Renton, WA Real Estate News

By Megan Coughlin
(Keller Williams Realty)
Real Estate Market Activity (As of October 15, 2007) Maple Valley/Black Diamond (MLS Area 320)Single Family HomesAverage Days On Market: 78Inventory of Active Listings: 523Average List Price: $444,473Average Sale Price: $422,347CondominiumsAverage Days On Market: 76Inventory of Active Listings: 7Average List Price: $296,861Average Sale Price: $284,919Kent (MLS 330)Single Family HomesAverage Days on Market: 72Inventory of Active Listings: 759Average List Price: $408,982Average Sale Price: $382,724Condominiums Average Days on Market: 49Inventory of Active Listings: 153Average List Price: $236,001Average Sale Price: $226,839Renton/Benson Highlands (MLS Area 340)Single Family HomesAverage Days on Market: 66Inventory of Active Listings: 398Average List Price: $425,947Average Sale Price: $405...
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By David Edwards
(Edwards Real Estate Group, Inc.)
On August 20th, the Renton City Council passed a resolution in support of the Roads & Transit Plan. Voters will vote on this package this November.The Roads & Transit Plan includes the following projects in Renton: - I-405 Bellevue to Renton lane additions- SR 167 / I-405 interchange HOV to HOV direct lane connection- SR 167 HOT (toll) lanes- Southbound I-405 to eastbound SR 169 flyover ramp- SR 167 Green River Valley corridor congestion relief projectsDavid EdwardsREALTOR®Keller Williams Realty Southeast SoundPhone: 425-890-8045E-Mail: david@davidjedwards.comWebsite: http://www.davidjedwards.comBlogsite: http://www.davidjedwards.com/renton-info-blog.aspDavid J Edwards is a full time real estate agent and REALTOR® with Keller Williams Realty specializing in Residential Real Estate for b...
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By Megan Coughlin
(Keller Williams Realty)
Real Estate Market Activity (As of October 8, 2007) Maple Valley/Black Diamond (MLS Area 320)Single Family HomesAverage Days On Market: 76Inventory of Active Listings: 538Average List Price: $446,534Average Sale Price: $422,717CondominiumsAverage Days On Market: 75Inventory of Active Listings: 75Average List Price: $296,861Average Sale Price: $284,919Kent (MLS 330)Single Family HomesAverage Days on Market: 72Inventory of Active Listings: 755Average List Price: $409,546Average Sale Price: $422,717Condominiums Average Days on Market: 50Inventory of Active Listings: 141Average List Price: $235,703Average Sale Price: $228,647Renton/Benson Highlands (MLS Area 340)Single Family HomesAverage Days on Market: 64Inventory of Active Listings: 406Average List Price: $426,982Average Sale Price: $407...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Hello everyone:  Last Friday, the newspapers in the Seattle, WA. area reported that the median sale price of a home decreased for the first time in years.  Granted it was only $500 but this is significant in an area where we've generally been immune to what's going on around the rest of the nation.The median sale price of a home in Seattle decreased from $400,000 to $399,950.  Yes, homes are expensive here and they've been selling well until now.  It appears there is a softening of the market with homes taking longer to sell and, thus, more inventory on the market. I'm not sure the trend will change until 2009 at the earliest.  I believe we tend to lag the national market by at least a year.  Job growth and migration is still  strong here although Boeing and Microsoft won't continue hir...
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By The Keutla Team
(Keller Williams )
Recently remodeled split level 4 bed/2 bath with spacious floor plan, backs to a green belt and large entertainment deck, out building and RV parking. Stainless steel appliances, newer roof and vinyl.  This wonderful home sits in the prestigous neighborhood of Fairwood.  With 1700+ sqft of living space this home is perfect for a growing family.  Hurry before the bank takes it back!!!                             
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By David Edwards
(Edwards Real Estate Group, Inc.)
The Washington Assessment of Student Learning scores for individual schools are now available at the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction Website at www.k12.wa.us. Percentage of Renton students meeting the state standard on 2007's WASL:Reading:Third Grade: 67 percent, down .6 percent from last year's 67.6.Fourth Grade: 73.4 percent, down 5.4 percent from last year's 78.8.Fifth Grade: 65.2 percent, down 1.9 percent from last year's 67.1. Sixth Grade: 56.4 percent, down 5.3 percent from last year's 61.7. Seventh Grade: 60.6 percent, up 15.9 percent from last year's 44.7.Eighth Grade: 54.3 percent, down 5.9 percent from last year's 60.2.10th Grade: 69.4 percent, down .6 percent from last year's 70.Math:Third Grade: 64.7 percent, up 2.6 percent from last year's 62.1.Fourth Gra...
