Real estate market on Mercer Island is ‘active’ this summer

A real estate snapshot from John L. Scott Real Estate.

By Sandra Levin

Special to the Reporter


As summer continues on, the local real estate market on Mercer Island is active, with no signs of slowing down in July. In June, we had an increase of 15.6 percent of homes sold since May, and a 79.7 percent increase versus six months ago. The average price of active listings increased in June by 23 percent from May, and the average price of sold homes were up 16.9 percent from May.

With 1.6 months of inventory, we are seeing that the market is still strong with a shortage of homes. Homes that are priced well, show well and in the most desirable neighborhoods are still going fast. Brokers in John L. Scott’s Mercer Island office have noted that buyers are still very active and sellers are ready to sell.

In John L. Scott chairman and CEO J. Lennox Scott’s monthly housing update remarks, he noted that every summer we see the highest level of new listings and homes going under contract.

“Sales activity on the Eastside is hot, and this summer there will be a surge level of sales activity intensity in most price ranges up to $1 million,” Scott said. “Additionally, there will be a shortage of unsold inventory locally for homes up to $1 million. The luxury market will see strong sales activity intensity to the $1 to 1.5 million range, healthy sales activity intensity to homes priced $1.5 to 3 million, and selective buyer activity above.”

John L. Scott Mercer Island broker Helen Hitchcock said she anticipates July’s market will show seasonal improvement, especially in resales.

“The summer in the Seattle area has always been active as people move into the area and want to get settled before school starts,” Hitchcock said. “Job growth has been vibrant in the area, so we expect people to continue moving here and needing appropriate housing.”

Part of this job growth is in the tech sector, and brokers in the Mercer Island office remain optimistic about the continual tech growth in the area, particularly on the Eastside. Recently, Amazon began the permitting process to build a 43-story tower in downtown Bellevue. The tower, which will be the city’s tallest building, would likely accommodate nearly 4,200 employees, is just one of many major leases of planned or existing Bellevue offices that Amazon has secured.

For those looking to sell in the current market, we always underscore the importance of ensuring your home is in good condition. Regular maintenance and upkeep can help you avoid to-do list overwhelm when it’s ready to sell. Hitchcock said sellers in high-demand markets can expect a lot of market interest if they are ready to sell – especially if the home is move-in ready.

“Most buyers are looking for ‘turnkey’ properties and have no time for projects,” Hitchcock said. “These properties will spend a relatively short amount of time on the market, and we are still seeing some multiple offers on choice properties. The key to selling quickly for top dollar is to work with an experienced agent who knows how to make your listing stand out among comparable homes in your local area.”

Sandra Levin is an office leader and business coach at John L. Scott Real Estate Mercer Island.

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