Category Archives: buyers

Just Sold

One of the things I love most about my job is helping first-time home buyers find their dream home. Last week Sarah and Mike closed on their dream house, a rambler in Shoreline with mid-century features in the living room and an incredible backyard.

We looked at countless condos, townhomes, and single family homes. They lost out on 3 other offers. One of the things I do when I’m out with buyers is watch their non-verbal responses to a property. When Sarah and Mike walked into this one, I saw a response I hadn’t seen previously – of joy and relaxation – and I knew we had found the home for them.

This home did not have an offer review date and had only been on the market for 3 days. Time to move quickly. We wrote an offer above list price with an inspection contingency (which was great because they had already paid for a couple pre-inspections where they didn’t get the house). The lender quickly sent me a pre-approval letter. And voila, Sarah and Mike got the house.

Congratulations to the new homeowners! May you have years and years of joy in your new home.

6th Time is the Charm

I met Steven and Lauren back in January at an open house. They were looking to buy their first home. Steven is an architect, so they wanted to buy a home that needed some work, to create their dream spaces.

By the end of March Steven and Lauren had their financing lined up. Not only were they pre-approved, their lender had put them through underwriting. With 20% down and strong financing, they were the ideal buyer.

But we’re in a competitive market, so getting a house is more than just having all your ducks in a row.

Their first offer was on a beautiful Columbia City home in need of some updates. The sellers received 8 offers and it sold for 25% above list price and beyond Steven and Lauren’s maximum budget. Their 2nd offer was on an incredible mid-century modern in Beacon Hill that was in need of a studs down remodel; Steven and Lauren weren’t willing to pay list price because of the amount of work needed, and they didn’t get that home either.

Next up was a view property in Seward Park, also in need of extensive remodeling. That one sold for $100,000 over list price. They moved on to a home near Alki Beach that also needed extensive work; that one went had 27 offers and went for 33% above list price.

As you can imagine Steven and Lauren were becoming pretty frustrated at this point. All they wanted was a place to call home. Their first anniversary was a little over a week away and they decided that for a present for themselves, they were going to get a house. They toured another 25 homes or so, and found 5 they really liked. They ranked them by offer review dates and decided to do an offer a day until they got one. Offer #5, also in West Seattle, wasn’t accepted either.

It’s now May 21st and their anniversary is just days away. Offer #6 is submitted, and yes, they got a house! Persistence paid off. They took some risks, waiving both their financing and inspection contingencies, and that made a difference. That, and they stretched to their maximum. The sale closed last week and they got their  anniversary present and dream house.

In 2018 I’m donating $500 to the non-profit of the client’s choice in honor of their closed transaction. Steven and Lauren chose for their $500 to go to Habitat for Humanity Seattle/King County. Their purchase of a new home will help another family get into their own home.

Congratulations Steven and Lauren (and Roxy, their dog), you’re going to love living in West Seattle near the Junction.

Interest Rates are Rising

If you’re thinking of buying a property, you should move forward with your plans now. According to one lender I work with, last week she saw an increase in interest rates every day. While most of us have been predicting that rates would hit 5% by the end of year, we have already reached (and exceeded) that percentage.

As interest rates increase, your buying power decreases. Let’s say your lender has qualified you for a home purchase of $700,000 with 20% down. A month ago your monthly payment would be around $2,837 with a 4.5% interest rate. At 5% that payment would be $3,006, or $169/month more. Your lender may no longer qualify you to purchase a $700,000 home but instead more likely around $675,000 to keep your payment around the $2,837/month. If we see a 7% (being conservative) increase in prices this year, your $700,000 home would sell around $750,000 by year end. By waiting, you are likely to decrease the amount you can pay for a home.

If you’re considering buying a property this year, the time to move is now. Give me a call at (206) 790-0081 or email Jamie@JamieFlaxman.com so we can talk about your plans and needs.

 

How Many Offers Does it Take?!

It’s a tough market out there for buyers. With demand for housing seriously outweighing supply, buyers are competing on most listings, and losing out on many.

The most offers I’ve had to write for a client was 2 years ago, when it took 8. I’ve heard of buyers who have submitted in the double digits.

Right now I have 2 sets of buyers who are on the offer roller coaster. One set has submitted 4. The other 2 (and we’re waiting to hear on the 2nd). It’s frustrating. You find a house you love and want to buy, but end up competing with 26 other offers (yes, last week buyer set 1 was one of 27 offers). You move on, but then you go through it again. What to do? Here are some tips I offer to buyers:

  • Know the numbers. You know what your maximum you can spend is. But also know the market numbers. If homes are selling 10-20% above list price, you should be looking at properties listed 10-20% below your maximum.
  • Have your financing lined up, and make sure your lender has taken you all the way through underwriting (except for a property address). Have a local lender who is available on the weekends.
  • Look at homes that have been on the market for more than 10 days. These are less likely to receive multiple offers. In this case, you might be able to look at homes at or slightly above your maximum as you might be able to get an offer accepted below list price.
  • Think about what you can compromise on. Could you go a few miles farther out? Is having a garage more important than getting a house? Don’t restrict yourself to fenced yards, you could put a fence in yourself.

