Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – August 2019 Newsletter

August 13, 2019

Seattle Market Update

Single Family Homes: In city sales have cooled. Buyers are seeing increased selection at reduced prices. Mortgage rates are low and usually this provides a lift to sales but it doesn’t seem to be having much effect on sluggish sales in town where property values are too high for many.  The story is different outside of Seattle, especially in Snohomish and Pierce county where homes often sell quickly and buyers are competing for homes still considered affordable.

Condo Market:We are seeing falling prices and rising inventory in the Seattle condo market. The trend is fueled by sellers who find being a landlord is harder than it used to be. According to a study from the University of Washington, nearly 40% of Seattle investors who rent out condos are selling in response to city regulations such as restrictions on move-in fees, criminal background checks, and regulations on how to qualify tenants. One exception are downtown condos where the market has been picking up.

Our Listings

9911 197th Ct NE, Redmond, WA – $1,225,000–   Exquisite Novelty Hill Home  – New Listing!

4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 3-car garage. Enjoy a bright, open floor plan & rambler style living. 3 bedrooms on the main level with nicely updated master bathroom and Jack & Jill bathroom. Guest suite & rec room upstairs. Fully fenced, huge yard on beautiful .78 acre lot with various outdoor entertaining areas. Newer furnace & A/C, 50 year roof, 1380 SQF unfinished basement w/permit ready plans. Updated kitchen w/granite, stainless appliances, large pantry & breakfast bar. Hardwoods. 7 minutes to MSFT, amazing schools, and conveniently close to just about everything.

10717 Burke Ave N #E, Seattle, WA – $369,000– Back on Market. FANTASTIC VALUEfor Northgate!

Modern Townhouse – 2bed/1.5bath + garage. Convenient location near everything Northgate has to offer – shopping, restaurants, transit center, future light rail and easy access to freeways. Well-maintained. Bright and open floor plan, kitchen with ample cabinets and counter space, inviting dining room. Spacious main bedroom with walk-in closet and cheery second bedroom on upper level. Exterior in great condition. Zero-lot line townhouse. No homeowner dues!

917 23rd Ave, Seattle, WA 98122 – $620,000–  Pending/Under Contract. Central District Charmer.

Welcome home to this cheery, clean and updated home in one of Seattle’s most diverse, hip and lively neighborhoods. 3bd/2bth, 2-off street parking spots. Walk to nearby Central District cafes, dining & shopping. Just minutes away from downtown. Many of the systems have been updated (electric, lighting, plumbing).  Inviting, private rear deck perfect for BBQs and outdoor entertaining. Urban micro garden space.  Two large off-street parking spaces. Lots of extra storage in walkable crawlspace under the home. Turnkey!

Did you know?

Kerstin works with a Group called Boomers Plus. Many of our clients are seniors and in addition to needing help with buying and selling real estate, some of them need additional services such as Reverse Mortgages, in-home care, aging-in-place remodelers, relocation assistance to assisted living, etc. We’d be happy to help you or any seniors in transition with finding trusted and skilled professionals that specialize in these services.

We’d love to hear from you

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

Thank you,

Kerstin

Brooks & Heinze Team at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827

Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Email: info@propertyinseattle.com

Web: www.propertyinseattle.com

 

Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – July 2019 Newsletter

Seattle Market Update

The trend from last month continues. Prices in Seattle are still dropping as inventories build and buyers continue to search outside the city limits for more affordable housing.  Last month, the median home price in Seattle fell to $781,000, a 3.9% drop from June of 2018. In King County overall, median prices dropped by 2.3% in June from the same period last year, to $695,000.

Will we soon see more MILs and ADUs

We might soon see more backyard cottages, mother-in-law suites and basement apartments. In an effort to address our city’s affordable-housing shortage, the Seattle City Council recently voted unanimously to enable the construction of more ADUs, while removing requirements that property owners live on site and provide off-street parking. These smaller units typically rent below market rate, and one in 10 provides free housing, usually to friends or family of the primary homeowner.  For more information on the recent changes click herefor an article in the Seattle Times.

Our Listings

10717 Burke Ave N #E, Seattle, WA – $399,950– BACK ON MARKET, buyer’s financing failed. Modern Northgate Townhouse – 2bed/1.5bath + garage. Convenient location near everything Northgate has to offer – shopping, restaurants, transit center, future light rail and easy access to freeways. Well-maintained. Bright and open floor plan. Kitchen with ample cabinets and counter space, inviting dining room. Spacious main bedroom with walk-in closet and cheery second bedroom on upper level. Exterior in great condition. Zero-lot line townhouse. No homeowner dues! MLS#1451735.

