Like the rest of the better neighborhoods in Seattle, our Real Estate market is white hot. No rosie glasses, Realtor-speak here, so don’t roll your eyes please. In case you haven’t been out much; Multiple offers, $100,000 or more over asking price on nice or not so updated homes. Damn-the-Appraiser cash offers. Secret dealings double-end deals (less than 1 day on market, really?) and not giving a listing full exposure and the highest value rising to the top. What this all means if you are a seller and moving out of the area, every Real Estate Agent in the city wants to know you. If you a seller and wanting to stay in the area, like all the other dumb-struck buyers, you will have your work cut out for you. So be prepared.
One might think this is great market for contingent offers as a way to move up the property ladder, easy to sell a home and buy and new one right? Well maybe, but it’s no slam dunk or cake walk, take your pick for a colloquialism. You will likely being competing against three, four or twenty other offers on your new purchase. The price will climb, and of course in that mix there is usually someone that doesn’t need to worry about an appraiser, aka a cash buyer. The seller might want you to pre-inspect and remove the contingency from your offer, and you know if you refuse, the next buyer drop the inspection gladly. Or the seller might stipulate to wait for mutual acceptance before your inspection. Knowing there are all those other buyers standing behind you in line that didn’t win the bidding process, are you really going to ask the seller to fix the plumbing problems or replace the foggy, failed double-paned windows?
Then imagine the poor buyers who sold their home in Iowa City for $150,000 thinking with all that cash, they will find a fantastic craftsman in their new hometown of Seattle. They arrive and learn it might get them a studio basement apartment turned condo on Queen Anne or Capitol Hill . . . . maybe. That is if they don’t spend all their savings on rent in the meantime while missing out in multiple offers.
Even more than before Phinney residents are staying put, remodeling their existing homes and buying homes from neighbors. If you think it’s hard to find a home on Phinney Ridge or any other close-in neighborhood you can see why. There is a real shortage of “supply” of sellers and an abundance of buyers, moving here from all over the world.
So what’s the answer? Use a full-service, full-time Realtor that knows the area, works evenings when needed, doesn’t pass you down through a team, like an assembly line. A Real Estate Agent who scours the NWMLS and sets you up on their same search, knows the neighbors and can be there the minute the keybox goes on. Someone who gets more word of mouth referrals than google ad words clicks and doesn’t depend on big data for their business. In other words, old-fashioned service and knowledge. The big Z, T, R, might have a lot of data, but rarely is it the right information. If you don’t know the difference well, maybe should should work with someone who doesn’t have 40 contracts going on at once but still has some ethical tricks up their sleeve.