- Known as the “Apple Capital of the World”, Wenatchee is a historic North Central Washington community that offers picturesque nature views, exciting outdoor activities, and year-round mild weather
- The largest city in North Central Washington, Wentachee has a robust economy thanks to its booming tourism industry and thriving agricultural sector. Real estate demand is high.
- The city boasts a very competitive real estate market, with a particularly strong demand for single-family, waterfront, and mountain homes for sale in Wenatche, WA.
- Wenatchee’s prime location near rivers, alpine forests, and mountain ranges has allowed residents and visitors alike to enjoy a variety of fun and exciting outdoor activities all year round.
Wenatchee, WA locals think of their city as a little piece of heaven. And for all the best reasons. Surrounded by majestic rivers, desert landscapes, alpine forests, and mountain ranges, this historic community’s 34,000 residents are spoiled for beautiful views, as well as the perfect blend of rural living and urban comforts.
Encompassing an area of around 8 square miles, Wenatchee is the largest city in Chelan County. It sits at the heart of Washington state, and is flanked by the scenic Columbia River to the east and the Cascades Range to the west.
Thanks to its central location, Wenatchee provides great access to three metropolitan areas in Washington – Seattle, the Tri-Cities, and Spokane. It’s also just a three hour drive from Vancouver, Canada. A mere thirty minutes away are the popular resort towns of Leavenworth and Chelan, providing plenty of tourism opportunities in the area.
With the abundance of nature destinations in and around the city, Wenatchee is an outdoor lover’s paradise, offering unending opportunities for adventure whatever the season. The city’s economy is more than just about tourism, however. It has a thriving agricultural sector and is one of the main producers of fruits in the region. In fact, the city has long been known as the “Apple Capital of the World”.
As the largest city in North Central Washington and an anchor of the Wenatchee Metropolitan Area, Wenatchee is a regional hub and home to numerous retail businesses, healthcare services, and government offices. Technology is thriving in the area, along with hydroelectric power production.
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A brief history of Wenatchee, WA
Wenatchee was named after its earliest inhabitants, the Wenatchi Native Americans, who were the first to settle at the confluence of the Columbia and Wenatchee Rivers. They were followed by a host of settlers, including missionaries, gold prospectors, and cattle farmers, who were attracted to the valley’s fertile soil, convenient location, and abundant natural resources.
The arrival of the Great Northern Railway in the 1890s led to the influx of new residents, who came to the valley for the fertile agricultural land. Wenatchee steadily grew from there, and boomed in the early to mid 1900s with the opening of several dams, industrial plants, and mining companies.
Homes for sale in Wenatchee, WA
Overview of Wenatchee, WA Real Estate Market
As of April, 2020, property values in Wenatchee have increased by 5% compared to the previous year. The median listing price of homes for sale was $372,500 or $203 per square foot, which is lower than the Wenatchee Metro median price of $246 per square foot. The median sale price of homes in the city is $355,000, up around 23% from the median sale price in June, 2017.
The Wenatchee real estate market is very competitive, with a property for sale often receiving multiple offers. From March to May, 2020, homes sold for just about 1% below the listing price and go pending for around 25 days.
Around 57% of residents are homeowners, and the rest are renters.
What you can find
Buyers will find plenty of real estate options in Wenatchee, from listings of spacious single-family homes to condos and townhomes. There’s a wide range of architectural styles, including Ranch, Craftsman, Bungalow, Prairie, and Northwest. Wood and stone exteriors are popular, creating harmony with the city’s rich natural features.
There’s something for everyone in Wenatchee. You’ll find listings for upscale homes with beautiful finishes, state of the art kitchens, spacious landscaped yards, and the best views of the valley. There are also numerous opportunities for starter homes, with listings of affordable properties found throughout the city.
Wenatchee features family-friendly neighborhoods where you’ll instantly feel safe and welcome. There’s a good mix of established communities and new developments. Find listings in the historic district, surrounded by arts and culture, or in the downtown area, close to shops, restaurants, banks, and offices. If you want greater privacy, look into neighborhoods close to forests, the rivers, and Wenatchee’s best outdoor attractions.
Waterfront homes are some of the most coveted properties in the city, providing great views and the best access to water activities in the area. Mountain homes are also in high demand for the stunning vistas they offer and the proximity to outdoor destinations.