Buying a new house but all your funds are tied up in your current house

Some buyers choose to buy the new home contingent on the sale of their current home, meaning they will make an offer on the new home they want to purchase and ask the seller to agree that they will only go through with the purchase if they can sell their home. Sounds good, except most sellers will include a clause that they are allowed to entertain other offers and can bump you unless you remove the contingency if a better offer comes along. Buying contingent on the sale of your current home means you are not obligated to buy the new home unless you sell your current home but it does not guarantee you can stave off competition, especially in a seller’s market.

There are different solutions to this problem and the best solution depends on the current market conditions and your financial situation. However, If you have enough existing equity in your current home, you may qualify to purchase a new home non-contingent BEFORE selling your existing home with 100% financing, when financing with a cross collateralization loan. If you would like to research this option and get more information on this program, I would be happy to put you in touch with Paul Scobee at Evergreen Home Loans.

We’d love to hear from you

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

Thank you,

Kerstin

 

Brooks & Heinze Team

at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827

Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Email: info@propertyinseattle.com

Web: www.propertyinseattle.com


Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – June 2019 Newsletter

June 11, 2019

Seattle Market Update

In urban areas prices are decreasing, in most suburbs prices are still increasing slightly, and in markets with greater affordability prices are still soaring. Follow this link to view the decrease/increase in your neighborhood.

One of those hot markets where prices are still shooting up is Tacoma, where greater affordability and high demand are the driving factors. However, condominium prices in King County continue to fall. Figures show condo prices in King County dropped about 9.6 percent and inventory surged nearly 122 percent compared to this time last year.

Mortgage Interest Rates

According to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are currently at 4.35%, the lowest for 2019. Quite a change from the near 5% rates in mid-November. At 4.32%, the second week of February 2018 was the last time rates were this low.

graph rates

Our Listings

10717 Burke Ave N #E, Seattle, WA – $423,000 – BACK ON MARKET.  Buyer’s financing failed so we are back on the market. Modern Northgate Townhouse – 2bed/1.5bath + garage. Convenient location near everything Northgate has to offer – shopping, restaurants, transit center, future light rail and easy access to freeways. Well-maintained. Bright and open floor plan, kitchen with ample cabinets and counter space, inviting dining room. Spacious main bedroom with walk-in closet and cheery second bedroom on upper level. Exterior in great condition. Zero-lot line townhouse. No homeowner dues! MLS#1451735.

Did you know? 

Did you know that Seattle City Law requires vehicles be moved every 72 hours.  This can be a real pain if you only drive your car on weekends and take the bus to work on weekdays because you’ll have to move your car on Wednesday even if you don’t really need to drive anywhere. Or else, face a pricey parking ticket, as well as stiff towing and impound fees costing hundreds of dollars; and your car can be sold to cover the fees if you don’t pay up and get your car out of impound.

You might wonder why we bring this up in a newsletter about housing. More than 2,300 people (20% of the county’s homeless population) counted in 2017 lived in vehicles. King County Superior Court Judge Catherine Shaffer recently ruled that the city had violated a homeless man’s rights against excessive fines (tickets, tow and impound) under the Eighth Amendment, she also ruled the man was protected by Washington’s Homestead Act (Frontier-Era Law), which protects homes from forced sale due to certain debts. Basically, in her interpretation if a vehicle is used as a home these protections apply.

Opponents of the judge’s interpretations of the law fear this will translate into anyone being able to remain parked wherever and however long they want to as long as they claim they live in the vehicle because police will stop enforcing the 72 hour maximum parking restrictions.

For more insights on this topic, read what The Stranger and Seattle Times reported.

We’d love to hear from you

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

Thank you,

Kerstin

Brooks & Heinze Team at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827

Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Email: info@propertyinseattle.com

Web: www.propertyinseattle.com


Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – May 2019 Newsletter

May 16, 2019

Seattle Market Update

Some properties are hot and some not so much. What are the deciding factors: Affordability. Location. Type of Property.

Housing activity during April signaled good news for most home buyers as inventory continued to grow and the rate of price increases slowed, especially in urban areas.

Home buyers shopping for higher-end homes in pricier cities like Seattle and Bellevue aren’t paying any more than they did a year ago and at the same time enjoy more selection than a year ago.

However, home buyers looking for something affordable in the suburbs are in stiff competition with other buyers and inventory there is still too low to meet demand.

