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Pierce County home prices seductive for Seattle buyers

TACOMA, Wash. – Home prices in Seattle are more expensive than in Tacoma, but brokers in Pierce County insist even though the market is red hot, the City of Destiny remains affordable for many.

Real estate professionals say the South Sound is still fiercely competitive but some insist many neighborhoods there aren’t out of reach.

“Not only are we affordable but we offer an equal lifestyle or better,” said Sloan Hunter, a real estate agent with Windermere Abode.

Hunter said buyers in Pierce County aren’t having to pay Seattle prices but the competition in and around Tacoma is still fierce.

“You are competing with cash buyers, there are some deep pockets right now and there are investors who do want to buy our homes because they know they will rent, with the rent market going up the way it has,” she said.

According to MLS, the median home price in Tacoma is just shy of $300,000.

“Light rail and our commute system has allowed King County to infiltrate and come down to Tacoma and with that comes rising prices,” said Hunter. “Multiple offers and we’re seeing our inventory, we are less that three month’s supply so it’s a true seller’s market here.”

When Sound Transit’s light rail system is completed as planned, it will help commuters with another option to live outside of King County and commute into  Seattle and other areas.

But mass transit stations will also have a mass impact on the selling price, according to a report by real estate tech firm Estately.

“At stops that are there right now, (houses) cost quite a bit more, and where more stops are going to be built over 5-10 years, there’s going to be some deals,” said CEO Galen Ward.

And while Seattle prices keeps pricing out buyers, many will have to keep driving until they can afford.

But if that’s Tacoma, they should know many others are also looking to fulfill their destiny in the South Sound.

“We are seeing in some of our areas 30-40% turnover since last year, you know up to 70% in some of central Tacoma, east Tacoma in the last two and a half years. That is impressive,” said Hunter.