Fences & Flowers

The CB Bain Blog

Homeowners who’ve made the arduous decision to sell their place have plenty to do to prepare for the day when their home hits the market. The condition of the house - inside and out, the age of the sellers - older or younger, and the homeowner’s level of desire to control the preparations will be factors in creating a well-considered timeline.

You’ve been renting or residing with family for a while and you’re tired of living in someone else’s home. Maybe family is getting too close for comfort or you’ve have had enough of the neighbor, who always slams his apartment door. These are common reasons I hear when a first time home buyer is ready to purchase a home. If you are planning to buy and are currently renting, think ahead. The planning can be weeks, months or even years. Having a game plan will help you be prepared so when the time is right, you will be able to make your move. The following are five things to do when preparing to buy a home.

As we may be tipping off the fevered pitch of the residential real estate market here in the Pacific Northwest, it’s a good idea to highlight some valuable credentials awarded by the National Association of REALTORS® or its affiliates. These designations may be recognizable and valuable to potential home sellers or buyers as they search for brokers who will best assist them in navigating our ever-changing market.

May 14, 2018

Written by:

Mark Jacobs

In the ever-convenient world of online meet and greets, there are plenty of reasons to dive deep when interviewing real estate brokers. Certainly, some of that can happen via phone, direct message or chat, even by email, but once the field is narrowed down, the conversation should continue offline whenever possible before choosing your broker. Here’s why it matters:

An ethical and hardworking real estate broker has the best interests of the client in mind at all times. When working with a seller, it’s clear that we want her to benefit financially as much as possible from the sale of her home. But, that’s only the end result. The best brokers will also initiate some hard discussions about what it will take to show the home and its features in the best possible light. 

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?  

Rightfully so, future homeowners have lots of questions about how the new tax laws affect presumed advantages to owning a home. It’s true that some significant changes took effect January 1, 2018 such as the allowable interest deduction on mortgage loans and the deduction of state and local taxes which also includes the payment of property taxes.

Everyone knows that size matters, right? Home buyers are perhaps looking for a larger home, a big yard for the kids, a 3-car garage while sellers are looking for the possibility of an escalated purchase price, giving them the largest “profit” or equity return on what is often their single largest investment. Of course, these common objectives are completely valid but unique to every individual or family.

The frenetic pace of our current real estate market opens the door for homebuyers to use creative tactics when searching for their dream home. It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of such methods as well as the additional time it takes to initiate unconventional search campaigns.



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