident and local Real Estate Broker Sharon Giampietro will be sharing a post on My Ballard each month to keep readers informed about the local real estate market. Giampietro comes from a long line of realtors and has lived in Ballard for 30 years. She is currently a Broker at Windermere Real Estate in Greenwood.

Check out Giampietro’s recap of how Greater Ballard fared in February below:

In Ballard we see new big buildings here, new construction there – what are these big projects? Many are apartment buildings.  From 1996 through 2007, the number of apartment units in Ballard stood pretty steady at just above 1000. At the start of the housing downturn in 2008, more units were added and by 2010 there were almost 600 more. 2011 and 2012 saw no new additions, and then in 2103 along came 586 new units with the additions of KOI, AVA, BELAY and NOBA. By the end of 2014 much of the construction we see now will result in 616 more apartments with 441 slated to be added in 2015.  In this 3 year period we will have doubled our existing apartment stock. Apartment seekers who want to live in Ballard now have choices.

Buyers seeking to own homes in the greater Ballard area are finding home searching more challenging. In February 148 new residential listings came on the market, the same number that came on in January, but 17 less than February 2013. During the month of February, 100 homes sold which puts our inventory at about 1.5 months.  In the world of real estate this is a low housing supply. The average length of time on the market was 3 weeks, down from 5 weeks in January and prices were up by 9% over January. Buyers and Real Estate brokers are asking lenders to help them find ways to “buy up” without first selling the home they live in. They worry if they sell first, they might not find another home to buy in a timely manner.

February saw 35 new condos come on the market – 10 more than February last year but almost half as many as in January 2014. The average price was down from January‘s $347,000 to $315,000, but the January average days on market was 3 times greater than February’s.

In February, a relatively low almost 6% of “solds” (homes and condos) were short sales or bank owned. By comparison, in King County these sales represented about 19% of all sales. Some buyers would appreciate a supply of short sales and bank owned properties as their price points have in the past  provided some affordability.

Greater Ballard is Greenwood, Green Lake, Wallingford and other close by neighborhoods identified as “705” in the NWMLS.  All residential and condo numbers are rounded to the nearest thousand and unless noted does not include new construction. Statistics not compiled or published by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service. Apartment data from Dupre + Scott  Apartment Development Report.

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