Bellevue, Washington Real Estate Market Conditions – Real Estate News & Advice

Global Real Estate

  • Foreign buyers and recent immigrants purchased 7% of the total U.S. residential market last year, paid a higher median price, and paid cash 55% of the time.   * Here in the Bellevue area – the % is more like 20-28%

Bellevue’s Red Lion Hotel is for sale

  • The six-acre property along the I-405 corridor is adjacent to a planned East Link light rail stop at 112 Avenue Southeast and Main Street.  In selling the hotel, the company thinks it may cash in on what they called “one of the hottest real estate markets in the country.”
  • “Ultimately operations of a sprawling two-story hotel on this site is not the highest and best use of this property,” Greg Mount, president and CEO of Red Lion Hotels Corporation, said in a statement.
  • Mount said he intends to capture the full value of the property and distribute the proceeds toward debt reduction and hotel investment opportunities across the U.S.
  • Rob Anderson, the listing broker with Kidder Mathews, said the property was listed Thursday, without a price.
  • “The East Link light rail has made quite an impact with a lot of properties near the planned stations,” he said.  “There is a huge range of people who are looking at it, and we don’t want to limit it to just hotel.”
  • The 319-room Motif Seattle – the former Red Lion Hotel – in downtown Seattle sold in June for $130.7 million, or nearly $410,000 a room.
  • The Red Lion Hotel Bellevue, on 11211 Main St., was constructed in 1969, has 181 rooms and 5,700 square feet of meeting space.

Security Properties buys land for 309 apartments in Spring District

  • An entity related to Security Properties bought land from Wright Runstad & Co. for a five-building apartment complex, which will be the first project in the 36-acre Spring District in Bellevue.
  • Property records show Security Properties paid $10.7 million for the land.
  • The buildings will range from three to nine stories and have a total of 309 units.
  • Security Properties is seeking building permits from the city.
  • Construction of the five structures will start at the same time, but they open separately, Nanney said.  They will share an underground parking garage.
  • The location is on the southwest corner of the Spring District – along NE 12th Street between 120th and 124th Ave. NE.
  • Nanney said being on a corner will allow the apartments to function as a standalone complex until the rest of the Spring District is built.
  • Ground-floor units will be offered as live-work spaces, but could be quickly converted to retail later, Nanney said,  “as soon as the vibrant walkable streetscape of the Spring District comes to life.”
  • Security Properties has an option to develop another 225 units on an adjacent parcel.

Western Washington housing market in “recovery mode” but some brokers say it’s  still not at full potential

More sellers listed their homes for sale during July compared to a year ago, but brokers with Northwest Multiple Listing Service say inventory remains “well below” what is considered to be a balanced market.  Last month’s pending sales rose slightly from a year ago while prices system-wide increased nearly 6.3%.

  • Some agents and firms are beginning to feel the summer doldrums, while others are experiencing a definite increase in activity,”
  • Price increases are “healthy, not exorbitant,” adding, “Thankfully we are not seeing signs of a bubble and instead are seeing realistic appreciation.”  Nevertheless, she suggested sellers who overprice their properties can face disappointing consequences.
  • Inventory improved from 12 months ago, rising from 25,272 active listings to 26,813 for a 6.1% increase.  Snohomish County notched the biggest gain with the selection there expanding by 27%.
  • Months of inventory (the ratio of active listings and closed sales) stood at 3.4 months at the end of July
  • A modest improvement from June’s figure of 3.35 months.  In King County, there is less than two months of supply, with the Ballard/Green Lake and North Seattle neighborhoods having only about one month.
  • King County’s slowly improving supply should reduce the frenzy pace we experienced in the spring
  • Although highly desired neighborhoods remain frenzied
  • It is noted inventory in King County is up 35% since April, rising from 4,511 active listings to 6,082 at the end of July.
  • MLS members added 11,437 new listings system-wide during July, up from the year-ago total of 10,860.  Single family homes accounted from 88% of the new listings.
  • Inventory levels are still the main concern in many areas.
  • Buyers complain “there just isn’t enough to look at, then when something great does come up there are multiple offers.”
  • Unlike many previous years, “this year, we have seen weeks of aggressive activity.”
  • Although the housing inventory locally is up slightly, we just don’t have enough of the right inventory in the right neighborhoods to satisfy the demand.
  • Our inventory today in King County is under 1.9 months’ supply,” he lamented, noting that’s well below the normal level of 5-to-6 months.  “The lack of supply leads to multiple offers and many properties selling for above their list prices.”
  • An uptick in housing construction appears to be easing some of the shortages.
  • “Developer and builder confidence in the Seattle market has been steady with real estate developers shifting away from building apartments and moving to condos, an example, new ground breaking’s announced in July that will add significantly to the nearly 500 units currently under construction
  • Northwest MLS members reported 9,615 pending sales (mutually accepted offers) during July, just slightly more than the year ago figure of 9,565 for a 0.5% gain.  Despite the modest increase, about half the counties — including those in the Central Puget Sound region – had fewer year-over-year sales.
  • Homes and condos that sold during July had a median price of $300,000.  That’s up 6.25% from twelve months ago when the median sales price was $282,363, and up slightly from June’s figure of $299,335.
  • Residential properties in King County sold for a median price of $425,000, an increase of more than 6.5% compared to a year ago.
  • About 80% of last month’s sales in King County were single family homes.  They sold for a median price of $468,000, an increase of 7.8% from the same month a year ago.  The median price for condos that sold in King County during July was $250,000.
  • That reflects a jump of 8.2% from the year-ago selling price of $231,000.
  • It is suggest now is a good time for renters to consider buying.
  • “In many markets, like ours in and around Seattle, Tacoma and Bellevue, it actually costs more to rent a home than to purchase one,”.
  • Looking ahead, brokers are upbeat “A growing economy, job growth, pent up demand, competitive mortgage rates, affordable home prices and low unemployment will keep housing moving on an upward trajectory

WA State County Real Estate Sales

Monthly home listing totals

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