Archive for May, 2008

Normandy Park Real Estate and My Chat with Another Real Estate Agent About Current Market Conditions….

Sold Normandy Park listingYesterday while I was working on my computer, I received a call from a Normandy Park real estate agent. He called me to ask questions about a listing I had for a Normandy Park home that recently sold.

He has a listing with a similar home in the same neighborhood of Normandy Park that was listed about the same time as mine, and was asking about the selling price of my clients home. Last fall, with the Subprime Meltdown, the Normandy Park housing market really froze up and there were very few sales last fall. The market still has not loosened up much for the traditional heavier spring market, and prices are coming down since inventory is still high. The agent was trying to help his seller clients understand that they were going to need to lower their listing price to be competitive in todays current market conditions.

The agent and I discussed the current market conditions for Normandy Park real estate, the homes for sale in Normandy Park, and their listing prices. While we were talking I pulled up one of my mls searches for Normandy Park so I could verify the numbers we were talking about. I personally think that the home prices peaked in Normandy Park last May (2007), and that the prices are now adjusting downward a bit. While this is not good news for Normandy Park sellers, it is good news for buyers interested in buying a Normandy Park home. I am very happy that my sellers' home sold, it was an unusual transaction, but it did sell during a challenging time.

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Searching for the Perfect Sound View Home for my Client…

Three Tree Point looking towards Normandy Park in the distanceEarlier this week I was previewing 3 recently listed Sound View Homes for Sale on Three Tree Point and Normandy Park just 10 and 15 minuets south of Downtown Seattle. There have finally been more Sound View Homes coming on the market for this late spring Seattle real estate market to send to my client.

The first home for sale was on Three Tree point was the best of the group, and right across the street from the best candidate we have seen so far. The views are good, although you do see some "wires" going to the waterfront home below, and I could even hear the waves lapping on the shore below. The house has a very well remodeled kitchen and great master bath (just what today's' buyers are looking for: slab granite, stainless steel, spa master bath etc!) and all the rooms, except the 3 baths have Sound Views. There were couple of other good matches for things my client is looking for, unfortunately there is no real potential for a wine cellar, and no formal dining room....

The other two homes for sale were in Normandy Park and while they will make great homes for other buyers, they were not good matches for my client. The last one did have beautiful Sound Views across a lush, private backyard, but it is still very vintage 1950's and my client is looking for move-in ready...but it does have some very good potential for someone.

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Normandy Park Real Estate* Market Snapshot as of today for May 2008

ACTIVE - 56 Normandy Park Homes for Sale

120 Average Days on Market (DOM) $439,000 to $4,250,000 STI - 0 Subject to Inspection Normandy Park Homes

0 Average Days on Market (DOM)

CONTINGENT - 1 Contingent Normandy Park Home

44 Average Days on Market (DOM) $599,900 PENDING - 2 Pending Normandy park Homes

84 Average Days on Market (DOM) $464,950 to $499,950 SOLD - 1 Sold Normandy Park Home

335 Average Days on Market (DOM) $1,030,000

*Single Family Homes

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Three Tree Point Real Estate* Market Snapshot as of today for May 2008

ACTIVE - 13 Three Tree Point Homes for Sale

254 Average Days on Market (DOM) $545,000 to $3,350,000STI - 0 Subject to Inspection Three Tree Point Homes 0 Average Days on Market (DOM) CONTINGENT - 0 Contingent Three Tree Point Homes

0 Average Days on Market (DOM)

PENDING - 1 Pending Three Tree Point Home 38 Average Days on Market (DOM) $475,000SOLD - 0 Sold Three Tree Point Homes

0 Average Days on Market (DOM)

* Single Family Homes

 

Special note on Three Tree Point (Sound View Homes only) Days on Market numbers. There has been one waterfront home that has been on the market for 839 days, and a very unique huge home has been on the market for 551 days, both really make an impact on such a small number of listings.

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My Other Blog…Art…and…Real Estate!

Camano Island Studio Tour May 10th 2008One of the reasons I moved to Seattle was that there seemed to be a very active Art Community in Seattle and the Puget Sound. Unfortunately I was too busy with my earlier career and later getting established in Seattle real estate which has taken a lot of time, dedication and energy, to make time for Art. I studied Art (BS) and Painting (MA) at S.D.S.U. and always planned to get back to my Painting.

Recently I have been writing a blog for a friend of mine's business, Daniel Smith Art Supplies , at DanielSmithArt.Blogspot.com , and it's been helping me get back into the Art Community...a wonderful benefit!

