Posts Categorized: Buying a Home

Stay Home, Stay Safe Order

buying or selling a house during COVID 19

 

Hi everyone, Rosie Rourke here! I thought you may be wondering how the COVID-19 Stay Home, Stay Healthy Order is affecting the local real estate market. Today (March 28th) Governor Inslee lifted portions of his mandated shut down for our business. Realtors were originally not listed as an “Essential” company on Gov. Inslee’s list. Geez… I thought I was essential (hahaha). Here is what is permitted with his new decree as of today:

real estate during stay home, stay healthy order in washington state

 

The MLS also has strict COVID-19 protocols for in-person meetings, inspections, and showings. Our team has already sprung into action to implement these new protocols at all of our listings as well as showing appointments with our buyer's agents. There are also no more open houses, you need to connect with a licensed real estate agent if you want to see a property.

We also understand if you are still uncomfortable with an in-person interaction at this time, we are serving our clients in a virtual mode! My listing team is doing listing presentations & home valuations by video conference. We are also strategizing with clients virtually to keep them set up for success in this market.

There are some clients that NEED to sell or buy right now and we have been able to help them get their home on market without stepping outside. We actually had 4 listings hit the market last week! For each listing we now create smart phone video walkthroughs of the home. Our goal is that active listings will be viewed by eager buyers with idle time (everyone is at home and online, lol) and hoping they will put us on their favorite list when mandate lifted. Or, better yet, buy it virtually (believe it or not, it happens, we just had a home go pending site unseen last night)! This is considered a blessing for buyers in the first time home buyer price range where they can actually have a chance to buy a home without bidding wars right now! 

Will Home Values Decrease? 

As you can imagine I am getting this questions a lot. My 25 years of professional real estate experience is banking on my crystal ball answer – no. We were slammed with bidding wars right up until the eve of the shut down. We even wrote virtual offers after shut down. You have to remember that we have an extreme shortage of inventory (homes on the market for sale) and historically low interest rates for buyers. Unlike 2008 our housing market is on a solid footing, there are more qualified buyers then there are homes for sale, period! The stock market is crazy right now, but interest rates remain low. Supply and demand is creating a hot market cooled only by this isolated event of the horrific virus.

Unfortunately, people getting layoffs, especially in hospitality, restaurant and travel industries are not in a position to buy. But many other industries in our diverse economy are simply working from home and are still in the market. When COVID-19 gets under control, businesses can open back up and employees can get back to work again. I have a hunch we will have penned up demand of buyers ready to surge after mandate lifted as well. Experts are saying we could see a Spring-like surge this Summer or Fall. Values do not decrease when there is demand, actually the opposite is true, and we are seeing that every day right now despite the Coronavirus. 

Let's Recap...

  • Are people still selling their homes? YES
  • Are people still buying homes? YES
  • Can you see a home in-person? YES
  • Can you see a home virtually? YES
  • Can you go to an open house? NO
  • Is now a good time to sell? YES
  • Is now a good time to buy? YES

I’m here for you. My entire team is here for you. How can we help you? I am happy to chat and discuss any real estate concerns or questions you have. I am solution-oriented and utilizing my experience of surviving other economy crisis’.

Here’s a tip - I’ve been advising my listing clients to consider putting their home on market NOW or late Spring/Summer. I’m concerned when flu season comes back in fall/winter, that COVID-19 will rear its ugly head again. 

We will overcome! Sending blessings, and looking forward to hearing from you.

Warm regards,

Rosie Rourke

Message from Rosie on COVID-19

There is an extreme shortage of inventory. Interest rates are at their lowest and might even go lower – this is to help drive the economy. The MLS has shut down all open houses so we can’t do that, but we have a huge marketing machine to get the word out globally and locally. Open houses are just one tool in our effective tool box.  People need to buy and people need to sell – it will be our job to make connections 😊 We are confident we can do that, but we are in unprecedented times. The one thing that does concern us is if we have a mandated town shutdown. Then we are all stuck until we get to the other side—and we WILL make it to the other side.

 

We already have virus precautions in place when showing homes. We educate our clients and public coming through home when they enter the home. We are doing our best to have solutions and to meet folks at their level of concern to help alleviate fears. Such as virtual walk through tours, recommending pre-inspections to upload to the listing as well as all pertinent information such as title, plat map, etc. Lenders and appraisers are still business as usual as most of their work is virtual.

 

My team is working virtually from home now with access to all necessary technology. Electronic signing, face-time conferencing, etc. We all stand ready to help you with your real estate needs when you are ready.

Is Covid 19 Affecting Real Estate

how is covid 19 affecting the real estate market in renton, seattle, kent

 

How is Covid-19 Affecting the Real Estate Market?

As you can imagine I’ve had these questions posed to me quite a bit recently from my local real estate clients.

“How is the Coronavirus going to affect the sale of my home?”

