|Real Estate Ruminations...

Some Seattle homes say “Stay awhile”

The subliminal messages you get touring Seattle homes has a huge impact on how you select which one you want to buy. Have you noticed that some Seattle homes seem to say “sit down and stay awhile” while you’re looking them over? Savvy sellers can create settings in their homes before they list them, featuring spots to sit and read, or to enjoy a conversation, or to reenergize, be it on a cushioned window-seat or an inviting Adirondack chair near the entry. Some Seattle homes seem to feel utilitarian and rush you through them because they feel bland, and others are so emotionally inviting that buyers, agents, even the neighbors seem to want to linger.

What is the secret to creating Seattle homes that say “stay awhile”?

It’s actually how it feels, looks, and smells, that creates an overall inviting haven. You might try a scented oil in the bath that you’ve smelled at a specialty spa, or removing all the extra clutter on the kitchen counter so it looks ready for a magazine shoot. A little color accent here and there, and thoughtful arrangements of furniture that open up the flow of the home all add up to creating an inviting environment. For extra ideas I recommend doing a little reading on Feng Shui and the art of feeling grounded and relaxed in a home.  Creating that special something is what I try to do with each listing before it hits the market.

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Could Snow Hit Ballard and Greenwood?

ballard and greenwood
Clear blue skies and cold temps could bring snow to Ballard and Greenwood, but know that while it’s chilly out, the real estate market is “red hot” right now. Those sunny days and possibly a Seahawks cloud 9 sensation have sellers raking in multiple offers and buyers bundling up for pre-inspections on Ballard and Greenwood / Phinney Ridge area homes. The hot Seattle residential real estate market of 2013 has rolled right into the new year and inventory has stayed relatively low. If you’d like to know when the “best time” to sell is I’d have to say we’re experiencing it right now. Three things that could calm down this heat-wave would be rising interest rates, more listings coming on the market, or an increase in available rentals (which would ease the current influx of housing needs for newcomers to Seattle who are starting work in the south Lake Union area). Brrrrr, it’s cold out there, but man oh man, it is a hot market right now!
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Green Lake : Front Porch First Impressions

First impressions are invaluable to sellers. Buyers pick up on them getting out of the car or just walking up to a home.  This sweet bungalow, which I sold in Green Lake a while ago, is a perfect example of how some contrasting colors, created with a few potted tulips in bloom and a cozy chair on the front porch make an inviting first impression.  This time of year our gardens are mostly asleep and plants are not showcasing your home.  So, if you’re selling right now or about to, I recommend doing a little staging to the front porch so buyers will be drawn to your home.  If it looks like a picture postcard, you’re ready for the “for sale” sign!

   Green Lake bungalow

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North Beach: Going, Going, Sold!

This North Beach home sold last night with three buyers bringing in offers for over the asking price.  Located on 30th NW, a quiet dead-end street, this North Beach stunner has an open kitchen/dining room that flows out to a covered deck overlooking a natural ravine.  Very sweet! We’ve had such a strong interest in unique “move-in” ready homes, it is astounding.  I met this client through my friends Doug & Kale Kim, who used to live across the street. They know how to make a home feel like home, and that’s important when thinking about how to move forward with putting your home on the market. Staging homes properly can be the difference between getting  asking price or getting OVER asking price. Click on the pic to see more…

north beach real estate

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Seattle Seahawks are Spectacular, Thanks Coach!

seattle seahawks

My hat is off to Pete Carroll!  Wow!  He is doing more with his attitude, coaching and vision for the Seattle Seahawks than we will ever know.  Today (1/12/2014) the Seattle Times ran a piece about him that hit the nail on the head: “If you had to boil the multifaceted Carroll’s passion down to a single concept, it’s clearly that he wants to inspire people to be their best.  As a coach, he is doing that with the Seahawks.” He has created pride in our city and beyond for our beloved Seattle Seahawks and we all adore our all-important role as the 12th man.  Thanks coach!  We will not forget your spectacular role leading our team to new heights.  Go Hawks!

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Residential Seattle – Kiss the Cook!

Wallingford Kitchen - residential seattle by Liz Talley

When you look through residential Seattle real estate listings and think about how you spend time on weekends, it’s likely that hanging out in the kitchen is part of your routine.  I recommend buying a home with a light & bright kitchen, with a sweet view out the window that offers inviting spots to hang out either on a stool by the counter or a built-in bench & table nook.  In residential Seattle, outdoor access is a must, think about how it feels and if the layout seems comfortable.  Once you’ve moved in and cooking is underway, my best advice is to be sure to kiss the cook.  This Wallingford kitchen had all the right elements including fir floors, a gas stove and warm feel and the home sold promptly this past summer.

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Seattle Area Real Estate Sales – 2014 Predictions

Seattle Area Real EstateFor the first time in many years, I’m seeing far more signs that the Seattle area real estate market is back to normal and picking up speed.  2013 marked my most successful year in real estate since I joined Windermere and I am seeing many indicators for a big sales year in 2014.  The pace is fast, financing on sales is running smoothly, escrow offices are buzzing with activity and sold signs are up.  I asked my mentor Matt Carroll,  who owns and runs the Windermere Greenwood office where I am working, for his predictions for 2014.  He said “We are entering a golden age of growth and development in the Seattle Marketplace.  Seattle housing should keep pace with that demand, and with the right agents, the sky is the limit.  When we look back on this in ten years, with the Viaduct coming down, the waterfront changing, 70,000 apartments being built in the past few years and unemployment approaching record lows for our area, we are in for a decade of long term stability and growth.”  He sums it up well and I concur.  Here’s to success in 2014!

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