Single-Family Homes in King County under $650,000 are considered a bargain; in Snohomish and Pierce Counties homes under $400,000 are a bargain. In these price ranges, homes generally receive multiple offers and sell the first week on the market.

Last month’s median price of a single-family home in King County came in at $690,000 which is down 4.8% or $35,000 from the April figure last year. The median price for a condo unit came in at $403,750 in April this year and is 9.6% lower than last year.

In Snohomish County, the median price of a single-family home last month came in at $500,000 which is 1.2% lower than a year ago.

Rents

What it costs to rent, and how that’s changing – check out this interactive map. The first quarter of the year saw steep increases in rents in rural Snohomish County; in the south, Tukwila, Burien and Renton also saw some rent increases. If you are an investor, it might be time to adjust rents to reflect the changes in the market.

Did you know?

The best time to sell your home are the months of May and June according to a national study conducted by ATTOM Data Solutions. Seller premiums were calculated as the percentage of the median sales price that is above the estimated market value at the time of sale and were about 10% higher during these months than the rest of the year. The specific dates to watch are May 24, June 20, June 21, May 31, and June 28, according to the study. We agree with May and June being great months for sellers. However, the national study mentions that July is also a great month but our past experience in the Seattle Area has been that sales actually slow down between the middle of July and end of August and as a result sale prices don’t usually increase during this time.

Our Listings

New Listing! Modern Northgate Townhouse  – $423,000 – 10717 Burke Ave N #E, Seattle. Convenient location near everything Northgate has to offer – shopping, restaurants, transit center, future light rail and easy access to freeways. Well-maintained 2 bed / 1.5 bath townhouse with attached garage. Bright and open floor plan, kitchen with ample cabinets and counter space, inviting dining room. Spacious main bedroom with walk-in closet and cheery second bedroom on upper level. Exterior in great condition. Zero-lot line townhouse. No homeowner dues!

5818 East Dr, Everett, WA – $310,000 – 3bed/1.75bath – SOLD! Congratulations to the Utter Family.

Thank You

Thank you to Jacqueline P. for the referral!

We’d love to hear from you

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

Thank you,

Kerstin

Brooks & Heinze Team
at Skyline Properties, Inc.
Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827
Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541
Email: info@propertyinseattle.com
Web: www.propertyinseattle.com


Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – April 2019 Newsletter

April 8, 2019

Seattle Market Update

The spring home buying season is in full swing! Yowza!!! Open houses are “mad” houses and bidding wars have returned. Home prices in the region have jumped up in the last couple of months.

King County’s median single-family house sold for 3.2% less in March 2019 than a year prior in March 2018. We saw home values dip between June 2018 – December 2018 but since the beginning of 2019,  prices are definitely on their way up again.  Single family homes (under $500,000 especially) have seen great gains and interest from buyers. The condo market is not quite as hot but we are seeing some gains here, too.

Both pending sales and new listing activity around Western Washington surged last month. Prices in Snohomish County jumped nearly 5.5 percent, while King County’s median prices rose more than 3 percent in March when compared to February.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.08% the first week of April, according to Freddie Mac. The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.56%.

Property Taxes 2019 – some up, some down

Did your property taxes go up or down for 2019? Here is a list of property tax rates for each city in King County. Some cities saw property taxes go up, some down. Some examples: Bothell up 14.6% (ouch!), Shoreline up 6.6%, Burien down 2.1% and Seattle down 1.2%.

Our Listings

5818 East Dr, Everett, WA – $310,000 – 3bed/1.75bath – For more information and a video tour, click here. UNDER CONTRACT.

20620 60th Ave W #F, Lynnwood, WA – $242,950 – 2bed/1.75bath – SOLD April 2019. Congratulations to our clients John C. & Mary H. on this sale.

Did you know?

The Seattle Kingdome was so expensive that the building wasn’t paid off until 2015 – a full 15 years after it was demolished.

Thank You

Thank you to Jennie J. & Edie T., Stacey K., as well as Taylor S. for the referrals!

We’d love to hear from you

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

Happy Spring,

Kerstin

Brooks & Heinze Team at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827 &Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Email: info@propertyinseattle.com

Web: www.propertyinseattle.com


Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – March 2019 Newsletter

March 12, 2019

Seattle Market Update

The Seattle Real Estate Market is heating up! We had very cool temperatures this last month but the housing market is heating up again. Buyers and sellers are no longer sitting on the sidelines waiting to see what will happen – they are taking action. What a difference a month can make!

