Spokane County's housing market cools in October as sales, new listings drop

<p><p>Spokane County’s housing market frenzy moderated in October as a fall cooldown brought fewer competing offers and home sales.</p></p><p><p>Some 697 single-family homes and condos on less than 1 acre sold in October, a 14.8% decrease compared to 818 homes in October 2020, according to data from the Spokane Association of Realtors.</p></p><p><p>“You could feel a little bit of the slowing down as we were changing seasons,” said Kyle Krug, a Spokane-based broker with John L. Scott Real Estate. “I think we are getting fewer offers per home and we’re also getting fewer escalation clauses. We are also seeing a lot more price reductions, too.”</p></p><p><p>An escalation clause is language written into an offer that automatically increases an amount the buyer is willing to pay for a home up to a specified price.</p></p><p><p>Although sellers are receiving fewer offers, demand is persisting in the market and homes are still selling above asking price, Krug added.</p></p><p><p>The county’s median closed home price of $375,000 in October was a 17.2% increase compared to the $320,000 median price in October 2020, according to data from the Realtors association.</p></p><p><p>However, the median home price last month was down from a $380,000 median price in September.</p></p><p><p>The national median existing home price for all housing types in September was $352,800, up 13.3% from $311,500 in September 2020, according to the National Association of Realtors. October data is not yet available.</p></p><p><p>Spokane County had 539 homes available on the market in October, representing a 23-day supply of inventory. That means it would take more than three weeks to sell all the available homes. By comparison, the county had inventory of 424 properties on the market in October 2020.</p></p><p><p>The county had 792 new listings in October, a 7.9% decrease compared to 860 new listings in October 2020.</p></p><p><p>Spokane Association of Realtors Executive Officer Rob Higgins anticipates home prices could continue increasing in Spokane County, but not at the same pace seen in the past year, when the Lilac City experienced an influx of out-of-area buyers and remote workers during the pandemic.</p></p><p><p>“If you are in a position to act, now would be a good time,” Higgins said.</p></p><p><p>Krug echoed that the fall market cooldown brings an opportunity for more buyers to obtain a home while taking advantage of low interest rates.</p></p><p><p>The average 15-year average mortgage rate was 2.27% and the 30-year average was 2.98%, according to Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage rate survey released Wednesday.</p></p><p><p>“From now to February is an opportune time to look for homes in a tough market,” Krug said. “I think (buyers) need to take advantage of that. I tell my clients, ‘Here’s your opportunity to get offers accepted.’ Now, (sellers) are accepting offers with contingencies and accepting offers at list price, depending upon location.”</p></p>