“How is Covid-19 affecting buyers, are they still looking?”

Here is my take on things and what is going on right now in front us.

Real estate transactions are still taking place, people need to buy homes or sell homes regardless of what is happening around us. Our open house last weekend was busy, and clients are still planning on listing their home in the coming weeks. Buyers are also extremely active both online and in-person, we really haven’t seen a slowdown.

Interest rates are extremely low right now which gives more buying power to home buyers and they are taking advantage of it. We are seeing record levels of online activity as well as multiple offers on homes. This combined with historically low inventory of homes is driving the market right now. Record number of buyers + low home inventory = a frenzy market at certain price points and areas in Fairwood, Renton, Maple Valley, Kent, and all-over South King County.  

If you are thinking of selling, I would love to have a conversation with you. Now is a great time to have me give you a free one to one home valuation and come up with a game plan. We are also scheduling private showings with anti-viral protocols to make sure everyone is healthy and safe. 

Contact me directly with any questions! 

Call/Text 206.719.5870

Email: rosie@rosierourke.com

Or fill out the form below! 

sellnow

best real estate agent near me to sell my home

 

The real estate market in the Renton, Fairwood, Kent, Maple Valley, Seattle and South King County as a whole has been going through an unprecedented sellers market so far in 2020. With low interest rates and a booming local economy buyers are qualified, eager and ready to make offers... but there are NO HOUSES! Ok yes, there are houses for sale, but we are trending about 38% less inventory (homes for sale) than we did this time last year. Less houses means more competition for buyers, which in turn is GREAT for YOU the seller!

We usually don't see a market frenzy like this until the warmer Spring months, it came early this year. But will it last until Spring? What about the election and now the threat of Coronavirus, how will this affect the house market if you are thinking of selling? Nobody has a crystal ball, but my team does have 40+ years of local real estate experience, and this experience is telling us to react to what is in front you RIGHT NOW! 

Before we get to the 5 reasons why you should list your home NOW and not wait until Spring, I want you to watch the short video below. My clients the Kirks were just like you, their timeline was to list in the Spring but the market dictated otherwise! We guided them through the expedited process of getting their home ready to list, listing it, and selling it literally before the sign even hit the ground! Because they decided to take action now they are currently laying poolside in Palm Springs enjoying their retirement! 

 

  1. Interest Rates – Interest rates at historic lows, which means more buying power for people house hunting right now! This is one of the reasons why there are so many buyers right now! Will these interest rates last? No one has a crystal ball, but if you wait and the rates go up, it could cool off the sellers’ market we are in!
  2. You Will Stand Out – With less homes going on the market right now, your home will stand out from the crowd! If you wait a couple of months you run the risk of a massive flood of listings like yours. With more competition the likelihood of a bidding wars diminishes. Once again, we don’t have a crystal ball but historically later in the Spring we see a surge in listings. Right now, inventory is low, it is a great time to take advantage of this!
  3. You Are in Control – In a sellers’ market like this, you have the upper hand when it comes to negotiating terms. With multiple buyers bidding for your home you will have more options. Waved inspections, over asking offers waving 22AD, etc. For more information about this talk with our team leader and expert listing negotiator Rosie directly!
  4. Off Market – Many homeowners love the idea of selling their home, but don’t want to do the extra work to get it show ready! Or maybe the thought of having people walking through your home is causing you anxiety. Our team has buyers agents with clients looking for a home like yours and we also have a network of top agents we work with buyers too. There is a chance that we could sell your home without all the hassle of listing it in a market like this. Once again, please talk to Rosie about this option!
  5. This is an Election Year – Historically the market slows down the closer we get to a major election. We don’t have a crystal ball, but we can see what is right in front of us. We are telling all our clients to get their home on the market earlier just in case!

Check out this cool tool that we have that can show you how many REAL buyers are looking for a home that matches yours! It’s cool, just enter your email below, then your address on the next screen, and get yourself prepared to be amazed!

January Market Update – Is it a good time to sell my home?

real estate market update

 

It's the last day of January, let's take a look at some market stats for this month. Interest rates continue to be SUPER low which is increasing the number of buyers actively looking right now. House inventory continues to be low which is why homes are selling at a faster rate than usual for this time of year. We usually don't see a frenzy like this until Spring, it has come early!

Bottomline for sellers: You might want to move up your timeline for listing this year. Listing now will help your home stand out!

Bottomline for buyers: Get in before Spring hits, if it is busy now I can't imagine what Spring will be like!

The Rosie Rourke Team doesn't have a crystal ball but we have over 40 years of combined experience. We are here to answer all your questions regarding buying or selling in 2020. Schedule an appointment with our team if you want to talk about selling or buying in 2020! No pressure, just a conversation and a cup of coffee! https://rosierourke.com/contact/

Stand Out, List Now!

is now a good time to sell my home

Stand out from the crowd RIGHT NOW and command all the attention from buyers or be one of many homes on the market this Spring?

