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Meanwhile, “inventory is non-existent in Seattle,” reports Sam DeBord, managing broker at Coldwell Banker Danforth and the state director for the Washington Association of REALTORS®. “We’re down to 1.7 months of inventory within the city limits, and there is no end to the shortage in sight.”

Naturally, this property deficit has sparked bidding wars, leading to buyers paying up for certain properties, DeBord explains.

“We recently had a buyer offer $520,000 on a $450,000 home that was just three days on the market,” says Debord. “That buyer lost out to one of 13 other offers. Right now, one out of every four homes that comes on the market in Seattle is sold in the first seven days.”

The problem for many would-be sellers is that they just can’t afford it—many still owe more on their mortgage than they can sell their home for on the open market.

“We’re struggling with this lower level of inventory, there’s no question about it,” says Bruce Taylor, president of ERA Key Realty Services, a brokerage covering all of Massachusetts. “We’ve closed out too many sellers. They’re waiting for prices to come back.”

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