It has been brought to our attention that low inventory in Seattle paired with rising interest rates, might drive more interest for home buyers during the holidays than in years past. The housing market is still showing signs of stability when we typically experience a slow down in November and December. According to the NWMLS November’s new listings were up from a year ago and pending sales were also up, but tight inventory has continued to fuel home sales. Several Seattle neighborhoods are experiencing high demand for more listings, with many listings receiving several offers due to high demand, and bidding wars still present during the once seasonal slow. There are many advantages to selling this time of year, including typically only serious buyers are out shopping this time of year, and you can expect a slower closing process. If you’re interested in selling or embarking on the home search this holiday season, contact your local real estate agent today.
While other prospective buyers are taking a break from the home search grind, you’re steadily on the prowl for the perfect home during the holiday season, most likely because you have a greater need to buy sooner rather than later. You might be relocating to the area due to work or family, or maybe your current living arrangement has been compromised – whatever your situation may be, there are some perks to buying a home this time of year.
For one, the competition is much less aggressive. We’re less likely to see bidding wars with less competition between buyers, which might ultimately mean a lower overall price for you. Just as searching for a home during the holidays makes you a dedicated buyer, dedicated sellers are also searching for a buyer during the holidays. Trying to sell at the end of the year isn’t convenient, meaning sellers trying to sell this time of year usually aren’t choosing to, they need to sell in a timely manner. This might mean less negotiating for you, and possibly a quicker acceptance of your offer. Historically, lenders are also less busy this time of year, so its possible you might get a faster mortgage approval. It also pays to shop around – don’t go with the first lender you meet, get quotes from several before you make any decisions. Home prices in Seattle are remaining high, but December is typically a lower month even for our city sales. If you want to take advantage of these low season perks, contact your local real estate agent today.
According to the Seattle Times, the median home price for a single family home has risen 15% in King County from this time last year, after a rise in home sales over the summer. The median price for a single family in King County in July rose to $434,000, the highest it has been over the last 5 years.
In October we experienced a more balanced market, with 2,187 homes sold which was 10% more than those closed in October 2012 according the the NWMLS. Over the last year we’ve seen competitive bidding wars due to low inventory, and last month we began to see more listings on the market. In King County there were 4,575 single family residences listed, 6% up from last year, and while inventory is still relatively tight, we’re beginning to see a healthier real estate market emerge. If you’re interested in buying or selling your home, contact your local real estate agent today.
When is the right time to buy? That is the question many generation Y Seattleites are asking themselves as the price in rent continues to climb, and mortgage rates begin to slowly climb. Seattle residents in their 20s are currently watching rent increases surge, and are all wondering when interest rates will begin to be too high for them to afford as well. This age group became young adults at the time of the market’s slippery slopes in 2007, and do not want to be stuck in the financial crisis their family and friends may have suffered before. The tug of war between rent vs. buy has been debated time and again, and it seems to have comes to a head in today’s marketplace.
The median Seattle home sale price is up 15% in August from a year ago, and rent is up 6% in comparison to last year; is it time for generation Y to take the purchasing plunge? There are a lot of factors for them to consider, and contacting a local real estate representative is a step in the right direction to determine if it’s time for you.
As you begin your home search, there are plenty of things you already know to factor in the decision: price, neighborhood attributes, beds and baths, square footage, and proximity to work. But have you considered looking into which school districts are round the neighborhood you’re searching? In Seattle as we know many new homeowners aren’t planning on having children anytime soon or maybe not at all, but this doesn’t mean that you should cast the school district factor aside; even if you do not have children or do not plan to, the quality of education nearby can greatly affect how much you pay for your home, and how much you can expect to sell it for in the future. You’ll pay more for your home if it is within a good school district. Parents of school age children are always searching for high school ratings, and often will pay more to live in a zoned neighborhood within a highly rated district. A good school district can also protect you from the ups and downs of the real estate market; even in an unpredictable market, a home in a great school district will likely see nearby home values staying consistent or above the median. This will protect you when it comes time for the resale, and although there are no guarantees, you can rest assured parents will always be looking to move to the best neighborhoods with the top schools. For more information on Seattle real estate, please contact your local agent today.
