Seattle homes for sale

Seattle Real Estate Blog

Local real estate news in the Greater Seattle market: Home prices and trends in Seattle, on the Eastside, and across the Puget Sound region. Written by , Managing Broker with Coldwell Banker Danforth and State Director for Washington REALTORS.

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June 20, 2014

Bellevue Home Sales: $750k Median Prices + 15% Appreciation = Heated Real Estate Demand

Home sellers in Bellevue can do no wrong right now.  The real estate downturn that started seven years ago seems to be a distant memory, as the Bellevue market has warped into an inventory-crunched, pent-up demand, rabid marketplace of home buyers.

The average sale price of a home in Bellevue last month was 3 percent above its list price.  Sale-to-list price ratios have been above 100 percent since January.  Almost every home that comes on the market, and is priced reasonably, is selling right away.  Multiple offers and bidding wars are the norm.  The only question mark in the market right now is: Why aren't more homeowners putting their homes on the market?

Bellevue Homes Median Sale Prices, Sale Price to List Price Ratio, Residential Properties Through May 2014

Bellevue homes for sale, real estate

As of the end of May, the median home price for sales in the Bellevue real estate market was $782,000.  This includes the city of Bellevue and its smaller incorporated enclaves of Medina, Hunts Point, Yarrow Point, Clyde Hill, and Beaux Arts.  This median sale price was a 13.3 percent increase over the same time last year.  Double digit appreciation isn't expected to continue long-term.  Most projections show slower, steady growth in the coming years.

Within the city of Bellevue itself, the median home price was just a bit lower at $747,975.  That's 14.6 percent year-over-year appreciation, a rise in prices that outstrips most of the greater Seattle market.  While the median home prices in the Bellevue area are high, there are still single-family homes available under $400,000.  Condos can be found under $200,000 in Bellevue.  They are a small part of the local market, but they do exist.

Searching for Bellevue homes for sale:

If you're looking for a home in Bellevue during this fast-moving market, you can't depend on a national website that takes days to update with new listings.  You need the direct daily feed from the MLS to find homes the first day they're listed by real estate agents.

Your choices:

Search all Bellevue homes for sale

Click on the map below to search Bellevue homes by neighborhood:

Bellevue neighborhoods map

Select from the neighborhood list below:

 

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

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Seattle Homes Group

© Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, REALTOR®, Coldwell Banker Danforth

Director, Seattle King County Realtors - State Director, Washington Association of Realtors
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Statistical source if not otherwise noted is NWMLS. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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June 2, 2014

Everything is Selling: Seattle Home Prices Jump 5.3% in May, Sellers Getting 102% of List Price

Home prices in Seattle saw a huge leap in May, with the median sale price of a single family home rising to $481,250.  According to figures from the NWMLS, that price increase represented a 5.3 percent rise over just one month ago when the median price for a house stood at $457,000.

Median Sale Prices, Sale-To-List Price Ratio, Seattle Single Family Homes, May 2012 - May 2014

Seattle home prices May 2014

The rising values contributed to a 7.1 percent year-over year hike in median prices for the city of Seattle, with the preceding year's May sales landing at just under $450,000.  It's just another month of competitive buyers, bidding wars, and sellers who haven't seemed to shake out in nearly large enough numbers.

Why would sellers want to list today?  On average, homes are selling for 102.1 percent of their list price.  Most of we see come on the market in popular neighborhoods sells in its first week.  It's almost difficult to find the correct hyperbole for the situation without sounding asthmatic.  As long as sellers are staying within striking distance of the most recent comps when they price their home, it's sold.  We've been working with buyers who are consistently offering above recent comparable sale prices and current listing prices, and are met with numerous competitive offers in almost every situation.  It feels like a feeding frenzy.

This isn't to say that all markets have recovered.  There are plenty of areas across the country that are still in a slow recovery mode, and even parts of the Puget Sound region that haven't made much of a comeback yet.  Housing prices in Seattle are still around 15 percent lower than they were at the peak.  

It's just becoming more clear by the day that our lack of inventory--resale and new construction--is severely restricting the buying market.  Seattle home buyers are ready, eager, and pre-qualified.  We just need to find them some listings.  Can you hear us, potential home sellers?

