Archive for May 2008

Looking to sell your home in a buyer’s market

Feeling low about the slowing housing market in the Renton, Kent, Seattle, Washington areas? It's no wonder, with all the "gloom and doom" reports in the media. There is hope for the housing market; it's what experts have been saying all along and it's worth repeating: Real estate is local; changing from state to state and even city to city. Not all markets are suffering. In fact, according to a recent report in Money magazine, more than half of the major housing markets in the U.S. saw prices stay the same or go up.The good news in all of this? It depends on your situation. As a homeowner, you may not have anything to worry about (particularly if you're planning to stay in your home awhile). If you're a buyer, you've no doubt discovered opportunities--and deals--abound. Thinking of selling your home? You can do it--and come out a winner--with our expert tips for making the most of today's market.
Price It Right
Your home has to hit the market running. If you’re asking price is too high, you'll turn buyers away--and they won't look back. (Remember: They've got lots of other homes to choose from.) Your home has to look like the best deal on the block. We'll research the actual "sold for" prices on comparable homes in the area to determine how to price your property.
Clean Up Your Act
Pretend that your fussy Aunt May is coming over for a visit--and bringing her white gloves. Every nook and cranny in your home must sparkle like never before. The American Society of Appraisers (ASA) suggests clearing your home of clutter (fridge magnets, piles of bills, etc.) and personal knick-knacks (family photos, souvenirs, etc.) even if you have to put it all in storage until your home sells. Sparse and simple will make your rooms look bigger and allows buyers to picture themselves living in the home. The ASA says the best thing you can do to update the look of your home is to give the outside and the inside a fresh coat of paint and add new carpet. Two neutral colors (wall and trim) not white is best. Also, if you're going to spend any money on landscaping, take care of the front yard first. It's more important to buyers that a home looks good from the street.
Offer Perks
You've done all you can to set your home apart from the others on the block--or have you? Consider giving your buyer a little financial nudge in your direction by paying points, offering to help with the down payment (especially appealing to a first-time home buyer), contributing to the closing costs, etc. Purchasing a home warranty or offering to pay homeowner association fees (if applicable) are relatively inexpensive ways to entice buyers.
Have Your Home Pre-Inspected
While home inspections traditionally have been requested and paid for by the buyer after an offer was made and accepted on the home, many sellers are now having their homes inspected before any buyers walk through the door. The idea is simple: With a pre-inspection, sellers can find and fix any potential problems that might put the sale of their home at risk. Beyond price you might also consider having an energy audit performed, particularly if you've made energy-efficient upgrades to your home. Your home may be able to boast money-saving features that will translate into real savings for your home's next owners--a huge selling point!
Pull Out All The Stops
This is no time to sit back and put your feet up. You'll need to work closely with your agent to ensure you're doing everything you can to help sell your home. Consider all offers your agent presents to you and respond quickly to them. Pass along any feedback you receive from potential buyers (important intelligence to have on hand!).

Finally, tell friends, neighbors and co-workers you're selling your home. Several of these people may already know who wants to buy a home in your area and, upon learning your home is for sale, will refer potential buyers to us. I will, of course, market your home through appropriate signage, the local multiple listing service, networking with the local community, advertising in real estate media and online, and much more.

I pull out all the stops to sell your home!
Lonnie Snyder
Keller Williams Realty Southeast Sound
Phone: 206-406-2710
E-Mail :
Lonnie Snyder is a full time real estate agent and REALTOR® with Keller Williams Realty specializing in Residential Real Estate for buyers and sellers in Washington’s Kent, Renton, Newcastle and South Bellevue.

Pacific northwest events on the calendar

With the coming of spring the days get longer, the air gets warmer, the birds begin to sing. As you look around, you see many changes taking place but the most stunning transformation has to be in the plants. Almost magically, barren branches start to bud, brown grass turns green, and tiny little shoots push up through the soil; and with the changing of the season, we close another chapter of events that have come to define winters in the Pacific Northwest.
Nonetheless, when one door closes, another opens and with that, we are given an opportunity to enjoy the vast array of springtime activities that are also unique to our region.
If you are looking for things to do in Renton, Newcastle, Bellevue and the surrounding area, I have updated my Local Community Events Calendar found online at:

There are literally hundreds of Pacific Northwest events on the calendar. Some of the most recent additions have been added to the pre-school programs page and are listed below.

