The Home Connection for June

Your June home connection is here and I sure hope you are out enjoying some of that amazing sunshine we are having!!!

Houses across the county are selling FAST!

In today’s whirlwind real estate market, houses are selling at astonishing speed – from sea to shining sea. Four years ago, the average house spent 39 days on the market. Two years ago, homes were on the market for about 24 days. Today, that number has dropped to just 17 short days. If you’re looking to sell your house quickly and on the best possible terms, today’s market can’t be beat. DM me to discuss how to secure a speedy, top-dollar sale for your house.

Tuesday’s Terrible Houses…

Looking at homes is fun and finding clients their dream home is perfect. Over the many years I have been in Real Estate I have come across some pretty surprising tastes in décor. Were all individuals and want to express ourselves and I love seeing so many amazing and beautiful things that people do. Some are interesting, some I want to do in my own home and others have left me wondering “What were they thinking? Then we have the remodel jobs. Some were started and left undone and some finished that somehow went in a different direction or just did not turn out the way the homeowner thought it would. Other pictures are of homes in sad shape and desperately in need of help; or maybe even torn down and rebuilt. I have seen mold so high it has hair on top of hair!


I have so many pictures taken over the years in a computer file and I thought it is time to start sharing! Every Tuesday I will put a few on. Every week different and you never will know what you are going to get so check back.

I hope you enjoy these pictures as there just for fun so I better provide a disclaimer here:  No homes were harmed in the production of these pictures.
 

What do you think the caption on these two should be?

Home Buyers in 2021!

Monday Meme. 👀 Dedicated to all the home buyers out there! Today we put in an offer for a home $85,000 over list and made all the details sweet, simple and easy for the seller. Did we get it NO! 🤬


Real Estate Market in Snohomish County is seeing double digit escalation offers: Need sellers!

Trying something a bit unconventional! 💡If you do not know how the Real estate market is right now I am going to take a quote🗣 from the MLS “The economics of scarcity are driving prices up at an unsustainable pace,” said Dick Beeson, managing broker 👩‍🏫at RE/MAX Northwest. “What will happen this spring and summer 🌞 will likely be more of the same. 🆘The real estate vortex we’re in of depleted inventory and high prices is real and unrelenting.” “If interest rates weren’t historically low, buyers would be unable to afford the escalating cost of housing,” suggested Beeson. “We’re feeling nervous about where this market is headed,” he said, adding, “Help is not on the way. Sellers are almost as rare as the dodo bird.” Although he noted the number of new listings🏡 coming onto the market has kept pace or even exceeded last year’s totals in some areas, (Not Snoho county) “new listings are immediately devoured by a plethora of waiting buyers.” The situation has buyers asking, “Am I paying too much?” 💸and sellers asking, “Can we ask more?” 💸That answer for both is “Yes,” says Beeson

Do you know Snohomish county does not even have 2 weeks of inventory? I listed a home in Marysville a few weeks ago and within 2 days I had 18 offers! Many waived everything and, I mean everything. The offer my sellers decided to accept? 140k over asking and covering the difference of a low appraisal! 👀 So why am I bothering you with this?👂We have 5 home buyers that we have been working to find homes and one family that currently has 7 family members living in the same townhome as they have special needs and we want to find them homes! We were just beat out of an offer that we put in for them. Our offer was 50k over asking and waiving all we could plus they would cover a 25k low appraisal. The offer that got it was $80k over list❗️❗️In almost 11 years in Real Estate I have never experienced anything like what is happening. I rarely do not get my clients the home they want on the first try but, right now there are to many buyers, low interest rates and not enough homes on the market to sell. So I am trying to think outside the box.🕵️‍♀️ If you happen to know of anyone thinking of selling within these parameters can you PLEASE consider having them contact me? 📞 Believe me I have scoped out everything online, even FSBO, and so I am reaching out.

✅ Local firefighter‍🚒Veteran wanting to use his VA loan for the first time. They are approved for up to 500k. They would love a small rambler w/garage and a bit of a yard. Flexible on area. Currently looking in Lake Stevens, Marysville and Arlington. 3-bed, 1.5 bath. Home does need to be in good condition for VA financing but if something is called out and if a little something is needed to push I will do it!

✅Family of seven. Multigenerational family with one of the parents being confined to bed permanently. We are trying to find a home that has 2, or potentially 2, living arrangements. A split maybe for parents to live downstairs and the younger families up? They have 2 small pet 🐐goats so no HOA neighborhood. Underwritten approved to 675k.

