Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – August 2021 Newsletter

August 22, 2021

Seattle Market Update

We are seeing a cooling in the urban housing market but that doesn’t mean homes are now affordable or easily attainable. This statement can also not ring true for suburban homebuyers as the majority of those homes are still selling quickly and above list price, particularly in markets about an hour outside the city or in price ranges below $600,000. Competition for homes eased slightly in July but inventory is still tight and it is still a strong seller’s market.

There is usually a little slowdown of activity in August in the Seattle market as people enjoy summer and travel. This year, it feels like this slowdown happened a month sooner, coinciding with the lifting of many pandemic restrictions in the area at the end of June. Online home searches, in-person tours and mortgage applications have all been on the decline. It’ll be interesting to see if the pace picks up again in September or if this is a long-term trend.

In Seattle, the median single-family home price this July of $896,500 is up about 11% from last July but down from a $919,000 peak in May.

The current average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage is 3.03 percent. At the current average rate, you’ll pay a combined $423 per month in principal and interest for every $100k you borrow.

Summer Home Maintenance Tips

We have 30 summer home maintenance tips, most of which you can do yourself. Following are four of them. Ask us for a complete list if you are interested:

1, Clean your dryer vent. Clean out all of the dust and lint trapped in the vent and exhaust duct. Dryers vents can be a fire hazard if they’re not cleaned and maintained.

2) Give your deck a once-over. Check your deck to see if there are any boards that look like they’re rotting. Have them replaced. Hammer any nails that are loose. Reseal your deck. 

3) Add a layer of mulch. Extra mulch will help fight off weeds and help your soil retain moisture during those scorching summer months.

4) Protect your home against unwanted guests. Cover any holes that are more than a quarter-inch wide. Get your tree branches trimmed back so they don’t create a highway for squirrels to your attic. Branches should be at least 8 feet from your roof. Do away with yard debris. Leaves and twigs are a haven for animals that might decide to invade your home.

Congratulations to our clients

Congratulations to AJ and Laura on the sale of their Greenlake Rambler!  

We’d love to hear from you

Any questions, comments, or feedback? Contact us any time.

Enjoy your summer,

Kerstin & Krisanne

Brooks & Heinze Team

at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827

Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541



Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – July 2021 Newsletter

July 12, 2021

Seattle Market Update

Properties still in high demand but we are seeing some cooling. We have seen more homes hit the market, finally increasing the supply of homes for sale. At the same time, homebuying demand has decreased, leaving the market feeling a few degrees cooler. Despite these changes, it is still very much a seller’s market but the share of homes sold above list price has flatlined in most urban areas. However, most first-time homebuyers in the suburbs looking for more affordable homes still face fierce competition.

NWMLS figures show the median price on last month’s completed transactions was $779,919 in King County (Snohomish County, $675,000; Pierce County $507,375).

Pandemic Mortgage Forbearance

Millions have avoided financial disaster during the pandemic thanks to government-mandated mortgage forbearance, which allows homeowners to skip payments or make reduced payments. As of March 2021, about 2.2 million homeowners remained in forbearance, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

If you are one of those homeowners, currently on a forbearance payment plan, communicating with your loan servicer prior to the end of your payment forbearance is crucial to avoid damage to your credit and/or foreclosure. Mortgage servicers continue to process millions of forbearances and under the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s new rules, effective Aug. 31, 2021, homeowners can continue to request a forbearance through the year-end. If you are not able to resume payments at the time your forbearance ends, you still may be able to enter into a loan modification with your mortgage servicer, but you should start those discussions before your forbearance period ends.

Our Listings

North Greenlake Rambler – 3 Bds / 1.5 Bths, $725,000 – Pending/Under Contract.

Congratulations to our clients

Congratulations to Michaelle and Randy on the sale of their Lynnwood Mid-Century, $650,000 – Sold.

We’d love to hear from you

Any questions, comments, or feedback? Contact us any time.

