Good Time to Buy?

Half Dome Cables ClimbAre you wondering if now is a good time to buy a home? There are so many factors that have gone into the latest housing boom that it can be difficult to gauge whether or not the high prices are here to stay. With that said, today’s Wall Street Journal makes a pretty convincing case that the hot job market in Seattle has led to the rising home prices. (I’m pretty sure this article is only available today before it goes behind a firewall.)

How does the Seattle-area job market look into the future?
There are still lots of upsides to the local job market. The WSJ notes that the “area gained more than 45,000 jobs in 2004” with Boeing accounting for “more than 3,700 workers”. In addition, Microsoft has a “20-year plan to add 2.2 million square feet of offices to its 435-acre suburban Redmond campus to accommodate as many as 12,000 new employees.” .

The WSJ also notes that “homes are selling for a premium in some locations along proposed routes for two ambitious transportation projects: a light-rail link and a monorail line that would offer commuters alternatives to cars and buses. There are plans for a 36-story condo tower along the proposed monorail at the historic Pike Place Market.” This analysis from the WSJ agrees with my earlier post about how mass transit has a HUGE positive effect on local property values.

The Boeing Boom

sasha with eyeglassThe Seattle PI had an article today describing how things are definitely picking up at the local Boeing facilities around the Puget Sound. This paragraph sums it up pretty well:

The company plans to open a second production line in Renton that will push output there to a record 31 planes a month. It is also requiring some 777 workers in Everett to work overtime and will replace a key executive there amid a series of production problems before it boosts output of that twin-aisle jetliner as well.

None of this comes as a surprise to me as I’ve been noticing a substantial increase in people who looking to move to the area related to Boeing jobs. In addition, some of the housing message boards such as craigslist and trip advisor seem to have a lot more questions about good places to live for people whose jobs are relocating to Everett and/or relocating to Renton.

For home owners, any sustained expansion of jobs to the region is great news and I’m of the opinion that job growth plays a larger role in keeping home prices high than any change in interest rates! The success of the tech industry (Microsoft, Amazon, etc) in the area has done wonders for our home values and with the additional growth from Boeing, the future looks real good for Seattle-area home owners.