Housing prices climbed even higher in Puget Sound this February due to a winter inventory shortage combined with more buyers moving to the region.
A report released by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) found the median house price in King County was $649,950 with Mercer Island, west Bellevue and Kirkland-Bridle Trails reporting a $1 million median price tag.
Analysts from NWMLS expected recently passed changes to federal law to put a damper on exploding house prices.
According to Market Watch, the limit for federal tax deductions for first and second mortgages was $1 million but dropped to $750,000 under the Republican tax plan that passed last year.
“The hyper job market in the Pacific Northwest continues to outpace almost every metro area in the nation, and thus our housing market is booming; for now, there is no end in sight,” said Mike Grady, president of Caldwell Banker Bain.
Of the 26 Washington state counties included in the study, pending sales dropped from 8,209 to 7,980 year-over-year in February while median prices increased 15 percent
In Puget Sound, Snohomish County saw the largest price jump at nearly 19 percent with a median home price clocking in at $460,000.
Prices were expected to rise further through the summer.
This February’s pending sales out-weighed new listings, signaling a continuation of low inventory in the region.
Additionally, both King and Snohomish counties have less than one month’s supply of housing available, meaning all current listings would be filled within a month if new ones didn’t enter the market.
Even in more remote corners of Puget Sound prices are increasing.
Kitsap County inventory is down 32 percent compared to a year ago and prices jumped nearly 16 percent in a February year-over-year comparison.
More buyers are also willing to pay cash and not demand an inspection contingency.
On the other end of the spectrum were Ferry, Pacific and Grays Harbor counties, which have the cheapest median housing costs, ranging from $123,450 to $185,900.
With the exception of San Juan, Kittitas, Okanagan and Pacific counties all others saw a decrease of inventory.