First Quarter 2020 Waterfront Report

At the end of every quarter, we conduct an analysis of waterfront single-family property sales. We are proud to contribute this analysis to Coldwell Banker Bain's quarterly market report and we hope you find this information valuable in your search for the perfect waterfront property!

Click here to jump to the graphical illustrations of our market analysis.

2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Report

Summary of 2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Statistics

In the first quarter of 2020, the seven counties included in this analysis experienced a -26% decrease in active waterfront inventory, a 12.5% increase in sold waterfront properties, and a 10% increase in the median price of sold waterfront homes. 

The biggest story of the first quarter is the significant decrease in active waterfront listings. Apart from Whatcom County, every other county experienced a double-digit decline in actively listed waterfront homes. 

Snohomish County and Skagit County realized the greatest decline in actively listed waterfront homes with -48.6% and -59.5% decreases, respectively. King and Kitsap saw -29% and -26%, respectively, and Pierce and Island Counties had inventories decline -15%.

With this drastic decline in inventory, one might expect the number of sold waterfront properties to decrease (at least slightly), however that wasn’t the case in Q1 2020. Across the seven counties analyzed, the number of sold properties increased 12.5%. King and Kitsap Counties saw a 33% increase in sold waterfront properties and, topping the charts, Snohomish County waterfront sales increased 62.5% over the number of sales in the first quarter of 2019. 

While it must be anticipated that COVID-19 will have at least some impact on waterfront real estate transactions, the typical influx of waterfront listings coming on the market in early Q2 has not occurred yet. It can be assumed that waterfront homeowners are postponing listing their property to mitigate the spread of the virus. Considering the significantly lower inventory levels we experienced going into the pandemic, it leads us to believe that the timing is ideal to list a waterfront home and capitalize on the virtually non-existent waterfront competition.

If you are considering buying a waterfront property, our expectation is that we will see a postponed increase in waterfront inventory. Rather than the surge of new listings occurring in April and May, we expect it will occur in May, June, and July, depending on when the general public feels more comfortable having prospective buyers tour their properties. If there is a property on the market that matches the majority of your desired criteria, we encourage you to take action and secure the property for your future ownership. Mortgage interest rates continue to be near historic lows and there is no guarantee that we will in fact see the seasonal influx of waterfront listings later this year.

If you decide to wait to see if the seasonal influx of inventory comes later in the year, we strongly encourage you to take all steps necessary to be as prepared as possible for tremendous competition, once listings start hitting the market. If you have a home to sell, let's talk now about the preparations you should make to have your home ready to list as soon as you identify a waterfront property to buy. If you will be seeking financing for your purchase, speak with our preferred lender, make application for a loan, and provide all necessary documentation so you are fully pre-approved -- and even better, pre-underwritten -- so your offer will be among the most attractive in competing offer situations. 

We hope this analysis is helpful and please don't hesitate to reach out to us to discuss the specifics of your home search. We are more than happy to help!

Graphical Illustrations of Market Statistics

2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Report2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Report

2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Report

2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Report

2020 First Quarter Waterfront Market Report

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