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Acreage for Sale in Washington State - Market Overview

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Created on Saturday, April 09, 2016
Updated on Monday, February 26, 2018
by Land Century

Washington state is known for its beautiful views and land. A very scenic state, Washington is in the Pacific Northwest and became the 42nd state in the United States. It's the 13th most populous state in the country, and a staggering 60% of residents live in the Seattle metropolitan area.

The state has a little bit of everything from temperate rainforests to mountain ranges and semi-arid basins in the East. You’ll also find beautiful water on the West Coast of the state, and the state’s biggest industries include.

* Shipbuilding
* Lumber
* Food processing
* Aircraft and missile production
* Transportation equipment
* Metals and metal products

Many of these industries are not of great importance for a land investor. With that said, it is good to know that the state does have a thriving lumber industry if you want to sell timber from your land, and it's also a positive that food processing is popular in the state. These are two very lucrative opportunities to make money from your land, and we're going to take a look at the market overview for Washington.

Washington Acreage and Market Overview

There is a lot of open property in Washington state, and we have a few listings that have just opened up. The listings that we have available include:

* A 0.11-acre residential lot with a power line and water availability. The lot does not include a sewer, but it is level and available to build on immediately. Homeowner association fees are present, and manufactured homes are allowed. Property taxes are $177.86, and the seller is asking for $10,999 in cash.

* A 0.16-acre lot with paved road access, power line at the property line and water availability just sold for $9,999. This lot was deemed residential, and was already leveled and ready to build.

The real estate market as a whole in the state of Washington is doing rather well. The median home value is currently $284,000, and home values in the state have risen by 8.8% in the last year. Industry professionals estimate that this figure will swell 4.9% in 2016.

It is estimated that by November 2016, home prices will reach $297,000 in the state. In retrospect, in 2012, prices were as low as $217,000 before quickly rising. According to estimates, 4.2% of homeowners in the state are currently delinquent on their mortgage. There are 12.4% of homes that are in negative equity, which is much better than the 14.4% national average.

If you look at homes in Seattle, the median price is $430,000. Bellevue has the highest prices, with the median being $543,000. You’ll also find cheaper prices in Tacoma, with the average home costing $170,000. Spokane is affordable, too, and prices can be as low as $132,000 for homes.

Keep in mind that home prices are varied throughout the state because of the change in landscape. In the semi-arid region, homes are a little bit cheaper. However, land that is on the West Coast is often more expensive due to its close proximity to the ocean. If you’re after land that has amazing potential, look no further than Washington.

A lot of land spanning 9.75 acres is for sale for $15,000, but a lot that is in buildable condition is selling for the same exact price and is just 0.31 acres. The area that you choose to purchase land in Washington will have a dramatic impact on the price. This is even more prevalent in Washington than most other states, so it’s very difficult to determine the average price of land in the state.

We’re going to look at historical prices so that we can see how land value has increased, or decreased in the state over the past 25 years.

Historical Land Prices in Washington

Washington state has a lot of historical data that shows us how much a particular lot's value has increased since 1975. This information provides the total home value and then also provides the actual land value so that you can understand how land prices have increased in the state, and the amount of value the land has as a whole for a property.

In New York, for example, the actual land itself accounts for over 50% of a home’s value, but this is not the case in Washington.

1975: The average price during the first quarter of the year for a home was $29,745, with the land accounting for $1,487. Land had a total shared value of 5%.

1980: The average home value was $67,667, with land being valued at $13,118, or 19.4% of the home’s overall value.

1985: The average home value was $78,622, with the land being valued at $3,931, or 5% of the total home’s value. We do not know what happened between 1980 and 1985 for the price of land to drop so significantly.

1990: The average home was valued at $120,190, with the land value being $33,980. Land accounted for 28.3% of the home's total value.

1995: The average home was valued at $164,695, with land accounting for $63,413 of the home's total value. Land skyrocketed to 38.5% of the total value of the home.

2000: Land became more valuable in 2000, as home prices were $211,354 and land accounted for $95,551 of the home's total value. The land value was approximately 45.2% of the home's total value.

2005: In 2005, we saw a major tipping point, with homes being valued at $313,000 and land being valued at $161,000, or 51.6% of the total home’s value.

2010: Following the housing bubble, home prices were $344,451 and land values were $154,352, or 43.3% of the home's total value.

2015: The prices during Q1 2015 were $393,585 per home, with land being valued at $163,908. The land's total value accounted for 41.6% of the home’s value.

We’ve seen some fluctuations, especially after the housing market crash, but we lost little bit of information along the way when the land value dropped to 33% in 2011 and has since risen by over 10%. What this information shows is that the value of land has increased in comparison to home values dramatically, and land is a smart buy in Washington as a result.
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