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By David Edwards
(Edwards Real Estate Group, Inc.)
Part Alton Brown, part John Curley, all ahead-of-the-curve story telling. That's The Curve!The Curve airs on Renton's Channel 21 on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 2:00 AM, 1:00 PM, 5:00 PM and 10:00 PM and Tuesdays and Thursdays at 12:00 AM, 8:00 AM, 3:00 PM, and 11:00 PM and Saturdays and Sundays at 4:00 AM, 10:00 AM, 3:00 PM and 7:00 PM. The Curve dramatically shows why Renton is the center of opportunity and is the right choice for businesses and families alike. The Curve is proudly sponsored by the Renton Community Marketing Campaign, a partnership between the City of Renton, the Renton School District, Renton Technical College, Valley Medical Center, and Renton Chamber of Commerce. The Curve isproduced by Hamilton/Saunderson.For more information on Renton's Marketing Campaign ...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Today, Countrywide Home loans announced they are looking for an additional infusion of cash from investment banks.  This is serious stuff, folks.  A little more than 2 weeks ago, Bank of America invested $2 billion in Countrwide which effectively purchased 16% of Countrywide's stock.  Now, Countrywide is asking for billions more which would indicate a serious liquidity crisis.I was having lunch with a banker friend of mine today and we were musing about how Bank of America might buy the rest of Countrywide if the price were right.  One thing making the rumor mills is if Countrywide is able to secure addtional money, their CEO, Angelo Mozillo, may be asked to leave.  One thing is for certain.  Expect Countrywide to continue to pare its staff to cut costs.  Already reductions of up to 20%...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
I read late today that Countrywide Home Loans will be laying off 12,000 people or up to 20% of its workforce.  Their CEO, Angelo Mozilo, stated he had never encountered market forces such as they are now.  The goal is to switch everything over to their bank.  What this probably means is their underwriting and ability to generate new loans will be much more restrictive.  Anything that is Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac approved will be o.k. Anything that is non-conforming (over $417,000 loan amount or "exotic" such as payment option loans) may not happen.  I feel bad, obviously, for the continued displacement of workers from our business.  I'm not sure there are other mortgage jobs out there right now.  Stay tuned as this saga continues.  Remember that ARM's are still adjusting in record numbe...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Good morning all:  I was thinking on my drive home last night about how ingrained it is in our borrower's mind that they get the lowest rates and fees on their loan.  Granted this isn't a bad thing.  In fact, I often encourage people to call 2 or 3 lenders when shopping for their loan.With this in mind, I can't stress enough how important it is to compare the same with the same. Right now I'm working on a jumbo loan (over $1 million) for a borrower whom I have known for a while.  I was not discouraged when they decided to shop around.  What is maddening is the rate and fee quote they got from one of my competitors.  A Good Faith Estimate was sent that not only charged them a great rate but also had $3,000 in closing costs as a part of the loan.  if you do your math, and include everyday...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Yesterday, my colleague, Jennifer Graves, and myself appeared on Coach Steve Toth's radio show, www.realcoachingradio.com.  Thanks, Steve, for allowing us the opportunity to appear!  In the show, both Jennifer and I talked about how the Paicific Northwest has so far emerged relatively unscathed from the rest of the nation.Why is this?  Number one, job growth due to employers such as Boeing and Microsoft still hiring means there are still plenty of buyers and borrowers out there.  Two, the Pacific Northwest has high paying jobs and often educated borrowers which are two great criteria to borrow money.  Still, the market has slowed here.  In several areas, housing inventory is at a 9 month supply and many homes for sale have had their prices reduced.  An argument could be made that we her...