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

Seattle Homes Group

© Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, REALTOR®, Coldwell Banker Danforth

Director, Seattle King County Realtors - State Director, Washington Association of Realtors
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Statistical source if not otherwise noted is NWMLS. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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May 25, 2014

The Real Estate Battle In Seattle: Everybody Loses On Their First Try

If you've been following the real estate market in the Seattle metro, you know it's more competitive than it has been in maybe a decade. Available inventory continues to fall, with less than two months' inventory now hitting a one year streak (balanced markets have 5-6 months' inventory). Sellers continue to get higher prices for their homes, and greater returns over the list price (the average sale price in Seattle right now is 102% of the list price). In short, every sale is a battle.

Seattle Real Estate: Months of Inventory vs. Sale to List Price Ratio

Seattle real estate battle

It's a tough time for buyers. Everyone seems to understand that financing terms are still outstanding, the local economy is booming, and home prices are projected to rise moderately for the next few years, creating a healthy investment environment. Whether it's downtown or on the Eastside, everyone realizes it's a great opportunity.

Everyone, that is, except for sellers. There's some perception by sellers that if they list their homes, even if the time seems right, they won't be able to find somewhere else to move when it sells. That self-fulfilling prophecy is, of course, questionable logic for someone who'd really like to move into a larger home or a different neighborhood, because their ability to finance that next property will probably never be better than it is now. The reality is, though, that sellers are not listing enough properties at the moment, and buyers are crawling over each other to get into a home.

This is particularly difficult for first time buyers. We're seeing folks who are absolutely committed to buying a home, visiting properties the first day they're on the market, and making offers the first weekend. They've gotten pre-approved, have good jobs, and are ready with down payments. They also, almost inevitably, will lose out on their first try. It's not just first-time buyers, either, this affects nearly any buyer who is financing a purchase.

It's not their fault. It's in our nature to try to get a deal. Most buyers, when they write their first offer, are afraid of over-paying. They want to make sure they don't leave money on the table, so they make a frugal offer for their attempt at buying. It doesn't work in this market.

There are no discounts in the Seattle market right now--period. Either the home sells in the first week, or it was significantly overpriced.

Of course there are exceptions to that statement. Unique properties, luxury price ranges, and quirky locations can cause certain homes to linger on the market longer. For the vast majority of homes that serve the "average" Seattle population, though, they're going to sell for full price, the first week on the market.  If they're priced appropriately, they're going to get multiple offers.

So, what can a buyer do to stand out from the crowd and secure a home in this market?

Be prepared. Get a pre-approval letter from a reputable local lender. Real estate agents like to call up your lender and make sure you're a rock-solid home buying candidate. That automated letter from Quicken Loans or some other online outfit doesn't give us a warm fuzzy feeling.

Be available to be timely. If you need to write an offer on a Sunday morning, so be it. Multiple-offer situations are all different. Some sellers will review your offer immediately, others will review all offers on a specific date. Your agent will be able to guide you through the most effective way to present your offer with the nuances that most consumers aren't exposed to.

Be flexible. Maybe a certain home calls for you to speed up your inspection, or allow the seller to have 3 days after closing to move out. In this market, as a buyer, you're not in the driver's seat. Clearing any hurdles for the seller will make your offer more palatable to them.

Be creative. I've written before about the value of a personalized home buyer's offer letter. Sometimes they make no difference whatsoever. Other times, they're the winning ingredient in your offer. I've had sellers in multiple-offer situations give my buyers the opportunity to match the highest competing offer and buy their home because they liked the letter and the people they imagined living in their home. It's worth the effort.

You don't have to lose out on your first home buying offer, but most will. That's just the odds. When you're ready to really get into a home, though, understand that it will be a competitive process but you'll eventually be able to buy. Missing out on one home isn't the end of the world, but making well-constructed, competitive offers in this market will ensure that within a reasonable number of attempts, you'll find yourself in a home.

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

Seattle Homes Group

© Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, REALTOR®, Coldwell Banker Danforth

Director, Seattle King County Realtors - State Director, Washington Association of Realtors
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Statistical source if not otherwise noted is NWMLS. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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May 21, 2014

Edmonds Condo: New listing for sale - 503 6th Ave S Unit 4, Edmonds WA 98020

Edmonds condo for sale - 503 6th Ave S Unit 4, Edmonds WAA great new condo listing just popped up, overlooking Old Town Edmonds.  It's a great property if you're looking for a walkable neighborhood, proximity to beautiful Puget Sound beaches and ferries, as well as a serene, quiet home.