Two weekends ago (Mother's Day weekend) I went on the Camano Island Studio Tour with my friend and some others from Daniel Smith for an all day tour of some amazing art studios and saw some great art. I bought a beautiful raku vase by Roger Cocke and a print by Betty Dorotik on the tour, and a few others also helped to support the Artists with their purchases. I had never been to Camano Island before, it is a stunning place, and some of the studios had glorious views of the Puget Sound. Of course the real estate agent in me was constantly noticing the real estate "For Sale" signs alongside the roads!

The next day, Mother's Day, I went on the 5th Annual Kirkland Artist Studio Tour in Kirkland with my friend which was both interesting and fun. I got to meet a few of the artists at their studios, see some of their work in progress and finished art before fatigue from the Camano Island Studio Tour the day before set in and we decided to shorten our planned tour. ,

While I have not yet started Painting again, I have been thinking more and more about Painting since I have been blogging about it. Just yesterday while previewing homes at some Madrona Broker's Open Houses I enjoyed seeing original paintings hanging at one of the houses I toured. I talked with the Open House agent (who was also the homeowner) about one of the paintings and he showed me another more recent small painting by the same artist, Francesca Sundsten. He told me that she will be showing at Davidson Contemporary Gallery this July. I will have to be sure to go there for the First Thursday Art Walk in Pioneer Square in July, and then blog all about it.

Funny how my other Blog, Art and Real Estate are converging!

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Madrona Homes for Sale and Brokers’ Open Houses

View of Downtown Bellevue from Madrona ParkYesterday I went to some Broker Open Houses in Madrona and stopped by one in Leschi on the way back to my office. The homes for sale in Madrona were listed from the $900,000 range to under $1,500,000. Two of them had been recently and extensively remodeled, and are ready for new owners who are looking to buy a Madrona home.

Unfortunately the weather was unseasonably cold and gray for the end of May, and the homes that had views of Lake Washington were not able to show off their views like they would have in sunshine. I stopped to take the above photo of Madrona Park looking acrosss a cold, gray Lake Washington to Downtown Bellevue, and it looks as cold as it was! However, seeing the Madrona homes listed for sale on a cold day really makes you appreciate their remodeling all the more, since they seem extra "snug" and warm!

One of the Madrona homes was a large craftsman that had the main floor beautifully opened up, solid white mill work, very high ceilings and high-end appliances and finishes so it felt light-filled and airy even on a gray Seattle day.

Another beautifully remodeled craftsman cottage had some nice surprises like an outdoor shower, of course it also had 3 fabulous indoor showers and baths as well! One of the nice touches for this home was the original art hanging on the walls, good art always enhances how a home shows. I have to admit though, that one of the paintings (by artist Francesca Sundsten) caught my eye so much that I missed seeing where the stairs were to the finished (very well finished) basement and had to ask where the stairs were "hiding"!

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Madrona Real Estate Market* snapshot as of today for May 2008

ACTIVE - 41 Madrona homes for sale, average of 80 days on market, $449,000 to $1,995,000.

STI - 2 Subject to Inspection, average of 109 days on market $420,000 to $599,000.

PENDING - 2 Madrona homes Pending, average of 25 days on market, $925,000 to $1,430,000.

SOLD - 4 Madrona homes Sold, average of 62 days on market, $310,00 to 780,000.

*These numbers are for single family homes only

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Magnolia Homes for Sale and this weeks Brokers’ Open Houses

Magnolia on a sunny day looking towards the SoundLast Tuesday was Broker Open Houses for homes listed for sale in Magnolia . The weather was rainy (but warm) so I was thinking that I might miss some of the wonderful views while touring the homes, but the wind picked up and the skies cleared for some glorious sunny views. Today I was focusing on the higher end of Magnolia homes for sale so the houses were ones listed between $1,000,000 and $4,000,000, but mostly under $2,000,000, of course... there is even more expensive Magnolia real estate too!

I had a plan to visit particular houses but I was quickly distracted by the Open House sign in front of a house that I have driven by many times. I m a fan of Mid-Century Modern Homes that have been respectfully updated with an eye for sleek, elemental design...well this first Open House was all that, just gorgeous! I think it would be a great match for someone thinking about a high-end condo, but who still needs more space and would like a little Zen like garden. The southwest view of the Sound and in the distance Alki Point was breathtaking, and it was extra exciting because several US Navy ships cruised by with a fire boat leading the way shooting fountains of water into the air!

Back to the planned tour...I was able to see 8 more Magnolia homes for sale before the Brokers' Open Houses ended, and one of those was another unplanned visit to a house that I had seen 3 years ago when it was originally listed for sale in Magnolia. It is a very modern home sited on an unusual shaped lot, it was interesting to see the house with furniture this time, much warmer.

