Lake Stevens Journal - Your hometown newspaper since 1960


By Steve Strong
John L. Scott Broker 

The Lake Stevens Real Estate Report for March 2013


March 12, 2013

With the longer days and extended daylight hours, more people are looking at purchasing a home and perhaps selling the one they are in. With values increasing and interest rates staying at all-time lows, more people want to buy now than in recent years.

Finding a home for a buyer has turned into a problem, as inventory of available homes for sale are at an all-time low across the county. When a buyer finds the perfect home, every other buyer in the county seems to have found the same house at the same time. First full price offer in, or highest and best offer when there is more than one offer being considered, gets the home.

The inventory for listings in Lake Stevens for residential property for sale continues to diminish. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) reports that in December of 2012 there were 134 available residential properties listed for sale, January 2013 with 127, followed by February 2013 with 112 active listings.

While the Lake Stevens active listings are shrinking, Snohomish County listings are staying close to the same.

The NWMLS reports the inventory for the county for the past three months as follows: December 2012 had 1,341 active listings, January 2013 had 1,351, and February had 1,341 active listings.

The popularity with Lake Stevens is sure to bring up the median value of a home in the Lake Stevens area; similar to the average median value for a home in the county, which has always been higher than Lake Stevens in the past.

The median value for a home that sold in Lake Stevens for the month of February 2013 was up $50,000 from what it was a year ago in February, but that month dipped low.

If you take the last three months (December 2012, and January and February of 2013) and the same three months a year ago, you would see an increase in value of $25,500. Yet prices do seem to have spiked substantially more the past month than we have seen over any of the other months for the past year.

With the present low inventory we can expect to see more gain in value as sales surge in the spring and summer months.

Right now appraisers are pulling in comparable properties to the outside of their area limits in order to find sales to justify purchase price. Most of the appraisers are relying more on the pending sales in the area to determine what the value is for the subject property. This is similar to what we saw in the spring of 2007.

Now is certainly a great time to sell your home. Go to my website at for information on how to go about selling your home and more about the real estate market.


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