Gov. Inslee lays out our plan
A 4 Phase plan to re-open Washington from the Stay Home Order.
In this letter, I will give my interpretation of this plan and how it relates to real estate along with updates and clarifications from the WA Realtor Association.
This plan is similar to many other states including NY and CA in that it has specifics about what can open at each Phase but doesn’t put a timeline on future phases.
But, Phase 1 started on Monday the 5th! Each phase should last about 3 weeks.
The WA Realtor Assc. announcement, below, interprets the governors announcement for real estate activity.
It says that all real estate activities will be allowed in Phase 2, with the exception of maybe in person open houses since gatherings are restricted to 5 people total.
Also in Phase 2, housecleaning is allowed which I think gives way to allowing contractors into your house to prep your home for sale.
GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES 4 PHASE APPROACH – from WA Realtors Assc.
On Friday, May 1st Governor Inslee announced an extension of the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order to May 31st and laid out a phased approach to re-opening the State economy. Phase 1 begins Tuesday, May 5th. Please note that this does not affect the modifications that were made to the original Stay Home, Stay Healthy order that allow certain real estate activities to take place.
Phase 2 businesses will include all other real estate activity including commercial real estate, the re-opening of real estate offices, and services such as sign installation. Phase 2 also allows gatherings outside your residence for up to 5 people, which presumably would apply to parts of the real estate transaction such as showings, appraisals notarizations, etc. The Governor’s phased-in plan will apply in counties that have been harder hit by COVID-19. The 10 counties that have not been as impacted by the virus will be allowed to apply for waivers that will let them open up faster (see KING5 story for summary).
Although it is not yet clear when Phase 2 will begin, we will be in constant dialog to make our case for the earliest possible start date that is consistent with maintaining public health as the number one priority, and we also will continue urging the Governor’s office to approve additional, and safe, modifications that we’ve requested to allow brokers to more fully meet the needs of their clients.
RE Transactions Rebound
Transactions in Seattle and King Co. bottomed out the first week of April, down -65% vs LY but have been increasing since this low.
This data plus a decrease in market time to sell a home and a +8% increase in sold home prices in April in Seattle show us that there are still buyers in the market and they are transacting.
The residential real estate market is still active and I think it will be headed back to “normal” once we are further along into Phases 2 & 3 this summer.
Only time will tell how the Stay Home Order will ultimately impact our housing market.
So far, real estate is fairing better than most segments of our economy.
Almost $700k for our neighbors in need!!
Thank you, thank you to all that helped support this incredibly worthy cause to help our neighbors in need and bring food and resources to our local food banks.
Our agent supported Windermere Foundation matched $250,000 to the $440,000 raised to get the total donation to almost $700,000! Amazing!
Life goes on…
more challenging for the most vulnerable in our city.
Things around my house have been moving forward, sometimes without me. I owe so much to my incredible family!
They have all stepped up and kept a positive attitude while spreading some kindness.
With love, the Johnson’s
My wife, Lari, and I celebrated our lucky
13th wedding anniversary in early May!
Our esteemed economist, Matthew Gardner, has released his 3rd quarter assessment of our Western WA real estate market. Enjoy!
Debuts & Discoveries – Beverage Tasting – Saturday, March 16th from 5-8pm
D&D is a great gathering of new talent from the Seattle beverage world with offerings from wineries, breweries, cideries and distilleries. Food trucks on site as well.
See link for all details & to get tickets.
Enjoy some tasty food and beverages and support Outdoors for All.
Helping children with disabilities get out!
I’ll see you there. https://lnkd.in/dx7hU58
The best, best part of my job is when I get to handover the keys to a first time home buyer! And this time Yasemin came all the way from Istanbul and has made a life here in Seattle and has now bought her first home!
Her mom is even here from Istanbul to help her move in!
It gets me a little choked up when someone gets into their first place and they’re so excited just to walk through the door! Best feeling and best part of my job!
Welcome home Yasemin!
Here are a few thoughts about melting snow, possible water intrusion and houses from Don McFeron at Scout Building Inspections:
“Gutters and downspouts full of snow and ice can back up if it starts raining before the snow and ice melt.
Water backing up in the gutters can be a real problem if you have a house without much of a roof overhang, because instead of wetting the soffits, it can get into the walls.
Roof downspout in-ground drains can ice up, and then the water coming down the downspouts can spill out next to the foundation. If the house has a finished basement, the water next to the house could get into wall cavities through the footing-to-foundation joint, and any through-wall penetrations or cracks. Make sure that water coming out of the downspouts runs down into functioning in-ground drains, or route the water on the surface far enough away from the foundation that the water cannot run down next to it and get into the basement or the crawl space.
Snow in a basement window well can get up against the windows and window trim. When the snow melts it could get in through small gaps between the windows and trim.
Water from melting snow that has piled up against a door can get in through weep holes and weather stripping as it melts.
When you shovel a walkway, be careful to not pile the snow up against the side of the house.
Snow on a roof can get up under the flashing around skylights, chimneys, plumbing vents, attic ridge vents, etc. Pretty much all of the flashings and roof boots are designed to protect against water that is flowing down hill. Blowing snow can get under the edges of flashings or pack in around them and then drip down behind them as it melts. Usually the amount of water would not be noticeable, but in a situation where there are several inches of snow followed by a quick melt and a lot of rain, it could be a problem.
I cleared the snow off of my roof top deck tonight because the snow was deep enough that when it melted it could have gotten up under the siding, through gaps between the door to the roof or through perimeter flashings and into the house. The through-wall drains were packed with snow so that water may not have been able to drain through them.
My office, Windermere Wedgwood, publishes statistics for the transactions that we represent each month.
These statistics dive deeper than the basic info you get from online sources.
The pack below shows transaction details like type of financing, cash offers, # of offers and the one I find most interesting this month, median sold price.
The median sold price for the 16 transactions completed by my office in December 2018 was $839k vs. $759k from Dec. 2017 or +10.5%
Even with the Seattle Times headlines about Seattle’s rapid decrease in prices, the numbers don’t lie, +10% vs last year!
Has your lender told you about the upcoming changes for conforming loans in 2019?
Make sure you’re working with a knowledgeable lender that keeps you informed on the latest and the greatest.
Thank you Matt for always keeping me up to date.
New conforming loan limits for King/Pierce/Snohomish county – all the way up to $726,525.
Gives you more purchasing power and reach.
A $725,000 home purchase will now qualify for a conforming loan with as little as 5% down payment of $36,250.
You’ll be able to afford more home and still be competitive in the changing Seattle area market!
What you want to pay attention to in the attached eye chart of a graph is the bottom graph and how every winter (December) for the last 10 years, we see a dramatic slow down in sales.
So yes, the rate of appreciation has slowed in the Seattle area since May 2018.
But, we also see a slow down in transactional sales every winter.
Put them together and it seems more dramatic and remember we had quite a run up of prices over the last 5 years.