The private deck has a great view of the Olympic mountains, and it has quite a master suite.  Let us know if you'd like to see it in person.  

Here are the listing details (courtesy of Chavi Hohm and Kim Colaprete, Coldwell Banker Bain):

  • Taxes: $2,967
  • HOA Dues: $375 (H20, Sewer, Garbage, Earthquake Insurance, & Building Maintenance)
  • Updated Kitchen with New Stainless Steel Appliances
  • New Interior Wood Doors
  • Spacious Walk-in Closet for Large Wardrobe
  • Wired for Media Center with Surround Sound New Siding and a Replaced Roof
  • Two Renovated Baths with New Fixtures and Back Splashes
  • Picture Perfect Patio for Summer Sunsets Views of the Olympic Mountains
  • Large Extra Room Perfect for a Home Office or Out-of-Town Guests
  • Two Parking Spots (#4) & Storage Unit in Secure Garage 

Here is the live listing.  Get it while it's hot, this market is moving fast:

503 6th Ave S Unit 4, Edmonds WA 98020

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April 22, 2014

What's Your Home in Seattle Worth? Get An Instant Property Value Online

Seattle home valuationThere is a new tool giving Seattle-area homeowners access to instant property valuations online.  While every online valuation needs some flexibility since you can't price a home without seeing it in person, this tool takes into account some of the best sources of data for the valuation.

What's My Seattle Home Worth?

The Seattle Homes Property Value Tool takes into account public sales data from the area, the sale history of the home, rent values nearby, and property detail changes to give a range of likely value for the home.  With a low range, high range, and confidence factor, a homeowner can estimate how close the tool may be to the actual price they might want to list their home for if they're thinking of selling.

Of course, if you're looking for a true valuation, you need a Realtor to do a professional review of the home, upgrades, surroundings, and current market conditions to create an accurate price, or a Comparative Market Analysis. Analyzing recent sales from the MLS will allow your Realtor to get the most up-to-date market information and price your home appropriately if you decide to put it on the market.

If you're thinking of selling, feel free to call or email us and we can put together a free CMA for you.  If you'd just like to dip your toes in the water for now, give the online valuation tool a try.

Seattle Homes Property Value Tool

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

Seattle Homes Group

© Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, REALTOR®, Coldwell Banker Danforth

Director, Seattle King County Realtors - State Director, Washington Association of Realtors
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Statistical source if not otherwise noted is NWMLS. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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April 15, 2014

Is There A Real Estate Bubble in Seattle? Inflation and 11% of our Home Equity Says No.

Home prices are on the rise in Seattle, and home buyers who remember the last real estate downturn well are mindful of the possibility of another drop in real estate prices in the future.  So, are we building up to another Seattle real estate bubble?

The most recent data say "No."  While home prices have certainly appreciated in the area for the past few years, much of those gains were simply due to the long-term necessity of reversing that extended real estate downturn of the late 2000s.  Price appreciation, according to historical data, is the unequivocal course of real estate for the long-term, due in large part to inflation.  

Seattle Home Prices and Active Real Estate Listings, 2004-2014

No Seattle Real Estate Bubble

Home prices in Seattle are still almost 11 percent lower than they were at the real estate peak in 2007.  August 2007's median home price for the city of Seattle was $498,000.  As of last month, our current median was at $444,000.  There's no rush to get back to those peak levels immediately, but idea that we're nearing a bubble similar to what we saw in 2007 just doesn't pan out yet.  

There's a bigger reason for this, when we look at the long-term effects of the economy.  Inflation makes general consumer prices rise, no matter if the market is hot or cold (we rarely see price deflation in the overall U.S. economy).  In 2007 we saw 2.8 percent inflation.  In 2008, as the downturn really got rolling, we hit 3.8 percent.   The worst economic year we've seen in decades saw just a 0.4 percent deflation rate, which was immediately wiped out by 1.6, 3.2, 2.1, and 1.5 percent inflation rates through 2013.

The big picture here?  We've probably seen price inflation across the country of around 15 percent since 2007.  Of course, this doesn't translate directly to home prices, but the overall takeaway should be fairly clear--home prices today are nowhere near what they were during the last real estate bubble.  The situation is vastly different, and while that in no way guarantees a healthy real estate market going forward, it certainly makes the comparisons to 2007 unwise.

