Eastside homes still expensive, but prices are declining

After the pandemic-spurred frenzy sent home prices skyrocketing, the housing market is finally showing signs of cooling.

Year-over-year home prices have fallen in every large city in Washington state in 2023, but nowhere as sharply as in the Eastside, according to a new report by financial technology website SmartAsset.

Kirkland, Bellevue, Redmond and Sammamish posted decreases in home prices ranging from 11% to 12%.

The price plunge in the Eastside cities surpassed the 8.1% decline in Seattle. It’s far greater than the state average decline in home prices of 4.2%.

SmartAsset found at least 263 cities, defined by population of more than 65,000, saw their average home value decrease between May 2022 and May 2023. The report used Zillow’s housing data for its analysis.

Across the country, Kirkland had the fifth-largest drop in home prices. The top 15 on the report were made up of cities solely from the San Francisco metro area and Eastside.

A combination of factors could be keeping potential homebuyers at bay, which in turn is dropping the prices.

Similar to the San Francisco area, the Eastside is dominated by the tech industry, which currently is undergoing a revamp that has affected thousands of jobs. In an effort to curb inflation, the Federal Reserve has continually raised interest rates. Options are also far and few between in the Puget Sound region as housing inventory remains persistently low.

The Eastside still is an expensive market for homeownership.

The average home in the Eastside cities can cost over $1 million, compared to the about $570,000 cost of an average home in Washington.


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