What goes Up . . . (hopefully)

Posted November 6, 2023 in Real Estate Trends

Scott Hogan, Clark County WA real estate agent

Rising interest rates continue to have a huge effect on our local real estate market. New listings, and closings, are both down. Days on market are up. The only thing that remains unchanged is median sales price. Here are the specifics, courtesy of the Clark County Association of Realtors, based on information through the end of September:

New listings (631) decreased 15.5% from the 747 listed in September 2022, and decreased 11.9% from the 716 listed in August 2023.

Closed sales (476) decreased 26.1% from the 644 closings in September 2022, and decreased 20.1% from the 596 closings in August 2023.

Inventory (how long it would take to sell the number of active listings if no new listings were added) increased to 2.5 months in September. Total market time (the average number of days a new listing takes to be sold) increased to 38 days.

Comparing the first nine months of 2023 to the same period in 2022, new listings (6,260) decreased 26.2%, pending sales (4,832) decreased 24.3%, and closed sales (4,563) decreased 30.0%.

Comparing 2023 to 2022 through September, the median sale price has decreased just $100, from $525,100 to $525,000.

Compared to a year or two ago, Sellers have less negotiation leverage while buyers are emboldened to ask for more concessions. Some Sellers have agreed to pay for a “buy-down” of the Buyer’s interest rate to make the monthly payment work for the Buyer. For Buyers interested in getting off the burden of rising rents, having the help of a mortgage lender who can provide alternatives like interest buy-downs or other loan programs is more important now than when interest rates were lower.

Adjusting to changes in the market takes some finesse. Use a professional Realtor who has an idea of how far to go in crafting an offer or counter-offer. Realtors negotiate purchase and sale agreements for a living. Use their expertise to assist you to buy or sell.

Sales are still happening. The slowdown in volume can mean opportunity for both Buyers and Sellers. Our role in the transaction is to make sure that everything is correct in transferring title from seller to buyer—correct in both documentation and handling the funds. That’s the secret to our success for over 40 years: our experienced title and escrow professionals that can be trusted to get it right. We take pride in our motto of “Service is the Difference.” Next time you are buying or selling real estate, let your Realtor know you want to use the local title company, not some mega-corporation!

Your friends at Clark County Title,