Jazz Tuesdays: 5-8 PMCost: Free. IKEA Restaurant, 601 SW 41st St., Renton.

JubilantBands perform at various times Friday and Saturday305 Burnett Ave. S., Renton WA425-226-1544 or

RUSH - May 31st - Gorge at George

INXS - June 3rd - Marymoor Park

Keb’Mo’ / Taj Mahal - June 24th & 25th - Zoo Tunes at Woodland

John Hiatt - June 29th - Marymoor Park

Indigo Girls - June 29th - Zoo Tunes at Woodland Park

The Police - July 12th - Gorge at George

Rob Thomas & Jason Mraz - July 12th - Marymoor Park

Widespread Panic - July 14th & 15th - Marymoor Park

Marc Cohn / Aimee Mann - July 16th - Zoo Tunes at Woodland Park

Emmylou Harris - July 24th - Zoo Tunes at Woodland Park

String Cheese Incident - August 1st & 2nd - Marymoor Park

Steve Miller Band - August 2nd - Gorge at George

Nickel Creek - August 11th - Marymoor Park

Boz Scaggs - August 13th - Zoo Tunes at Woodland Park

Tom Petty - August 15th & 16th - Gorge at George

Ani DiFranco - August 18th - Marymoor Park

The Avett Brothers - August 27th - Zoo Tunes at Woodland Park

Dave Matthews Band - August 29th - 31st - Gorge at George

Los Lonely Boys - August 30th - Marymoor Park

Bumbershoot - August 30th - September 1st - Seattle Center

If you have something you would like to see added to the calendar, please submit your request by going to the community calendar page and click add an event at the top. Please limit your event postings to those taking place in Washington State’s King, Pierce, Thurston, Snohomish, Skagit, Lewis, Mason, Island, Grays Harbor and/or Kitsap counties.

Event information is subject to cancellation or change. Please phone ahead to confirm event dates, times and costs.
Have a great weekend!

Lonnie Snyder
Keller Williams Realty Southeast Sound
Phone: 206-406-2710
Lonnie Snyder is a full time real estate agent and REALTOR® with Keller Williams Realty specializing in Residential Real Estate for buyers and sellers in Washington’s Kent, Renton, Newcastle and South Bellevue areas.

How do I get the real scoop on homes I am looking at?

When you are looking at homes in the Renton, Kent, Seattle area how can you find out what you are looking at. Home inspections, seller disclosure requirements and the agent's experience will help. Here is a summary of the things you could expect to see in a disclosure form:
* In the kitchen -- a range, oven, microwave, dishwasher, garbage disposal, trash compactor.
* Safety features such as burglar and fire alarms, smoke detectors, sprinklers, security gate, window screens and intercom.
* The presence of a TV antenna or satellite dish, carport or garage, automatic garage door opener, rain gutters, sump pump.
* Amenities such as a pool or spa, patio or deck, built-in barbeque and fireplaces.
* Type of heating, condition of electrical wiring, gas supply and presence of any external power source, such as solar panels.
* The type of water heater, water supply, sewer system or septic tank also should be disclosed.
Sellers also are required to indicate any significant defects or malfunctions existing in the home's major systems. A checklist specifies interior and exterior walls, ceilings, roof, insulation, windows, fences, driveway, sidewalks, floors, doors, foundation, as well as the electrical and plumbing systems.
The form also asks sellers to note the presence of environmental hazards, walls or fences shared with adjoining landowners, any encroachments or easements, room additions or repairs made without the necessary permits or not in compliance with building codes, zoning violations, citations against the property and lawsuits against the seller affecting the property.
Also look for, or ask about, settling, sliding or soil problems, flooding or drainage problems and any major damage resulting from earthquakes, floods or landslides.
People buying a condominium must be told about covenants, codes and restrictions or other deed restrictions.
It's important to note that the simple idea of disclosing defects has broadened significantly in recent years. Many jurisdictions have their own mandated disclosure forms as do many brokers and agents. Also, the home inspection and home warranty industries have grown significantly to accommodate increased demand from cautious buyers. Be sure to ask questions about anything that remains unclear or does not seem to be properly addressed by the forms provided to you. I would be happy to help.