Because Magnolia is in an older part of Seattle, there is a wide range of home styles and several were represented on my tour, the Mid-Century Modern, Post Modern Contemporary (3 of those), one completely remodeled Mid-Century Traditional, Mediterranean, Colonial, and a Northwest Contemporary. These homes all have wonderful kitchens and baths, beautiful details and finishes, and most of the homes had stunning views...which is why they are also come at a high price! Next week, for balance, I'll focus on entry level homes for sale in Magnolia.

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Magnolia Homes* for Sale Market Snapshot as of today for May 2008

ACTIVE - 125 Magnolia Homes for Sale, 110 average days on market, $359,950 to $6,950,000

CONTINGENT - 1 Contingent Magnolia Home, 54 days on Market, $699,950

STI - 5 Subject to Inspection Magnolia Homes, 83 average days on market, $459,500 to $1,735,000

PENDING - 13 Pending Magnolia Homes, 58 average days on market, $419,950 to $1,350,000

SOLD - 11 Sold Magnolia Homes, 117 average days on market, $390,000 to $1,900,000

* Single Family Homes and Townhomes

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Brokers’ Open Houses and Seattle Real Estate

I am planning on posting stories about my tours of the weekly Brokers' Open Houses in what I call Seattle's Urban Villages, the neighborhoods that make Seattle such a wonderful place to live. These will be some of my impressions, opinions, thoughts, and musing about how the homes relate to their neighborhoods and whatever strikes me as relevant (or not!) to the Seattle real estate market. Sometimes it may just be a story about that particular days tour. Because of the Northwest Multiple Listing Service rules (Rule 190) of not advertising another members listings without their permission, I will only be writing about the homes I see on the Brokers' Opens in very general terms expressing my impressions and opinions. So no addresses, mls numbers, specific prices etc., the homes will retain their anonymity... ...I just wanted you to know why!

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Opening Day of Boating in Seattle!

Opening Day of Boating Rowing Regatta on the Montlake Cut May 2007It's gray, drizzly and the first Saturday in May which means it's the Opening Day of Boating season in Seattle! The Seattle Yacht Club in Montlake, is celebrating their 87th year of kicking off the Opening Day of Boating in Seattle.

A few days ago the boats began tying up to the log boom just outside of the Montlake Cut outlining where the Parade of Boats will travel and the rowing regatta for the Windermere Cup will race. While driving back to Seattle from my office in Bellevue, I stopped near the Museum of History and Industry in Montlake to take a look at the boats lining up and mooring at the log boom to take some photos.

While I was there, I watched a lot of boat traffic going by, large and small (check out the friendly guys in the little boat!) and saw the Montlake Drawbridge go up to let some of the taller boats pass. Friendly guys in a boat passing through the Montlake Cut a few days before Opening Day of Boating

Last year I was lucky enough to be showing houses to a client from N.Y., and two of the Seattle houses listed for sale were right on the Montlake Cut. While we were viewing the Montlake homes for sale, we got a nice view of some of the festivities. It was fun to have, even if only for a moment while working, a waterside view on Opening Day of Boating!

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What’s an Urban Village?

Seattle, like all cities, has many interesting neighborhoods that each have a unique flavor and character that make living in Seattle a wonderful experience. I call these neighborhoods Urban Villages.

Many of the Seattle neighborhoods have a center or village where shops, cafes, restaurants, galleries and businesses gather that provide places for the locals to shop, relax with a cup of coffee, meet up with their friends and neighbors, and catch up with the local happenings.

The Seattle Urban Villages that we are going to explore over time are: Alki, Ballard, Belltown, Capitol Hill, Eastlake, Fremont (the self proclaimed "Center of the Universe"!) Georgetown, Green Lake, Madison Park, Madison Valley, Magnolia, Montlake, Queen Anne, Pioneer Square, University District, Wallingford, West Seattle and many more.

We will also explore the cities surrounding Seattle such as: Mercer Island, Bellevue, Kirkland, other places on the Eastside and around Seattle.

So why take the time to explore these Urban Villages and more?

Because buying a house and choosing it's location where you will make a home is such an important step to make...it should not be taken lightly.

Location, Location, Location is not just a Real Estate phrase about one way value is determined, it's also about the lifestyle you will be enjoying and living for years to come. Making a good match with a neighborhood or Urban Village is important for truly making a home.

So...join me and let the adventure of Seattle's Urban Villages and Seattle Real Estate begin!

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Welcome to My Seattle’s Urban Villages Blog!

Sun Breaks in the clouds over Downtown Seattle and Elliott Bay from Queen Anne’s Kerry ParkHello....

Welcome to my Seattle's Urban Villages Blog!

I hope that your visit here is helpful, fun and gives you some insight to Seattle, the Seattle Real Estate Market, my Real Estate Ethics and Philosophy, and a good introduction to me.

Seattle is not my hometown, I chose to live in Seattle and moved here in 1994. That has been a wonderful decision...

....because I love Seattle!

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