Skip to content

WCRER Expands

The Washington Center for Real Estate Research (WCRER), based in the Runstad Department of Real Estate, has ambitious plans to expand its data collection and research activities in the coming years. These plans involve providing new types of data and extending the geographical areas and time ranges covered. WCRER staff are currently working hard to make data more accessible by redesigning the website and creating a new data dashboard. The Center also plans to engage in more applied research projects resulting in the publication of white papers of interest to policy makers and the real estate industry. The Research Committee of the Runstad Department of Real Estate Advisory Board, led by Michael Orbino, now has the mission of supporting WCRER in achieving these goals.

With respect to data, WCRER has begun to implement its plans by:

  • Redesigning the Apartment Market Report and increasing its frequency of publication from semiannual to quarterly.
  • Expanding Housing Affordability Index data for both buyers and renters by adding new indexes for cities and extending the county and state indexes further back in time.
  • Providing quarterly median house price data for all cities with populations greater than 10,000.
  • Providing alternative Area Median Income benchmarks for jurisdictions participating in the Multifamily Housing Property Tax Exemption (MFTE) program.

Several data projects are currently underway. These include:

  • Redesigning the quarterly Housing Market Report.
  • Adding a data dashboard to the website to facilitate access to our core housing data on prices, rents, and affordability.
  • Increasing the number of cities for which we provide data.

WCRER is also expanding its research activities through a series of white papers. The first of these, Finding Common Ground: Best Practices for State Policies Supporting Transit-Oriented Development, is intended to help inform the debate about TOD policies in Washington. Based on a review of state and local policies in Washington and other states, this report presents some recommendations for consideration by policymakers. This report was distributed to all state legislators and others involved in TOD policy. It was authored by Mason Virant, Associate Director of WCRER, Christian Phillips, Ph.D. student at UW, Steven Bourassa, Director of WCRER and Chair of the Runstad Department of Real Estate, and Arthur Acolin, Associate Professor in the Runstad Department of Real Estate. Funding was provided by Challenge Seattle through UW’s Mobility Innovation Center.

A second white paper, Increasing Washington State’s Urban Residential Building Capacity, provides an assessment of actions taken by municipalities to remove regulatory barriers to provision of affordable housing. It focuses on municipalities that received awards under the HB 1923 or HAPI grant programs to either prepare or implement Housing Action Plans. This report was authored by Steven Bourassa and Mason Virant and was funded by the Department of Commerce.

WCRER is also preparing to launch the first of an annual series of State of the State’s Housing reports this fall. This report will present a comprehensive overview of housing policy and housing market developments in Washington during the preceding year and is intended to be a reference document for state legislators and other policy makers.

For more information, please visit WCRER’s website at