Fences & Flowers

The CB Bain Blog

In Seattle, where median home prices jumped $20,000 in a single month to $777,000, homebuyers are beginning to consider whether a home’s aesthetics and functionality warrant its purchase price. Sellers are also feeling the pressure of competition where it’s becoming necessary to pay for neglected repairs, consider minor renovations, apply a fresh coat of paint and stage the home appropriately in the hopes of attracting a hoard of buyers.

These days, you can’t seem to go anywhere without someone talking about real estate values. A common discussion of how much value a homeowner’s house has gained can be heard at most any get together or neighborhood Starbucks. With the press constantly writing about the real estate market, these discussions can be quite competitive. Depending on where you live in King County, last year, your value may have increased between 10-20 percent. While someone living in Seattle has seen some of the largest gains in the country, the rest of King County has also benefited from our region’s demand. But how has the rest of King County increased compared to Seattle, and is the big city really the big winner in this value battle?  

Late boomers, like myself, are busy people. We’re still raising kids or about to send them off to college. Many of us are at the apex of our careers or juggling fast-paced schedules at home for everyone in the family. Adding to the fever pitch, we’re often already caring for aging parents.

Buying or selling a home is a lengthy process filled with paperwork and discussions. You might hear a lot of crazy terms and acronyms thrown around. MLS, BOMK, CMS… it all becomes a blur! So, what do all those terms mean?

I just heard from my longtime pal, Steve, who shared the news that he and his wife had just sold their beautiful houseand would be moving in three weeks. I was surprisedto hear this because theirsweet little bungalow was their empty-nester home, the smaller place they’d down-sized into after their kids had grown and gone and begun families of their own. Plus, Steve’s green thumb had turned the yard into a real standout. But things change and now, to be nearer the grandkids, a move was in order.

When I decided to sell my beloved first house in late 2009 it wasn’t a particularly good time. We were a year into the Great Recession and home prices were down. Way down. Having owned the house for 14 years and substantially improved it, I still made a handsome profit on its sale. But had I waited a few years my proceeds would have been greater. On the other hand, lower home prices meant I got a smoking deal on the house I bought, which wouldn’t have happened even a year later and would be unimaginable in today’s red-hot market.

Dreaming of a new home can be fun and exciting. But when you’re ready to begin the buying process, it can be overwhelming. Where do you start? Should you move to a different state? Should you stick around? Do you want a different kind of home? Is the busy city calling your name or are you content with rural peace and quiet? How can you find the best real estate agent and lender?

In the Pacific Northwest, the real estate market is on fire. It’s been a seller’s market for a while, and 2017 is showing the same trends. Folks want to live here, and we can’t blame them. But finding the perfect home with such low inventory is tough. And winning the bidding war? That’s an even bigger challenge. So what’s a buyer to do?

When you’re selling your home, there’s so much to think about. Curb appeal, open houses, marketing your home… the list goes on. Selling in the fall means less daylight, so it’s time for you to light it up!

In Seattle, it’s definitely a hot real estate market. With all the latest corporations hiring throughout the area, there are simply more people moving here than there are selling. Consequently, listed homes are snatched quickly, often with dozens of offers made during the negotiation process. So what’s a buyer to do?



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