Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) today reported a 43 percent increase in pending sales of single family homes and condominiums during May compared to the same month a year ago. However there were about 5 percent fewer year-to-date transactions than in 2010.
Why the wide discrepancy? During the first five months of 2010 sales were boosted by a federal tax credit. So through May 2010, the NWMLS reported 35,454 mutually accepted offers; this year's total for five months is 33,612 (down about 5.5 percent).
However there is no denying that activity and sales have picked up, which is reflected in the dramatic increase in pending sales. My business is way up and other Brokers I have spoken to have expressed the same thing. Moving forward you should see less skewed data. We should be seeing more apple-to-apple comparisons from now on making it easier to interpret how the market is really doing.