Mercer Island homes sold in December not ‘average’

The backyard of this foreclosed home at 2213 61st Ave. S.E. near Interstate 90. It sold for $275,000. - Linda Ball/Staff Photo
The backyard of this foreclosed home at 2213 61st Ave. S.E. near Interstate 90. It sold for $275,000.
— image credit: Linda Ball/Staff Photo

Statistics from the Northwest Multiple Listing Service for December show that despite the lingering effects of the economic downturn, moderately priced houses are selling.

The Island real estate market remains difficult to categorize. One or two transactions regarding multimillion dollar homes can skew sales values easily. Adding to the appearance of volatility, the growing number of condominiums on the market — which range in price from less than $200,000 to $1 million — add to the difficulty of easily characterizing Island residential real estate.

Homes and condos at the lower end of the pricing scale that sold in December included tiny houses that had lingered for months.  These, along with a handful of others that closed in December, sold for prices well under what might be expected for a Mercer Island home.

• A small one-story house, built in 1958 on a 5,000-square-foot lot just off Faben Drive, sold for $275,000.

• A few blocks away in East Seattle, a 630-square-foot house on a 2,600-square-foot lot sold last month for $215,000.

• A condo at The Carlton condominiums on 76th Avenue S.E. in the Town Center sold for $176,000.

In December, 124 homes and condos were listed for sale, down one-third from December a year ago. Yet, the number of sales that were pending during the month was the same. The median final sales price for all sales (both condos and single family homes) in December 2011 was $550,000, down substantially from a year earlier. However, the median price for the 13 single family homes (only) that closed in December was $876,000, up nearly 14 percent — again still much lower than the $1 million-plus average of just a few years earlier.

At present there are just under 100 homes and condos listed for sale on the Island. More than 40 are priced at $1 million or above. Four homes are priced at $15.5 million or more. A 14,000-square-foot home with more than 300 feet of Lake Washington waterfront near Proctor Landing is priced at $26.8 million. It has been on the market since February 2011.

NWMLS will release their annual statistical summary for 2011 later this month.


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