✅First time home buyer with 2 small kids and need a home they can keep their laying hens with them. No HOA against chickens. 🐓3 bed/ 1.5 bath with a garage detached or attached. Like homes with a bit of lot. Looking in Marysville, Granite falls, Arlington area. Underwritten approved to 500k.

✅First time home buyer couple. No kids yet but want to have a couple fur babies 🐕🐕‍🦺soon as they lost there two older ones in the last year. Underwritten approved to 570k, 3 bed, 2 bath. Like newer modern homes but not the zero lot line ones.

✅First time home buyer expecting their first baby in May. Underwritten approved to 425k. Flexible on location but prefer Everett and going east or north is okay. At least a 2 bedroom, 1 bath.

🔑This is not something I would normally do or ask but I want to do the best for my clients and never hurts to try right?

Please reach out if you know of anyone, wanting or thinking, about selling. That could help my buyers or another family that is looking for a home. ☎️

Thank you!!

Top 10 Rightsizing Tips for Seniors

Top 10 Rightsizing Tips for Seniors

Are you considering selling your home and retiring? Maybe somewhere warmer? We all know the main areas for retiring are Florida with many cities being ranked in the top 10. I was surprised to see Myrtle beach- SC, Ann Harbor MI, and Lancaster, PA in the top 10 and I did not see Arizona in the top 25. In fact it looks like they were #38 in the 2020 ranking. Times are changing for sure! Where do you think Washington ranked? We ranked 46 out of 50!

Over the years seeing Seniors in my church, neighbors and with my own parents I have seen many challenges as we age that make you decide to move. After struggling to help one family move that had many medical challenges I decided I need to learn more to help this population and is why I am proud to be an Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES). Helping those make a move that is more senior friendly and working with their family in taking the time they may need for their next adventure in life.

So where do you start when you are starting to consider a move and have lived in your current home for 20+ years?

1. Start with the easy stuff.

Eliminate anything that’s broken, damaged, or no longer wanted. Then, go to the out-of-the-way spaces like attics, crawlspaces, and garages. Progress in these “easier” parts of your home will help you build momentum and tackle the harder-to-decide areas.

2. Ask yourself,  “If this disappeared tomorrow, would I run out and replace it?”

If you wouldn’t miss it or need to replace it, it’s probably not worth keeping.

3. Don’t be a storage unit for others.

If friends or relatives have left things for you to store, it’s time to ask them to pick up their possessions—or arrange to have them shipped. You may need to be tough and set a firm deadline, after which you will donate the items.

4. Ask for help.

Although you can do much of this work on your own, a family member, a good friend, or even a professional organizer can help make the job more manageable.

5. Decide what’s important.

Pretend you are moving overseas, but you can only take a severely limited number of items because it costs a small fortune to ship them. What items belong on your list? These are the things that matter most to you!

6. Is this something from a lifestyle I no longer have or want?

For example, if you have three cabinets full of plastic containers, but only cook for one or two people, it’s reasonable to eliminate a few plastic sets—and dishes, pots, and pans.

7. Schedule a regular time each week—or several days a week—to work on rightsizing.

Realize that rightsizing is a life-changing marathon, not a sprint. You didn’t accumulate everything overnight, and you won’t sort it all out overnight, either.

8. Value what you keep.

The fewer things you keep, the more you will treasure and enjoy what you have, instead of tucking items away in a closet or stacked among dozens of other things. These are the select, meaningful items worth having in your personal space.

9. Prevent new collections from forming.

Instead of material gifts, ask people to spoil you by sharing time, enjoying new experiences, and helping you indulge in luxuries (spa certificates, imported chocolate, a musical or other theatre production, gift certificates for dinner out, etc.). In other words, ask for special treats that you love and want, but don’t always buy for yourself.

10. Use age to your advantage.

Now is a great time to give items to family members that you eventually want them to have. Take a photo (preferably a digital one) of your recipients holding their treasured gifts and create a scrapbook of “next generation” memories. These images can serve as powerful reminders of your most cherished items moving forward into posterity with the most special people in your life.

It takes time once you decide you want to start making the steps for a move. The average time frame I work with Senior sellers that have decided to move is a few months to a few years. I had one couple that I worked with for 3 years! They had been in their home for 32 years. Raised their kids and finally decided it was time to move into a ground floor condo with no steps and then go see the world. It takes time to navigate and sometimes many meetings to help them make decisions and keep them on their path. I helped with so many referrals and even some of the heavy lifting before we did the heavy selling. 🙂

Want more information on what a SRES can do for you? Visit the consumer site to learn about the value of working with a SRES and content with topics to assist you like Senior housing options, adapting your existing home and more.

