Market Update – September 2021

Closed sales of single family homes on less than one acre, including condominiums for September totaled 803, a 3.2% increase over September last year. The average closed sales price was $413,863, compared to September of 2020 when the average sales price was $332,867, the average price is up 24.3%. The median closed sales price for September was $380,000 up 21.2% from September last year when the median price was $313,500.

Year to date closed sales continue to run ahead of last year, closed sales through September total 6,083 compared to 5,587 over the same period last year, an increase of 3.9%. The year to date average closed sales price is $398,753, up 26.7% over last year’s year to date closed sales price of $314,735. Our year to date median closed sales price through September is $367,138 up 24.5% over last year’s median closed sales price through September of $295,000.

Inventory continues to increase. As of this report the current inventory totaled 617 properties up 29.1% from one year ago when the inventory was 479 properties. New construction closed sales total 763 down only 4 closed sales over the same period last year.

In the Coeur d’Alene MLS Market, from the Year over Year Comparison Report all active residential listings during the
month of September 2021 were up 1.07% compared to 2020, with 1,785 active listings vs 1,766 at this time last year.
The Sold Market Analysis Report shows that September ended with 597 total residential sold listings compared to 826 in 2020, down 27.7%.

For the month of August 2021:
• Absorption Rate is currently 2.12 vs 2.58 in 2020, down 17.83%. The YTD rate is 1.52 compared to 2.85 in 2020, down 46.67%.
• Median Sale Price of sold homes was $499,500 vs $385,000 in 2020, an increase of 29.74%.
• New Construction Residential closings for the month = 72 units vs 106 units in 2020, an decrease of 32.1%.
• Typical Residential Sales (Existing/Non-distressed) for the month was 420, an average sales price of $599,364 and an
average of 72 days on market.

Spokane Repeatedly Piques Interest at

Downtown Spokane

“What Slowdown? The 10 Markets Where Home Prices Are Unstoppable” was published January 28th 2019 and it discusses the nation’s housing markets that have been strong enough to resist the recent slowdown. Spokane was said to be the third strongest market in the nation.

“The Cities That People Can’t Wait to Move to—and Locals Have No Interest in Leaving” was published November 9, 2018 and it discusses the markets that are seeing the most interest from people located outside of their area while people located in their market area show the least interest in leaving. Spokane was said to be the most popular housing market with out-of-towners and has the most locals who are happy to stay put.

“America’s Most Affordable Outdoorsy Cities, 2018: Open-Air Adventure at Cut-Rate Costs” was published August 13th 2018 and it discusses affordable cities where you can easily get on a bike, go for a run or board a boat. Spokane was said to be the most affordable outdoorsy city.

“The Hottest Markets in June 2018: What Happens When They Get Too Hot?” was published July 5th, 2018 and it discusses the nation’s 20 hottest markets, of which, Spokane was listed as number 18 on the list.

“The Hottest Markets for U.S. Real Estate: Is California’s Reign Over?” was published April 26th 2018 and it discusses the fact that California’s housing markets are no longer dominating the list of hottest markets on Spokane was listed as number 13 on the list which only had six California cities listed.

“Cost-Conscious Buyers Are Flocking to These 10 Affordable, Midsize Cities” was published March 1st, 2018 and it discusses how low inventory and rising home prices are pushing buyers into smaller, more affordable markets and Spokane was listed as the number 1 most affordable midsize city to watch.

“The 20 Hottest Real Estate Markets for February 2018: Get Ready for the Spring Thaw!” was published March 1st, 2018 and it lists the 20 markets that have already hit their prior year’s peak. Spokane was ranked 18 on the list of 20 markets.

“Party Time: Welcome to America’s Top 10 Booziest—and Soberest—Cities” was published March 13th, 2017 and it discusses the nation’s drinking culture. Spokane was listed as the 7th booziest city.

Mortgage Interest Rates Down as Stock Market Declines

Chart with key to success

Mortgages rallied last week as U.S. 10yr treasury yields fell 14bps on the week, the strongest performance since April 2017. The S&P 500 and DOW fell 4.60% and 4.50% for the week on Friday, -2.33% and -2.24% respectively, and are now back in the negative territory for 2018. The 2s5s curve inverted for the first time since 2007 and the 2s10s curve is near 13bps this morning. However, the curve steepened into the end of the week as the market continued to price out the Fed interest rate hikes in 2019. Market expectations are pricing near 50% probability for a March interest rate increase and near certain hike next week.

