The i-buying movement has been on the rise recently, especially within the last year. But with the housing forecast in 2019 indicating the market will continue to cool down, a new challenge is posed for electronic real estate companies such as Zillow and Redfin—and the challenges may be even greater in Seattle.
Whether it’s storage that doubles as décor or rooms that mirror soothing galleries, the best of Nordic design invites your eye to rest and consider. To bring a dash of Scandinavia to your own home, try any one of these approaches to embracing the less-is-more ethos.
In early December, the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) press release indicated that home buyers in our region are feeling less pressure and more options amidst lending limit increases and softening home price growth.
While many buyers and sellers choose to take a break for the holidays, listing your home for sale in the winter can be a great time to take advantage of less competition among other homeowners and get your home in front of buyers that are serious about closing a transaction. If you’re considering selling this season, here are a few key points to consider, courtesy of Upnest.
It might be hard to believe, but we are edging ever-closer to the new year and 2019 will be here before we know it. The start of a new year signals change and as we prepare what this one will bring, Seattle Timesdove into the top four technological trends that are making—or are set to make—an impact on the real estate industry. From modular housing opportunities and automated parking systems to a whole new level of amenities, explore those five trends and the resounding impact they may have on the Emerald City’s future.
I am happy to announce Leading in Luxury, a channel in partnership with a brand that understands the value of that reputation; Inman, who serves as the trusted source for real estate industry news, will host this exclusive section on trends, best practices, and innovations in luxury real estate.
Amazon is drawing closer to making a final selection for HQ2 as many are speculating that the company will select not one but two locations for their new headquarters. The two cities that seem nearest to the finish line are Crystal City, Virginia—which is located just outside Washington D.C.—and Long Island City, New York, as executives have made trips and secured high profile meetings with city officials.
Statistics from the third quarter of 2018 are in and Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty has analyzed the data with a look at the latest market trends in Seattle, the Eastside and Bainbridge Island. While previous reports this year continued along the same narrative—of anemic inventory and meteoric home price growth—this quarter brings a different story, as home price appreciation leveled off and buyers found more options on the market.
Right now, the 10-year treasury bond is jumping up. With the rise in the 10-year bump, consumers will most likely see another rise in mortgage rates. That is because most loans are sold on the secondary market and they share the same demographic as the investors who buy bonds. So, when one goes up, lenders have to increase interest rates so they can sell the loan to investors who are willing to take on a bit more risk. Interest rates on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are around 4.625%, which is still relatively low on an historic scale.
From September 26th to 28th, I joined Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty brokers Blake Ruud-Johnson, Katherine Hansen and Jason Gibbons at the 2018 Washington REALTORS® Fall Business Conference, working on issues that impact real estate brokers and current and future homeowners in Washington State.
At just over 12 percent year-over-year, residential prices in Seattle in July 2018 sustained their rate of increase from June, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Index. The Index showed Las Vegas, Nevada widening its lead nationwide with a twelve-month increase of 13.68 percent. Seattle remained second in the nation at 12.05 percent growth. Competing Pacific Coast gateway cities Los Angeles and San Diego were neck-and-neck, with home price increases of 6.37 percent and 6.18 percent, respectively, while prices in San Francisco rose by 10.8 percent.
Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC today announced that Tera Realty Limited in Shanghai, China is the newest member of its global network and will now operate as Tera Sotheby’s International Realty. Owned and operated by Ted Fang, the firm was established in 2016 and serves the residential real estate market in Greater Shanghai.
On Wednesday, September 19th, Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty brokers Jay Kipp, Brad Vancour and I were invited to Vancouver to visit Westbank, a world class developer, as they set the stage for the unveiling of the condominium buildings in Seattle. The first that is set to come onto the market is named First Light and will soon stand at the corner of 3rd and Virginia. In a recent visit to our affiliates at Canada Sotheby’s International Realty, Shaz Karim raved about how Westbank dares to do things differently and builds things no one else thinks possible, so excitement was mounting as we boarded a seaplane on Wednesday evening at Lake Union and visited one of their projects, the Fairmont Pacific Rim.
The University of Washington proposed its latest growth plan to the Seattle City Council Committee earlier this week and it will now advance with stricter requirements to driving and housing, as it works to massively expand its Seattle campus and construct the highly anticipated Innovation District. As Seattle Times reports, the master plan “calls for the campus to swell by 6 million square feet of academic, athletic, research and office space over the next 10 years and beyond.”
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.”
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.”
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.
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?