Beach Business: Four differing real estate markets

Inventory remains strong in North Beach area home sales.

Since the beginning of 2016, the countywide residential real estate market has seen a steady increase in inventory, new listings, and pending sales, says longtime Grays Harbor real estate broker Tom Quigg. The trend line for sold properties matches that of 2015.

“What I find interesting, is how the four market areas of the county differ,” said Quigg. Here are some of his observations using material from his Grays Harbor Real Estate Market at a Glance for Windermere Real Estate.

• Since the beginning of 2016, Ocean Shores/North Beach area has had a big increase in inventory, and for the past four months the pending sales, number of sold properties, and average/mean prices have leveled off; not much, but noticeable.

• For 2016, Aberdeen/Hoquiam saw a more modest increase in inventory together with strong increases in new listings, pending sales and sold properties. But, July 2016 saw a big drop in average and mean prices to the lowest for the year. This is likely because fewer high priced homes sold last month.

• Montesano/Elma is experiencing a slowdown in inventory. This has created an extended seller’s market with average and mean prices for June and July at the highest point in the past 15 months. This is an indicator that now may be the time to consider new construction in those communities.

• Westport/Grayland is becoming a stronger buyer’s market, with inventory increasing, and asking prices decreasing steadily over the past 15 months. This has resulted in a steady increase in sold properties, with average and mean prices moving up and down along a flat trend line. Buyers should find good opportunities at the South Beaches.

• The average/median sales prices for July 2016 are: Grays Harbor County — $151,000/$137,000; Ocean Shores/North Beach — $190,000/$168,000; Aberdeen/Hoquiam — $84,000/$72,000; Montesano/Elma — $206,000/$194,000; and Westport/Grayland — $132,000/$127,000. Keep in mind that these are average/mean prices for only one month, and can vary greatly from month to month.