Joe Schmitt writes a weekly blog called The Good Life, featuring information about the region’s history, culture, climate and economy. The blog also showcases new residents, clubs and organizations, outdoor recreational opportunities and local events.
Yakima was added to the list of only six housing markets in the state by the National Association of Home Builders that shows marked improvement. The index is released every month and identifies housing markets that have shown improvement for at least six consecutive months using three sets of independent monthly data: employment growth from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, house price appreciation from Free Mac and single-family housing permit growth from the U.S. Census Bureau. “New home construction provided 41,000 jobs in Washington State in 2011, even in its recession-weakened state.
With 300,000 Washingtonians out of work, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the jobs and the economy are critical issues. While it’s no surprise that Washington’s largest private employers are Boeing and Microsoft, what most probably don’t know is that the new home construction industry is the state’s third-largest employer. It is encouraging to see such growth in the Yakima Market in 2012,” said Carly Faul, Executive Officer, Central Washington Home Builders Association. As an integral driving for local, state and national economies, housing health is vital. It’s an excellent sight that Yakima is one of six of the 242 national markets to make the January index. The news for existing home sales is just as good! The average closed sales price increased in 2012 over 2011, approximately 14%, but house prices remained mostly flat. This increase is reflective of more homes priced between $200,000 to $350,000 selling. There were also a handful of homes over a million dollars that sold in 2012, by contrast, 2011 saw no activity in this price range. “This shift of buyers could be reflective of financing restrictions easing up. Conventional financing was the number one option used by buyers in Yakima in 2012.
The message I think has been successfully delivered, BUY NOW, rates are incredible low, prices are still low and there is a lot of inventory. We will likely never see a more perfect time to buy a home in Yakima, it is really fantastic,” notes Moriet Miketa with Prudential Almon Real Estate. The Yakima Valley offers extensive housing options. Residents can find horse ranches, historic homes, downtown condos, resort communities, and wide ranging neighborhoods to the unique needs of all home buyers. Yakima County is also fortunate have one of the more favorable residential real estate markets in the nation. Because of the region’s relatively resilient stable economy, area residents and real estate investors typically experience slower yet steady growth in real estate values.
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