Government Regulations Add to "Sticker Shock" of New Home Prices
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, August, 1999
“Sticker shock is biting both newcomers and those already here,” reports a recent news article on soaring home prices in some parts of Washington. It’s no secret that home prices in urban areas across the state are rising fast, often putting the American dream of homeownership out of reach for the average working family in Washington. In King County, for example, the median sales price on a home has increased almost 9%, from $192,000 to $209,000, in just one year. That’s more than ten times the rate of inflation in the general economy.
Most consumers are acutely aware of rising home prices. The larger question, however, is why are prices rising so fast. Factors most often cited include the growing economy, the limits imposed by the Growth Management Act, and the fact that more people are moving to Washington attracted by the natural beauty of the region and the promise of well-paying jobs.