Should I have a home warranty?

If you are buying a house in Renton, Kent or greater Seattle area, You should have a home warranty.

What is a home warranty?

The standard home warranty is a one-year service contract that protects a resale home buyer or current homeowner against the cost of unexpected repairs or replacement of major systems and appliances that break down due to normal usage. Coverage is also available to home sellers during the listing and escrow period to help them keep unforeseen breakdowns from potentially delaying the close of sale.

How does a home warranty help me?

Old Republic Home Protection customers enjoy peace of mind, convenience, budget protection, and easy, dependable service. No more "searching the Yellow Pages" for a reputable repairman, no more "hassles" over the cost of repairs, no more "budget busting" repair bills.

Who handles the repairs?

Old Republic Home Protection maintains a network of qualified independent service contractors to serve you. The independent contractors we use have been carefully screened and meet our stringent service standards. We also follow up on every call to ensure that you are satisfied with the service that you have received.

Do home warranty plans cover appliance or system replacement?

Yes. You may already have warranties on individual items in your home, check these warranties carefully, since they may only cover parts and/or labor. With Old Republic Home Protection, parts, labor, and system replacement are all covered. Please review our Plan for complete coverage terms & conditions.

What is the difference between my homeowner insurance policy and a home warranty plan?

Old Republic Home Protection's one-year home warranty covers items not covered under your standard homeowner policy-filling a critical gap in the protection of your home. For example, if your dishwasher leaks and water damages the floor, your homeowner's insurance policy may cover the damage to the floor, but not the repair or replacement of the dishwasher. With an Old Republic Home Warranty, your dishwasher is covered!

If your looking to buy in Renton I make sure that all my clients get a Home Warranty. Call me to find out how you can get your home warranty.

Protecting your property

There is a lot that you can do to be prepared for an Emergency.
The City of Renton, like all communities in the Puget Sound region, is susceptible to any number of natural or man-made disasters. These include earthquake, fire, flood or other technical disasters. During the first 72 hours of a major incident, City services may be stretched to their limits and resources will be directed to locations where the need is the greatest.
During a disaster such as a major windstorm, flooding, or earthquake, all official radio communication channels within the City could potentially be jammed with emergency traffic. Recognizing the uncertain nature of emergency communications, the Renton Fire and Emergency Services Department coordinates a group of amateur radio operators that help the City during emergencies.
The City of Renton does have an Emergency Response Plan in place to provide for recovery after a disaster; however, these plans take time to implement and individuals and families need to develop a degree of self-reliance for the first 72 hours. To help prepare for a disaster, the City of Renton encourages citizens to:
Assemble a Disaster Supply Kit
Determine a central contact (preferably out of state)
Learn CPR and First Aid
Determine a central meeting point outside your home
Find out how to shut off the water, gas, and electricity
Attend an Earthquake/Disaster Preparedness Class
Develop a Family Emergency Preparedness Plan
Avoid Chimney Related Hazards
Other Resources that can help you prepair is the Disaster Preparation Handbook published by the Washington State Emergency Management Division and the Department of Health.
Visit King County's Personal Preparedness Website to learn how to develop a family disaster plan, what to include in your disaster kit, and what is needed to shelter-in-place. Whether it be at home, school, work, or when you're outside, Be Prepared!
Look for additional emergency-related information at the Washington State Department of Emergency Management. is a common sense framework designed to launch a process of learning about citizen preparedness. One of the primary mandates of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is to educate the public, on a continuing basis, about how to be prepared in case of a national emergency.
If you are interested in obtaining any booklets or specific information, please contact the Fire Department at 425.430.7027 or send email.

