Sep 2, 2022 - Real Estate

Seattle incomes rise but aren't keeping up with home prices

Growth in median <span style="color: #00ab58; font-weight: 900;">homebuyer income</span> and <span style="color: #ff942f; font-weight: 900; white-space: nowrap;"> home price</span>
Data: Redfin analysis of HMDA data. Chart: Kavya Beheraj and Skye Witley/Axios

Seattle homebuyers make more money than they did before the pandemic — but it's not enough to keep up with the leap in home prices.

By the numbers: The median income for Seattle homebuyers in 2021 was $148,000, up 10.4% from 2019, according to a Redfin analysis of mortgage data in the 100 largest metro areas nationwide.

  • Meanwhile, median home prices surged 29% during that time.

The big picture: Remote workers — leveraging their higher salaries to buy homes in cheaper areas — drove up incomes and home prices in "pandemic boomtowns" such as Boise, Idaho and Austin, Texas, Axios' Emily Peck reports.

Zoom in: Redfin found that homebuyers in Tacoma, Washington — another pandemic-era migration hotspot — posted slightly larger income growth than Seattle, at 15.1%.

  • That puts Tacoma among the top 10 cities nationwide for homebuyer income growth during the pandemic, while Seattle ranked in the top 24.

The latest: A big chunk of Seattle home sellers dropped their asking price in July as the market cooled slightly.


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