Thank you,

Kerstin & Krisanne

Brooks & Heinze Team

at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827

Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541



Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – January 2020 Newsletter

January 26, 2020

Seattle Market Update

2020 is starting out as a seller’s market! In December, buyers had fewer homes to choose from in King County than any time since February 2018. To some extent, seasonal factors are at play as housing markets generally contract in December but the shortage in inventory was more than just a seasonal trend. Inventory for single family homes and condos (combined) was down by more than 30% in seven counties: Thurston (-54%), Pierce (-38.9%), King (-38.8%), Snohomish (-35.6%), Mason (-32%), Kitsap (-30.6%), and Skagit (-30.5%). There is only about 1.2 months of supply (6-month supply would be a balanced market). Available homes were quickly snapped up by buyers.
What does this mean for buyers looking to buy right now? Few homes to choose from and stiff competition from other buyers, as well as bidding wars driving up home prices. Whew!
Krisanne and I are working with motivated buyers and we can hardly get to the good homes fast enough with our clients before they go under contract! There are just too many buyers chasing too few properties. What a frenzied start to the new year!

Did you know?

The most expensive home to sell in 2019 in our area was in Hunt’s Point, WA. The 9,420 square foot home sold for $37,500,000. The second biggest sale was a $30,000,000 home on the waterfront in Medina. In 3rd place, another home in Medina on the waterfront which sold for $16,050,000.

Our Listings / Sales

We don’t have any home for sale right now but we are working with a seller in Shoreline and one in Kenmore to bring their homes on the market in the coming weeks. Stay tuned.

We’d love to hear from you

Life transitions such as growing a family, empty-nesting, dissolving a relationship, or other life circumstances often necessitate a change in living arrangements, let us know if we can help you with your next move.
Any questions, comments, or feedback? Contact us any time.

Happy New Year,

Brooks & Heinze Team
at Skyline Properties, Inc.
Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827
Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – February 2019 Newsletter

February 8, 2019


Seattle Market Update

There is a clear lack of consumer confidence evident in the real estate market. January is always a little slow but we saw slower activity in the market than usual last month.

Seattle Area home prices are still dropping but for most Seattleites that still means homes are out of reach. The median income of homebuyers in the Seattle metro area has reached $114,000 or about 40% higher than the region’s actual median household income of $82,000.

The 30-year fixed mortgage averaged 4.46 percent for the week ending Jan. 31, up from 4.45 percent the previous week. A year ago, mortgage rates stood at 4.22 percent.

There is hope that the softening of house price appreciation along with increasing inventory of homes on the market, as well as historically low mortgage rates will give a boost to the spring homebuying season. However, signs of a slowdown in the global economy and lack of affordability for locals might dampen these hopes.

Seattle Rental Market

Seattle has added lots of new, modern and expensive apartment buildings to address the influx of newcomers to the Emerald City. Perhaps too many units were added. Currently, 1 in 10 units across the city are sitting empty. Landlords have responded by lowering rents slightly and offering more perks to get tenants in the door. For more detailed information click here. Unfortunately, affordable apartments are still hard to find.

The rental market is cooling the most in the priciest parts of the region. On the Eastside, rents dipped 2.5 percent, in the last quarter, while rents remained virtually unchanged in South King County and Snohomish County. Rents dropped at least 3 percent in the past quarter in Belltown, South Lake Union, Fremont/Wallingford, Kirkland, Redmond, Sammamish/Issaquah and Edmonds.

Did you know?

A recent report by AARP found that 90 percent of retirees want to stay in their homes as they age. Aging in place — rather than packing up and moving to a specialized retirement community — is the newest housing trend for older Americans.

We’d love to hear from you

Any questions, comments, or feedback? Contact us any time.

Thank you,



Brooks & Heinze Team
at Skyline Properties, Inc.
Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827
Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Has the Seattle Housing Market Gone Nuts? Yes! But why?

April 4, 2014

The market sure has heated up. Prices are going up and multiple buyers are competing for the few houses available.

So what’s going on?

– Seattle Unemployment is Low:

In February the Seattle area’s unemployment rate hit its lowest level since September 2008 at 5.1%. 

– Consumer Confidence is High:

Confidence is now at a new post-Financial Crisis high.

– Mortgage Rates are Still Attractive:

Current interest rates are roughly on par with where they were in August 2011 and still two points below the 6.41% average rate during the height of the housing bubble through 2006

– Limited Supply of Homes Available for Sale:

There is about a 1.8 month supply of homes for sale in King County. A 4-6 month supply is needed for a balanced market between home buyers and sellers. We are NOT in a balanced market – we have a strong seller’s market.