But what about your property. It is your biggest investment.
While it's difficult to predict when a natural disaster might strike -- and what kind of damage it could cause -- you can take steps to protect your home and your belongings. Money magazine offers these "before and after" financial tips to consider:
Before Disaster Strikes:
Update your homeowners insurance policy. Be sure to include any recent renovations or improvements.
Consider buying a replacement-cost policy rather than an actual-cash-value policy, so that you'll be compensated for the amount it costs you to replace your belongings.
Create an inventory of your household items. One way is to use a video recorder and narrate as you go, noting specific details such as serial numbers. Or, take still photographs and make a list. Make sure to store these items and other important documents in a water- and fire-proof container or safe-deposit box.
In The Aftermath:
Contact your insurance company immediately, even if you're not sure if your policy covers the type of damage you've suffered.
If you're ready to clean up but concerned about moving anything before the insurance adjuster shows up, take pictures first.
Save all receipts -- even for incidental costs like gas and meals -- related to the disaster.
Before you bring in a contractor to rebuild or repair, you'd be wise to get several bids in writing. Also, Money advises making sure the job has been completed to your satisfaction before you pay the total bill.
If your home is uninhabitable, have utilities (water, gas, electricity) and phone service stopped, and contact creditors immediately if you think you'll have trouble paying your bills.
You may be able to take advantage of available tax breaks for losses suffered; consult your insurance representative and/or financial or tax advisor about your specific situation.

I love my Tankless Hot water installed by Maple Valley Plumbing.

I recently bought a house in Renton. My wife & kids love living in the Benson Hill area. With the prices in Renton Real Estate we were able to sell and buy a newer house that needs a little work.
After some evaluation I found out that the tankless water heater is a more efficient way to heat water. It heats water quickly and delivers an endless supply of hot water for as long as you need it. With the tankless water heater, you only pay to heat water when you need it and for as long as you want it.
That mean it doesn’t matter if I took a shower before or after the kids. Everyone had enough hot water to finish their shower. Here are a few of the points that I love about my tankless water heater.

  1. Produce and supply endless streams of hot water to multiple outlets simultaneously without any fluctuation in temperature
  2. Are up to 30 percent more energy efficient than a traditional natural gas water heater and up to 50 percent more efficient than an electric water heater
  3. Shut-off automatically when the water supply is closed, providing users with significant energy savings - in turn saving money on their utility bills
  4. Are compact wall mounted units with a life expectancy of 20 years, whereas hot water tanks require about 16 square feet of floor space and usually last around 10 years

After all, who doesn’t need a little more space or money?

Now another important note is you need someone you can trust to install it properly for you. I had a number of company’s come out and talk to me. One wanted to charge me just for the estimate. Forget that people. Maple Valley Plumbing has built a reputation in the Maple Valley area by providing unparalleled service to their customers. With quality plumbing service at an affordable price I enjoyed the job they did for me. They have since helped me with other plumbing service and repair. You can contact them at Maple Valley Plumbing & Pipeworks, Inc 23312 Suite B Maple Valley Highway Maple Valley , WA 98038 Phone: 425-432-7599
If you have any questions about my Rinnai tankless water heater or Real Estate please email me.

Beyond the house itself, what should I look for in Renton Real Estate property?

Looking at Real Estate in Renton can be fun.
Once you've found the right home, take a good look at the land it's built on before you buy. Check for:

Easements: Whose are they and where are they located? Will you be able to build a garage, shed, fence or other improvements while avoiding the easement areas?

Flood: plain Is part of the lot marked for flooding areas? How often and for how long is the area under water? Has the house ever been flooded or threatened by high water?

Boundaries: Where are the true lot lines? Is the fence properly placed within the lot? Will there be room to build a deck or addition to the house later on?
Utility cables: Where are they located? Will it be possible to add phone lines or upgrade electrical capacity later? Hydrant How close is the nearest fire hydrant? This, and the proximity of the fire station, are often important when purchasing homeowner's insurance.
You may have to do a little research to answer some of these questions, and may want to make any contract contingent upon your being satisfied with the results.
Being a Real Estate professional I would be happy to help you. Please call me or email me with any questions.

