The second quarter results which complete the first half of the year for San Juan Island were very exciting. Per the NWMLS, the dollar volume on San Juan Island was $71,595,607 with a total of 130 transactions. We enjoyed a 25% increase in transaction number and a 42.5% increase in dollar volume as compared to the same period in 2016. For San Juan County, the total dollar volume was $128,019,123 with a total of 254 transactions. The County’s gain was 19% in transaction number and 32.5% in dollar volume

San Juan Island

First Half 2017 130 $71,595,607

First Half 2016 104 $50,160,050

San Juan County

First Half 2017 254 $128,019,123

First Half 2016 214 $96,809,961

One very notable contributing factor to the increase in volume is the recovery of our market in the category of lots and acreage. Land sales were the slowest to recover but this quarter reflects an improvement of 56% in the transaction number over the same period in 2016 for San Juan Island. The County’s land sale transaction number reflects a 23% improvement. I attribute this to buyers not being able to find an existing home suitable to them, due to low inventory levels. Total inventory on San Juan Island for all property types as of July 11, is 280 of which, 57 are pending which is a decrease of 21% from June 2016 levels.


2017 280 57 20%

2016 355 44 12%

2015 350 45 13%

2014 407 35 9%

2013 418 36 9%

2012 439 33 8%

2011 465 14 3%

It is very encouraging to have recovery in the land segment of our market. Land sales equate to busy architects, designers, permitting and land use consultants, general contractors, interior designers, landscape architects, and subcontractors, just to name a few.

The only segment of our market that still lacks recovery is the waterfront lot sales. Their desirability is less than that of a water view parcel because an owner is not able to enhance views due to shoreline buffer protection.

Sales in excess of more than $1 M have been stable. Year-to-date in the County, we have had 18 sales as compared to the 17 for the same period in 2016. I guess you can’t believe everything you read in the Wall Street Journal. San Juan enjoyed 12 of the sales, Orcas had 4, and Brown and Shaw Islands each had 1. Currently 16 high-end sales are pending in the NWMLS for the County which is slightly higher than the number in 2016, which is a good trend. The Wall Street said we were the hottest high-end market in the nation, but I don’t agree, we are healthy. We have a good level of high-end listings, but I have always defined how “hot” a market is based on closings, not listings.

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