Windermere Professional Partners

Key Insights & Trends to Know About the South Puget Sound Housing Market in June 2024

June 3, 2024

As we head into Summer 2024, we have several important insights to share about the South Puget Sound’s housing market. While there are overall trends we’re experiencing in our region, you’ll find that every neighborhood, city, home type, and price point has a great deal of nuance.

Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned investor, we are answering all of your questions in this blog post!

What is your best advice for first-time homebuyers in the South Puget Sound right now?

Beginning your homeownership journey is exciting, and we want to make sure you have all of the information you need to make the right decision for you. If you’re buying a home for the first time in the South Puget Sound, here are a few takeaways you need to know:

  • Average sales prices continue to climb and interest rates refuse to budge. It’s a tough time for first-time homebuyers, but there are still opportunities out there.
  • Assumable FHA and VA loans offer great opportunities, and these options are often overlooked. For homes that were purchased two years ago or less, this can be a great opportunity for first time homebuyers to get an affordable home with a great interest rate. Our REALTORS® have experience finding these bargains, so just reach out and let us find the right deal for you!
  • The core of Pierce County can be unaffordable for many first-time homebuyers. The core includes cities and neighborhoods like North Tacoma, University Place, Fircrest, South Tacoma, Puyallup, and Gig Harbor.
  • We recommend that first-time homebuyers look outside the core of Pierce County. Neighborhoods and cities like Spanaway, Graham, Fredrickson, Olalla, Port Orchard, and areas of the Key Peninsula have housing prices that are more compatible for first-time homebuyers. We have REALTORS® who specialize in these areas that can help guide you to the right home for you!

What do I need to know about selling and buying a home at the same time?

If someone needs to sell a home to buy something larger and more expensive, we refer to these buyers as “move-up buyers.” This can often entail selling and buying a home at the same time. Here are a couple of factors to keep in mind as you look into this process:

  • Today’s market in the South Puget Sound is a prime dual market. This means that homes under $650,000 are selling at almost twice the pace as homes that are over $650,000. Right now this is true in most ALL markets in Pierce, Thurston, King, Kitsap and Mason counties.
  • Our dual market means that move up buyers can sell high and buy low. Of course, this is the perfect economic situation! Our REALTORS® help their clients do this every day, and they’re prepared to help you take advantage of these market conditions.

What is the #1 piece of advice you’d give to someone who wants to BUY a home in the South Puget Sound right now?

Some people have been saying that buyer representation is no longer necessary. And while our perspective is anything but objective, the services that our brokers provide translates to real dollars in their clients’ pockets.

Our #1 piece of advice to buyers right now is that you need to work with a REALTOR® who is experienced, highly knowledgeable, and an expert in their neighborhood.

Here are just a few of the ways our REALTORS® bring value to each transaction:

  • We live in the neighborhoods we work in and know the ins and outs of every community. Our real estate agents know the nuances of all of the communities throughout the South Puget Sound, and they know the ins and outs of many of the homes, too!
  • Our brokers know their market stats front to back. Our brokers can tell you what the market trends are at a specific moment, in a specific area, in a specific price point. Not only because of the exclusive info they have access to from our brokerage, but because they’re constantly working with buyers and sellers and know what’s happening in the moment. The algorithms used by many firms are not able to offer such accurate data. This allows us to make sure our clients don’t pay too much!
  • On that note, our negotiation strategies also make sure you’re not paying too much. Our REALTORS® are armed with the knowledge and fact-based data to help craft an offer that assures the highest probability of success. The highest number doesn’t always win—there are many different considerations that go into crafting a competitive offer.
  • The licensed inspectors we partner with are there to protect you. All of our REALTORS® have access to multiple licensed inspectors so you have all of the facts about the home you’re buying.
  • Our REALTORS® collaborate with your lenders. Our brokers are always available to assist your lenders in navigating the numerous challenges of completing a transaction. There is not one lender that would argue with the fact that “things are different now,” one example being “Third Party Underwriting.” Ask your REALTOR® about this one!
  • We work to make sure that the sellers stick to their end of the deal. Our REALTORS® do everything they can to make sure that the sellers of the home you’re buying stick to the letter of the contract BEFORE closing so that you as the buyer don’t have to deal with legal headaches after the sale is completed. Your real estate agent also organizes escrow needs, previously mentioned lender needs, and of course your needs are the client!

Overall, for anyone who has already purchased a home, you KNOW that this is a very stressful time in anyone’s life. We are committed to being proactive and doing all we can to exceed our clients expectations and keep the stress to a minimum.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to SELL a home in the South Puget Sound right now?

If you want to sell your home, it’s never too early to start strategizing. Even if you don’t plan to sell until 2025! Here are a few things you need to think about:

  • Your REALTOR® needs to know their numbers. Our exclusive statistical package can make sure that you are getting the most for your home in the shortest period of time. These statistics along with the information shared regarding the very active dual market are critical factors to review prior to deciding on the price of your home.
  • Homes that are properly prepared are still getting multiple offers. With interest rates being what they are, we have seen multiple offers trend primarily towards turnkey homes. If your home has some deferred maintenance or just needs a little love and attention, we would suggest our exclusive Windermere Ready program. This program is where we will loan you up to $100,000 of your equity to get your home in prime sales condition.
  • Your REALTOR® needs to be experienced with receiving multiple offers so you don’t lose out on money. They need to have a written system on how to manage those offers. It is not uncommon to see sellers leave thousands of dollars on the table due to their representative not managing the process effectively.

What do I need to know about moving to the South Puget Sound?

If you’re moving to the South Puget Sound from other regions of Washington or other parts of the country, you’re in the right place to start learning! Here are the two things we recommend starting with:

  • Do your research about the South Puget Sound area. Our website at has photos, videos, and blogs that offer detailed information about Pierce, Thurston, South King, and Kitsap county areas.
  • Find a professional that knows the market you are interested in. We also have detailed information about the REALTORS® who specialize in those areas, all of which are happy to answer any questions you may have.

Once you have some areas in mind, let us share the statistics with you so that you know what to expect when crafting an offer.

What is your best advice for investors in the South Puget Sound right now?

  • It is a popular belief that commercial properties are experiencing a bit of a slow down. This is due to high interest rates, and increasing vacancies primarily in office space.
  • Residential real estate is very active and there are some smart opportunities for investors here. Due to the high cost of housing, residential real estate is expected to continue to be lucrative.
  • Know the local rental regulations prior to purchasing any property. This is of paramount importance for any potential investment you’re going to make. Our REALTORS® can point you in the right direction to make sure you are informed prior to making any purchasing decision.

The real estate industry has seen some big changes during this past year. It’s crucial to make sure you have the right professionals to help guide you when buying any type of property. Even after all of these changes, real estate is still proving to be the best way to increase your personal wealth. We look forward to the opportunity to help you reach your personal real estate goals!