For much more detailed information, specific statistics and sources – see below:

Seattle-Area Unemployment at Late 2008 Levels

Let’s have a look at the jobs data for February and how the Seattle area’s unemployment rate and approximate labor participation rate alongside the national numbers.

In February the Seattle area’s unemployment rate hit its lowest level since September 2008 at 5.1%. The national unemployment rate is still a bit higher at 6.7%, also roughly on-par with late 2008 levels.

The Seattle-area labor participation inched up in February to 70.0%. The national labor force participation rate was steady at 63.0%.

For reference, in 2006 when everyone imagined the economy to be in great health, the local unemployment rate averaged 4.3% and the labor participation rate averaged 69.5%.

Here’s a look at the local and national unemployment rates:



Consumer Confidence at now post-Financial Crisis High

The Latest Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index based on data collected through March 14 is at 82.3 and was 4.0 above the February reading of 78.3. This measure of confidence is now at a new post-Financial Crisis high.

At 81.0, the Present Situation Index increased 0.7% between February and March, and is up 34% from a year earlier. The Present Situation Index is currently up 301% from its December 2009 low point, and sits at its highest level since April 2008. The Expectations Index rose even further in March, increasing 9.2% from February.


Mortgage rates still two point below average rate during the height of housing bubble through 2006

As of last week, the 30-year mortgage rate sits at 4.40%, down slightly from the high of 4.58% set back in August, but up more than a point from the low set in May of last year. Current interest rates are roughly on par with where they were in August 2011 and still two points below the 6.41% average rate during the height of the housing bubble through 2006 (source: Federal Reserve).

 Limited Inventory fuels Price Hikes / Multiple Offers

According to the statistics on the NWMLS (Northwest Multiple Listing Service – all real estate agents are members of this service), there is about a 1.8 month supply in King County and a 2.2 months of supply in Snohomish County.

In general, four-to-six months is the supply needed for a balanced market between home buyers and sellers. We are NOT in a balanced market – we have a strong seller’s market.

There are just about as many pending sales as last year this time but it appears, the only thing holding back more sales is the lack of inventory. It is not unusual to see homes get multiple offers, sometimes as many as 40+ in nice neighborhoods and most popular price ranges.

Happy House Hunting!  Contact us today if you are looking to buy a home or condo in the Greater Seattle Area.

Happy House Selling! Contact us today if you are looking to sell your home or condo in the Greater Seattle Area.  


Kerstin G. Brooks
Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team
Skyline Properties, Inc.
Cell: 206.276.5827

Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team – Fall Newsletter 2013 (mailed 10/18/13) – State of the Market, Winterizing your Home, When to Short Sell, and more

November 7, 2013

Dear Clients and Friends, 

What an exciting year 2013 has been for real estate so far.  I am sure you have heard the buzz of multiple offers returning to the market place.  Homes selling in a few days.  Home prices soaring.  But is that the whole story?  What does it all mean?

Please read our newsletter below to learn more about:

–  the State of the Market,

            –  Our New Listings,

            –  Keeping an Underwater Home and Short Sales, and

            –  Winterizing

State of the Market and Home Values:

Multiple offers on many homes are commonplace in the city, especially homes that do not fall into the category of short sales or fixers. Buyers prefer turn-key homes because lending is easier to obtain for these homes. Many buyers shy away from short sale homes because short sales can be difficult to negotiate and take a long time to close.

Buyers are having to compete for homes due to low inventory and increased buyer confidence. The low inventory of homes for sale can mostly be attributed  to the large number of “underwater” homeowners who are discouraged to sell because they owe more on their mortgage than their house is worth.  If prices continue to go up, more current home owners who have held off selling due to negative equity might list their home and offer more inventory and choices to home buyers.

The median home value in Seattle has increased about 15% over the last year (source: Zillow) and currently is at about $433,000. If you are interested in learning about the current value of your home, please feel free to contact us to get a free, no obligation comparative market analysis (CMA).

