Seattle Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

 

Sept. 19, 2020

Pier 58 in Seattle is closing with plans to remodel

The City of Seattle closed its downtown Waterfront Park last week after discovering Pier 58 had shifted, which left a gap of "several inches" between the pier and land.

The pier will not reopen until it is replaced, according to Superintendent of Parks and Recreation Jesús Aguirre.

The closure came after Seattle Parks and Recreation received a report about a waterline failure and possible shifting at Pier 58 between the Seattle Aquarium and Great Wheel on Aug. 5.fter having the pier appraised, the city said structural engineers found the "shift was substantial," and the pier had shifted several inches, the city said.

Waterfront Park between University and Pike streets was closed due to the findings.

Click here for more information: https://www.king5.com/article/news/local/pier-58-shift-forces-shutdown-of-seattles-waterfront-park/281-49df523b-a0fb-494b-86cc-3a32bf58e123

Posted in News
Sept. 18, 2020

Two new COVID-19 testing sites have opened in King County

Two new COVID-19 testing centers have opened recently in south King County that could help alleviate long waits for testing given that the approaching flu season could bring more demand for coronavirus tests.

Both infections have similar symptoms and health officials say the demand for more COVID-19 tests could be a result, and King County officials are trying to meet that possible demand.

"Closing the gaps in testing access, particularly where we see higher rates of infection has been a top priority," said King County Executive Dow Constantine.

Click here for more information: https://komonews.com/news/coronavirus/two-new-covid-19-test-sites-open-in-king-county

Posted in News
Sept. 17, 2020

Seattle tops list for best real estate market

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact much of life in Seattle, the region's housing market has shown its resilience.

Since March, real estate agents in the area have relied heavily on technology and adapted to the new coronavirus restrictions to make sure people could continue buying and selling homes safely. Even though inventory in the Seattle area remains low - far below what it was at the same time last year - new listings are starting to go up and buyer demand has stayed high.

According to a new study from Wallethub, Seattle is one of the top places this year to buy a house. The study ranked Seattle second on the list of 2020's best real estate markets. Seattle ranked behind only Boise, Idaho.

Click here for more information here: https://www.seattlepi.com/seattlenews/slideshow/seattle-tops-list-for-best-real-estate-markets-207513.php

Posted in Real Estate
Sept. 16, 2020

Seattle home prices rise, driven by young homebuyers

Like much during the pandemic, the latest news on home prices inspires a definite sense of deja vu.

For the fifth month in a row, home prices around Seattle rose faster in June - 6.5%, year-over-year - than any of the nation's other top 18 metro areas, save Phoenix, according to new data from S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index. That's more or less the same rate of growth we've seen since spring.

Price growth in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties topped national averages for the eighth month straight. National year-over-year home price growth of 4.3% in June pointed to a "stable" market, said S&P Managing Director Craig Lazzara in a statement. Prices rose in each of the 19 large cities that Case-Shiller tracks; among just those metros, year-over-year price growth averaged 3.5%. (Typically, Case-Shiller examines home prices in 20 metro areas, but data for the Detroit metro area has been unavailable since the start of the pandemic.)

Click here for more information: https://www.arcamax.com/business/businessnews/s-2403444

Posted in News
Sept. 15, 2020

Mortgage rates decrease again

The downward trend of mortgage interest rates has continued this week, with average rates reaching 2.91% for a 30-year fixed rate loan, according to the weekly report by Freddie Mac. This is a decrease from last week’s rates when they reached 2.99%, but is still just slightly higher than their lowest rate on record from two weeks ago when they dropped down to 2.88%. For 15-year fixed rate loans the numbers decreased to 2.46%, down from 2.54% a week prior.

Despite these low rate applications for both purchase and refinance loans have seen slight decreases in recent weeks. According to the latest report from the Mortgage Bankers Association, purchase applications decreased 1.8% from one week earlier, but they are still considerably higher than they were a year ago. “The home purchase market remains a bright spot for the overall economy,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Purchase applications were essentially unchanged, but were 33 percent higher than a year ago – the 14th straight week of year-over-year gains.”

Click here for more information here: https://www.forbes.com/sites/amydobson/2020/08/27/mortgage-rates-decrease-again-veering-back-into-territory-of-lowest-rates-on-record/#3ec2e8a958b5

Posted in Finance
Sept. 14, 2020

How to qualify for mortgage while in retirement

It’s not uncommon for retired homeowners to want to relocate or downsize.

