Why I Always use a Professional Photographer

Poor lighting, crooked lines, and awkward angles make listing photos look amateurish. But just how big of a difference do these flubs make? Photography pros share “good” and “bad” images that exemplify the rules of high-quality photos, along with tips for capturing the perfect picture. Here’s one example of an exterior.

Poor interior photos greatly affect the online impression of the quality of your home as well.

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Posted on March 14, 2018 at 5:03 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Selling a Home | Tagged , , , ,

The Future of Real Estate as Baby Boomers Retire

What will happen when the Baby Boomers retire? For one thing, they’re keeping their homes longer than other generations… and it could be one factor (among many) that affects the housing shortage. But what about the years ahead? If you have multiple properties, you’ll want to read this.

FutureCast Forum member and wealth manager, Brian Evans, road-maps the opportunity for Delaware Statutory Trusts allowing landlords to divest, diversify and downsize in retirement.

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Posted on October 16, 2017 at 7:40 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Market Statistics, Selling a Home |

15 renovation apps to know for your next project

Below, we rounded up 15 standouts across three categories—plan, design, and expert help—available on iOS and/or Android, many of which are free to download.

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Posted on May 22, 2017 at 5:48 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Around Home, Buying a Home, Home Improvement | Tagged , , , ,

The Hottest U.S. Luxury R.E. Market is Closer Than You Think!

The San Juan Islands, an archipelago off the coast of Washington state long cherished for its remoteness and simplicity, is now the hottest luxury real-estate market in the country.

The priciest 10% of the area’s real-estate market rose faster last year than any other U.S. county, according to Realtor.com. The median home value in San Juan County is now $444,300, up from $377,600 in 2014, according to real estate marketplace Zillow. Right now there are four homes priced at $15 million or higher for sale, including one for $20 million.

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Posted on May 22, 2017 at 5:37 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Spectacular Homes | Tagged , , , , , ,

How to Achieve a Minimalist Home

Tips for getting rid of clutter to achieve an organized home.

Reading about it is one thing, but can you actually do it??

Posted on March 24, 2017 at 5:47 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Around Home | Tagged , , , , , ,

February Home Checklist

Check out these tips to keep your home clean, organized, and warm during the chilly month of February.

February Home Maintenance Checklisxt


Posted on February 10, 2017 at 7:01 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Around Home | Tagged ,

What is Title Insurance?

When you buy title insurance for your property, the title company conducts an in-depth review of public records to make sure there are no problems with the title. Title searches can uncover title issues like liens, judgments, information on prior loans, assessment taxes, and other issues. The title company will then work to fix any defects that are found before the transaction closes.

The title company will then issue an insurance policy that will help protect you from a variety of issues that might be uncovered later. Unlike homeowners insurance that is limited to future incidents, title insurance is limited to problems that already exist when the policy is issued. If you should happen to have problems related to the title of your home, your title insurance policy includes coverage for legal expenses that may be necessary to investigate, litigate, or settle a claim.

What is Title Insurance and Why You Need It

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Posted on February 10, 2017 at 6:58 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Around Home | Tagged , , , , ,

House flipping is back, with all its opportunities and risks

The trend of buying a fixer-upper, making some repairs and “flipping” to a new buyer quickly is making a return to real estate markets, years after the trend fell out of fashion with home buyers.

More than 6 percent of home sales last year were “flips”, according to a new report from Trulia. The real estate data website defines a flip as the selling of a home at least twice within a year.

That’s the highest number in a decade, before the real estate bubble burst and the financial crisis of 2008. So could the housing market flip out again?

“When you see flipping reach ten-year highs, economists like us start to worry a little bit.” Trulia’s Chief Economist Ralph McLaughlin told CNBC’s “On the Money” recently.

“We think it’s a little bit different this time ,” McLaughlin added, “because we think more flips are actually value-added improvements that investors are making to the house, rather than speculative flips which is basically someone buying and sitting on a home waiting for the prices to rise.”

But like the mid 2000’s, home prices are rising. “Price increases in 2016 were the quickest in about 3 to 4 years,” McLaughlin said, adding that gives flippers a potential layer of protection.

A 'bank-owned' sign sits outside a foreclosed home in the Mountain's Edge neighborhood of Las Vegas, Nevada, in 2010.

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Posted on February 6, 2017 at 8:14 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Buying a Home, Selling a Home | Tagged , ,

Seattle chugs along as America’s hottest home market despite slowing a bit

Across Greater Seattle, the typical single-family house cost 10.4 percent more in November than a year ago, the biggest increase of any metro area in the country, according to the Case-Shiller home-price index released Tuesday.

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Posted on February 6, 2017 at 8:06 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Market Statistics | Tagged , ,

Tour the most expensive condo ever listed in Seattle

The Puget Sound Business Journal first reported the penthouse was on the market earlier this week (as of February 23, 2017). It has been listed for four days at $13.8 million, putting it just behind this historic neo-classical revival on Capitol Hill and this literal castle in Laurelhurst.

The penthouse at Bay Vista is listed for $13.8 million. At 5,732 square feet, that price breaks out to a whopping $2,408 per square feet. The penthouse has three bedrooms, four bathrooms and unparalleled views of the city. You can see the full listing here. Photo: Photos By Aaron Leitz Photography, Listing Courtesy Moira Holley, Realogics Sotheby's International Realty

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Posted on February 6, 2017 at 7:50 pm
Kathy West | Posted in Spectacular Homes | Tagged , , , , , ,