Experts predict that 2019 will start off with a strong seller’s market, with a surge in buying expected later in the spring. The final months of 2018 revealed a more balanced market for the Puget Sound region, with about two months of single-family home inventory.

Home prices in King County have decreased by 11 percent in the last six months, according to the NWMLS. Seattle was also removed from the list of the top three markets for fastest-growing home prices in the nation, with Las Vegas being number one. King County reported a median closed-sales price of $639,000 for December 2018; Snohomish County reported $470,000, and Pierce County was at $344,000. Analysts point out that Seattle is on its way to a more proportional market.

While mortgage rates have declined in the last few weeks due to the stock market sell-off, rates are expected to rise in the coming months and are forecast to be as high as 5.5 percent come fall. Real estate professionals predict home prices will also rise about 5.5 percent through 2019. Homes that are in the more affordable, mid-price range will appreciate gradually at the beginning of the year, with prices flattening shortly after the summer months. Buyers can expect fewer multiple-offer situations and an increase in inventory in the coming months. Taking into account current inventory and the market, it’s still a great time for buyers to continue their search!