I have a number of buyers who are looking for a home in one of Seattle’s most desirable locations including Ballard, Wallingford, Fremont, Phinney, Ridge, Green Lake, Ravenna, Magnolia, Queen Anne, and so on. Unfortunately, inventory has been tight for some time now and has only been getting tighter. So, where are the homes? Or possibly what do you need to expect to buy a home in this area? I decided to run several searches on NWMLS and grab some screenshots as an illustration of the number of homes for sale. I am using a real-world search from one of my clients so there are a couple small excluded areas and some nasty fixers that have been filtered out. All searches are for stand-alone homes — no single townhouses. That said, I think you can still get an idea of what’s available where.
The Original Search
Sadly there’s nothing available for us (short of a few ugly fixers that have been filtered out).
Compromising on Features
Compromising on bathrooms and square footage gives us some options, but not too many to be honest.
Compromising on Location
West Seattle, Northgate, and Shoreline have plenty of homes that meet our criteria.
Compromising on Price
This chart shows how many more houses you would see in your search if you increased the price limit by $50k each time. For example you would find 6 homes between $450k and $500k with our original criteria. Therefore going beyond $650k would get you diminishing returns in selection. Home prices have a long tail extending all the way out to about $6 million.
The Bottom Line
Finding a home under $450k in this area is possible, but requires patience, quick response, and a bit of luck. The two best approaches to having more options are being flexible with location and price, to the degree that you can.