Category Archives: Buying

Weekly Statistics Ending May 5, 2017

This week’s activity cooled somewhat compared to last week’s marathon. The market is still active to be sure, but more buyers are taking their time to check out their options. Our 1.75 days of gorgeous weather possibly played a role…

Click here for the full report and neighborhood-by-neighborhood statistics!

© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island |  (206) 232-0446 | mercerisland@windermere.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040.  Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Weekly Statistics Ending April 21, 2017

We saw an incredible uptick in homes for sale this week and some slowing in the volume of pending sales. That said, we are hearing crazy stories of hot Seattle listings being bid up 20-25%. Be careful out there! Know your limit before you get emotionally attached. Having a savvy Realtor can help you make smart decisions even when the market is bonkers.

Click here for the full report and neighborhood-by-neighborhood statistics!

© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island |  (206) 232-0446 | mercerisland@windermere.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040.  Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Should I Waive The Inspection?

Jay,

The house I want to buy looks great and some of my friends are saying my offer stands a better chance of being accepted if I waive an inspection. Should I?

While I applaud your friends trying to help you get the home you want, in short, I do not recommend waiving an inspection. I have seen too many structural deficiencies hiding behind fresh paint to feel an inspection is superfluous.

Having an inspection gives you the opportunity to get to know the bones of the home and discover the minor or major issues of the property – important information for any future homeowner.

Even if a home is being sold “as is”, it is worthwhile to have an inspection done so you can get an idea of what it would cost to do the needed renovations.

One strategy that buyers in highly-competitive markets are employing is getting a pre-inspection. In this scenario, the buyer would pay to have an inspection done before making an offer on the property so they can know the possible fixes the property needs ahead of time and decide whether they want to move forward with an offer or not.

There are pros and cons to having a pre-inspection. First, not all sellers will agree to a pre-inspection. Second, the buyer pays for the inspection out-of-pocket and the seller may not even choose their offer to accept, causing the buyer to walk away empty-handed.

However, a pro is that the inspection itself no longer is a contingency in the offer, making the sellers feel more at ease.

A buyer may be faced with a seller who indicates they have already had a professional inspection done of their property and therefore a buyer inspection is not necessary. However, I still advise buyers to have an independent inspection completed. Just because a seller may have had a pre-inspection done does not mean they have fixed all the issues the inspector found – or they may not have fixed them in a way that is up to the buyers’ standards.

If you are thinking about moving and want to know more about inspections and the buying or selling process, please contact me at 425-260-0716 or jay@jayagoado.net.

Weekly Statistics Ending April 7th, 2017

Many neighborhoods saw a slight cooling off this week with pending sales lower than the craze of last week. More new listings promised to come to market could ease the pain felt by buyers in this extreme seller’s market. Check out this week’s report neighborhood by neighborhood for details!

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island |  (206) 232-0446 | mercerisland@windermere.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040.  Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Kitchen Remodeling

Jay,

We are thinking about remodeling our kitchen but are not sure how much it could cost or if it is worth it if we try to sell in 5 years. Does it make sense to remodel our kitchen?

When thinking about doing a kitchen remodel you have to identify the reason for the remodel. Some people remodel their kitchen to suit their current lifestyle needs while others do it for the purposes out bringing extra value to their home. They type of remodel you do will depend entirely on your budget. And most people fail to plan a budget that they can live with. Often they start with choosing appliances or cabinets they have fallen in love with and then they build from there. This can cause budgetary nightmares down the road so it is recommended you start with your budget and work with kitchen remodeling pros who can give you a reality check on what is possible within that budget.

According to Remodeling Magazines national remodeling costs, professional kitchen remodels range from $56,000 for mid-range remodels to $110,000 for upscale remodels while the do it yourself remodel averages $24,000.
When investing this kind of money pay particular attention to the following kitchen remodeling budget tips:
1) Keep the kitchen layout the same to save money
2) Avoid using expensive upscale materials like exotic woods for the cabinets
3) When trying to save money don’t scrimp on plumbing and electrical
4) Get multiple bids and negotiate for what you need

When a kitchen remodel is done right it can bring an excellent return on your investment and provide you with a state of the art kitchen for you to enjoy for years to come.


SOURCE: http://www.remodeling.hw.net/

Thinking About Moving in a Few Years – Remodeling The Bathroom

Jay,

My family will likely be moving in about three years from our home. We have done nice updating throughout the house, but our master bathroom is woefully in need of some updating as it was last updated in the early 80’s. Does it make sense to remodel?