Tips to cut your operating costs

Modern appliances may make life easier, but they also consume energy and water. Here are some tips for cutting appliance operating costs--without sacrificing convenience:
Gas stoves and ranges: If you're thinking of replacing your current range or oven with a new gas model, consider choosing a unit with an electronic ignition. Pilot lights burn gas--and money--24 hours a day. Also, when gas is being burned efficiently, the flames are blue; if they're yellow, call in a professional to have the unit adjusted or repaired.
Refrigerators: If yours is more than 10 years old, consider replacing it. At the very least, replace door seals that no longer fit tightly. If you have more than one refrigerator and a separate freezer, think about replacing them with a single larger refrigerator/freezer unit.
Clothes washer: Pre-1985 models can eat up valuable kilowatts. Upgrading to a newer, front-loading model can cut water consumption by about 25%.
Water heater: The National Association of Home Builders says heating water consumes nearly 13% of the average home's monthly energy bill. If your water heater is 10 or more years old, consider replacing it with a new, high-efficiency model.
Shower heads: The cost of installing low-flow models will be repaid with reduced energy costs to heat the water as well as lower water bills.
Toilets: Unlike early low-flow versions, today's low-flow toilets really work and can cut water use in half or better.

When looking for new appliances, search for those with ENERGY STAR certification to find the most efficient models. The ENERGY STAR website ( offers information on certified products in more than 40 categories, along with a wealth of resources to help you plan and undertake projects to reduce your energy bills and improve home comfort.
Tips For The TakingFor tips on saving energy around the home, visit the website of the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) at
For printed information, call the EERE Information Center toll-free (877) 337 3463 for a copy of these free publications:

  • Energy Savers: Tips on Saving Energy Money at Home
  • Energy Savers Cool Summer Tips
  • Energy Savers Hot Winter Tips

Feel like doing some spring cleaning?

The Benson Hill PTA Rummage Sale will be held May 31st from 9am - 4pm.
Donations will be received at the school cafeteria on Friday, May 30th, 3:10p.m. - 7p.m.
Suggested items to donate include: clothes, jewelry, furniture, CDs, DVDs, books, artwork, electronics, toys, bicycles.

WOW Skeleton found at a Renton construction site

Police say there was nothing to indicate a crime.
Skeletal remains found Thursday at a construction site in the Renton Highlands likely belonged to a person who was buried more than 60 years ago on the property, Renton police reported.
Police excavated the property after an adult jawbone was found Tuesday while the developer was digging to connect utilities to new homes at
2209 Edmonds Ave. N.E. In their excavation, police found more remains, along with metal poles and brackets that likely were part of a casket, police spokeswoman Penny Bartley said.

"We believe these remains were no doubt a family member or a loved one of the property owners Typically we don't see crime victims buried in caskets."
The ornate pieces likely were crafted between 1910 and 1940, based on an examination by the state Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation. The casket likely was wooden and had deteriorated, Bartley said.
Up until 1943, it was legal to bury human remains on one's own property.
The original home was demolished to make way for new construction. The developer recently bought the property through a private trust, police said.

Guess you just never know what your going to find.

Can Small Changes Save You Some Cash

You don't have to spend a dime to noticeably reduce your home's utility bills. Here are some easy lifestyle choices worth adopting:

  • If your dishwasher has an energy-saving feature, use it. Don't run the washer until it is completely full, then use the shortest cycle that will get the dishes clean.
  • Set the refrigerator's temperature to 40 and the freezer to 0. Use the "efficiency" setting if it has one.
  • Use small appliances whenever possible--toaster ovens, microwaves, pressure cookers.
  • Turn your electric oven off several minutes before cooking is completed--heat is retained for quite a while after the oven is turned off.
  • Cook outdoors during summer and consider eating more no-cook dishes such as salads.
  • Turn your water heater's temperature down to 120 degrees F, even 115 degrees F (the factory setting is often 140 degrees F.). Turn it way down or off when you're away from your home on business trips or vacations.
  • Take showers instead of baths. Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth or shaving.
  • Use your washing machine's cold-wash setting whenever possible. Use the warm or cold setting on your dryer, or hang your clothes on a line to dry.
  • Turn off lights when you leave a room. Use lower-wattage bulbs throughout the house or switch from incandescent bulbs to compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs), which can cut lighting bills by 50% and last 10 times longer.
  • Set your thermostat to 55 degrees F in winter or 80 degrees F in summer for long absences--work, vacations or business trips.
    Make sure air registers are not blocked by furniture or curtains.
    Close drapes, blinds or shades during the hottest part of the day in summer and the coldest part of the day in winter--or all day long if you're not going to be there.

If there is anything else that you can think of please let me know.

Waterfrount Living Concerns.