For more ideas on how to compete or to talk about the real estate market, please call/text me at 206-790-0081 or email me.

Home Buying Class

This Thursday, April 26th, Julia Eaton of Axia Home Loans, and I will be teaching a class on learning to buy a home. Topics include: steps in the home purchase process; understanding today’s real estate market; options for financing your purchase including how to obtain a mortgage; and why it might be in your best interest to buy sooner rather than later.

Thursday, April 26, 2018, 6:00-8:00pm at the Phinney Neighborhood Association, Blue Building, Room 3

To reserve your space or with questions, please email Jamie@JamieFlaxman.com or call/text 206-790-0081.

How Do I Compete in this Crazy Real Estate Market

If you’re a buyer in our crazy, hot market, you may be wondering, how do I compete? While most properties are receiving multiple offers and bidding wars, it is very possible to be successful in our market.

I have an 8-step process for helping my buyers be successful. These steps begin with being pre-approved for a mortgage and knowing the maximum amount you can afford. I have a list of wonderful lenders who can help you with your pre-approval.

My 8-steps include recommendations on pricing and how to make your offer stronger. If you’d like to learn more about the 8-steps, please contact me.

Another option in our market is to look for homes that have been on the market for more than 2 weeks. It’s very possible these homes have been overpriced, so even if the list price is higher than your max budget, you may be able to negotiate to a price in your range.

Let’s talk about your home buying needs. Phone/text 206-790-0081 or email me.

What a Crazy Month

When I think of December and real estate, I think of quiet. Everyone is getting ready for the holidays or going on vacation. It’s a great time for me to catch up on paperwork and plan for my business in 2018.

This past December did not hold to market trend. It was crazy out there. Open houses with a 100 visitors. Listings receiving 28 offers. Multiple offers being received the week between Christmas and New Year’s.

What’s going on you ask? The data for December isn’t out yet but based on what I’ve seen, here’s my theory to why we had a crazy month: We have almost no inventory of properties for sale and people want to buy before interest rates go up and tax reform goes into effect.

Do you want to buy a property? Do you have a property you’ve been debating about selling? Give me a call/text at (206) 790-0081 or email at jamie@jamieflaxman.com for a complimentary consultation.

New Listing on Phinney Ridge

My colleague Mark Ashmun and I are excited to announce our latest listing, 749 N 67th St, Seattle, WA 98103.

Enjoy everything Phinney Ridge and Green Lake with this 2007 craftsman, including a permitted 2 bedroom ADU w/ great income potential or perfect for extended family living. The home offers 7 bedrooms and 4 full baths, 2 kitchens, 2 laundry rooms, and 2 off-street parking spots.

There is a large deck for entertaining and the custom designed backyard has an apple tree, rose garden, hot tub, fire pit, and more.

Additional features include:

  • 3,910 square foot home
  • 4,960 square foot lot
  • Tons of storage throughout
  • Central A/C for main and upper floors
  • Gas forced air heat
  • Master suite with gas fireplace, 5 piece bath and large walk-in closet with CA Closet system
  • Peek-a-boo Green Lake views from 2nd floor
  • P-Patch is across the street and 1 block to Green Lake

Download 749 N 67th St Flyer

For more information on this home or on buying or selling a home, contact me at 206-790-0081 or email me.

 

As Summer Winds Down

Summer doesn’t end until September 21st, but for many, summer ends with Labor Day (this year September 4th). With kids heading back to school and summer vacations over, the real estate market usually sees an uptick in September. More listings come on the market so it’s a great month to buy a home. And if you’re on the edge about selling, we should get your home on the market soon before the market slows down for winter.

To talk about your real estate needs, give me a call/text at (206) 790-0081 or an email to Jamie@JamieFlaxman.com.

Wallingford 1911 Bungalow

4010 1st Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98105, Listed at $740,000

I’m excited to announce my latest listing, a wonderful 1911 bungalow in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood. This home has 3 bedrooms and 2 full baths and is waiting for your updates. Additionally, the house has cathedral ceilings, loads of natural light, and period touches. Add to that a sun room off the kitchen – imagine sipping your coffee while watching the sunrise over the Cascades, or put in a comfy chair and you’ve got a reading nook.

Gardeners will love the yard with its raised beds, fruit tree, and flora. Right now there are crab apples, tomatoes, and zucchini coming in. There’s a one car detached garage, rebuilt in 2001.

The location is ideal – just blocks to Gas Works park & local shops. Easy access to the University of Washington, South Lake Union, and downtown Seattle.

Upcoming Open Houses

Wednesday, August 9, 11:30am-1:30pm

Saturday, August 12, 1:00-4:00pm

Sunday, August 13, 1:00-4:00pm

For more information:

Email Me

Call or Text Me: 206-790-0081

Download the Flyer: 4010 1st Ave NE Flyer

Watch the video.