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San Juan Island and county real estate market summary

The third quarter results for San Juan Island and San Juan County were consistent with the first quarter results; very robust. The second quarter was in COVID shock but that gave way to a strong third quarter. Per the NWMLS, the dollar volume year-to-date on San Juan Island was $139,281,708 with a total of 188 transactions. This reflects a 65% increase in the dollar volume and a 38% increase in the number of transactions. For San Juan County, the total dollar volume was $292,879,941 with a total of 430 transactions. The County also had an increase which was 41% in dollar volume and 34% in number of transactions. Based on the active market, we will complete this year above 2005 dollar volume, which was when the volume and number of transactions reached an all-time high.

For the agents and brokerage firms, this market would be considered incredible. Coldwell Banker San Juan exceeded our entire 2005 year’s volume by the third quarter in 2020. The majority of our agents, and those throughout the County are having their best year ever. The source of all this activity is extremely low interest rates, the exiting of the metropolitan areas towards a safe-haven location away from COVID and civil unrest.

Further, many prospective buyers have been working out of the home and have realized, they do not need to be in Seattle, they can work remote from paradise.

The buyer profile remains the same as always, the age group is mostly 45–65 years, looking for a second home that will become their future retirement location. Most are interested in water view or waterfront homes. Once lodging opened in the County, buyers were driving from the western Washington area and purchasing homes in the $1m to $2m range, which reduced our inventory sharply.

Sales activity over $1m properties are ahead of 2019 with just our year-to-date closings. The numbers should be double that of 2019 at year-end 2020, if all the pending sales close. High-end sales provide upward movement in our median home price.

As of October 14, 2020, we have a total of 177 property listings on San Juan in the NWMLS, with 89 of those properties in escrow. This is compared to 254 listings with 34 of those in escrow same time last year. This reflects a 30% decrease in the total number of listings and a 161% increase in the number of escrows from last year same time. The inventory totals include all types of property.

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Merri Ann Simonson

Managing Broker

Coldwell Banker San Juan Islands Inc

1-800-451-9054 Office

360-317-8668 Cell