Recently, Bernard Bernanke startled many by announcing that the Fed will not wind down their bond buying program at this time. The program is part of an overall stimulus package geared at bringing back the national economy. The Fed’s purchase of these bonds over the last few years has driven mortgage rates to historic lows. The fear by many that there would be a reduction in bond purchases has caused mortgage rates to go upward briefly for a few months but for now, further rate increases seem less likely at least in the immediate future. This should continue to help keep housing affordable and aid the overall upward trend in the real estate market.

Our New Listings

Updated Mid-Century on large, private lot in Lynnwood.  $335,000. 3 bed/2 bath home on .31 acre lot! Large living room and dining room offer lots of space for play or entertainment.  French doors lead to large, private patio. Large master bedroom with beautifully updated bathroom. Don’t miss the soaking tub perfect for cooler fall and winter days. Plumbing has been updated.  Interior: 1608sqft / Lot 13,000sqft. + outbuilding for additional storage. Close to Interurban Trail, South Lynnwood Neighborhood Park. Easy access to I5, Hwy 99 & Transit Center. 6121 211th St SW.

Spacious Capitol Hill Condo.  $375,000.  1bd/1bth. Don’t miss this. Units are rarely available in Three19, a well-managed, newer building. This bright & spacious SE corner unit has tons of windows, hardwood floors& two decks. It offers custom blinds, closets & light fixtures as well as a gas FP, gas range, common garage parking & full-sized washer/dryer. You will have enough storage space with a walk-in closet, coat closet, pantry (yes!), laundry closet and a large storage unit. It shouts sophistication and style with its tasteful finishes. HO Dues $389/month, 819 SQF. 319 E. Summit Ave.

Shoreline Townhouse-Style Condo. $299, 950. A amazing amount of space and lives like a house. Three bedrooms, each with their own bath (1 full, one 3/4 & one 1/2 bath). Hard surface flooring, deck off master, new concrete patio & good sized private yard area. Close to Interurban Trail, shopping & Shoreline Community College. Low dues. New roof in 2013. Vinyl siding & low maintenance landscaping. Plenty of parking. Dead end street. Terrific unit and convenient to all. HO Dues $50/month. 812 N 145th Ct.

As always, more information and pictures of all our listings are available at

Should you keep an underwater house? Is a short sale right for you? Three questions to ask:

Short sales are still commonplace as many homeowners still struggle with making payments or make the decision to sell an underwater home. When does it make sense to sell an underwater home?

‘Home’ for most of us evokes warm and fuzzy feelings about family, security, belonging and community. To some, suggesting they walk away from their home may produce some anxiety.

However, when housing is the biggest single expense in a family’s budget and is ‘breaking your back’ you,  it’s worth untangling emotions and look at financial facts.

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) guidelines provide for thirty-one percent of gross monthly income to be allocated to housing. That includes property taxes and insurance. In the great housing boom, the stampede to buy before the price of housing got further out of reach enticed many buyers to greatly exceed those limits.

Overpaying for houses was justified by telling ourselves that the equity in our house was also our retirement nest egg. Then housing values plummeted. So, what to do? What questions should you consider in making a decision on selling your house as a ‘short sale’?

First question:  Could you decrease your housing costs if you rented? If current housing expenditures are close to the cost of renting, then it makes little economic sense to change.

Second question: Is real estate the best use of the investment component? The answer will depend on how far underwater the house is in today’s market. How much needs to be paid down before the investment is worth as much as the debt? When weighing alternative investments it’s important to evaluate other holdings. If there is a defined benefit retirement plan or significant stock holdings, perhaps holding an underwater house for a decade may make sense.

Third question: Can you make the current house payment in retirement? The closer you are to retirement, the harder you need to think about whether a retirement income can fund the wait for housing values to improve.

Conclusion/further actions: If the status quo is unsustainable or inadvisable in keeping an underwater house, you should consult with an attorney and real estate agent on next steps, including analyzing other option such as loan modification, HARP refinance, bankruptcy and strategic foreclosure.

Time to Winterize and Protect your Home:

After an incredible summer here in Seattle, fall was eager to start with gusto. How about all the rain, wind and cool temperatures we’ve had already. Is your house ready for the change in season? In addition to having rain coats, sweaters, hats and mittens in your coat closet as you prepare for the cold months ahead, it is vital to winterize your home.

