Real estate cooling with the fall weather

  • Saturday, October 6, 2018 1:30am
  • Opinion

By Todd Fahlman

The real estate market is open 365 days a year – yes, even on holidays – but there are cyclical trends to the marketplace.

Some of those ups and downs are based on mortgage interest rates and housing availability, but some are based on season. Next to spring, fall is the busiest season for home buying and selling. Autumn offers certain benefits to home buyers, including year-end tax breaks, pleasant weather conditions for moving and a wide selection of homes for sale.

Housing inventory levels have significantly increased to 1.67 months compared with spring’s inventory levels of .87 of a month. Last month real estate brokers added 300 new listings, which matches the same amount of new listings added last year during the same month.

The difference is we have witnessed a 1.74 percent decrease in closed transactions, which accounts for more homes available for buyers.

During this past spring and summer, home buyers were out in force. In many areas throughout Snohomish and King counties, homes went under contract quickly, and bidding wars were not uncommon.

Homes are not going under contract as quickly this time of year, and multiple offers are less frequent.

That takes some of the pressure off buyers and helps soften home prices.

There is a chance, however, that the Federal Reserve will increase its benchmark lending rate in December, which could have a modest ripple effect on mortgage interest rates.

Take advantage of this great real estate autumn market and low interest rates.

For more information about the advantages of buying or selling this fall, contact your local real estate broker.

Todd Fahlman sells real estate locally. He writes a monthly column for these newspapers.

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