January is typically a slower month for the real estate market when buyers can get better deals on homes amidst less competition. The Seattle Times noted that in 2016 and 2017, “January was the cheapest month to buy a single-family home in King County.”
But January 2018 was different. The month marked a Seattle median home price record of $757,000, and across King County, single-family home prices surged 20% compared to January 2017. The Times notes that while home prices have historically surged in spring and summer, “buyers can’t afford to be picky anymore … and the hordes of newcomers moving here for high-paying jobs at Amazon and other tech companies” are aggressively purchasing homes.
And another motivating factor for buyers to secure homes? Rising mortgage interest rates, which are ticking up. According to Zillow, today’s average 30-year fixed rate is 4.22%, up from 3.9% one month prior.
An Overview of Mercer Island’s Single-Family Residential Market
In January, there were 19 new listings on Mercer Island, a considerable increase from the 9 new listings that came on the market in December, though a slight drop from the 22 listings brought on the market in January 2017.
The number of sales decreased by 50% month over month, and as we previously noted, December was an exceptional month on Mercer Island for closed sales when buyers rushed to secure homes before the close of the year. This month was fairly typical for this time of year and marked a slight increase in sales compared to January 2017, when there were only 12 sales for the month.
The Mercer Island median home price increased slightly month over month, but decreased compared to January 2017. Though as we note in the “fine print,” the monthly data sets on Mercer Island are small and shouldn’t be relied upon for accurate appreciation. Especially for homes priced up to $2 million, we’re seeing a frenzy of interest and the majority of new listings in this price range are receiving multiple offers, as we also experienced with our recent new listing on Mercer Island.
A quick note about our new “Trends at a Glance” table in regard to median and average sale price: The Mercer Island monthly sales data set is small, and we provide the median and average sale prices from one month ago and one year ago as an interesting comparison. However, waterfront or luxury sales can skew the average and median monthly sale prices to the high side. To get a more accurate sense of appreciation on Mercer Island, we suggest that you look at quarterly and annual Mercer Island market reports.
A Snapshot of the Current Inventory
As of today, Mercer Island has 44 active listings available, and buyers are encouraged to see new listings finally pick up again on Mercer Island.
The most affordable home currently on the market is located on Island Crest Way and is listed at $875,000. We’ve seen a nice handful of new entry-level listings hit the market (priced below $1,400,000), though these homes won’t last long.
We encourage our clients to see these home with a day or two of the listing date, since many sellers are being tempted (and often taking) pre-emptive offers, even if they planned to review offers on a particular review date.
Mercer Island new listings, pending sales, homes for sale, and homes sold for the past 15 months (single-family homes – does not include condos)*
*Trendgraphix data may vary from other data provided in this monthly market update. For example, while a listing may appear to be a “new listing” to Trendgraphix, it may have been canceled and re-entered into the MLS as a strategy to repopulate IDX feeds. Additionally, town homes are occasionally listed as both a single-family home and as a condominium home. We filter for these types of “new” listings and duplicate listings.
Mercer Island absorption rate based on homes sold for the past 15 months (single-family homes)*
The absorption rate indicates how quickly homes are selling. It is calculated by taking the number of properties sold divided by the number of properties for sale (as a percentage). In a buyer’s market, the absorption rate is 16.67% or lower. In a balanced market, the absorption rate range is from 16.67% to 33.33%, and in a seller’s market, the absorption rate is 33.33% and above.
January 2018 Real Estate Market Stats
Single-Family Residential Market (All)
- 19 new listings
- 15 sold homes
- Median sold price: $1,550,000
- Average sold price: $1,638,703
- Lowest sold price: $720,000
- Highest sold price: $2,880,000
- 18 new listings
- 15 sold homes
- 1 new listing
- 0 sold homes
Mercer Island Condo Market
- 2 new listing
- 4 sold homes
- Lowest sold price: $295,000
- Highest sold price: $850,000
Mercer Island “Nosy Neighbor Report” – January 2018
Here’s our monthly “nosy neighbor” report with data for all single-family home sales on Mercer Island (not including unlisted sales). If you’re curious about a recent sale in your neighborhood, you can learn the details with a quick glance at the report below or by clicking on the map for sale details.
Current Mercer Island Listings
By Home Type / Location
- Mercer Island Condos
- Single-Family Residential Homes (All)
- New Construction Homes
- Waterfront Homes
- Search by Neighborhood
- $1 million or less
- $1 million to $1.5 million
- $1.5 million to $2 million
- $2 million to $2.5 million
- $2.5 million to $3 million
- $3 million to $4 million
- $4 million to $5 million
- $5 million or more
Windermere Mercer Island
My MI Founder & Editor / Residential Broker
Windermere Mercer Island