Clean your gutters. Remove leaves and other debris from your gutters by hand, scraper or spatula then rinse them out to allow freezing rain and melting snow to drain. Make sure that your pipes are not leaking or misaligned. Also, your gutters should drain water 10 feet away from the foundation of your house.

Check the furnace. Turn your furnace on now to make sure that it is working. Have it inspected and cleaned by a professional. Your furnace should be cleaned and tuned annually. Replace filters. Keep your ducts in good condition; your ducts should be vacuumed once every few years.

Caulk and change your windows. Put up storm windows in order to provide an extra layer of warmth. Caulk around the windows to prevent water intrusion and drafts.

Inspect  the chimney. Sweep out your chimney if necessary. Ideally, it should be inspected before it is turned on the first time in the winter. Cover your chimney with a protective cap that comes with a screen. Have a professional chimney sweep conduct an inspection/cleaning. If you own a wood stove, sweep it more than once a year, install a glass door on it and keep it closed when your stove is turned off. Close your chimney damper when the fireplace is not in use.

Reverse the direction your ceiling fan blows.  By reversing the direction your ceiling fan blows during the winter, it will push warm air downward.

Insulate those pipes. Freezing temperatures can lead to a burst pipe. Insulate your pipes by wrapping them with foam rubber sleeves or heating tape. You can also use fiberglass insulation.

Questions? Looking to buy/sell?

Have questions about anything real estate related? Ask us, we are happy to be your resource when it comes to real estate.

We would love to help sell your home if you are ready to make a move. We also appreciate your referrals to friends and family if they are looking to buy or sell.

Happy Fall,

Kerstin & Krisanne

Kerstin G. Brooks & Krisanne Heinze
Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team
Skyline Properties, Inc.
Kerstin:  206.276.5827
Krisanne: 206.920.2541

Competition is Fierce – Hot Seattle Housing Market

July 10, 2013

Multiple offers – Rising Property Prices – Rising Interest Rates – Low Inventory – Preinspections – Cash Offers, …. this is what my clients are dealing with everyday now. Yes the market is hot. It’s exciting and exhausting. The video below, recently aired on King 5, describes what buyers are going through well.


Working with an experienced agent who knows how to make your offer competitive is key in this market. To learn more about what sellers like to see in an offer, feel free to contact the Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team.

Kerstin G. Brooks
Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team
Skyline Properties, Inc.

Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team – First Quarter Newsletter 2013

March 2, 2013

As we are well into 2013, we are thankful for all of our past clients, current clients and the opportunities we have living in this wonderful area.  Now to the market update…

State of the Market and Home Values:

After years of grave losses, home values finally started to increase in the latter part of 2012 (March/April 2012 was the bottom).  Gains could be seen in most of the Greater Seattle area. If you are curious about the value of your home, feel free to contact us. We are happy to prepare a free market analysis for you.  This last year also saw the return of multiple offers on some homes, especially homes that did not fall into the category of short sales or fixers. Buyers are having to compete for homes due to low inventory and increased buyer confidence.  Cash investors entered the market in a big way, as well as many first time buyers who see the value in homeownership and real estate. The low inventory of homes for sale can be largely attributed  to the large number of “underwater” homeowners who are discouraged to sell because they owe more on their mortgage than their house is worth.  Predicting real estate values for the future is difficult but there appears to be a consensus among industry professionals that home prices will continue to rise. If prices continue to go up, more current home owners who have held off selling due to negative equity might list their home and offer more inventory and choices to home buyers.

We are optimistic that the housing market recovery will continue moderately in 2013.

Tips for Selling in 2013:

Be realistic – Yes, there has been a lot of news of recovery, rising prices and multiple offers. It’s all true but the reality is that values are still off considerably from what they used to be. If you price your home right from day one, you will get fair market value. We can help you price your home competitively so you are not giving anything away and get what the market dictates based on comparable sales and current market trends. We will market your property to make sure it gets the attention it needs to sell but proper marketing will never overcome an inflated price.

