Sunday, August 4, 2013

Second Quarter Real Estate Report

Sales up, Inventory down

The real estate market in Madison Park continued its acceleration in the second quarter, the quarterly statistics confirming stronger sales volume, quicker closings, and increasing home values.

There were 49 residential sales in the second quarter, which is a 53% increase over the 32 sales recorded in the same quarter last year.  And with only 44 homes currently on the market, the absorption rate now stands at less than three months.

Here’s the breakdown of the second-quarter numbers for Madison Park (Washington Park and Broadmoor included):


Sales:  40
Median Sale Price:  $1,277,500
Average Sq. Ft.:  4,022
Average Price per Sq. Ft.:  $424
Average Days on Market:  104
Average Discount from List Price:  4.45%


Sales:  9
Median Sale Price:  $475,000
Average Sq. Ft.:  1,164
Average Price per Sq. Ft.:  $475
Average Days on Market:  230
Average Discount from List Price: 5.1%

A top-floor unit in this condo building at 2325 43rd Ave. E. sold in one day for $1,099,000

Although the median sale price of single-family homes last quarter was down significantly from the $1,750,000 figure of a year ago, that is simply a reflection of the different mix of homes sold in two periods.  In fact, the average $424 per sf. ft. sales price this year represents a 10% increase over the $385 per sq. ft. realized by home sellers in Q2 2012.

Although the numbers are slightly misleading, the average days on market for sold homes was down in the second quarter compared to the earlier sales this year.  Single-family residences (known as SFRs in the trade) showed a big decline from 178 days in the first quarter this year to just 104 days last quarter.  And while the average time condos spent on the market rose from 133 to 230 days since the first quarter, this was the result of one incredible outlier.  A waterfront condo at 2040 43rd Avenue E. spent 1885 days (that’s over five years) on the market, according to the NW Multiple Listing Service.  If this sale were not counted, the average days from listing to close for condos in the second quarter would have been only 23 days. That’s an amazing come down from the average of 110 days during the same period last year.

Also on the good-news front, sellers in the second quarter took a smaller discount from their original list prices than was true last year. For SFRs, the decline was from 5.2% last year to 4.85% this year, although if one house that sold for 29% less than the original listing price is excluded, the figure falls to just 3.8%.  That 6,500 sq. ft. Washington Park home, which was originally listed at $5,950,000, sold for $4,250,000 after 518 days.

Many others did not mirror that particular seller’s experience, however.  In fact, there were 13 house sales and three condo sales during the quarter that occurred within ten days of listing. And seven of the 40 house sales, almost one in five, sold at a premium to the original list price.  For example, a house listed for $1,250,000 at 2104 38th Avenue E. sold for $1,305,000 (a 4.5% premium) just 14 days later. The fact that the lot was sub-dividable may have had more than a little to do with the multiple offers.  One seller received $683,876, 12% over asking price, for his $609,000 listing after only four days.  These are stories to gladden the hearts of those very few who are now putting their houses on the market.

Here’s an overview of what was available in Madison Park at the end of July, as provided by the NW Multiple Listing Service:


Listings:  33
Median List Price:  $2,595,000
Median Sq. Ft.:  4,101
Median Price per Sq. Ft.:  $633
Average Days on Market:  165
Percentage with Price Reductions:  33%
New Listings:  5
Pending Sales:  16


Listings:  12
Median List Price:  $907,000
Median Sq. Ft.:  1,400
Median Price per Sq. Ft.:  $648
Average Days on Market:  132
Percentage with Price Reductions:  45%
New Listings:  1
Pending Sales:  6

1900 Shenandoah Dr., Broadmoor, listed at $4,295,000

There have been only six new listings in the past 30 days, which is well less than the average nine sales that occurred per month during the second quarter.  This disequilibrium, which is consistent with the overall market, may help further the trends of upward sales prices and shorter times on market for sold homes.  Pending sales are currently 50% higher than at the same point last year.

It’s interesting to compare the current inventory with what actually sold in the previous quarter.  For example, the average price per sq. ft. for SFRs is $585 for properties on the market versus $424 for those that recently sold.  The median sale price in the second quarter, $1,277,500, is just 49% of the $2,595,000 median list price for those SFRs still available.

There are very few of what might pass as “affordable” houses available in Madison Park.  Of the 33 listings, only three are under $1 million.  Seventeen are listed at $2 million or more.  Right now there are actually two “ultra-luxury” $6 million waterfront houses on the market in Washington Park (both on the 400 block of 39th Avenue E.) that are priced at over $1,400 per sq. ft.

452 39th Ave. E.: 4,200 sq. ft. listed at $5,895,000 

The least expensive listing in the neighborhood is a “quaint art deco duplex on a quiet street” (to quote the listing agent) at 2030 McGilvra Boulevard E., priced at $710,000. That’s just an average $276 per sq. ft. for the 2,570 sq. ft. “multi-family” dwelling.

2030 McGilvra Blvd.: 2,750 sq. ft. listed at $710,000 and now pending

Just as an aside, the most expensive home that sold in Madison Park last quarter was actually a spec house.  Located at 344 McGilvra Boulevard E., the 7,760 sq. ft. Washington Park mansion has five levels and a sweeping Lake view. The house has a convoluted multi-year history of start-and-stop building, but when it finally came on the market in June 2012 it was listed at $7,900,000.  In June this year it sold for $4,695,000.  That’s still $605 per sq. ft., though not the highest amount per sq. ft. paid for a house in Madison Park during the quarter.

[Thanks to Laura Halliday of Windermere Real Estate for her help in compiling the sales data. Listing data courtesy of Redfin, using information from the Northwest Multiple Listing Service and other sources. Photos courtesy of Redfin. Editorial Note: 344 McGilvra, although originally listed at $7,900,000, was later removed from the market and then re-listed, which is why it is not the house mentioned in this posting as having the biggest discount at sale from its original listing price. Original listing price refers to the most-recent listing.]

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