Date Archives: November 2021

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How to Navigate a Competitive Real Estate Market

Competitive MarketHomes are selling very quickly! Securing a home in a competitive market can feel challenging, if not impossible. Below, we've rounded a few tips to give you the best chance possible at getting your dream home in the competitive market. Following our guide and working with our brokers will help you stay ahead of the pack and position yourself as a potential buyer.

  • Get Pre-Approved
    Before you even begin house hunting, get a pre-approval letter from a lender. Shopping with a pre-approval in hand shows sellers a lender has verified your income, creditworthiness, and other numbers, and you have the capacity to buy their house. A pre-approval letter will communicate that you're a serious buyer. If there are several offers on the table, interested parties without financing could be tossed out. Pre-approval qualifies you for financing and gives you a competitive edge. And keep in mind that pre-qualification is not the same as pre-approval.

  • List Your Needs and Wants
    Now is the time to break out a notepad and start making a list of your needs and wants. Needs are non-negotiable features that your next home must have. Wants are features you'd like your next home to have but would be willing to sacrifice if you find a good home. For example, you may need a large backyard for your children or pets. You may prefer hardwood floors or an updated kitchen, but those may not be deal-breakers. Knowing your non-negotiable items will help determine whether a home meets your minimum requirements. If it does, you'll be able to act quickly and make an offer in today's competitive market.

  • Find a Great Real Estate Agent
    A great real estate broker is your secret weapon when buying a home in a competitive market. Not only do they have a solid understanding of the current market and the neighborhood you're interested in, but they also have terrific connections and great negotiations skills, which will work to your advantage. Before you hire a broker, be sure to get referrals, check online reviews, contact several recent clients, and find out their experience. When you have a list of at least five contenders, ask important questions. The inside knowledge of an excellent broker can put you on the fast track to success.

  • Look for Homes Under Your Budget
    In a competitive market, you can expect to compete against multiple or dozens of bidders on one home. As such, it may not be a good idea to look for homes at the top of your budget because chances are another person will outbid you. A good strategy is to look for homes that are below your budget so you can have room to offer above the asking price without going outside your target price point or dipping into your savings. You may also consider an escalation clause, which states that you'll put your bid at a certain price point higher than other competing bids – but make sure you know when to stop.

  • Be Ready to Move Fast
    Once you've found a home that ticks the boxes in your needs list, put in an offer right away before someone snatches it up. Your offer should include all relevant information, forms, and disclosures the seller will need to make a decision. An incomplete offer could end up in the trash in a multiple offer situation. Pay attention to details and make sure your offer is complete. Your agent will be happy to help you draft your offer and have your negotiating strategies at the ready. Also, know how high you're willing to go if there are other offers and be ready to make tough decisions quickly and decisively.

  • Make a Large Down Payment
    Making a sizeable down payment is another way to strengthen your offer. Of course, you should save up enough for a down payment when buying a home, but it's more important than ever to do so when buying in a competitive market. You want to show the seller that you are serious, can afford the home, and is ready to put your money where your mouth is.

  • Keep Trying
    A competitive market could mean that you "lose" a few homes to other buyers. Home inventory is remarkably low and homes tend to sell remarkably quickly when they come on the market. If your offer isn't accepted, do not be discouraged. Keep searching and putting in offers until you're able to find a home that you love.

If you're ready to buy a home in the Pacific Northwest, Coldwell Banker Bain can help. We put our knowledge, skills, and experience on your side to help you find the perfect place to call home. Contact us today to get started.


Small Business Saturday: How to Support Small Businesses This Holiday Season

Small Business Saturday

During the holidays last year, shoppers chose to support small businesses more than ever before by skipping online shopping and chain stores to do their holiday shopping locally. So let's do even better this year, and show the Seattle area small businesses some love for the holidays. Our brokers have the details on why and how to support small businesses this holiday season.

Why Small Businesses Deserve Your Support During the Holidays

If you're like most people, then you probably already have some favorite local small businesses where you love shopping. It's nice to go to a place where people know your face, name, and preferences as soon as you walk through the door. Small businesses provide the opportunity for local artists, artisans, farmers, restaurateurs, and business people to share their unique wares with the public.

Small businesses are also integral to local economies in every neighborhood, and Seattle is no exception. Thriving small businesses create jobs, drive local spending, and provide a level of personalized service that you can't find anywhere else. Many small business owners are also very dedicated to raising funds for local charities, supporting community events, and giving back to the communities that help them thrive.

How to Support Small Businesses for the Holidays

There are so many reasons both big and small to support small businesses for the holidays. Your support means so much to these businesses, and doing your holiday shopping locally is also a great way to find one-of-a-kind gifts that you won't find anywhere else. But how do you show your support? Here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Show Up and Browse to Find That Special Something
    We all know how easy it is to browse a big, online retailer to find generic gifts, but it's hard to find that spark of inspiration for a truly special gift when you shop online. Whether you already have a gift idea in mind or you want to find a unique gift for someone who's hard to shop for, visiting small businesses to browse and make a purchase is a great way to get inspired for your holiday shopping.

  • Start Your Shopping Early and Be Patient
    Starting your holiday shopping early provides a variety of benefits for small businesses, and can make your life easier too. It provides revenue for small businesses when they need it most, and allows them to prepare your order before the busiest holiday shopping times. So get out there to start shopping before Black Friday, and be patient while small businesses get your order ready in time for the holidays.

