Archive for July, 2008

Art Walk in Seattle’s Pioneer Square for July’s First Thursday

This month's First Thursday Art Walk in Pioneer Square in Downtown Seattle was on a gorgeous evening and many people were out enjoying themselves while looking at Art , listening to live music and taking in the general atmosphere.  It's a great way to spend an evening and perhaps purchase some original art to add to your home.

This time I was going with a friend who wanted to see an Artist customer of hers, Fred Lisaius, (she is the manager of the Daniel Smith Artists' Materials Store in Bellevue) who was showing at the Linda Hodges Gallery.  It was really cool to meet Fred Lisaius, and see his beautiful paintings in person, of course I checked out his website before hand! We also met up with two others and took our Art Walk around Pioneer Square

Fred Lisaius at Linda Hodges GalleryDeborah Butterfield at Greg Kucera GalleryMy Favorite Deborah Butterfield Sculpture at Greg Kucera GalleryJoy Gonyea-Roberts’ Art Booth “Jewelry by Joy”Ariel Bradys’ StudioKerrie Carbary’s Studio and “The Horse”

We started at Occidental Park to visit the Art Booths, and I bought a beautiful necklace from Joy Gonyea-Robertson (Jewelry by Joy ) and I wore it the rest of the evening!  We also stopped by to talk with Kim McCarthy at her booth (who works at Daniel Smith ) and see her work.  The Art Booths have lots of very affordable art pieces...great place for gifts too!

Some of the Galleries we went to were: Grover/Thurston Gallery (Julie Paschkis' art was beautiful), and both Davidson Galleries.  At the Davidson Contemporary I was looking forward to seeing an artist, Francesca Sundsten , whose paintings I had enjoyed seeing at a Madrona Broker's Open House in May, but she was not part of the July group show after all.  A wonderful surprise for me was to discover a favorite artist/sculptor of mine at the Greg Kucera Gallery... Deborah Butterfield !  Being in the presence of Deborah's huge, graceful horses was a wonderful experience.

We also went to see Artist Studios at theTashiro Kaplan Building. Some artists' there who caught my eye were:  Ariel Brady [ Foo 5 (Japan, 1942) ], Michael Brady, and Kerrie Carbary ( "The Horse" )

It was a fun evening and there was lots of great art out on display.  Seattle has a very vibrant Art Community , and it's important to support our local artists...how much more wonderful would your home be with some original art?

Spoken by Deborah Burns | Discussion: 2 Comments »

Is Now a Good Time to Sell My Seattle Home?

An acquaintance who knows I am a Seattle Real Estate Agent, asked me this question the other day because she was thinking about selling her Seattle home.

My BRIO For Sale sign

Well...it depends.

It depends on the individual situation.  For some, selling now is the right course of action.  For others, waiting a few years might be the right course of action for them.

If you are relocating far away, if you no longer want to be a landlord, if you can no longer afford your mortgage, if you are experiencing some tragic life changes (job loss, illness, divorce or death), if you are experiencing joyous life changes (growing family, another new home, career advancement) or some other motivating reason to sell now.  Then, yes, selling your Seattle area home is (maybe) the right course of action for you.  People's situations are very unique, so their answer is very unique.

If one of the above reasons in not one of yours, and you are just thinking of making a change to something new, downsizing to something smaller (without a pressing need), want to move closer to work,  want to test the market to see if you can get a particular price, and if you are not motivated to do what it takes to sell your house in a buyers market, then this is not the market for you.  You may want to wait (if you can) for a few years.  The Seattle area inventory is high right now and you may not get the best price for your house.  Of course, no one can say how the market will be in a few years, either up or down.

Here is a snapshot of the Seattle area real estate market for June 2008 compared to June 2007: 

ACTIVE listings (houses & condos) for the month of June, 2008, King County had 15,831 active listings, June 2007 was 12,282, UP 28.9%,  that means more houses competing for buyers this year. 

PENDING listings (houses & condos) for the month of June, 2008, King County had 2,549  pending listings, June 2007 was 3,766, DOWN 32.32%, that means a third fewer buyers making accepted offers on houses this year. 

SOLD listings (houses & condos) for the month of June, 2008, King County had 2,148 sold listings, June 2007 was 3,634, DOWN 40.89%, that means more than a third fewer buyers are buying homes.  

The absorption rate for June 2008 is 7.3 months of inventory to sell at the current rate of sales, and for June 2007, it was 3.3 months of iinventory.  A big change in the Seattle real estate market.  Those absorption numbers are just a snapshot for June 2008 and 2007, and they do not show how sales are trending.

0 to 3 months is a sellers market

4 to 6 months is a balanced market 

7 plus months is a buyers market 

The absorption rate can be very different depending on the city, or neighborhood.  That's why "location, location, location" is an important consideration when buying and selling your Seattle area homeAbsorption rate can also be analyzed by criteria such as price range, or type.  

My answer to the person who asked me the question was "no".  It is not a good time for her to sell her home since she was only thinking about making a change for change sake, and was not  a motivated seller.  I suggested that since she was looking for change, that she update the kitchen and/or baths.  She will get to enjoy the changes, and the updates will put her home in better shape to sell in a few years or so. 

So there really is no short, easy answer to the question:  Is Now a Good Time to Sell My Seattle Home?  The answer for you should be based on your unique situation.

Spoken by Deborah Burns | Discussion: No Comments »

It’s Time to Take a Walk on Seattle’s Wilder Side at the 13th Annual Georgetown Art & Garden Walk!

Georgetown Art & Garden Walk 2008 poster This Sunday, July 13th, is the 13th annual Georgetown Art & Garden Walk .  Just 5 minuets south of SeattleGeorgetown  is welcoming one and all to see their gardens, art studios and have some fun! 

I went to Georgetown earlier in the week to get a photo of the poster, I can usually get really interesting photos of a poster nailed to a telephone pole, but not this year.  I finally found one in the window of Fruit Cocktail Collectibles where I took the above photos.  Fruit Cocktail Collectibles even has it's own little garden area!  Be sure to take a peek inside when you are in the Georgetown neighborhood they have some cool mid-century (and more!) collectibles.

Fruit Cocktail Collectibles in Georgetown - Seattle Washington

Okay, back to the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk....

The Georgetown Neighborhood website says this about the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk:

"So much to see! Colorful gardens, artist studios, food and drink, plus tours of the Georgetown Powerplant Museum and the Museum of Communication. Free and no registration required. Maps available on the day of the walk at the Bank of America parking lot, 1112 South Bailey Street."

Last year I was working with some clients showing a house, and afterwards,  I had an open house scheduled at my Montlake listing so I missed the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk.  But I have happy memories of my 2006 visit and here are some photos....

Orange retreat at the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk 2006 Art House at the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk 2006 Rustic archway to a garden at the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk 2006 Cool retreat at the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk 2006 Back yard get-away at the Georgetown Art & Garden Walk 2006

*****

Spoken by Deborah Burns | Discussion: 3 Comments »