San Francisco’s Stanford Hotels Corp. is buying a downtown Seattle development site for a whopping $16.75 million dollars! According to the Puget Sound Business Journal, the price that the Hotel folks are forking over is significantly less than the $30 million that the previous New York Group had paid for it back in 2007 (and has since lost in foreclosure) but is also almost twice the offer another company previously offered for the lot. The lot is located at 1903 Fifth Avenue, across from the Westin Seattle, and Stanford has declined to comment on any future plans for the lot at this time. According to the PSBJ, Stanford is also planning a 15 story hotel at 300 Terry Ave N in South Lake Union. There were a number of offers for the property which was originally listed in 2012 at $7.5M, but the finally selling price clearly indicated that Seattle is a highly sought after marketplace for development sites.
It’s been a long grueling few years for Seattle Bubble and Redfin pioneer Tim Ellis and CEO Matt Ellrilchman, but the launch of Porch, the new home improvement index has finally arrived! Curious what your neighbor paid for the kitchen remodel? Who designed the new building across the street, and which contractors are top rated in the area? The Seattle based startup Porch has a long list of data compiled to answers questions such as these, and will allow homemakers to access many home improvement projects and contact information for professionals in the area, making it simpler for homeowners to tackle huge home projects.
According to Seattle Bubble, the team at Porch has compiled their data through a variety of partnerships Nationwide, and developers are working hard to add more data and update new features in upcoming months after the site’s launch. The site allows you to do a map search of project completed in your surrounding area, view photos of those projects, and find professionals in your area. If you’re already a member of Porch, or plan on checking out the site, we’d love to hear your feedback!
Even if you’re an experienced buyer, buying real estate takes time and patience, and hard work to find the right home. Is it an investment home you’re after, or your first home? Zillow has compiled a list of things all buyer should keep in mind when thinking about buying real estate, and here is the synopsis:
Even though mortgage interest rates have slightly risen, they are still at historic lows. This has caused many people to put a pause on their home search, scared by the recent change in rates, but that could be a mistake, as rates will likely continue to increase over the next few years. Buyers should also keep in mind that while you’re real estate agent can give you guidance,it is your job at the end of the day to make every decision. Be sure that the home your purchasing is a smart financial investment for you, and review the title documents, mortgage loan documents and disclosures, etc. Do your research to avoid any problems down the road. Generally speaking, shopping around for 4-12 months is a good time frame to give yourself to look at dozens of properties before zoning in on the right one. Drive around the neighborhoods you think you’d like to live in regularly, and be realistic about the price range. No home is absolutely perfect, so do your research and shop around before you choose the right home for you. For more information on Seattle real estate, contact your local real estate agent today.
The DSA has released a detailed report of all of the benefits of the density of Downtown Seattle, and their findings examine everything from employment and residential density, to the effect on transportation and farm growth. Downtown residents only make up 4% of the city’s total land mass, but you might be surprised by some of the impressive stats showed compared to the rest of Seattle. By encouraging growth in residential and employment density, the benefits may finally outweigh the challenges.
They’ve documented that the efficient use of space should contribute to our area’s jobs, salaries, and revenue. Downtown density also increases transportation efficiency through increased public transit, and a more efficient system. The DSA’s report also indicated that there are environmental benefits to downtown density, a direct result from a decrease in carbon emissions from downtown workers and residents. You can view the full DSA report online, check it out for more information. You might be surprised to find that the downtown area is 4 times as dense as the rest of Seattle!
If you’re looking into a full family room update with new furniture, a fresh coat of paint, and accessories beginning the process can be very exciting, but also quite expensive. If you’re getting tired of looking at the same space everyday, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the difference a little change can make. The folks over at Zillow have compiled a list of a few changes to consider when redecorating on a budget that won’t break the bank. The first change that can surely drastically change the look and feel of the space is giving it a fresh coat of paint – and if you have a large family room that will require alot of paint, try painting only an accent wall to spice things up. A splash of a vibrant color on one wall can create a drastic change, and is relatively affordable. Try neutrals if you’re painting the whole room, and try something bold or bright if you’re choosing an accent wall.
Updating the mill work can be a game changer many don’t initially think about when beginning the decorating process, but new crown molding, or larger baseboards can really make a difference. Choosing a new rug can also spice up a room, even a new rug layered over your carpet can define a space. New furniture can of course completely change the look and feel of your room, and your wallet, but try searching for a new end table, or painting your coffee table a new bright color. You can also update accessories like pillows on your couch, or new lamps on your table to change the look and feel of the larger pieces of furniture. Without fail, getting rid of the items you don’t like or need in your room and cleaning it up can really make a huge difference as well. For more decorating tips on a budget, visit Zillow.