Few condos for sale now, Stevenson property listed
By LINDA BALL
Mercer Island Reporter Reporter
October 11, 2011 · 10:12 AM
There are a total of 135 residential and condominium listings on Mercer Island. That’s down by 36.32 percent from a year ago. Of those properties, 117 are single family residences and 18 are condominiums. It is interesting to note that the 33 new listings that came on the market last month were all single family homes; not one new condo listing came on the market.
August’s inventory stood at 147 homes and condos.
With 27 total closings on the Island in September, and 33 new listings, it would appear that supply and demand on the Island is attempting to strike a balance. Pending sales, or sales that went under contract last month, number 30 compared to 31 last month and 26 in September 2010.
“When you’re looking at single family at 117, that’s not very much,” said Windermere broker Diane Rae Jones. “Supply is short, but if that were four years ago, people would be snapping them up. But if the price is off, it’s going to sit.”
Rae-Jones said buyers are tough and smart. With the recent stock market scare, she has had a few people drop out of the real estate market.
Median price on all Island sales rose from $648,000 a year ago to $725,000 last month. Single family homes sold at a median price of $747,500, while condominiums dropped just over 30 percent, with a median sales price of $410,000, down from $587,500 last year.
According to the Northwest Multiple Listing Service, pending sales for the NWMLS service area, which encompasses 21 counties, are up by more than 20 percent from a year ago. Pending sales tapered off by 9.6 percent area wide in a typical transition to fall and winter.
With interest rates at an all-time low, buyers may start shopping, but they are very well educated, said NWMLS director Darin Stenvers.
“Before they ever leave their homes, they have a good idea of which homes are priced correctly,” Stenvers said.
Stevenson farm land is listed for sale
Pete Hayes with Coldwell Banker Bain in Bellevue has listed the Stevenson property for $6 million. The property, just shy of five acres, is one of the few — if not the only — remaining large tracts available on the Island.
“We’ve already received offers that are being considered,” Hayes said. He said he has also made inquiries to the City of Mercer Island, hoping the tract could be used for the public good.
“If someone doesn’t pop up and say ‘I’ve got the cash and we’re ready to do this,’ then we’ll be obligated to sell to the buyer with the best offer,” Hayes continued. “I would absolutely love to see a soccer field.”
He said the offer he has is close to the asking price.
In the meantime, the Mercer Island School District is finalizing plans for new schools. Superintendent Gary Plano said the School Board will meet Thursday to discuss real estate options, which the board is continuing to examine and could presumably include Stevenson’s or other properties. He said the district will not make public any negotiations, on any property.
“I truly would love to see it saved,” the realtor said. “But it is for sale.”
Contact Mercer Island Reporter Reporter Linda Ball at email@example.com.