As last month, all of January’s real estate market indicators were up over the previous year, especially a 10.5% increase in pending sales. Inventory dropped again as the number of pending sales continue to outpace the number of new listings. This makes it a great time for sellers who have less competition for their house.

Buyers are challenged with fewer choices, but now is the time to avoid anticipated rising home prices and interest rates. You should have your Realtor set up a home search that emails new listings to you as they come on the market so you have first crack at them.

At month end, there were 2,903 active listings in the MLS database, 58 less than December’s 2,961 inventory, and 167 less than 3,070 homes and condos listed a year ago. MLS brokers added 1,210 new listings to inventory during January, 391 more than last month, and 36 less than the same month a year ago.

January’s 1,363 pending sales are 345 more than December’s 1,018 mutually accepted offers, and 10.5% higher than pending sales last January.

Pierce County MLS members reported 756 closed sales during January. This is a 22.8% decrease from last month’s 979 closed sales, and a 6.6% increase from 709 completed transactions in January a year ago.

The median price for January’s closed sales of single family homes and condominiums (combined) was $218,250. This is up 2.3% from the January 2014 figure of $212,500. The average time on market for properties that sold was 78 days, compared to 79 days last month and 73 days this month last year.