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

Seattle Homes Group

© Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, REALTOR®, Coldwell Banker Danforth

Director, Seattle King County Realtors - State Director, Washington Association of Realtors
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Statistical source if not otherwise noted is NWMLS. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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April 9, 2014

Seattle Makes Top 10 Fastest-Growing Metros in America

The census bureau put out new data this week showing huge growth in the Seattle area.  King County had the fourth-largest population increase in the country from July 2012 to July 2013.  37,000 new residents came to the area during that period, a 1.8 percent increase.

The greater Seattle market, defined as Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue by the census bureau, increased by 57,514 new residents during the same span. That put Seattle at #10 on the list of metropolitan areas gaining the most residents.  The hot job market, reasonable housing prices, and lack of a state income tax are all factors being cited as contributing to the attractiveness of the Seattle area.

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

Seattle Homes Group

© Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, REALTOR®, Coldwell Banker Danforth

Director, Seattle King County Realtors - State Director, Washington Association of Realtors
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Statistical source if not otherwise noted is NWMLS. The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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March 28, 2014

Property Tax Swap or Levy Duty Upshift: Solving WA's McCleary Decision on School Funding

The recent decision by Washington's Supreme Court on school funding is a complex topic. When it's broken down to its basics, however, there may be a straightforward solution to a large portion of the financial demands created by the decision.

In a nutshell, the state constitution says that Washington has a paramount duty to fund basic education. The court decided that, currently, the state is not funding basic education adequately.

To be clear: the court said that the state itself is not meeting its obligation in funding basic education. This means that the overall budget for education needs to come from the state, not other sources. While the state property tax and sales tax fund around 70 percent of the education budget, municipalities across the state pick up around 20 percent of the education tab through local levies on property taxes (the federal government covers the rest). There may be some need to increase the total funding for the state, but making sure all funds come through the state will also be a priority.

This is the focal point of the so-called "Property Tax Swap". If all of the money that local homeowners are paying in levies to their cities was instead being paid to the state and earmarked for schools, the education budget could be funded with those same dollars, but it would be the state supplying the funds it is constitutionally required to provide. It's essentially a levy duty upshift--putting the responsibility of schools back to the state venue where it was meant to be.

It sounds a bit simplistic, but sometimes that's the way accounting works. The state can make up a large portion of its lacking education budget by simply taking in a larger state school levy (increasing the current rate on the school levy portion of the property tax), while reducing local school levies by limiting the local rates charged. Statewide, the plan is revenue neutral. There is no additional tax revenue coming from taxpayers statewide as a group, or going to schools--there's just a larger amount of the money coming from the state to the schools.

There are some side effects that could create dissension. Projections show property owners in wealthier counties or school districts paying more in property taxes than they had before, and vice-versa for lower-income districts. While there is some resistance to that idea, it answers another part of the court's concern, which is the current uneven distribution of state education funds. The idea has bi-partisan support, as it was first posited by Democrat Ross Hunter, and championed by former Attorney General Rob McKenna, a Republican, during his campaign for Governor. The widespread support is due to the more reliable long-term funding mechanism for education that doesn't rely on individual districts renewing their local levies every few years.

Just as importantly, it minimizes the funding gap that now exists in the state's education budget. While there are many other tough decisions to be made in funding the rest of the education budget and satisfying the Supreme Court based on the McCleary decision, this is one fairly painless fix with a big payoff. Taxpayers, on the whole, pay nothing more, and that's preferable to across-the-board tax hikes to nearly any voter.

REALTOR® groups generally approve of the idea. While we oppose most property tax increases, we support sensible property tax rates that build quality schools and infrastructure. Good schools make for good communities, which is why a predictable long-term source of funding is in the best interest of the real estate industry as well as every individual in the state. Maintaining the current funding source for schools, while reducing the need for state government to increase other taxes, is good for Washington schools and for Washington businesses.

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

The Seattle Homes Group

© The Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, Realtor

Director, Seattle King County Realtors
State Director, Washington Association of Realtors

Coldwell Banker Seattle: Coldwell Banker Danforth & Associates
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Source:  NWMLS Stats - The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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March 22, 2014

Open House in Queen Anne Today - 2429 1st Ave N, Seattle WA 98109

We'll be open from 1-4pm today and tomorrow.  Come by and see a beautifully-crafted contemporary home with the traditional style to fit the historic Queen Anne neighborhood.