While you will likely not recoup everything you put into your bathroom remodel, it may indeed be worth the time and effort. Furthermore, if your home can stand out from the competition when it does come time to sell, you may benefit from a shorter time on the market and higher sale price. Of course, until then, you can enjoy your bathroom.

According to Remodeling Online, their Cost Vs. Value Report, if a bathroom were remodeled and the house sold within one year, an average rate of return was 84.9%. The average spent was $12,918 with $10,970 recouped.
However, if the floorplan of your bathroom doesn’t need attention and your cabinets are in good shape, you may be able to get away with a much less-intensive remodel. Simply re-facing the cabinets, adding new countertops and hardware, and updating fixtures such as the sinks, toilet, shower and tub can save a lot of money.

SOURCE: http://www.realtor.com/home-garden/remodel/remodeling-projects/top-7-roi.aspx

Weekly Statistics Ending March 31, 2017

This week was beyond eclectic as every neighborhood seemed to beat to its own drum completely oblivious to what was happening next door. Check out this week’s report neighborhood by neighborhood for details!

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island |  (206) 232-0446 | mercerisland@windermere.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040.  Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Weekly Statistics Ending March 24th, 2017

Sales increased this week at many price points in nearly every neighborhood throughout the Seattle-Eastside region. The $2 million and above price point continues to have more supply than demand, but otherwise the market very much favors home sellers.

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island |  (206) 232-0446 | mercerisland@windermere.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040.  Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Weekly Statistics Ending March 17, 2017

News of substantial expected mortgage interest rate increases in 2017 may motivate buyers further to purchase while rates are low. Every 1% increase in interest rates equates to about a 10% reduction in purchasing price for the same monthly payment. So if you purchased a $600,000 home at 3.5% interest it would be about the same monthly payment as a $540,000 home at 4.5% interest.

The market quieted this Saint Patrick’s Day week as most neighborhoods saw a status quo result instead of the upward momentum we had been experiencing. Fewer homes available on the market was likely the primary cause of this stagnation. 

Click here to to view the complete report for all 16 MLS areas

© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island |  (206) 232-0446 | mercerisland@windermere.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040.  Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.

Weekly Statistics Ending March 10th, 2017

Housing inventory reaches record low, but brokers expect spring bounce

KIRKLAND, March 6, 2017) – Home buyers are in a spring mood, but sellers are still hibernating, suggested one broker while commenting about the latest statistics from Northwest Multiple Listing Service. Figures for February and feedback from brokers indicate record-low inventory is spurring multiple offers, rising prices, fewer sales, and frustrated house-hunters.
Year over-year pending sales (mutually accepted offers) declined for the first time since March 2016, falling 8.9 percent. Eight counties, including King and Snohomish, reported double-digit drops in pending sales as the volume of new listings couldn’t keep pace with demand.
During the past three months, brokers have added 17,572 new listings to inventory, down only 5.7 percent when compared to the same three-month period of a year ago. During the latest December-to-February time frame, MLS members reported 22,393 pending sales, far outpacing the number of new listings.
“Our robust market has created extreme conditions, and we’re seeing frenzy hot activity on each new listing coming on the market,” reported J. Lennox Scott, chairman and CEO of John L. Scott. “We’re also experiencing some of the lowest inventory levels on record,” he noted.
In fact, a check of Northwest MLS records dating to 2004 shows no other month when the number of active listings dipped below the 10,000 mark – until last month.
At the end of February, there were 9,091 active listings in the Northwest MLS system, which encompasses 23 counties. That represents a drop of nearly 25 percent from the year-ago total of 12,107.
“Home sellers and buyers are complaining equally about the current market’s low inventory,” remarked MLS director George Moorhead, designated broker at Bentley Properties. “Sellers are frustrated when they cannot find another home to match their current needs, or when a home goes off market so fast that the option of a contingent sale is not even considered,” he stated.
Buyers have been grumbling about the market for the past two years, Moorhead said. “That mood has escalated into a panic as other buyers up the ante – at times to a level that even causes real estate professionals to shake their heads,” he remarked.
Brokers believe seasonality is a factor, with several saying they are expecting an uptick in listings.
View the full press release

Northwest Multiple Listing Service, owned by its member real estate firms, is the largest full-service MLS in the Northwest. Its membership of nearly 2,100 member offices includes more than 25,000 real estate professionals. The organization, based in Kirkland, Wash., currently serves 23 counties in Washington state. 

View the full FEBRUARY 2017 combined report by neighborhood