Central Washington Real Estate Market Trends

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Q1

2021

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Our Central WA real estate market data is updated quarterly to aid in your real estate forecasts. Historical Central WA real estate data and trends are included below the latest update. We break down our data by county, but we cover major cities in this region including Chelan, Wenatchee, Leavenworth, and Yakima.

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Q1 2021 Gardner Report

Central Washington
Real Estate Market Update

by Matthew Gardner

Below is the latest Central WA housing market trends analysis. Additional links:

Historical Central WA Data
Western WA Data
Eastern WA Data
Other Regional Data

 

The following analysis of the Central Washington real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact your Windermere Real Estate agent.

 

Regional Economic Overview

Through last fall, the Central Washington region was on its way to recovering the jobs that were lost due to COVID-19, but new infections have reversed that momentum. The hardest hit sectors were retail trade and transportation; all the markets contained in this report saw employment in these sectors drop. Due to the decline in employment, I wasn’t surprised to see the unemployment rate tick back up to 8.2% from the year-end level of 7.9%.

In aggregate, total employment was measured at 211,520, down from a pre-pandemic peak of 218,624. I hope that broader vaccine distribution will lead to a reopening of the local economy, which will give a much-needed boost to the area.

central washington Home Sales

❱ Sales in Central Washington were essentially static compared to the same period in 2020, with a total of 939 homes sold.

❱ Pending sales were 9.2% lower than in the fourth quarter of last year, suggesting that closings in the second quarter may also disappoint.

❱ Home sales rose in Kittitas County but were either static or fell in the rest of the region.

❱ Although the picture may appear somewhat bleak, I believe the primary issue has been a lack of inventory. However, the number of homes coming on the market has actually started to rise and I’m hopeful this will lead to improved sales as we move toward the summer.

A bar graph showing the annual change in home sales for various Central Washington counties.

central washington Home Prices

A map showing the real estate market percentage changes in various Central Washington counties.

❱ Year-over-year, the average home price in Central Washington continues to trend higher, with prices up 20.8% to $414,084.

❱ With signs that there are more sellers coming to market, combined with modestly rising mortgage rates, I expect to see the rapid pace of price growth start to slow, which will be good news for home buyers.

❱ All counties covered by this report saw prices rise significantly, with double-digit increases in all but one market.

❱ The takeaway is that average home-price growth in Central Washington remains well above the long-term average, but there are signs prices may experience a modest slowdown as we move through the year.

A bar graph showing the annual change in home sale prices for various counties in Central Washington.

Days on Market

❱ The average time it took to sell a home in Central Washington in the final quarter of 2021 was 57 days.

❱ During the fourth quarter, it took 13 fewer days to sell a home in Central Washington than it did a year ago.

❱ Three counties saw the length of time it took to sell a home drop compared to a year ago, but Okanogan and Yakima saw market time rise 13 days and 1 day, respectively.

❱ It took nine more days to sell a home in the first quarter than it did in the fourth quarter of 2020.

A bar graph showing the average days on market for homes in various Central Washington counties.

Conclusions

A speedometer graph indicating a seller's market in Central Washington.

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s real estate market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors.

With signs of more listings coming online, the frenetic housing market may cool, but I do not see it contracting further. Though it remains a seller’s market, I have decided to leave the needle in the same position as it was at the end of 2020.

 

About Matthew Gardner

Matthew Gardner - Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate

As Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, Matthew Gardner is responsible for analyzing and interpreting economic data and its impact on the real estate market on both a local and national level. Matthew has over 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

In addition to his day-to-day responsibilities, Matthew sits on the Washington State Governors Council of Economic Advisors; chairs the Board of Trustees at the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington; and is an Advisory Board Member at the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies at the University of Washington where he also lectures in real estate economics.

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Major Eastern WA cities covered in this report:

Wenatchee

Yakima

East Wenatchee

Chelan

Ellensburg

Sunnyside

Grandview

Cle Elem

Kennewick

Richland

Cashmere

Omak

>

Eastern WA counties covered in this report:

Chealan

Douglas

Kittitas

Okanogan

Yakima

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Gardner Report Archive

Central Washington
Historical Reports

2021
Q1 2021 Central Washington Market Trends

Q1 2021
POST | (PDF)

2020
                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q1 2020
POST | (PDF)

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q2 2020
POST | (PDF)

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q3 2020
POST | (PDF)

Q4 2020 Cetnral Washington Market Trends

Q4 2020
POST | (PDF)

2019
                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q1 2019
POST | (PDF)

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q2 2019
POST | (PDF)

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q3 2019
POST | (PDF)

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q4 2019
POST | (PDF)

2018
                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q1 2018
POST | (PDF)

Q2 2018
POST | (PDF)

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q3 2018
POST

                    Central Washington Real Estate Market Update

Q4 2018
POST | (PDF)

These Central Washington real estate reports, data, forecasts, and market trends are provided for informational use. If you find it useful, please properly attribute this resource with a link. Areas in this region of Washington State are also known as the Cascades, Lake Chelan, the Wenatchee Valley, and the Yakima Valley.