Real estate market active in December

real estate Neither heavy rain, nor power outages, nor holiday diversions sidetracked the motivation of 2,058 home buyers whose offers were accepted by sellers last month.
   With that volume of pending sales and a solid gain in new listings, members of the Puget Sound Mulitple Listing Association finished the year on a strong note, according to figures released last week.
   December activity showed marked improvement from a year ago, when numbers logged 1,726 transactions, an increase of 19.2 percent.
   During 1995, members reported 33,948 pending sales, which is about 91 percent of the total number of transactions (37,046) PSMLA brokers handled in 1994.
   Listing activity also reflects good market conditions, with agents adding 2,907 new properties to inventory in PSMLA's tri-country area.
   At year end, the inventory of active listings totaled 13,528 properties, which includes 10,678 single family homes and 2,850 condominiums. That figure is up 13.8 percent from December 1994, when a total of 11,890 properties were offered for sale in King, Snohomish, and Northern Pierce counties.
   Last month's closed sales totaled 2,856 units, about the same volume of a year ago, when members reported 2,847 completed transactions.
   December's volume rose almost 22 percent, compared to November's figure of 2,346 closings.
   Prices have increased about 3.4 percent in the past 12 months, according to PSMLA figures. The average price for sales that closed during 1995 was $180,886, which compares to an average of $174,918 for the previous year's sales.
   For December's sales, the median price was $154,950, which compares to the year-ago figure of 150,000.
   Homes that sold in King County last month had a median price of $160,000 (meaning half sold for more and half sold for less). In Snohomish County, the median price was $146,250.