Seattle’s ebullient housing market is boiling over into the rest of Puget Sound. As Seattle home prices continue to ascent unrelentingly buyers with fewer financial resources are depleting the housing stocks in smaller exurban cities and towns.

In May 2017 the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Index showed Seattle’s home price growth slowing for the first time in eight months yet the city’s index remained 13.3 percent higher year-over-year, still far ahead of other Pacific Coast gateways. Our nearest neighbor—Portland, Oregon—was up 8.9 percent year-over-year, while L.A., San Francisco and San Diego were higher by 5.6 percent, 5.4 percent and 6.6 percent, respectively.

Where will it end? Apparently not at Seattle’s city limits.

News reports of the spillover of buyers into surrounding counties seem to have just scratched the surface of the peripheral impact of Seattle home prices. Buyers unable to afford a home in Seattle—together with second-home buyers and owners cashing out—have flooded into the exurbs in search of value on a budget. These buyers are not only looking deep into southern and eastern King and Pierce Counties, but across Snohomish County and as far north as the Skagit Valley. In those areas, the market has been driven (measured in cumulative days on market, or CDOM) down to levels previously seen only in the more frenetic markets of Seattle and the Eastside.

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For apartment-dwellers seeking to convert to homeownership relief is on the way with projects like NEXUS, offered by Burrard Group and Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty, and now KODA, a project that will offer 200 new condominium units at Fifth and Main in the International District. KODA is tentatively scheduled for completion in 2020.

For Seattle’s performance on the Case-Shiller Index, see the chart below; and for more details, download Case-Shiller’s summary report.

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