Waterfront living is among the most desirable of locations in our area. The views and vistas are fantastic, not to mention the ability to walk out one's door to drop a line to fish or untie a line to enjoy boating. However, all this joy is not without some special concerns.

River Rising
The most common fear heard from waterfront homebuyers is their concern that the river may rise and roll into their home. While it is not an impossible scenario, it is truly rare. More often than not, the water that posses the greatest risk to the waterfront home is not from the river, but rather from the water flowing overland toward the river. Always remember that the river is the place that all water flows to. How a particular home is oriented to or obstructs the flow of water moving toward the river determines how dry the house remains. And for many homes in is not just how dry it is in the home, but also under the home.

Surface Water Toward River
The majority of water that affects the home is the surface water flowing toward the river. The volume of water can be in the thousands of gallons per hour during a heavy shower. If the grade of the lot is not proper, this can mean thousands of gallons of water in or under the home. So, when looking at waterfront property, enjoy the view over the water, but be sure to look inland to be sure that your experience with water front living won't be with water in the living room!

What To Do After The Flood
But what should you do after you've experienced a flooded home? There is hope! Your home and its contents may look damaged beyond repair, but many items can be restored. There is a high probability that by acting quickly, your flooded home can be cleaned up, dried out, rebuilt, and reoccupied sooner than you think. After your home has been flooded, play it safe. Always seek professional help. And while in the midst of cleaning and repairing, consider your preparation for the future. The American Red Cross and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) suggests the following steps if your home has been flooded:

Take Care Of Yourself First
Take Care of Yourself First - Protect yourself and your family from stress, fatigue, and health hazards that follow a flood.
· Give Your Home First Aid - Once it is safe to go back in, protect your home and contents from further damage.
· Get Organized - Some things are not worth repairing and some things may be too complicated or expensive for you to do by yourself. A recovery plan can take these things into account and help you make the most of your time and money.
· Dry Out Your Home - Floodwaters damage materials, leave mud, silt and unknown contaminants, and promote the growth of mildew. You need to dry your home to reduce these hazards and the damage they cause.
· Restore the Utilities - The rest of your work will be much easier if you have heat, electricity, clean water, and sewage disposal.
· Clean Up - The walls, floors, closets, shelves, contents and any other flooded parts of your home should be thoroughly washed and disinfected.
· Check on Financial Assistance - Voluntary agencies, businesses, insurance, and government disaster programs can help you through recovery.
· Rebuild and Flood-proof - Take your time to rebuild correctly and make improvements that will protect your building from damage by the next flood.
· Prepare for the Next Flood - Protect yourself from the next flood with flood insurance, a flood response plan, and community flood protection programs. This step also includes sources to go to for additional assistance.

For More Information
For more information on repairing your home after a flood, please visit Many people highly prize waterfront living, and find it a deeply fulfilling experience. Knowing what to look for when choosing waterfront property will make your life on the water easier and more rewarding. Choose and plan wisely - it's about knowing!

Avoid Getting Hooked By A Foreclosure-Related Scam

Yes it is sad to say but there are lots of people out there willing to victimize people in financial difficulty--especially when their troubles become part of public record. Beware of offers involving signing over your deed to someone else who promises to sell your home for you--whether they do or not, you'll still be responsible for the mortgage.

Also, investigate people who offer to buy your property so you can avoid foreclosure. They may be legitimate but, to be on the safe side, check them out by contacting your state Attorney General, the state Real Estate Commission, or the local District Attorney's consumer fraud unit.

Finally, consider carefully any "counseling agencies" that offer foreclosure-mitigation services for a fee. In many cases, they offer services you can perform yourself, such as negotiating a workout plan with your lender.

If you decide to conduct a pre-foreclosure sale, give us a call. We'll work with you to make sure your interests are protected in the transaction.

Keep in mind that if you have a loan ensured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers a toll-free number you can call to find a HUD-approved housing counseling agency: (800) 569-4287. For more information about foreclosures provided by HUD, go online to:

Foreclosure Fact The type of foreclosure procedure followed in a state depends on whether real property is purchased there using mortgages or deeds of trust. (Some states use both.) In general, states that use mortgages require a judicial procedure through which the lender must get court approval to initiate foreclosure. Where a deed of trust containing a "power of sale" clause is used to purchase property, the lender can initiate a foreclosure sale without going to court.

