The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Michele Smith
the Times 

Dayton realtors say local housing market is strong

 


DAYTON—Garry Snyder, owner of Christy’s Realty in Dayton said local home sales remain strong, in spite of the state mandated restrictions on in-person meetings, put in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 .

“I’ve had a very good year,” Snyder said. “It has been very busy. We’ve had a lot of sales under contract.”

Snyder said there are fewer current listings, but that was true for this time of year even before the COVID-19 restrictions.

Snyder has thirteen active listings with home prices ranging from $138,900 to $449,900.

Reasons some people are listing their houses include buying a bigger house, or building a house, or downsizing.

Several of his listings are also due to sellers relocating for health reasons or because of job transfers.

Snyder said it isn’t unusual to list a house one day and get an offer the next, or within a week.

He thinks the homes that have not sold or have been on the market for a long time, may be listed at too high a price, need a lot of work, or are in the flood plain and require expensive flood insurance.

His best guess for the current scarcity of listings is that people are happy living here.

Snyder and his wife Anne Higgins own fifteen rentals, he manages around 60 properties in all, and have had no problem collecting rent due to the COVID-19 economic slowdown.

“Everybody has paid up,” he said.

Snyder said people have had financial help with rent and utilities through the Blue Mountain Action Council, the Walla Walla Housing Authority, and through Project Timothy.

Snyder said he is unaware of any commercial properties currently for sale. Christy’s Realty recently closed a sale for the old Shell gas station on West Main Street.

Blue Mountain Realtors is owned by Blaine and Julie Bickelhaupt.

Julie Bickelhaupt agrees with Snyder about the strong local market for home sales.

Interest rates are at an all-time low and buyer interest is at an all-time high, for both land and home sales.

“It’s a perfect time to buy a house, to move up, or to downsize,” she said.

She thinks new people are discovering Dayton as many are looking to move out of areas with busier lifestyles.

The Bickelhaupts manage between 20 and 25 properties in Waitsburg, Dayton and Prescott.

She said their tenants have been very responsible and have been able to remain current with rental payments.

 

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