Be prepared – You might want to do a preinspection. This gives you an opportunity to find out what issues will likely come up when a buyer has your home inspected. You can also get bids and shop around for contractors at your leisure rather than under time constraints when under contract.  This allows you to address any issues before going on the market.

Declutter,  dress up and stow away – Simple home improvements and decluttering can make your home shine and attract the right attention.  Repainting and a thorough cleaning, inside and out (roof, gutter, windows, carpets, floors, etc. ) will help make the marketing materials shine and attract traffic. It will also make a lasting impression on touring buyers.  Replace any broken light bulbs and consider using higher wattage light bulbs, especially in the winter months to make your home look brighter.  Big remodels generally do not pay back, especially if the buyer does not share your taste of finishes. Defects such as drippy faucets, leaks, etc. should most definitely be addressed.  Unattended defects might deter potential buyers or may make them more likely to haggle on price.  Start packing any items you do not need on a daily basis and declutter.  Open and organized spaces make your home look bigger and more appealing.  Lock up or stow away any valuables and medications.

Timing  – The best time to sell is when consumer confidence is on the upswing, interest rates are low, unemployment is decreasing and there are more buyers in your local market than there are sellers .  Spring is usually a favored time for sellers to put their house on the market because of longer daylight hours and healthier looking yards, as well as a convenient time for families with school aged children. However, with inventory at an all time low right now and currently increasing buyer confidence, sellers have an edge with buyers competing for a few good homes.  It is a good time to sell now.

Tips for Buying in 2013:

Jump – If you have been wanting to buy but you have sat on the sidelines because you have been afraid to commit, wait no more. The bottom of the market has passed (which was March/April 2012). Prices and interest rates are still low which makes this a good time to buy.

Be prepared – Decide if homeownership is right for you and take the time to run the numbers. Real estate is a long term investment and if you think you will live in your home less than five years, you should think twice about buying. Buying and selling have associated costs. We can run the numbers for you. If you have decided that buying is for you, get preapproved for a loan before you start the house hunt. Have your mortgage broker run your credit and then fix any blips or inaccuracies to make sure your credit score reflects your true rating. Better scores qualify you for better rates and better rates mean lower payments. Your income, credit and down payment amount will also determine the types of loan programs you are eligible for.  You should understand what your options and payments will be before you commit. Ask us for a referral to a qualified mortgage broker.  Also, sellers will not entertain offer from buyers who cannot show that they actually have the funds in hand or qualify for financing.

Carefully consider the neighborhood – there are a number of online resources that let you check crime statistics and the national sex offender list. Check out the commute and public transportation options for different areas and research schools. Visit the neighborhoods at different hours of the day and ask residents in the area what they like and dislike about their neighborhood.

Ask lots of questions and actively engage in the process  – Most sellers will put on the lipstick when they put their house on the market. They clean and paint the house, use airfreshners, cover things up with throw rugs, etc. – you get the picture. When you are looking at homes, take the time to look at details, ask to see the seller disclosure form that will show defects the seller is aware of and ask questions if you see things that seem out of place. No house is perfect but you want to know what you are getting yourself into. Turn on the stove, run the faucets, look in the closets, be aware of stains and blotches and so on. Of course, you should hire a licensed home inspector once you have decided to buy a specific home but you can weed out a lot of homes that are not in acceptable selling condition by paying attention yourself.

Attend our free homebuyer seminar – Whether you’re a first time homebuyer or a move up buyer, you will learn valuable information at these free home buyer seminars. The class will cover the State of the Market, Important Steps of the Homebuying Process, Pros and Cons of Buying vs. Renting, and Financing Options. There will also be time for questions in the end to make sure individual interests and questions are answered.  Call or email Kerstin at 206.276.5827 / .

New Listings

We have a new listing in Edmonds (Yost Park) neighborhood for $449,950.  It is 4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2-story with basement.  It has beautiful territorial views, a wine cellar, updated fixtures, spacious at about 2600 SQF and it is on a cul-de-sac, just minutes from downtown Edmonds.  Our first open house will be on Saturday, March 2nd, from 1-4pm and Sunday, March 3rd from 1-4pm.  Please let us know if you want more information.

Kerstin Brooks & Krisanne Heinze
Brooks & Heinze Real Estate Team
Skyline Properties, Inc.


