Coldwell Banker Bain, a leading provider of real estate brokerage services throughout the Pacific Northwest and a market leader in home sales in 2019,* releases its third-quarter 2020 market report providing a variety of statistics for the sale of homes in neighborhoods and counties in SW Washington and Oregon, as well as for segments including luxury and condos. This report reflects activity between July 1 and September 30, 2020.*
Reflecting on the overall market, Ward Spears, Oregon regional manager for Coldwell Banker Bain, said, “For a number of years one of the main themes in the market has been ‘low inventory.’ Now, powerful forces are coming together to cause a dramatic ebb in the number of homes that are on the market. For a long time, people were reluctant to sell because they were uncertain whether there would be something to buy. Additional uncertainty about national and world events also resulted in a reluctance to sell. According to the Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS), the current level of inventory is only 1.1 months of availability on the market, an all-time low.
However, this does not mean that home buyers should just settle for any home to purchase. Having a cool-headed approach and making a prudent buying decision with the guidance of a broker who truly earns their status as a trusted advisor is crucial when shopping for a home in this market. Other statistical oddities exist which can create opportunities for an attentive home buyer. For instance, the region of the market with the highest appreciation over the last 12 months also has the longest market time (Lake Oswego and West Linn), and the region with the lowest appreciation percentage has the shortest market time (NE Portland). Market peculiarities like this are best navigated with professional assistance.”
Principal and managing brokers in specific markets had the following observations:
Brandon Fairbanks, principal managing broker of Coldwell Banker Bain of Bend, said, “Bend has become an official ‘Zoom Town,’ with many businesses closing their corporate offices and allowing their employees to work online, and thus giving these employees an opportunity relocate to highly desirable towns and communities.
The demand for housing is stronger than I’ve ever seen and with low interest rates coupled with the lowest inventory of homes on record, prices continue to skyrocket with multiple offers on most homes. Total homes sold this year are up by 8 percent in Deschutes County at 4,354 total and up 2 percent in Bend. In September, we sold 701 homes in Deschutes County vs. 461 last year, (up 52 percent), and in Bend, there were 403 homes sold vs. 286 last year, up 41 percent.
Listed homes were at 251, down from 271 in August and down 73 percent from last year in Bend at 915 homes. In Deschutes County, 440 homes were listed, down 14 percent from the August number of 514 and down by a whopping 74 percent vs. last year’s figures of 1,641 homes on the market in September. Pending home sales were down by 24 percent vs. August figures and last year in September in Bend at 291 homes. In Deschutes County we had 491 pending homes down 25 percent from last month and even with last year’s September pendings of 490.
Pricing is up from the same as last year’s September figures with an average sold price of $701,380 in Bend, up 27 percent from last year and up 25 percent in Deschutes County with the September’s average price per home at $613,336 this year and $492,386 last year in September. Homes are selling at a faster pace than last year in Bend at 49 days on the market and in Deschutes County at 55 days. Million-dollar home sales are starting to play a role in Central Oregon — this year, Bend had 55 $1 million+ or more priced homes that sold vs. 21 last year and in Deschutes County there were 64 $1 million+ home sales vs. 23 last year.
Said David Sly, principal managing broker of Coldwell Banker Bain of Portland Uptown, “It is hard to believe we have moved into the final quarter of the year. I do not believe anyone could have predicted the strength of the housing industry. This has certainly been a bright spot in our local economy. We are experiencing a seller’s market not seen in our area in over a decade. Our low available inventory, currently at 1.1 months, remains to be a challenge in the Portland metropolitan area and arguably across the entire Northwest region.
Pending and closed sales have been brisk in all residential markets with the exception of condominiums, which saw the only decline in year over year sales at a -12 percent. In addition, all residential markets saw price appreciation over the same period last year, many in double digits. Again, the condo market has been negatively affected and saw a -3.1 percent price change over the previous year, echoing the slide of condominium sales. I expect the rest of the year will keep up the strong pace we have seen so far. Strong buyer demand coupled with low interest rates will continue to bolster our efforts as we close out 2020.”
SW Washington – Vancouver and Longview/Clark and Cowlitz Counties
“If I were to give a headline to Southwest Washington’s third-quarter 2020 real estate news it would be ‘New Listing Disappears in a Blink of an Eye!’ ” said David Knode, Coldwell Banker Bain’s SW WA regional manager. “Actually, I think that would be the mantra for the entire year so far. Active listings on the market and ready to sell in Clark and Cowlitz Counties are down drastically marketwide compared to the third quarter of 2019 — down 54.3 percent and 43.5 percent respectively. Because of that low inventory number, almost every house that comes on the market regardless of price has a large amount of activity. Coupled with the low inventory and historically low interest rates and you have a feeding frenzy and a strong sellers’ market. Median sales price and the number of sales contracts written and accepted are up in both Clark and Cowlitz Counties in excess of ten percent. The number of days a home is on the market in Clark County is still a very short 36 days; however, in Cowlitz County it is 25 days, a reduction of almost 30 percent from this time last year.
We are now approaching an election. Just like every election in the past, there will be a momentary lull and then back to the insanity we call our market as we now know it. We have all learned new ways of doing business safely and efficiently that I am sure will continue well into the future.”
*Information and statistics derived from the Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS) each quarter. Statistics not compiled or published by the Regional Multiple Listing Service.