Summer real estate heats up, gaining momentum

A monthly real estate snapshot from John L. Scott Real Estate.

By Erin Flemming

Special to the Record

As summer continues on, the local real estate market in Snoqualmie is active, with signs pointing toward a positive July. Karen Lindsay, managing broker and branch manager of John L. Scott’s Bellevue-Issaquah office, said the market picked up in June, likely due to low interest rates and the perception of additional inventory for buyers.

Looking toward July’s market, Lindsay said the Fourth of July holiday was likely to shift most of the month’s activity to later in the month, with big showings at open houses and high demand.

“Prospective buyers will still want to lock in a home purchase that they can close before the kids have to be back in school the first of September, and July still allows time to accomplish that goal,” Lindsay said. “Though July may start off a bit slow, I predict the last three weeks of the month will have a full month’s business packed into them.”

The continual tech growth in the area, particularly on the Eastside, also bodes well for the market, Lindsay added. Recently, Amazon began the permitting process to build a 43-story tower in downtown Bellevue. The tower, which will be the city’s tallest building — likely to accommodate nearly 4,200 employees — is just one of many major leases of planned or existing Bellevue offices that Amazon has secured.

“The Seattle area is getting a lot of press coverage about several big tech companies adding space or moving into our area, bringing high paying jobs and individuals who would like to buy and control their housing costs,” Lindsay said. “Rental housing, even with all the units that have been built in the last couple of years, is still under pressure and pretty expensive for relatively small square footage.”

Making the jump from renting to owning can be the biggest factor in wealth building for many, Lindsay said. She noted that those who choose to lay down roots and purchase a home locally have the advantage of a few factors – appreciation, income tax deductibility (which can reduce taxable income), and the principal of leverage (meaning the entire value of the home appreciates).

“These financial principles, if understood and put into practice, can help ensure that a high earner will build wealth over time without great risk, all the while controlling their housing costs and having autonomy with the property they live in,” Lindsay said. “This autonomy is valuable for many – it means no more asking the landlord whether you can paint a room a different color or install a bicycle rack.”

For those looking to sell their home for top dollar in the current market, Lindsay underscored the importance of hiring a broker who can assist with what is likely a person’s biggest asset.

“To find success in selling, it’s crucial to work with an expert who is a local expert and familiar with all the latest marketing methods,” Lindsay said. “If more than one buyer wants the home at the same time, the seller’s chance of reaching a sale price over the listed price goes up dramatically. To get to this point, our brokers use a trademarked marketing method called Seller Listing Launch, which draws as much attention to the home as early as possible in the marketing process.”