Living in Wenatchee, WA
General cost of living
The cost of living index in Wenatchee is just slightly above the national index, but is around 19% lower than Washington state’s. Housing in the city costs about 30% more than the national average, but around 30% less than the state average. In all other cost of living factors, including groceries, transportation, and healthcare, Wenatchee’s indices are lower than the state and national averages. In particular, Wenatchee has one of the lowest utilities costs in the region.
As the regional hub of North Central Washington, Wenatchee is a bustling economic center and home to numerous businesses of all sizes. While agriculture continues to play an important role in the city’s economy, hydroelectric power, technology, healthcare, and tourism have also become major sources of jobs and income for residents, not only in the city but also the rest of the Wenatchee metropolitan area.
The Cascade Mountains to the west protect Wenatchee from rain, resulting in mild weather all year round. The city enjoys more than 300 days of sunshine and experiences all four seasons. Summer is the busiest season, as tourists flock to the area for the many outdoor activities they can do here. The temperature generally peaks in August at around 81 degrees F.
Winters are also busy, with tourists coming for ski season. The snowy period in Wenatchee typically lasts from November to early March. Spring sees the re-greening of the area, perfect for the start of festival season.
Wenatchee is home to over 180 restaurants where you can enjoy a wide range of cuisines, including barbeques, Mexican, American comfort food, and Asian. And with the area’s strong agricultural tradition, you can expect the finest farm to table cuisines.
Must-tries in the city include long time staples and new favorites, such as McGlinn’s Public House, Pybus Public Market, Tiki Hawaiian Barbeque, and Wild Huckleberry. See this page to find more options.
Kindergarten to Grade 12 students in Wenatchee can attend Wenatchee School District, which includes 9 elementary schools, 5 middle schools, and 6 high schools. There are also several private schools in the area.
Those seeking higher education can find opportunities in the North Central Educational Service District and Wenatchee Valley College. Washington State University also has a presence in the valley through the WSU Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center.
Getting around Wenatchee is made convenient by several transportation services. The main public transportation system is Link Transit, a commuter bus system that serves 17 communities in Chelan and Douglas Counties, as well as outlying communities like Leavenworth and Chelan. The city also has an Amtrak station served by different intercity coach buses.
Travelers to Seattle can take the BNSF Railway, or a commercial flight out of the Pangborn Memorial Airport.
Parks and recreational activities
With abundant outdoor destinations all year round, you’ll never run out of things to do and see in Wenatchee. The city operates 17 parks covering 465 acres, with facilities like baseball fields, basketball courts, gardens, swimming pools, splash pads, and more.
The city’s crown jewel is the Ohme Gardens, a nine acre alpine garden founded in 1929. Sitting on a hilltop overlooking Wenatchee, it features winding walking paths amid stunning views, waterfalls, serenity pools, and more.
Camping, hiking, biking, and fishing are the most popular outdoor activities in the area. You can do all these and more in the many state and national parks in the Cascades Range. The closest to the city include North Cascades National Park, Squilchuck State Park, Olmstead Place State Park, Lake Wenatchee State Park, and Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park. On the east side of the mountains is the Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort, a winter resort with light powder and easy terrains that make it perfect for skiers of all ages.
Wenatchee Valley wines have received wide recognition throughout the country. Visit the tasting rooms and wineries in the valley to enjoy a sampling of the finest wines in the region. See this page for information on where to go. The valley’s breweries and cideries are also not to be missed.
Art and history
Explore historic Wenatchee through museums like Cashmere Pioneer Village & Museum and the Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center. If you’re into the arts, Wenatchee has a flourishing art scene, as showcased in a number of galleries throughout the valley.
Golfers of all skill levels will love the many choices for a golf course in and around Wenatchee. Check out this page to see your options.
Learn more about living in Wenatchee, WA
Contact us, the Coldwell Banker Cascade Real Estate team. We are the #1 real estate firm in Wenatchee Valley and surrounding areas. We have been honored with a Premier Office Gold designation by Coldwell Banker, and are in the top ranking each year among all Coldwell Banker firms internationally.
We are proud Wenatchee locals and we give back to the community in a big way. Each year, we donate more than 1% of our gross sales back to the community, totaling over $50,000 annually.
We invite you to browse our website. Go on a video tour of our properties for sale, see our blogs to learn more about the local lifestyle, go through our listings, and chat with us if you have questions about homes for sale in Wenatchee, WA. We will be happy to help. Contact us at 509-888-8887 or drop us a message through this page.