The home buying and selling season are in full swing as we move into the heart of the summer. Our local market shows no signs of cooling off, but it is evolving due to continuing inventory issues.

The most recent report from the Northwest MLS shows a nearly 27 percent increase in new listings throughout its territory over the previous month as more sellers decide to get off the fence. Total active inventory is up about 6.8 percent.

While there are more homes for sale, in this swift market there are still plenty of qualified buyers ready to make their move. Buyers should be prepared to make their highest and best offer when they find a home that meets their needs.

Brokers also report that although the market is still competitive, buyers may find the competition to be a bit less intense as we move into late summer. This could be due to buyers going on vacation, along with all the distractions provided by the numerous events and recreational opportunities our region has to offer. Perhaps there’s a “window of opportunity” for the most persistent. Rising interest rates will eventually affect even our robust real estate market. Buyers and sellers are both keeping an eye on what rates are doing. Buyers want to get into a home before rates get any higher. Sellers want to list before buyers leave the market so they can reap the most from the sale. We should all keep in mind that even if interest rates rise into the mid-4 or even 5 percent range, it’s important to note this is still historically low.

Lastly, Vancouver, B.C.’s housing market is once again on the rise. As foreign buyers return to looking north of the border, this may provide some relief for buyers in the Puget Sound region.