Kennewick -- A new study says Washington's housing market is slowing, but prices remain high, making it harder for for renters to become first-time home owners. That's according to statistics by the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at Washington State University in Pullman.
There were 26-thousand-720 homes sold statewide during the first three months of this year. That's 9-point-2 percent drop from the same quarter in 2006.
While home sales are slowing, the median price of a house increased 7-point-4 percent over last year. That compares to a nearly two percent decline in the national median price for a single-family home during the first quarter.
In the Tri-Cities, Yakima, and nationwide, a new trend has surfaced. Hopeful homebuyers with bad or no credit will face a struggle when seeking financing.
Brian Nott with Vanguard Mortgage & Title in Kennewick, says lenders have in the recent past extended credit to those with marginal scores, and many have defaulted. This, he said, has created what he calls a "sub prime fiasco." And the backlash is now being felt in the housing marketplace.
As far as home prices go, Nott says costs are stable for homes in the Tri-Cities.