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Residents of this city are wondering if they should be buying homes in Bellingham

Here's what draws people to Bellingham

Even with rising home prices in Bellingham, the area continues to attract the attention of Seattle residents, according to Redfin. Here's what some other national websites say about what attracts people to live here.
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Even with rising home prices in Bellingham, the area continues to attract the attention of Seattle residents, according to Redfin. Here's what some other national websites say about what attracts people to live here.

Even with rising home prices in Bellingham, the area continues to attract the attention of out-of-town homebuyers.

In a new report, residential real estate company Redfin found that among its users more were doing searches to move out of Seattle than move in during the last three months of 2017.

What cities were Seattle residents looking up?

An estimated 10.4 percent of those searches were for Los Angeles, but coming in second was Bellingham at about 9.3 percent. This continues a trend that started in the third quarter, when Bellingham was the most popular area for Seattle searches at 10.9 percent.

While Bellingham’s real estate market has been hot, Seattle’s market has been even hotter – the median price for houses and condominiums sold in King County last month was $571,250, a 20.3 percent increase compared to the sales in January 2017, according to data from the Northwest Multiple Listing Service. With the price increases Seattle homes have seen in recent years, more people are looking at Bellingham and Tacoma to buy a house and either commute or telecommute to Seattle, said Jon Whitely, a spokesman for Redfin.

0208 Migration map

Of the Redfin users searching for Bellingham homes last spring, the vast majority (69.4 percent) were from Seattle. The San Francisco Bay Area was next at 5.5 percent, followed by Los Angeles (5.4 percent) and Portland, Ore. (4.5 percent).

For Seattle, the fourth quarter of 2017 was the first time Redfin users were doing more searches to move out of the area than move in during that year. San Francisco and New York City topped the list for the highest net outflow searches. Seattle also had a high number of users searching within that city, a sign that many also want to stay there and buy a house.

Metro areas that had the highest inflow (more searches to move in rather than move out) were in the southwest and the south, including Phoenix, Las Vegas, Atlanta and Dallas.

Dave Gallagher: 360-715-2269, @BhamHeraldBiz

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