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEAugust 31, 2007SEATTLE, WA. - Washington State based nwRealty.Net, Inc. today announced the addition of Marlene Burns and ERA American Brokers, Inc. to its suite of real estate based marketing services.  ERA American Brokers, Inc. now uses the latest release of nwRealty prospecting software to fully integrate the "Promotional Spotlight" of their listings and services with Multiple Listing Service IDX listings on www.nwRealty.com. This allows their websites at www.marleneburns.com and www.eraamericanbrokers.com to extend reach far beyond Renton and King County, WA.  They now have full access to direct traffic acquired from nwRealty's global presence for generating exposure and leads, creating an additional competitive advantage in today's increasingly competitive rea...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
I was reading this morning that the government estimates that at least 2/3 of the adjustable rate mortgages (ARM's) in this nation set to readjust are exotic loans with low teaser rates.  Further, a lot of these loans are above the FHA limit of $367,000. One statistic I read was even higher; 81% of loans set to readjust are exotic or "low teaser rate" loans.What does this all mean?  It means that there is relief for approximately 20-30% of the homeowners with ARM's set to adjust.  Obviously, that's the good news.  The sobering news is for the rest of you.  If you have an ARM set to readjust in the next year, don't wait until the last minute.  Start doing your homework now!  If the government can't help, call your lender.  They may be willing to work with you and reset your mortgage.  Ke...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Yesterday I started pricing a jumbo mortgage for a client of mine and found out the rates had increased 1/2-1% over pricing two weeks ago.  The best price I found was 7.5% on a 30 year fixed mortgage.  The rates on ARM's wasn't significantly better.  My borrower has a 720+ credit score, can put down 25% and has assets in the millions.  All in all, a great loan but the loan amount is over 1 million and there's no market to buy these right now.I believe this will be one of the first markets to recover.  It may take a month or so but, a lot of times, these are pristine borrowers and I believe the lenders will recognize this again.  If you're a borrower, it's best at this point to borrow under either $750,000 or $1,000,000.  Any loan over 1 million is more expensive.  Your other option is t...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
I read this morning that President Bush moved to ease our jitters by allowing people whose mortgages are resetting to refinance into an FHA loan.  Further, the FHA loan limits would be increased to $417,000.  Obviously, these are positive moves that may give our world some traction.But the fine print states that the only people who are eligible for this new FHA program are those who haven't missed a payment. And I would bet that a decent percentage of borrowers in this category have.  Let's get real here, folks.  After several years of easy money for the borrower and for us, we're faced with a slowdown that I don't believe will go away anytime soon.  I'm talking 6-12 months before the shakeout is over.  In the meantime, we should be stressing to our borrowers that it is imperative they ...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
I write this evening a little perturbed with my borrower who is shopping me.  I understand this is all part of our job but have to admit I'm not crazy about it.  Especially since this particular borrower not only got my business in the first place but also the business of a friend of mine.  I'm a believer in giving first but would prefer reciprocity in return if at all possible. I also did not shop my customer's services.  I just trusted they would do a great job and they did.With the above being said, borrowers make sure you're comparing apples to apples.  I'm up against a bank on the above mentioned loan and, of course, they quoted no points, fees, etc.  Plus, I needed to charge MI as the loan was at 95%.  The bank indicated their rate would be higher but there would be no MI (mortgag...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Hello all: It occurred to me today that I love working with real estate agents on deals.  Here's why.  It allows me to communicate throughout the process in order to get the transaction done.  I like this.  I often hear from realtors that they never hear from the lender until the deal is ready to close.  I don't understand this.  I even call the listing agent and introduce myself.I think there's a soft spot in my heart for agents.  Granted, I've heard the grumblings from my fellow brethren about how often agents call checking on their deals.  The only time I had an agent call me a lot was when I made a mistake and only locked a loan for 15 days.  Understandably, the agent was worried as it looked like the rate lock might expire and the client might change their mind. This was my fault. ...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
I was thinking today about Pay Option ARM's and wondering if they made sense for you, the borrower.  I think I came to the conclusion that, most of the time, they really don't. The one exception might be if you're an investor who doesn't plan on holding your property that long or you're unsure about if your property will always cash flow. Flexibility in payments may work for you.With that in mind, I believe Pay option ARM's were created to make us, the mortgage salespeople of the world, a whole bunch of money.  In my office, it seems as if a lot of my co-workers were interested in putting their clients into Pay Option ARM's because they could or did earn big rebates from the lender.  Furthermore, it appears that part of our current mortgage crisis in the United States is due to borrower...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Hello all:  I had the question posed to me twice today by consumers such as yourself.  The question was are you going to survive?  I said yes and here's why.  Number one, Exact Financial Group is a mortgage broker and, therefore, has the ability to shop your loan to over 75 lenders in order to find the best fit for you. Two, we're on the retail side of the equation.  The big trouble is on the wholesale side (American Home Morgage which failed recently was a wholesale lender).As we go forward, here are my predictions.  The mortgage market will continue to tighten.  There are a lot of bad loans out there and the secondary market who repurchases these loans that are sold is dead.  Plus, there are more loans set to adjust through next year and I don't believe people will be able to afford t...
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By Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA.
(Responsive Pest Control)
Hello all:  In Washington State all loan originators were requred to be licensed as of the first of the year. We also have to pass a test by the end of the year in order to keep our license.  I think this is a good thing.  First and foremost, the conversations I had with the professionals I work with (mostly reators) indicated they thought it was a good thing.Secondly, I believe it will help you.  Theoretically, a person who has to get a license is more committed to the business.  What goes with this is a focus on you, our customer, as this is the only way to make it in the long run. A mortgage person who isn't licensed is not subject to any regulations and could operate their business any way they choose.  We should be an ethical lot; I believe licensing helps.  That's not to say  ther...
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