Spokane Area Real Estate Market Update

building metal house architecture

737 single family homes on less than one acre including condominiums were reported sold closed for September. This number is down 1.3% from September 2017 when 747 homes were reported sold. This is the fourth month in the last five in which sales compared to the same month last year have been down. The average sales price for September was $259,472 up 9.9% from September last year when the average sales price was $236,161. The median price for September was up 9.3% from September 2017, $235,000 v $215,000.

Closed sales through September total 6,286 closed sales compared to 6,003 through September 2017 an increase of 4.7%. The year to date average sales price is $254,733 compared to $228,051 over the same period last year. The year to date average sales price is up 11.7%. The median year to date sales price is up 11.6% compared to the same
period in 2017, $234,632 v. $210,000.

Inventory is down less than 1% compared to last month however compared to last year at this time inventory is down 24.3%, current inventory at 1,451 homes compared to 1,918 at the same time last year. New construction closed sales reported to the Spokane Association’s MLS are up 14.7%, 626 year to date closed sales reported compared to 545
closed sales reported last year.


Source: Spokane Association of REALTORS

Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd. on

Automated Valuation Models are Tools, Not Solutions

photo of green data matrix

Photo by Markus Spiske on

This article was posted in Realtor Magazine and can be found here. It was written by John S. Brenan who has been the Director of Appraisal Issues for The Appraisal Foundation since 2003.

Because you may be reading this on a laptop, tablet, or smartphone, you already know that today we use technology in ways we never imagined even a few years
ago. Who could have dreamed of ordering something online and having it delivered within hours? Now we’re anticipating deliveries via driverless cars and flying

With these advances, will computers inevitably replace appraisers when it comes to valuing homes? That question is the subject of much debate. In some limited
transactions, an automated valuation model may be used appropriately today instead of an appraisal. Based on the specifics of the property and the transaction details,
an appraisal may be unnecessary. For example, I’d be irate if I owned a $2 million home free and clear but had to pay a large fee for an appraisal in order to take out
a $50,000 line of credit. However, if I’m looking to buy a $500,000 home with 10 percent down, is it reasonable for a lender to rely on artificial intelligence to
determine whether the collateral is adequate? Not likely.

I couldn’t agree more with the sentiments of Karen Belita, a data scientist with the National Association of REALTORS®, who wrote in a blog post, “When it comes
to online home value estimates, the number one caveat for consumers is that these estimates are not a substitute for formal appraisals, comparative market analyses,
and the in-depth expertise of real estate professionals.” Bravo. Indeed, AVMs are not appraisals. It’s possible that as technology evolves, AVMs may be used to a
greater degree. But today, in many cases, an automated valuation is suspect if there is a lack of available data or the property isn’t a “cookie cutter.” Many of us have
checked our own properties against the finding of an AVM and thought, “Yeah, right.” When it comes to AVMs, your mileage may vary.

So why aren’t automated models more reliable in more transactions? Because computers don’t buy houses; people do. An AVM does a great job of analyzing tangible
features such as a property’s age, number of bedrooms and baths, square footage, and lot size. However, a property’s overall appeal is something that has been, at
least to date, extremely difficult to quantify. It’s a uniquely human phenomenon; a property’s overall appeal reflects a combination of characteristics. While not
everyone has the same preferences, some unusual features will likely face significant market reluctance.
But wait, you say, aren’t appraisers required by the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice to be “independent, impartial, and objective”? Absolutely.
Still, appraisers are not machines. They must have relevant data and logic to support their analyses, opinions, and conclusions, but they also incorporate the concept
of market value reflecting the interests of consumers who are “typically motivated” and “well-informed.”

Recognizing that AVMs play a role in developing an appraisal, the authors of USPAP acknowledge their relevance with respect to their use of regression, adaptive
estimation, neural network, expert reasoning, and artificial intelligence. But appraisers remain better than AVMs at recognizing motivations and knowledge levels
of market participants.