What do a great agent and massage therapist have in common?

November 4, 2011


Buying a home is one of the most exciting things you can do. I remember when I bought my first condo – I was thrilled. I was excited about making the leap from renter to homeowner. Home buying is a great financial commitment and an intensely emotional experience.  When your emotions are involved in a purchase, there’s a possibility that those emotions can get out of hand and stress can taint the experience.

Experienced Buyer’s Agent with Great Communication Skills


 Fabulous Massage Therapist


 Stress-free Home Buying

Selecting the right home for you and your family should be fun. Picking the right agent to work with and finding a way for you to stay grounded during the process are key ingredients.

Finding a home to buy is actually pretty easy with all the information so readily available online today. However, getting that home under contract, managing the inspection, jumping the hurdles of title and settlement are the “scary” parts where your agent really “earns” his/her fee.  A good and caring agent will be there to educate you and hold your hand step by step.  Good communication between you and your agent will make the process easier and less stressful for you.

Also, having some other way to ground yourself when you start to feel overwhelmed or conflicted is very important. Massage is great for lowering tension and anxiety. It also helps with staying alert, being more aware and concentrating – all important when committing to a big investment like a home. When you are calm and your mind is at peace you are more likely to make sound decisions

 For a free, no-obligation home-buyer consultation, contact Kerstin G. Brooks of the Brooks & Heinze Team at 206.276.5827 or find the team online at .

 To schedule an appointment at Shift Massage, contact Kathy J. Rose at 206.399.8820 or find her online at .

Kerstin G. Brooks
Brooks & Heinze Real Estate
Cell: 206.276.5827

Smart Homebuyers are focusing on taking advantage of favorable rates along with the Tax Credit

January 11, 2010

Smart home buyers are focusing on taking advantage of the present, very favorable rate situation along with the still available tax credit.

Rates are likely to go up:

Please note that the main reason interest rates are so low is because the government is buying mortgage backed securities, or you may have heard the term “toxic assets”, which are basically sub-prime loans or loans that required no proof of income, allowed low credit scores and were generally 0% down.

After you get a loan through your bank or mortgage broker, the loans are sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and then those 2 entities package them up to sell them to investors. After the sub-prime meltdown no investors wanted them and so to keep Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae afloat, we, as taxpayers, bought them for essentially the “list price” even though they were not worth anything.

Even now, because interest rates are so low, private investors are not interested in mortgage backed securities (even though most of the loans now have a stringent qualification process) and so we, as taxpayers, are still buying them (and probably over-paying the banks).

In December (on the 24th, while most of the country was spending time at home with their family for the holidays) the Treasury announced there was to be no limit on what the government spent to bail out Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. The prior limit was 400 Billion. This is a good article to explain what that means (besides we are all getting ripped off and our children, children’s children and so on will suffer). .

So, when the government decides to start stepping out of the big business welfare role, interest rates will go up and I presume that will happen in 2010 sometime. So, what happens when interest rates increase? Buyer’s qualify for less money and it impacts the housing market because buyers can afford less.

Tax Credit for First-time Buyers and Move-up Buyers scheduled to expire April 30, 2010.

In order to qualify for the credit, all home purchase contracts need to be in effect no later than April 30, 2010 and close no later than June 30, 2010.

More about these tax credits can be learned in one of our prior posts from November 8, 2009 entitled “First Time Homebuyer Tax Credit Extended” and “A New Tax Credit for Certain Existing Home Owners”.

A great way to learn more about the above topics or decide if becoming a homeowner is right for you, please contact us or attend one of our home buyer workshops:


Date: Thursday, January 28, 2010
Time: 6:30pm – 7:30pm
Location: Northgate (Seattle) – 9709 3rd Ave NE #450, Seattle, WA 98115

Topics covered:
Loan Application Process, First-time Homebuyer Tax Credit, Market Conditions, Own vs. Rent Illustration, Home Buying Process, For Sale by Owner (FSBO), bank-owned, short-sale properties, Q & A. RSVP to Kerstin at 206.276.5827 or

Krisanne Heinze & Kerstin G. Brooks

Brooks & Heinze Team

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