SEATTLE, WA – Denver, Seattle and Portland, Oregon are the hottest real estate markets so far in 2016, according to Redfin, the next-generation real estate brokerage. In its latest report, Redfin measured housing markets’ hotness based on the percentage of listings designated as Hot Homes, those likely to go under contract within 14 days according to the company’s proprietary Hot Homes algorithm. In Denver, Seattle and Portland, more than 60 percent of homes listed so far this year were Hot Homes, outpacing all other markets Redfin tracks.
A limited supply of homes for sale has led to strong demand from homebuyers in these markets, accelerating the pace at which homes sell. In April 2012, a typical home in Denver found a buyer in 36 days. In Portland it was 65 days and in Seattle it was 50. This April, the median time on market fell to 10 days in Denver, and eight days in both Seattle and Portland.
In Denver, it is not unusual for a home to have more than 100 showings in a single weekend, with sellers having their pick of up to 30 offers, reports Redfin agent Karla Kirkpatrick Adams.
“The market is moving so quickly that I can no longer use recent sales as a guide for what my clients should offer on a home. Instead, I call listing agents of similar homes that are under contract but haven’t yet sold. I ask them the contract price, which is a more up-to-date reflection of the current market than the prices of homes that have already sold. That way, I can advise my clients accurately,” said Kirkpatrick Adams.
In all three metros, home prices are shooting up faster than the national pace, though Portland and Denver remain relatively affordable compared to other hot markets.
“Strong job growth and relatively affordable home prices have been lightning rods of buyer demand for Denver and Portland,” Redfin chief economist Nela Richardson said. “Their economies have a lot in common with the tech enclaves to the west, Seattle and San Francisco, but there’s a big difference—home prices.”
The typical home in Denver and Portland costs an incredible $850,000 less than a home in San Francisco. Portland and Denver also offer a respite from Seattle, where homes typically sell for around $90,000 more than in those two cities.
“The combination of jobs, affordability and a desirable western lifestyle is a triumvirate that buyers are flocking to this year,” Richardson said.