Is Amazon to Blame for Seattle’s Slowing Housing Growth?

Amidst Seattle losing its top spot on the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index and a slowdown in Amazon hiring, GeekWire asks, “Is Amazon responsible for Seattle’s housing cooldown?” According to the article, in this case, “correlation does not necessarily mean causation,” as market experts say that an increase in the number of homes for sale and fewer buyers on the market are at the root of changes.

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Washington Falls Behind Nevada for Fastest Home Price Growth in the Nation

After 20 months of leading the nation in home price growth, Seattle Times reports that the Evergreen state now trails behind Nevada in year-over-year price gains, though—to the chagrin of buyers everywhere—it’s not “because homes here have suddenly become cheap.” As of June 2018, prices across the state as a whole grew 12.1% compared to this same time last year, down slightly from the 12.8 percent increases reported in May. Many of the region’s markets saw a deceleration of at least 1 percent from May to June, including Seattle, Bellingham, Mount Vernon/Anacortes and Bremerton/Silverdale, among others.

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Seattle-Area Homebuyers Feel Some Relief Amidst Increasing Inventory

Though the Seattle-area real estate market has decidedly been in favor of sellers for the past couple of years, buyers felt a bit of relief in July, as inventory increased for the third consecutive month. As Puget Sound Business Journal reports, the median sales price for July 2018 was up just 5-percent on a year-over-year basis, a stark decline from the 18-percent surge from the spring sales season. The root cause comes down to inventory, as there were just over 5,000 homes and condominiums available for sale last month, marking “a remarkable 48 percent more than July 2017.” After three months of inventory gains, supply is now higher than it’s been since early 2015.

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Bike Shares Expand on the Eastside Amidst Concerns Over New Taxes to Seattle’s Program

Many of us on the Eastside have slowly noticed the influx of Limebike and Ofo bicycles for rent on the Eastside, a product of the dockless bike share programs that have cropped up throughout the city of Seattle and now on the Eastside, with Bothell implementing a program, and Bellevue and Redmond close behind. Now, as Kirkland Reporter outlines, the city of Kirkland is the latest Eastside enclave to consider starting a bike share pilot, as it was the topic of City Council debate in early July.

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Is Transit-Oriented Development the Key to Solving Seattle’s Affordable Housing Crisis?

As a recent Seattle Times article proclaims, “Sound Transit rail stations could help solve our housing crisis,” as each new LINK light rail station will afford the opportunity “to create vibrant, walkable mixed-use communities with significant amounts of new housing and reduced dependence on automobiles.” The $60 billion investment in improving transit and building new infrastructure to support the expanding light rail system marks the largest transit investment in the history of our region, and as the Times points out, “by 2040 we will have light rail connecting Everett to Tacoma and Seattle to Redmond and Issaquah,” which will provide unprecedented and seamless connections around the Seattle metro region.

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Seattle Undergoes Rare Inventory Increase with Relief Expected on the Horizon Amidst a Flurry of New Condominium Projects in the Pipeline

The Seattle area real estate market is in dire need of home inventory and some relief has come for buyers, as the Northwest Multiple Listing Service reported that real estate brokers added 14,524 new listings to the market in May, which was the first time this figure has topped 14,000 since May 2008.

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Seattle Housing Market Update

The Northwest Multiple Listing Service released statistics from May 2018 and revealed that for the first time since 2008, over 14,000 new listings came onto the market, revealing a rare inventory increase in an area increasingly marked by a lack of inventory amidst rising demand. As the report reads, “total active listings snapped a streak of 44 months of negative numbers during May when the year-over-year comparison showed an increase of 3.8 percent.”

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How First-Time Homebuyers Are Navigating Competitive Markets

A recent feature published by New York Times outlined the challenges many first-time buyers are facing in real estate markets around the nation, as starter home supply dwindles and prices increase. In areas beyond the Puget Sound, homes are selling quickly, especially when they are smaller and lower-priced, and “seasonal demand is increasing as usual, but buyers are finding that there is a lack of new listings.”