The output of an AVM is not, by itself, an appraisal. It may become a basis for one if the appraiser believes the output to be credible for use in a specific assignment. If
the appraiser believes it to be credible. Today, that’s a very big “if.” So unless and until AVMs can better emulate the human factor, an ethical and competent
appraiser remains indispensable.

The Appraiser’s Coalition of Washington along with the Network of State Appraiser Organizations (NSAO) aka “The Network”, have asked that readers of this article share it on their social media accounts, sent it to agents, lenders and AMC’s as well as to State and Federal Legislators.


Smoke Alarm Recall

Kidde-Smoke-AlarmOn March 21, 2018, Kidde launched a safety recall of approximately 452,000 smoke alarms in the United States and about 40,000 sold in Canada. There is a possibility a yellow cap that covers one of the alarm’s smoke sensors was left on during assembly, possibly limiting the alarm’s ability to detect smoke. Please check the model of each alarm in your home.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission offers more information about the recall, including details that can help you determine if you have a recalled alarm,

Remember, be sure to test your smoke alarms monthly and change the batteries every time you change you clocks for daylight savings.​

Median Sale Price up 15.4% Year over Year

Residential closed sales of single family homes on less than one acre including condominium sales totaled 758 for May 2018. This total is down 2.4% from May 2017 when 777 closed sales were reported. The average sales price for May was $265,057 compared to the average sales price in May last year of $227,481, an increase of 16.5%. The median sales price was $240,000, an increase of 15.4% over the median sales price in May 2017 of $208,000.

Year to date sales through May total 2,836. This is a year to date increase of 9.8% over last year when total sales through May 2017 were 2,583. The average sales price through May is $245,479, up 12% over the average sales price through May 2017 of $219,159. Median sales price through May is $225,000 which is up 12.5% through May last year when the median price was $200,000.

Inventory continues to lag behind last year, down 17.6%. Current inventory is 1,389 residential properties compared to 1,686 last year as of the May report. New construction sales reported for May totaled 68 and the total through May this year is 306. This number is up 15.9% over the 264 sales reported through May 2017.

Source: Spokane Association of Realtors

Spokane Makes #18 on’s List of Top 20 Performing Markets

top_20_mrkts_May18® ranked the following 20 markets as “hottest” in the country in May:

  1. Midland, Texas
  2. Boston
  3. San Francisco
  4. Columbus, Ohio
  5. Vallejo, Calif.
  6. Boise City, Idaho
  7. Stockton, Calif.
  8. Buffalo, N.Y.
  9. Grand Rapids, Mich.
  10. Fort Wayne, Ind.
  11. Colorado Springs, Colo.
  12. Sacramento, Calif.
  13. Worcester, Mass.
  14. Rochester, N.Y.
  15. Ann Arbor, Mich.
  16. Detroit
  17. Odessa, Texas
  18. Spokane, Wash.
  19. Dallas
  20. Racine, Wis.

Original Source: “Home-Buying Frenzy Sets a Record as California Loses its Grip on Hottest Markets,”® (May 31, 2018)

Spokane’s Median Year to Date Sale Price is up 7.7%


Sales of single family homes on less than one acre including condominium sales totaled 705 for November 2017. Compared to November last year when sales totaled 610, closed sales are up 15.6%. Compared to last month when sales totaled 803, closed sales are down 12.2%. The average closed sales price for November was $231,512, an increase of 12% over November’s 2016 closed sales price of $206,701. The median closed sales price for November was $209,950 up 8.9% when compared to November 2016 when the median price was $192,750.

Year to date closed sales continue to out pace 2016. Closed sales through November total 7,479 compared to 6,927 last year through November, up 8%. The YTD average sales price is up 7.6%, $228,469 v. $212,384. The median YTD sales price is up 7.7%, $210,000 v. $195,000.

Inventory continues tight. As of this report, the inventory of single family homes on less than one acre, including condominiums totaled 1,360. This is down 30 homes from the same time last year when 1,390 homes were on the market. New construction sales continue to lag behind last year. Through November there were 696 new construction sales, including condos, down 9.3% from 767 sales reported through November last year.

Source: Spokane Association of Realtors