“Home Sales Post their Sharpest Drop in Three Years”

Did your heart just skip a beat?  Where did THIS come from?


This was the headline in many papers (NY Times, Wall Street Journal, The News Tribune, etc.) after a report on February 21, 2018, from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

The headline for the NAR article was different: Existing-Home Sales Slip 3.2 Percent in January.

Newspapers took one sentence out of the article; NAR uses the statistic as their headline.

Here is the link:  Link to Article from NAR.

I went on to research how these statistics were created and, more importantly, what did similar statistics look like for PIERCE COUNTY.

Here is how the statistics of these two headlines were created:

  • Take the closings from  December and then from January, for each of the last 3 years.
  • TOTAL decrease from December, 2015 to January, 2016?  December, 2016 – January,2017?  December, 2017 – January, 2018?
  • Then, what years had the “sharpest drop”?
  • Nationally, Lawrence Yun, chief economist at NAR says it was this November, 2017 – January, 2018 year ~ compared to the past 3 years.  This is a NATIONAL statistic, existing-home sales “sank 3.2% in January from 5.56M Sales in December, 2017 to 5.38M Sales in January, 2018”.

Now, let’s look locally!   Would those same headlines be accurate for Pierce County?

December Closing vs.  January Closings % Change in Home Sales
Dec. 2015-Jan 2016 -28.2%
Dec 2016-Jan 2017 -20.7%
Dec 2017-Jan 2018 -25.3%


As you can see, the statistics are VERY different for PIERCE COUNTY than for the Nation as a whole.  And, actually our numbers are much lower, December over January, year to year.  This is what these same headlines would read if it were talking about PIERCE COUNTY:

 “Home Sales Post their Sharpest Drop in Two Years”

Existing-Home Sales Slip 25.3 Percent in January”

Very different ~ And, much wider spread!  And, this is what our local market looks like, year-over-year.  What does it mean?

In order for a house to SELL in January, the home would go under contract in November-December, because of the time it takes for a home and it’s buyers to go through the process.  Guess people are doing other things during that time of year!  Housing takes a back-burner!

Most Importantly:  How do these statistics correlate to the market as a whole for the year?  Is this any indication?

It turns out there is NO correlation to the market for the year as a whole.  Let’s look at more statistics:

Complete Year

January – December

Total # of Closings

Existing Homes



2015 13,314 +17.0%
2016 14,968 +12.4%
2017 16,153 +7.9%


In other words, relax!  The headlines that were promoted this week have NO correlation to the market as a whole.  It is taking one small snippet of information, creating a heart-skipping headline, and, frankly making folks worry.  There is constant talk of another “housing bubble”and any news like this is fuel for their fire.  I will go on, in other posts, to continue to share statistics that will show you the difference in our market today vs. early 2000’s.  Not to worry about that!

As you see, I love the research!  I love making headlines make sense for you!  I love making sure you have accurate knowledge about OUR marketplace!

Let me know if you have ANY questions!

~ Rae Anne 


Gated Community ~ University Place

8422 59th Street Court West ~ University Place, WA  98467

Spend 2 minutes and discover how easy living can be!  Perched amongst the trees, this home lives like a rambler ~ yet it has a fully finished walk-out basement for even more  space!!  Located in the gated Danbridge Community, this move-in-ready home features your master bedroom suite on the main level, complete with spa-like bath and walk-in closet large enough for your morning yoga!  With no obstructing walls, the Great Room is perfect for entertaining and your guests can enjoy two private decks as well.  A laundry on both levels makes it easy to live all on one floor!  And, make sure you see the hidden wine cellar . . . a perfectly fabulous place to open those classic vintages!

And, yes, this home IS in the University Place School District!   And, the school bus stops right at the gate!  Join others in sending your kiddos off to school!

MLS #1182550 ~ $385,000 ~ 3 Bedrooms ~ 2.5 Baths ~ 2,164 sq. ft. ~ Built in 2000

Hope to see you soon!


Easy Living Elegance ~ University Place

4444 Paradise Avenue West ~ University Place, WA  98466

Enjoy a short, personal tour of this designed-for-the-views home! It is fully oriented to Puget Sound! The nearly 4,000 sq. ft. home has rambler style living on the main level and a fully finished walk-out daylight lower level.   Our seller incorporated the elegance of  box ceilings, bay windows, formal bow window, wainscoting & multiple fireplaces.  Yet, with 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, 2 laundry rooms and 1 over-sized kitchen life is easy!  Live life to its fullest right here!

Update ~This home sold in 10 days for $755,000 in August, 2017.

Join me again, when we tour another home available for purchase!


Earthwise Architectural Salvage Tour!


A quick tour of a unique salvage yard in Tacoma!   Come with me for a couple minutes.  See my favorite corner of this truly unique salvage yard! Everything from live-edge wood & reclaimed bowling alley lanes to authentic period hardware, such as glass door knobs.  It’s a Saturday morning, put your tennis shoes on, grab-a-cuppa-Joe kind of places!  With DIY, remodeling, updating and HGTV so popular ~ this is a definite stop for your materials!  All these materials are reclaimed, saved from the landfill!  Talk to John, the acquisitions manager.  He may pick up your salvage!   Earthwise Architectural Salvage

See you at the next find!

University Place ~ Kelly Park ~ Property Pro’s Episode 2

This home sold in 6 days with multiple offers!  What a difference professional planning did for this home! With a budget of $15,000, we were able to paint the interior & exterior, add new carpeting, transform the kitchen & add features that today’s buyers desire.  The ownersof this home netted over 300% ROI, quickly, for over offering price!  Congratulations!

University Place ~ Wescliffe Estates ~ Property Pro’s Episode 2

This video shows the final product and budget that was started in Episode 1!  Our project manager, Jessica Neal-Smith, kept the project ON budget!  She spent $11,000 to totally transform the master bath from a deterrent into a feature; and, $10,000 to repaint the exterior as well as the interior, all new carpets, light fixtures, etc!  Our sellers netted over a 200% ROI.  What would the ROI be on your home?

University Place ~ Wescliffe Estates ~ Property Pro’s Episode 1

What started out a deterrent, became a selling feature for this home!  Our seller saw the financial benefits of taking $21,000 to remodel the bath, as well as paint, carpet & landscape before the home was presented for sale! In return, they got a quick sale and netted over 200% ROI.   See where it started in this episode.  Episode 2 shows the final product & budget.

Lake Tapps Home Sold ~ Multiple Offers

I often employ a drone and it’s pilot to assist in marketing my properties.  The aerial shots truly enhance the presentation; and, it assists potential buyers see the possibilities this property offers.   Both the drone and traditional professional photos were used here. As you can see here, it truly made a difference in showcasing this mini-farm in the Lake Tapps area of Pierce County. The home was very well prepared by our sellers and beautifully staged to enhance the home’s features.  Buyers could clearly see themselves living here!  So much so, our sellers had 9 offers within 4 days!  Home preparation, the right price and staging all assist a seller in getting the highest sales price!  Congratulations!