Clark County Housing Market Update
(You won’t read THIS in the paper)
- Seasonal changes are expected.
- Driving Californians to Clark County?
This index (mid-October data) continued the expected slow reduction as we enter the holiday season. Buyers get busy with the holidays and slow their house hunting. The small decrease in house showings is totally on track with normal seasonal changes. (A slowdown in this index over several months can be the first signal of a major slowdown and thus is watched carefully.)
As we enter the holiday period, it is normal for the number of homes on the market AND the number of solds to fall. October inventory (the number of months needed to sell current inventory based on September solds) remained steady at 2.5 months. That is, the number of solds fell at about the same rate as homes on the market.
As expected, total listings fell again by 11% to 1748. Last month total listings fell just 6%. Next month total listings should fall again, perhaps even more. Keep in mind that buyer showings is also slowing. This is a common seasonal situation which results in a short term buyers market. Buyer showings do fall off just a bit faster than the reduction of showings but this quickly changes in January when buyer activity surges while listings are slow to reenter the market. So we have a move to a buyer’s market during the holidays and a move to a seller’s market from January through March. After March listings then begin their surge and the market moves back to the buyer side somewhat. This is the typical seasonal swing.
As we approach the holidays, it is normal for pending sales to begin their decline. However, this month pending sales remained nearly unchanged (down only 4) at 753. This certainly suggests a continued seller’s market.
Price reductions have been slowly increasing from February through July, 2019 . However, in September I reported they fell to 1210 and in October they fell to 757. In November they remained steady (763).
The Average Price:
The average price of a home in Clark County has been on the increase since the beginning of 2012. It is a zig zag line with ups and downs but in general the average price has risen from just under $200,000 to now $415,000, more than doubled since early 2012. The average sales price in November fell for a second month in a row to $401,000, a drop of over $15,000.
Keep in mind this number is an average of all home sales. It is not necessarily what is happening with your home value. For example, if in September more homes sold in the lower price ranges then the average will fall. This single occurrence likely has little connection to the value of your home. If this becomes a trend over several consistent months this then would suggest falling overall home values. So stay tuned and we shall see.
Market time went up slightly to 51 days.
Short-term Conclusion: (Long-term conclusion is below)
The market shows all the typical signs of a continued strong market. The earliest signal of market weakness would be buyer activity levels (the number of times lockboxes are opened). This indicator remains steady considering the season. I see no clues as yet that we have a market weakening at all.
If not the fires then what might drive home buyers into Clark County
Last month I discussed why California’s crazy fires will likely not drive homeowners out of the state and to Clark County. I cited a similar situation from the past that suggests human nature often just does not react logically. The fires are not going to drive Californians our way but there is something else that might (and I predict will) drive folks from all over the world to Clark County.
“If you build it, he (they) will come”. Have you visited the waterfront development currently underway in downtown Vancouver? It is beautiful and I predict it will be a major draw to smaller and medium sized companies looking to relocate. The development is beautifully presented via this link:
Be sure to view both impressive videos.
The project includes 1.25 million square feet of office space, 3300 residences including condos, apartments and senior living arrangements as well as shopping, dining and entertainment options. All of this is adjacent to the new $35 million dollar waterfront Park.
There are some good reasons that we will see an influx of business to Clark County.
- According to CNBC’s 2019 study, the state of Washington is very business-friendly. It is ranked #5 in the nation. The same study ranks California as #32 and Oregon as #22.
2) The cost of living in Vancouver is 102.9 as compared to San Francisco (167.5), Seattle (126.9) and San Diego (135.4).
So, as you can see this new Vancouver Project promises to make Clark County a major player in the business world. I predict this Project will be a huge magnet to new businesses. This Project will bring a factor of stability and appreciation to our housing market. We will see home values rise at a faster rate than what would otherwise occur over the next 5+ years because of this huge development.
Chris Kelsey, Managing Broker
Keller Williams PP
“Don’t be Chicken to Call”