  • Support Small Businesses by Showing Your Love Online
    After you're done shopping at your favorite small businesses, why not show them some love online? Leaving positive reviews on Yelp and Google is a great place to start because those reviews really help small businesses gain exposure online. You can also shout out and link to your favorite small businesses on social media, to help all of your connections find the best local places to shop for the holidays.

  • Try Dining Out or Ordering a Meal Kit for a Holiday Meal
    Eliminate the stress of cooking for the holidays and support a small business in the process by visiting a restaurant for a holiday meal. You can dine out at a restaurant that's open for in-person dining, or order a meal kit from a local restaurant that makes it easy to whip up a world-class meal at home with minimal effort.

  • Be a Friendly Customer and a Generous Tipper
    When you visit a small business to do some shopping or eating, make sure to treat the staff well. And if you can afford it, a generous tip can make a big difference.

Are you searching for a home located close to all of your favorite Seattle small businesses? Our local real estate team is here to help you find the perfect match among the many Seattle homes for sale. Contact us to buy and sell homes in the Seattle, WA area.


9 Things to do in Pioneer Square

Pioneer Square

Seattle homes for sale have lots of things going for them. The city is famous for its culinary delights, its rich history and culture, and the seemingly never-ending number of parks you'll find nestled between the world-class amenities and unique landmarks. Our brokers say there's no other place like it.

One of the truly special things about Seattle is Pioneer Square, among the most vibrant historic districts in the Pacific Northwest. These days, it's home to art galleries, cafes, and even a handful of technology startups.

Let's take a look at some of the terrific things to do and see throughout Pioneer Square:

  1. Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park – 319 2nd Avenue South, Seattle, WA 98104
    Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park is a reminder of Seattle's remarkable history as one of the most important ports of call for those heading to adventure in Alaska in the 1890s. Its collections include a variety of artifacts from the period, as well as diaries and journals kept by real Klondike explorers.

  2. The Underground Tour – 614 1st Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104
    The Underground Tour is one of the most famous Seattle tours around, giving you a fun way to explore the interconnected tunnels of the Seattle Underground. On top of heading this 75-minute, group, and family-friendly event with a humorous bent, organizer Bill Speidel leads seasonal paranormal events.

  3. Iron Pergola and the Tlingit Indian Totem Pole – 100 Yessler Way, Seattle, WA 98104
    Iron Pergola and the Tlingit Indian Totem Pole are two striking landmarks located right in the heart of Pioneer Square. The Totem Pole first arrived in 1899; the current Pole is a reproduction of the original artifact. The lavish Iron Pergola, originally a cable car stop, was erected in 1909.

  4. The Ninety – 406 Occidental Ave South, Seattle, WA 98104
    See the Seattle Sounders, the popular local soccer team, at their home at The Ninety. Located at the Sounders' front office headquarters, it's the gathering place for diehard fans. Known for a wide range of events and plenty of Sounders exhibits, it also provides plenty of opportunities to meet with players.

  5. Occidental Square – 117 South Washington Street, Seattle, WA 98104
    Occidental Square is an urban oasis in the center of the district, offering abundant shade from beautiful London Plane trees. Bocce courts, ping pong tables, and an all-new children's play zone installed in 2019 provide plenty of opportunities for fun and relaxation.

  6. King Street Station – 303 South Jackson Street, Seattle, WA 98104
    The historic King Street Station is one of the most stylish Amtrak stations still in service today. Dating back to May of 1906, its clock tower was based around the celebrated San Marco bell tower of Venice, Italy. It was built by Reed and Stem, the same firm responsible for New York City's Grand Central Terminal.

  7. Waterfall Garden Park – 219 2nd Avenue South, Seattle, WA 98104
    Waterfall Garden Park is a serene location that sits upon the original site of the American Messenger Company, now UPS. Its 22-foot man-made waterfall and the double-decker patio, complete with tables and chairs, make it one of the most striking of Seattle's many pocket parks.

  8. Merchants Cafe – 109 Yesler Way, Seattle, WA 98104
    Merchants Cafe has the distinction of being Seattle's oldest bar and restaurant, having operated since 1890. Known for tons of raucous fun whenever the Seahawks are playing, its menu is packed with fan favorites like Doc Maynard's prawns, Tacoma taquitos, and the 1962 Seattle Fair chicken sandwich.

  9. Comedy Underground – 109 South Washington Street, Seattle, WA 98104
    Comedy Underground has played host to some of modern comedy's foremost greats – many of them before they were greats. Names like Mitch Hedberg, Patton Oswalt, Maria Bamford, and even Jerry Seinfeld himself have taken the stage. On any given night, you'll also see local comics just starting out.

There's so much to see and do when you live in the Seattle area! Contact us at Coldwell Banker Bain to find out more about Seattle real estate.

Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) or information provider(s) shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Listing(s) information is provided for consumers personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Information on this site was last updated 08/13/2022. The listing information on this page last changed on 08/13/2022. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Internet Data Exchange program of RMLS (last updated Fri 08/12/2022 8:34:57 PM EST) or Willamette Valley MLS (last updated Fri 08/12/2022 11:51:39 PM EST) or COAR/MLSCO (last updated Sat 08/13/2022 8:51:23 AM EST) or NWMLS (last updated Sat 08/13/2022 8:44:16 AM EST). Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Coldwell Banker Bain may be marked with the Internet Data Exchange logo and detailed information about those properties will include the name of the listing broker(s) when required by the MLS. All rights reserved. --

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