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RSIR Supports the 30th Annual "Spring for Schools" Luncheon in Bellevue

On Friday, April 27th, I joined a collective of Realogics Sotheby's International Realty (RSIR) brokers and members of the firm's executive team to support the Bellevue School District at the Bellevue Schools Foundation's 30th annual Spring for Schools Luncheon. Held at the Hyatt Regency in Bellevue, we were thrilled to raise $825,000 to support our local students. In addition to raising funds, attendees were treated to inspiring stories from students who have been impacted by community members. 

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The Art of Telling a Story & Why Listing Brokers Matter (Even in a Hot Market Like Seattle)

In our current real estate cycle, in which we have a completely tilted supply and demand curve (where 80,000 people are moving into King County annually with only 8,000 new units being built) the bidding wars have gotten a little out of hand. Given Seattle’s hot real estate market, I have met with sellers who have posed the following question: Why go with a full-service broker when there will be multiple offers anyway? Does marketing matter?

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The 2017/2018 Market Report

Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty’s acclaimed Research Editor and Data Analyst, William Hillis, has assembled a year-over-year review of eight key counties and 29 regional markets around the Puget Sound. In addition to in-depth market analysis, the report includes the “Condominium Conundrum,” Seattle’s stellar performance on the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index, the effects of Chinese capital controls and Canada’s restrictions on foreign buyers, landmark sales on the Eastside, and more. I have compiled a selection of key highlights including trends to watch, to spark a conversation so we may outline the implication for homes in your city.

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The 2018 Report on the Nation’s “Best Jobs” is Dominated by the Technology & Construction Industries

Indeed.com recently released their 2018 report on “The Best Jobs in the United States” and in a set of results unsurprising to Seattleites who have become accustomed to the influence of two particular industries in recent years, the technology and construction industries dominated the list. Though Indeed recognizes that there is a confluence of factors that contribute to what makes a job ideal, they narrowed categories down to two factors: 1) jobs with a minimum baseline salary of $75K and 2) jobs that have seen significant growth on Indeed.com within the past few years.

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Eddie Chang & King 5 News on Impact of Vancouver’s New Foreign Buyer Tax

llowing the announcement that British Columbia is increasing their foreign buyer tax on home purchases from the current rate of 15-percent up to 20-percent, King 5 News reported that the move “may create more demand from wealthy Chinese investors and homebuyers who are looking to purchase property in Washington state.” Adding to demand amidst anemic inventory supply, particularly in downtown Seattle condominium stock, however, is causing some worry.

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The Asia Services Group Meets to Discuss International Broker Best Practices

Weeks before the Lunar New Year celebrations began, the Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty Asia Services Group held a Town Hall meeting to review best practices when working with overseas buyers. The meeting was also attended by China Daily reporter Linda Deng, who covered the findings in a recent China Daily cover story, and was moderated by Marc Berger from Nyhus Communications.

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A Look at the School District Levies in the Upcoming King County Special Election

With sixteen school districts in King County asking voters to approve levies in the election on February 13th, many residents are asking questions about why the districts need additional funding, and whether the levies are necessary. This special election will mark the first since the McCleary educational funding ruling, which has caused many voters reason to question whether the levies need support.

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EducationAshley Breunich
Luxury Craftsman Home Meets Kirkland

New luxury home on a quiet street by D Mitchell Homes. 3342 sq ft. 4 bedrooms, den, and bonus room. Stamped concrete driveway surrounded by award winning landscaping that features irrigation, and a fully fenced backyard with a 350 square foot covered patio with skylights and a gas BBQ connection.

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6 Tips for New Homeowners

Signing the final paperwork and receiving the keys to your new home marks an exciting transition from the end of the transaction process into homeownership, and can often be accompanied by a sense of uncertainty at what to do next. For many, it’s difficult to know where to start and what to address first, so the Times put together 6 tips that all new homeowners should consider in order to save money and make the most of their investment.

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A Buyer in Tukwila Completes the First Cryptocurrency Home Purchase in Seattle

As Seattle Times reports, a recent home sale in Tukwila likely marked the first purchase in the Seattle area to utilize Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency in the transaction. The Tukwila home sold for $415,000 to a young investor who “used a combination of bitcoin cash (a new type of bitcoin) and several other cryptocurrencies for the 10 percent down payment and to help secure a conventional mortgage for the remaining cost of the house.”

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