The Home Connection Feb-2021

Home Buyers DESPERATELY seeking Home Sellers!

Like my meme? I could say its meme Monday but really, it’s to “mask” my frustration.

We have 5 very qualified first-time home buyers that we are desperately trying to find homes for and inventory is so low, over 40% from last year, there are too many competing for the same home! We have put in 8 offers for our clients in the first 2 weeks of 2021. Britt has been so busy showing the homes as soon as they come on the market, our buyers are being so flexible and I am writing offers at all hours of the day! We are busy and blessed to be representing some wonderful families but, like I said, so frustrated to keep getting the call of rejection and the words “I am so sorry there were to many offers and the seller chose to go with.” We want our buyers to understand we are doing EVERYTHING within our experience to get them a home. This is just not normal!!

Last night I put in an offer for home buyers that are qualified in the mid 500k range. The home was in Marysville I used every negotiation technique that I have learned over my long real estate career and built a great rapport with the listing agent. My buyers are underwritten approved, which I am advising all our buyers to do, as it shows financial strength and security to a seller that the buyers have done everything to secure the transaction will not fall apart due to financing. We shortened every timeline and waived what my buyers felt comfortable with. We did a preinspection and then waived an inspection after contract too!  So, like I said every timeline shortened, everything fast and quick and we could close in 2 weeks if needed.

I got the call…. “Jen, your clients offer was amazing, and you were in the top few, however, I am sorry we had 11 offers and the sellers chose another that they just could not pass it up.  The next day the same thing, 19 offers, the day after that 24 offers. Are you seeing a pattern here?

As one that lists a lot of homes, I understand this call. I know what I want to see as a listing agent for my seller and in turn make sure to submit complete, streamlined offers for our buyers giving them the best opportunity to get a home. Normally, I am successful and my track record on securing homes has been strong. Until, that is, now and I am frustrated for my buyers. There has not, at any time, that I can remember this many buyers with these low of interest rates and this reduction of homes on the Real Estate market. 

This morning I have submitted 2 more offers. One of the offers is for a home that had a review period and wanted all offers in by Thursday, the 21st, but since they went on the market 3 days ago they already have had 30+ showings, currently have 5 amazing offers in hand so changed up everything and wanted all offers in today. This is what we are dealing with right now. I have crossed my fingers, toes, eyes, knees and elbows for them in hopes this evening we get a call of success. I don’t want to make another call to my clients telling them we didn’t get it.

I took this from the MLS so you can see a bit of numbers happening right now.

While overall inventory is down, a comparison of counties shows a wide range of deficits, according to NWMLS data. Perhaps surprisingly, King County’s supply declined “only” about 18% from a year ago, while five counties (Clallam, Clark, Island, Mason, and Snohomish) reported drops of at least 63%. A closer look at the MLS report for all counties shows the shortages are most acute for single family homes (off 50.6% area-wide), while the condo supply improved (up 7.1%).

“With listings down 42.8%, record low interest rates, and demand very high in outer suburban areas, it seems like the perfect price storm has hit,” suggested James Young, director of the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington.

Now you have a little bit of insight on what I am dealing with?

 Sooooooooo….

Are you thinking of selling? Want more information and a valuation? You may have thought of selling but saw Zillow had you at an amount that you feel is low? Remember, consumer sites are no competition for a real live agent that is out in the market every day. Contact me! I would feel pretty confident in saying I have a buyer for your home.

Martin Luther King, Jr. 2021

Fill in the blank…

“I have a _________…”

It doesn’t take a psychic to know what word you chose.

Was it “dream”?

Good chance it was. We all know this line from Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famous speech. So when we hear those first three words, it sort of naturally comes to mind.

But what many people aren’t aware of is how much he affected the lives of real estate agents, buyers, and sellers.

It was his death that gave Congress the last push needed to pass the Fair Housing Act, back in 1968. It’s pretty involved, but to put it simply…

This was put in place to ban racial discrimination in housing. You can’t be refused the rental or purchase of a house, based upon your race.

Seems simple enough to most people now. A given, if you will. But it didn’t happen overnight. And believe it or not, it still can and does come up.

But guess who’s a big part of making sure this Act is followed…

On the front lines, it’s real estate agents. We’re tasked with making people aware that discrimination based upon race (and many other things) are not acceptable, and they must refuse to work with anyone who wants to do so.

Real estate agents are proud to be a part of this ongoing history.

Today is the day where we take a moment to reflect and pay him respect. It’s also a good day to share some insight into how much more responsibility real estate agents have than meets the eye.