Sales activity continued to be substantially higher than the number of new listings again in December; the resulting reduced inventory driving prices higher. Slowly increasing interest rates add to buyer concerns, but don’t appear to be cooling the market.   

At month end, there were 1,763 active listings in the MLS database, 19% less than November’s 2,173 inventory, and 17% less than 2,129 homes and condos listed a year ago.   MLS brokers added 807 new listings to inventory during December, 210 less than last month, but 90 more than the same month a year ago.

December’s 1,201 pending sales were 21% lower than November’s 1,518 mutually accepted offers, but 2.5% higher than 1,172 pending sales last December.

Pierce County MLS members reported 1,326 closed sales during December.  This is a 2% increase from last month’s 1,298 closed sales, and a 9.7% increase from 1,209 completed transactions in December a year ago.

The median price for December’s closed sales of single family homes and condominiums (combined) was $280,500. This is up 12.2% from the December 2015 figure of $249,950.  The average time on market for properties that sold was 52 days, compared to 43 days last month and 57 days this month last year.