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This is the Hottest Real Estate Market in the Country—By Far

A sold sign is posted in front of a home at a new housing development. Photo by Justin Sullivan — Getty Images

Home prices have been on the rise nationally since February, but no area of the country has seen a spike like the Pacific Northwest.

The price of single family homes in the Seattle area has soared 13.5% in the past 12 months. That’s more than twice the national average of 5.9%.

The median single family home in Seattle, as of August, costs $730,000 – though residents willing to brave the 1.5 hour (one way) commute from Snohomish or Pierce County can find a home for $455,000 or $313,000, respectively.

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The numbers, from the monthly Case-Shiller home price index, show Portland in second place nationally, with an average 7.6% increase.

Demand for homes in Seattle has greatly outstripped supply, which has fueled the steep increases. And prices aren’t expected to drop anytime soon, since there’s not a lot of private undeveloped land left for builders to create new subdivisions.

The 12-month surge is the largest increase in Seattle housing prices since 2006, in the midst of the housing bubble. Since 2012, when the market bottomed out, average home costs have increased 79% – and they’re now 20% above their previous peak at the height of the bubble.

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