Click here for the full MLS listing for the home

Current list price:  $1,300,000

2429 1st Ave N front of houseExperience the sophisticated style of this custom-built Queen Anne residence. Natural surroundings complement the traditional Northwest style of the home. High-end finishes give a rich texture to the open layout. Relax in your spacious master suite, or converse with friends on the sun deck. Walk to nearby shopping, or entertain at home in the spacious kitchen and dining rooms. With an entire suite of amenities downstairs, this home is perfect for large groups of guests, or quiet relaxation.

---


The entire top floor of this home is the master suite, with an expansive bedroom and bath, plus a private balcony, walk-in closet, and laundry room.  Limestone, glass, and tile keep the bathroom luxurious and bright.

The main floor is perfect for entertaining, with an open kitchen, formal dining space, and comfortable living room.  Walk out the french doors to the sun deck on top of the garage, or out to the lush gardens in the full fenced from yard.  Quarter-sawn white oak floors and custom box beams give a warm, traditional feel to the open spaces.

Listing: 2429 1st Ave N Seatle WA 98109Downstairs is perfect for guests, with two bedrooms, a kitchen, a full bath and a half bath, as well as a large family room and utility hookups.  

Live in the comfort of contemporary construction with the style of a traditional home that fits the historic Queen Anne neighborhood.

Built in 2008 - 3 bedrooms, 2 full baths, 2 half baths, 3,240 square feet - MLS 607613

Call Sam DeBord for a showing or any additional information:  206-658-3225 

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

The Seattle Homes Group

© The Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, Realtor

Director, Seattle King County Realtors
State Director, Washington Association of Realtors

Coldwell Banker Seattle: Coldwell Banker Danforth & Associates
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Source:  NWMLS Stats - The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

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March 20, 2014

2429 1st Ave N Seattle WA 98109 - For Sale

2429 1st Ave N, Seattle WA 98109

Just Listed:  Custom-built home at the top of Queen Anne hill 

Click here for the full MLS listing for the home

Current list price:  $1,250,000

2429 1st Ave N front of houseExperience the sophisticated style of this custom-built Queen Anne residence. Natural surroundings complement the traditional Northwest style of the home. High-end finishes give a rich texture to the open layout. Relax in your spacious master suite, or converse with friends on the sun deck. Walk to nearby shopping, or entertain at home in the spacious kitchen and dining rooms. With an entire suite of amenities downstairs, this home is perfect for large groups of guests, or quiet relaxation.

---


The entire top floor of this home is the master suite, with an expansive bedroom and bath, plus a private balcony, walk-in closet, and laundry room.  Limestone, glass, and tile keep the bathroom luxurious and bright.

The main floor is perfect for entertaining, with an open kitchen, formal dining space, and comfortable living room.  Walk out the french doors to the sun deck on top of the garage, or out to the lush gardens in the full fenced from yard.  Quarter-sawn white oak floors and custom box beams give a warm, traditional feel to the open spaces.

Listing: 2429 1st Ave N Seatle WA 98109Downstairs is perfect for guests, with two bedrooms, a kitchen, a full bath and a half bath, as well as a large family room and utility hookups.  

Live in the comfort of contemporary construction with the style of a traditional home that fits the historic Queen Anne neighborhood.

Built in 2008 - 3 bedrooms, 2 full baths, 2 half baths, 3,240 square feet - MLS 607613

Call Sam DeBord for a showing or any additional information:  206-658-3225 

 

See the real Seattle market.  Try The Seattle Homes App.  100% of MLS listings, updated daily.

New real estate listings in SeattleDetailed Seattle home searchWhat is my Seattle home worth?

The Seattle Homes Group

© The Seattle Homes Group: - Sam DeBord, Managing Broker, Realtor

Director, Seattle King County Realtors
State Director, Washington Association of Realtors

Coldwell Banker Seattle: Coldwell Banker Danforth & Associates
Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Google + | Sam (at) SeattleHome.com

Source:  NWMLS Stats - The Northwest Multiple Listing Service did not compile or publish this information.

Stay informed:  Subscribe for automatic email updates

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