"But Rosie, I didn't plan on listing my home so soon in 2020, but I don't want to miss all the buyers RIGHT NOW!" Not to worry, the #rosierourketeam does more than just put a sign in the ground, we can help you organize, stage, declutter, repair/update, and get your home ready to command top dollar in the market place sooner than you ever thought possible!

Did we pique your interest? Here are your action steps...

#1 - In about 2 minutes you can see exactly how many REAL buyers are looking for a home that matches yours! Fill out the form below!

#2 - Contact Rosie personally at 206.719.5870, either by text or call to schedule a time for Rosie to give you a REAL home valuation, not from some computer program that doesn't know your home's story. You can also fill out the form below!

Spring is NOW and the buyers are ready to BUY, let us know if we can help!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

As we enter into a new decade we are coming off of an historic serge in our Renton, Fairwood, Kent, Maple Valley, and Seattle real estate markets! The past few years we have seen prices rise and interest rates fall, but what does 2020 have in store for us? It's also an election, what does that do for first time home buyers, home sellers, second time buyers, and is it a good time to buy or sell a home? Let's ask Rosie Rourke, once of King County's best real estate agents what she things, watch the video below!

 

 

Fall Market Update 2019

The Fall Market is Heating up, Don't get Left Behind!

 

Thinking of buying? Buyers are lining up right now with super low interest rates! Thinking of buying? With the low interest rates you have more buying power than ever before, this is your chance! But none of this is possible unless you take action RIGHT NOW!

Help me buy a homeHelp me sell my home

Tired, overwhelmed, and think that there is now way out? We have the solution!

Out growing your current home? This blog is for you!

Your house is busting at the seams, the kids have their stuff everywhere, and all your energy is just surviving day to day, right? WE FEEL YOU! We’ve all been there, trust us! And remember when you bought your first house, it seemed HUGE! Now you would do anything to get into a home that fits you and the kids, but the thought of having to purge and keep the house clean with kids is daunting. And you need the equity in your current home to buy your next home too… what if you end up being displaced for a few months or worse… in your in-laws’ basement?

Sounds like a lot of doom and gloom, doesn’t it? Let us be your hero and your advocate during the process… we have real world solutions! We work with the top lenders in the industry, there are ways to structure you home loan so you don’t have to sell and buy at the same time. We also have access to a pool of qualified buyers actively looking, so there is an opportunity to sell your home before it lists to the public. And so on and so on! We guarantee that the process can be fun, liberating, and the best decision you will make for you and your family!

Let our team leader Rosie Rourke buy you a Starbucks (our treat) and let’s talk about your solution! She has been where you are and wants to help you change your life!  

Why Buying a Home During the Holidays is Actually a GREAT IDEA!

buy a house now

Let’s face it, most real estate agents are checking out right about now, because no one wants to buy a house during the holidays, right? WRONG! My team and I are working hard selling our listings and helping our clients buy before the new year! Here are some reasons why NOW is a great time to be looking and buying!

  • Less competitive – Not that many people buy homes in the winter, and that’s for a variety of reasons. You won’t have people outbidding you, and you’ll have ample inventory from which to choose. It’s a win-win!
  • Lower interest rates… for now – Word on the street is that interest rates are going up after the 1st of the year. Buy now and save a lifetime worth of interest!
  • Eager sellers – Generally people who sell during this time of year are ready to get it over with. Their homes have either been on the market a while (because most people don’t buy this season), or they’re eager to get their family up and moved to a new place before the holidays or before a new job starts on Jan. 1. Either way, it means sellers are more willing to negotiate on price as a result!
  • Tax benefits – If you buy by the end of the year, it will also you to take additional itemized deductions, as well as write off your mortgage interest, from that year’s tax returns. Depending on how much your home was, that could mean thousands and thousands of dollars and savings.
  • Start the New Year off right – Wouldn’t it just be nice to have your move over and done with by Jan. 1? To start your New Year and new phase of life off in a brand new home? Many buyers think so!
  • Take advantage of breaks – Moving can be a hassle, taking days and days to pack up, load and unload cars, and finally, put everything in its new place. During the holidays, you and your family members likely have some time off work and school, giving you plenty of availability for these pesky moving tasks. If you move at other times of year, you’d have to take time off work, adding even more costs to your bottom line.
  • Easier to spot problems – Winter is a great time to make sure the house you’re buying is up to snuff. The roof, gutters, heating and plumbing are all put to the test as the winter weather gets harsher. If something looks awry, your home inspector will spot it and you can make sure the sellers fix it (or take it off the cost of the home) before you close.

So, if you are cruising through open houses or just surfing the internet looking at listings… tap in one of my professional buyers agents and one of the 50+ families they have helped buy a home in 2018! www.rosierourke.com/buywithus