During last month’s Snow Storms, showing activity dropped more than 41 percent the week of the heaviest snow, according to the NWMLS which tracks agent access to homes on the market. Despite the weather disruptions, brokers added lots of new properties to the market during the month. Inventory is starting to be absorbed much more quickly, unlike the last 4-5 months when homes sat on the market a little longer.

In brief, sales are happening! Prices are shooting back up. Mortgage interest rates are low, economic indicators for our city are looking good, and buyer demand is high. Some buyers who had given up last year are back on the prowl.  We are even seeing multiple offers and bidding wars making a slow comeback in some areas.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.35% during the week of February 28.

Our Listings

20620 60th Ave W #F, Lynnwood, WA 98036 – Do you know someone looking for a condo in the Lynnwood area? We just listed a spacious 2 bedroom / 1.5 bath condo / 2-car carport. This is a top floor townhouse style unit with a nicely updated continental bath including jack-n-jill sinks. For more information take a look at this video.

Affordable Housing Upzone Rezone

Making more affordable housing available is one of many priorities for Seattle’s City Council. One of the many options under consideration are allowing for denser construction in the hearts of 27 neighborhoods while also imposing affordable-housing requirements on developers. This is met with applause by some and stern criticism from others. Click here to learn more about this, including a map feature that allows you to check on your neighborhood. We often have clients contact us and ask us what effects certain rezones have on their property value. If you are concerned about this for your property feel free to contact us.

Did you know?

This “bank” made one in five home purchases in the U.S. possible. What is the name of this bank? The “bank of Mom and Dad”.  Homeownership is out of reach for many young people — and those who don’t have family members to turn to for help are often out of luck. The down payment is the biggest hurdle to a home purchase. Many renters who would be able to meet monthly mortgage payments can’t qualify for a mortgage because they’re unable to save enough for a decent down payment to either get a loan or get a loan with reasonable terms.

We’d love to hear from you

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

Thank you,

Kerstin

 

Brooks & Heinze Team

at Skyline Properties, Inc.

Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827

Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541

Email: info@propertyinseattle.com

Web: www.propertyinseattle.com

 


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,

Kerstin

 

Brooks & Heinze Team
at Skyline Properties, Inc.
Kerstin Brooks: 206.276.5827
Krisanne Heinze: 206.920.2541
Email: info@propertyinseattle.com
Web: www.propertyinseattle.com


Brooks & Heinze Seattle Real Estate Team – January 2019

January 14, 2019

Seattle Market Update

2018 in review – The year started strong for real estate. High demand from well-qualified buyers, low interest rates, a strong economy and low inventory kept driving prices up the first half of the year. The second half of the year, sales slowed as higher mortgage rates and unsustainable price increases squeezed would-be buyers out of the market. At the same time, inventory improved offering more options to buyers, however, inventory for affordable homes didn’t really improve all that much. Homes started to take much longer to sell over the summer, not for a lack of interested buyers but more for a lack of housing affordability. Once the rates declined again toward the end of the year, sales started to rebound slightly showing that homebuyers are very sensitive to mortgage rate changes.

2019 “crystal ball” – We’ll have to see. 30-yr-Mortgage Rates are projected to increase to 5.0% in Q2, 5.2% in Q3 and 5.3% in Q4 but we don’t know what they will actually be. The biggest problem in our area is a lack of inventory, particularly affordable inventory. Seattle is facing some real growing pains. The sudden injection of tech wealth over the last 5+ years has exacerbated inequalities pushing people and businesses out of the city. Unless solutions are found for some of these issues, housing appreciation may be modest.

Comparing Seattle trend to National Trend

Looking at the information from October 2017 – October 2018. You can see that the increase in rates eased appreciation in most other parts of the country but unlike in Seattle didn’t push prices downward.
This graph published in the Seattle Times Business section visually conveys this interesting point.

graph

Did you know?

Did you know that the shutdown of the IRS & other Government Agencies is causing headaches for homebuyers and lenders? There is a delay in financing or refinancing mortgages because lenders cannot obtain income validation for form W-2 and personal tax return income. Some people will have to wait to get their mortgage refinanced or move into their new home.

Our Listings

1431 NW Richmond Beach Rd #1, Shoreline, WA – 2 bdr/1.5bth – $234,950 – Under Contract.

The townhouse is located at the Brookside West Condos, a well-managed 16-unit townhouse community with many long-term residents. Spacious master bedroom is connected to the 5-piece master bath. The second bedroom is loft-style. Open floor concept on main level with access to large, level and fenced in yard. Home needs some TLC.

We’d love to hear from you
Any questions, comments, or feedback? Contact us any time.

Happy New Year,
Krisanne and Kerstin


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