Again if you decide to conduct a pre-foreclosure sale or "Short Sale", give us a call. We'll work with you to make sure your interests are protected in the transaction.

Should I Still buy a home?

There's No Need To Panic

You don't have to look hard for news stories about changes in the nation's housing market. The media regularly reports on foreclosure rates being higher, home prices dropping in some areas and sales taking longer than they used to. It's all true, in some sense, but compared to what? A phenomenal housing boom that lasted nearly five years.You don’t have to look hard for news stories about changes in the nation’s housing market. The media regularly reports on foreclosure rates being higher, home prices dropping in some areas and sales taking longer than they used to. It’s all true, in some sense, but compared to what? A phenomenal housing boom that lasted nearly five years. The truth is, booms don’t last forever, and the adjustment to a more-normal market just doesn’t look good by comparison. Consider the following:

  • National Realty News says national statistics show that homeowners who purchased in the last two years put a median 10% down payment on their homes and now have a median 13% in equity. Those who purchased five years ago placed a median down payment of 11% and currently have a median 41% equity in their homes.
  • Today’s interest rates look terrific from an historical standpoint. While interest rates on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage have been hovering around 6%, according to Freddie Mac, the average interest rate 10 years ago (1998) on a 30-year fixed was 6.94%; 20 years ago, 10.34%; and 30 years ago, 9.64%.
  • Housing markets vary considerably by location--national statistics mask what’s happening in your particular area. While some regions have been harder hit than others, not all markets are experiencing price declines. Even within markets, some areas and property types are still appreciating in value even though nearby neighborhoods may be seeing price drops.

Simply put, all real estate is local. So give me a call.

Renton Swimming Pools Now Open at Lindbergh & Hazen

Hazen Pool Spring 2008
March 10th to June 20th
1101 Hoquiam Ave. NE. Renton WA 98059
Phone: 425-204-4230
Office Hours: 3:00 PM to 9:00 PM
(Monday through Friday)

Pool Schedule Monday through Thursday:
Lap Swim: 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Competitive Stroke: 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Swim Lessons: 4:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Open Swim: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Lap Swim: 8:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Pool Schedule Friday:
Lap Swim: 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Competitive Stroke: 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
IST: 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Open Swim: 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

Fees (Open Public Swims):
Youth - Ages 4 through 17 = $2.50
Adult - Ages 18 through 61 = $3.00
Seniors - Ages 62+ = $2.00
Babies - Free if Under Age 3 & Accompanied by Parent

Fees (Lap Swims)
Evening = $3.00 Seniors = $2.00
Noon = $1.50 Seniors = 1.00


Lindbergh Pool Spring 2008
March 10th to June 20th
16740 128th Ave SE, Renton WA 98058
Office Hours: 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM
(Monday through Friday)

Pool Schedule Monday & Wednesday
Early Riser Lap Swim: 6:00 AM - 7:30 AM
Shallow Water X: 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
Lessons M/W: 9:30 - 11:30 AM
Lap Swim: 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Open Swim (Shallow End Only): 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Lessons M/w: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Competitive Stroke: 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Lessons M/w: 4:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Open Swim: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Lap Swim & Shallow Water X: 8:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Pool Schedule Tuesday & Thursday
Early Riser Lap Swim: 6:00 AM - 7:30 AM
Deep Water X: 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
Lessons T/TH: 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Lap Swim: 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Open Swim (Shallow End Only): 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Lessons T/TH: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Competitive Stroke: 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Lessons T/TH: 4:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Deep Water X: 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Open Swim: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Lap Swim & Adult Lessons: 8:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Pool Schedule Friday
Deep Water X: 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
Lap Swim: 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Open Swim (Shallow End Only): 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Competitive Stroke: 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Open Swim (Shallow End): 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Open Swim: 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Fees (Open Public Swims):
Youth - Ages 4 through 17 = $2.50
Adult - Ages 18 through 61 = $3.00
Seniors - Ages 62+ = $2.00
Babies - Free if Under Age 3 & Accompanied by Parent

Fees Water Exercise - $6.00 / Seniors $4.00

Fees (Lap Swims)
Evening = $3.00 Seniors = $2.00