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Seattle Tops Real Estate Market For Price Increases

Kevin Mooney
Northwest News Network
Northwest cities have seen big gains in home prices over the last 12 months.

Seattle is at the top of the list of major U.S. cities that are seeing the highest increases in home prices. That’s according to the real estate firm Zillow, which released a new report Wednesday.

The survey found home prices up about 6.5 percent nationally over the past 12 months. But Zillow Chief Economist Svenja Guddell said the Northwest has seen even bigger gains.

“The Seattle metro right now we are seeing it’s the second fastest moving market among the large markets in the U.S. with almost 12 percent annual home value appreciation, and Portland is seeing roughly half the appreciation at 6 percent annually right now,” Guddell said. "But still we have seen a lot of home value appreciation in Portland and its become a much more expensive market.”

Guddell said the average Seattle home has appreciated more than $48,000 in value over the past year. Inventory of homes on the market is down 23.6 percent from a year earlier.

Portland homes prices have increased at a slower rate, up 6 percent. The average Portland home has gained $20,900 in value.

"Overall, the level of inventory in Portland is also pretty tight, so you will still have a hard time especially finding entry level homes in Portland,” Guddell said. “But it is currently not getting worse.”

Other cities and towns in Oregon are seeing greater home price increases than Portland. Salem home prices are up 10 percent, Eugene prices are up 8 percent, and Bend prices are up 7 percent.

But Guddell said she believes price increases will slow next year, as interest rates are expected to rise and as homes become increasingly unaffordable.


Price increases for average home in Northwest cities (from Oct 2016 to Oct 2017)

  • Seattle +12 percent 
  • Bellingham +10 percent
  • Salem +10 percent
  • Spokane +9 percent
  • Eugene +8 percent
  • Olympia +7 percent
  • Bend +7 percent
  • Portland +6 percent

Deborah is an award–winning radio and television journalist whose career spans more than three decades. As the recipient of a 2018-2019 Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism Fellowship, Deborah is currently focusing her reporting on adolescents and mental health.