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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
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.
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.
This week saw a significant uptick in new listing activity in many areas and price points. A sign of things to come? We can only hope!
© Copyright 2017, Windermere Real Estate/Mercer Island | (206) 232-0446 | email@example.com | 2737 77th Ave SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040. Statistics provided by the Northwest Multiple Listing service and deemed accurate but not guaranteed.
I am proud to announce the formation of a new guild benefitting Seattle Children’s Hospital. It is called Project Kid’s Cancer Cure and it will directly benefit Seattle Children’s COG (Children’s Oncology Group) Clinical Trials Fund. It is very rewarding to know that the money I help raise will go directly toward these clinical trials. To put it in perspective, see below how the fundraising will directly impact these trials:
$25,000 – Will cover the gap between federal grant funding and actual cost of clinical trial participation for up to 6 patients.
$50,000 – Will cover the gap between federal grant funding and actual cost of clinical trial participation for up to 12 patients.
$100,000 – Will support the unfunded costs for a year of participation in consortium phase 1 clinical trials, allowing Seattle Children’s to sign on for trials coordinated by the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) or other consortia such as New Approaches to Neuroblastoma Therapy (NANT), the Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Consortium (PNOC), or Therapeutic Advances in Childhood Leukemia (TACL); and giving Seattle Children’s pediatric patients access to the most innovative treatments.
$350,000 – Will cover the annual deficit for all of Seattle Children’s cancer clinical trials.
When I decided to start this guild, I told my friends that I wanted my annual donation to Seattle Children’s Hospital to be more meaningful and I believe that this accomplishes that goal. As you can see, we have our work cut out but I have assembled a strong group of friends who will help me to raise funds for such a great cause. For more information about the clinical trials, take a look here
More information will follow along with ways to help us out with a donation or items for auction. Thank you for your support!
Pondering a remodel? Did you know some projects actually pay for themselves when it’s time to sell? Remodeling Magazine just released its 30th annual Cost vs. Value report, which provides a detailed analysis into how much popular remodeling projects costóand the value they add to your homeóin various regions across the county. Thanks to our robust housing market, the Pacific Region beat the national average for recoup on every single project.
A few key takeaways we learned from this report are:
- Exterior “curb appeal” improvements generally pack a bigger payback than interior projects
- Inexpensive improvements are easier to recoup than pricier remodeling projects
- Replacement projects usually net more than remodeling/expansion projectsówhich may explain the relatively low returns on kitchen and bath remodels/additions
For the full Pacific Region report on all 29 projects, including project descriptions and scope, click here!
Cost vs. Value data © 2017 Hanley Wood Media Inc. Complete data from the Remodeling 2017 Cost vs. Value Report can be downloaded for free at www.costvsvalue.com
What a year for rentals! You think that buying a home is difficult, try renting a home! Take a look at last year’s rental statistics put out by my friends at Windermere Property Management – Lori Gill & Associates. Just click on the photo below for valuable statistics.
This is so exciting! We have such a demand for condos in Bellevue that this is a much needed project. Developers have shied away from building condos and have instead focused on apartments. Insurance companies are charging so much money to insure builders, while building condos, because of the huge number of construction defect lawsuits that have taken place over the years. This has caused condo prices to soar. Take a look at the below Seattle Times article:
http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2013/03/26/some-buyers-snap-up-retirement-homes-earlyThe article below really hits home to me as our children are now in High School and we are starting to think about our plans once they head off to college. The pricing might not be as realistic out here but the concept certainly makes sense with interest rates on the rise and retirement communities are also on the rise in terms of appreciation.