A front page Seattle Times article on Monday, October 13th reported on the local condo market (King, Snohomish, Pierce tri-county region) and the uneven condo values throughout the region. While this may be true in some outlying areas in all three counties, urban locations near major job centers have recovered and in many cases surpassed the last peak market in 2007/06. On the second page the business reporter states that while single family home prices and apartment rents climb, some submarkets have seen condo prices drop this year stating "The biggest decline: downtown Bellevue, where the median price last year reached a record, only to tumble this year by 14 percent to $430,000". My market focus and area of expertise is the eastside's condominiums, specifically downtown Bellevue. This statement caught me by surprise, and is contrary to what I've been telling my clients, so I decided to do a little research.
The downtown Bellevue condominium market (zip code 98004) definitely peaked, along with the rest of the market, in 2006 and 2007. The median sales price in 2006 was $475,000 and in 2007, as the area slipped into the recession, median sales prices dropped to $415,000. Fast forward to 2013, downtown Bellevue, along with the rest of the Puget Sound region, is fully immersed in the recovery, and the median condominium sales price for that year was $515,000, a nice recovery since the recession. So far this year median sales prices are just under $510,000. There are currently 30 downtown Bellevue condos with sales pending reflecting a median list price of $574,000. While unit sold numbers are down somewhat (381 units sold in 2006 vs. 350 units sold in 2013) values have definitely surpassed the last market peak of 2006/07. A penthouse at One Main Street, listed for sale earlier this month at $6 million dollars, has a pending sale after just 8 days on the market . . . that's nearly $1,400/SF . . . more typically found in Manhattan, not Bellevue. Has the downtown Bellevue condominium market recovered . . . I think we're doing just fine here on the eastside.