Yet if the move involves buying a house and financing that purchase, they may discover that qualifying for a mortgage is a bit different from the last time they bought a home. Not only have lenders tightened their credit during the pandemic, retirees generally have left a steady paycheck behind.

“It can get tricky for retirees,” said Al Bingham, a mortgage loan officer with Momentum Loans in Sandy, Utah. “You can have a lot of money but show very little income and have difficulty qualifying for a mortgage.

Click here for more information here: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/09/01/heres-how-to-qualify-for-a-mortgage-in-your-retirement.html

Posted in Finance
Sept. 13, 2020

July pending home sales are up over 15% annually

The usual summer slowdown in the housing market is not happening this year. Buyers continue to show strong demand, spurred by the new stay-at-home world of the coronavirus and by record low mortgage rates.

Pending home sales, which measure signed contracts to purchase existing homes, increased 5.9% in July compared with June, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales were 15.5% higher annually

“We are witnessing a true V-shaped sales recovery as homebuyers continue their strong return to the housing market,” said Lawrence Yun, the NAR’s chief economist. “Home sellers are seeing their homes go under contract in record time, with nine new contracts for every 10 new listings.”

Find more information here: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/27/july-pending-home-sales-jump-over-15percent-annually.html

Posted in Real Estate
Sept. 10, 2020

Real estate industry remains resilient

“When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” We’ve all heard this phrase. It’s likely been uttered over a recent Zoom call while offering a virtual prost with friends and family.  

We’ve seen a lot of toughness and resiliency during such a trying time, and I for one have been reminded why I’m so proud to be part of this truly tenacious industry. The real estate industry is full of people who are driven to help others around them, and that is never more apparent than during the hard times. We’re truly fortunate to be in this unique business that is completely built on the foundation of relationships and is full of people who don’t think twice about helping others in times of need. 

Like many others, when the pandemic hit, our first instinct was to figure out how we could help. So, we called on some of the brightest minds in the brokerage space to come together and bring insights and inspiration to their peers virtually. We practiced what we preach and focused on being a resource for our sphere and helping our clients be one for theirs. And while the first few conversations were ones of uncertainty, they quickly moved toward productivity and optimism as we all settled into the new way of doing things. We also noticed the more we leaned on our community, the stronger we felt. The more ideas we all shared, the more quickly we got back on our feet. 

Click here for more information: https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesrealestatecouncil/2020/08/28/strength-in-numbers-remaining-a-resilient-real-estate-industry/#50f7859e5b11

Posted in Real Estate
Sept. 8, 2020

How to navigate your real estate closing

Closing day is the culmination of a weeks-long process that could include financial drama, tense negotiations and a lot of discussions with real estate professionals, lawyers and mortgage lenders.

Here’s a guide to navigate what happens after you sign the purchase contract until the day you get the keys to your new home—or complete your mortgage refinance.

A real estate closing is when you finalize the paperwork to purchase your new home or complete your refinancing arrangement. Once the paperwork is complete, you are the homeowner and responsible for what’s contained in every document you’ve signed, including a commitment to pay the mortgage installments for the entire term of the loan.

Although federal law allows for a right of rescission for people who are refinancing—giving them until midnight of the third business day after the transaction to cancel the mortgage—there is no such provision for new home purchases. Once you’ve signed the documents to buy a new home, they are official.

Click here for more information: https://www.forbes.com/advisor/mortgages/real-estate-closing/

Posted in Real Estate
Sept. 4, 2020

Bellevue Approves More Grants For Small Businesses

The Bellevue City Council on Tuesday approved $185,000 in additional support for small businesses that are struggling amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Small businesses can apply for the $5,000 grants until Sept. 17 under the following eligibility guidelines:

    Must employ between 2 and 25 people
    Have annual revenue under $5 million
    Suffered a 20 percent drop in revenue resulting from COVID-19, with expenses not previously covered by other funding sources

Grants can be used to pay for business expenses, personal protective equipment or health and safety upgrades.

Find more information here: https://patch.com/washington/bellevue/bellevue-approves-more-grants-small-businesses

Posted in Local News