Seattle has seen an influx of technology workers from Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and Facebook. But, like many cities, it has a problem--there are not enough condos to meet this demand for workers who many to stay in the city, writes Sam Debord of MarketWatch.
Year over year, Seattle's condo inventory is down 39%. For buyers, that means bidding wars and rising prices. The median condo price in Seattle rose to $385,000 last month. That's 21% higher than just one year ago. It's not a surprise anymore to hear about a brand new listing that received 10, 20, even 30 offers. Buyers get fed up, but rent prices continue to rise at the same time.
Debord says there's one solution to the problem--more condo development.
Condo development is at the heart of the answer for cities like Seattle where population growth is meeting with a lack of housing and transportation. Regulation and resistance from traditionalists create significant hurdles and friction for condo developers. Onerous construction fees and lagging liability concerns discourage new entrants.