Mukilteo Beacon - Your Hometown News Source

Articles written by Elizabeth Erickson

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Where’s Dexter? | Guest View

The statue was bought 10 years ago in late 2003 for the original location for Gallery Homes Real Estate on the corner of 5th Street and Mukilteo Speedway. A Mukilteo Historical Society member brought...

 

The selling success of higher priced homes – Part 1

You might be surprised to find out what defines a ‘premier’ or ‘masterpiece’ or similarly labeled higher-priced property. It’s not simply price alone, because the same price in Puget Sound might equate to a starter home in San Francisco. It... Full story

 

Home sale preparation: Clear out your clutter

Word’s out: The market is hot! Wait just a minute. In Mukilteo, there are currently 51 active residential listings – 37 houses, 14 condos – 30 of those have been on the market more than 45 days. The average of those 30? One hundred and forty...

 

Former Rosehill principal turns 88

In 1925, Ty Cobb, Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth were burning up the bases, a half gallon of milk cost 28 cents, Calvin Coolidge became the first president to have his inauguration broadcast live – on the...

 

Consult an attorney before listing a distressed property

In the last five years we’ve seen a cottage industry arise, spawned from the economic crisis and housing market collapse. “Short sale negotiators” and real estate agents “specializing in short sales” are plentiful – some reputable, others...

 

One small detail can make a big difference

The North West Multiple Listing Association’s real estate purchase and sale forms were a collaborative effort of many attorneys and real estate professionals; they are under seemingly constant review and alteration. The result of this rigorous stan...

 

The benefits of renewing a defunct HOA

It’s been years since dues have been collected or meetings held. No annual updates of the homeowners association have been sent to the state. Homes have changed ownership. When properties changed hands the CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions and...

 

Real estate scams and scallywags

I’ve been “working” with an “all-cash,” “foreign buyer” who plans to buy a home sight-unseen and close in a month. He’s provided a Bank of China statement in “U.S. dollars” showing a balance of $1,154,051. By coincidence, a month...

 

HOAs: The good, the bad, and the ugly

Many residential communities have Home Owner Associations. Often they might seem like they hold little relevance – until rules are broken. Residential HOAs are often managed by volunteer neighbors who form a board. They must register the HOA in the... Full story

 

The transfer of home ownership

It’s difficult to remember a time when home sellers handed the keys to the new homeowner themselves. “Have a glass of lemonade! We’ll show you how the sprinkler system works and introduce you to our good friends, your new neighbors!” There...

 

Buyers understandably wary of bidding wars

Currently there are few homes for sale and a disproportionate number of qualified buyers. We know there’s a huge “shadow inventory” of bank-owned real estate, but regardless of the reasons, qualified buyers are frustrated. When new listings app...

 

Selling a home for more than asking price

This spring the overall real estate market has morphed from “languishing” into an environment that is generating multiple offers. This quick turn-about includes Mukilteo, Edmonds and greater Puget Sound over the last three months. (Not that... Full story

 

Who nurtured your potential?

The micro-lending organization KIVA ( HYPERLINK "http://www.kiva.org" www.kiva.org) sent a reminder that the funds I’d loaned to three strangers in Kenya, India and Afghanistan had been fully repaid; those funds were now available to loan to...

 

Create a successful partnership to sell your home

Sellers and listing brokers forge a relationship through a written contract, which has a beginning and an end. Optimistically, the end of a listing contract is consummated with a transfer of ownership. What should sellers expect during this...

 

Expectations of your buyer’s broker

So you’re ready to buy your home, but you’re not sure of the whole process; what to expect and where to find help. You’ve started looking online at houses and areas where you’ve chosen to live. You’ve played around with affordability...

 

Short sales and what they mean for the American Dream

For too many homeowners in this worst of all possible worlds, the outstanding mortgage taken out in 2006-09 is more than the current value of their home. Payments on mortgage interest rates of 7 and 8 percent – or more – added to Private...

 

The changing role of appraisals

During the ‘crazy years’ from about ‘04 to ‘08, it was rare for appraisals to come in lower than the contracted sales price. The buyer’s lender’s appraised value simply was the sales price. Banks business was then... Full story

 

Distressed properties: 'Everywhere else, but not here...'

“But ours isn’t a short sale... it’ll be better next spring... But we owe... we paid... we need...” Brokers who still remain in the business are working hard to refine their bedside manners in the art of delivering bad news....

 

Lessons from a learned negotiator

“That’s stupid! That’s just a stupid offer!” Looking back, it seemed like he levitated from his surly slouch. Presenting an offer to sellers and their broker in person is ‘old-fashioned’ in the world of faxes and...

 

Should you buy or should you sell?

Last Thursday and again on Monday, Chicken Little was out squawking again, “The sky is falling!” as the stock market took big tumbles. By the time this goes to press, the sky may be resting in the toilet... or not. Either way, dire...

 

Those pesky 2012 property tax assessments

(Side question of the month: In the last 6 months, how many homes sold for $1,500,000 or more in King, Snohomish, Island, San Juan and 5 other counties? Answer is imbedded in this article, but take a guess before reading.) In June, Snohomish County h...

 

The 2011 decision: To rent or to purchase?

Residential purchases by investors and buyers alike are on the rise, coming out of winter’s sluggish sales. Yet many qualified potential homeowners are holding back. Why purchase a home now? There is no one-size-fits-all when deciding whether... Full story

 

Partnering with your real estate broker

For the purpose of this article, the presumption is that you’ve made a wise, informed choice in hiring a professional through interviews and referrals. – Elizabeth Erickson Residential real estate sales is a unique profession. We enter...

 

State of the housing market varies with perspective

The answer to “How’s the market these days?” is answered with a question: “From whose perspective?” If you’re a seller it’s terrible. Presenting a Comparative Market Analysis of recent ‘solds’ in...

 

Buyers’ expectations of value in today’s market

In Snohomish County this last two years has been a long winning streak for homebuyers. Yet some high, closed sold prices occasionally surprise us. Why do a few sales seem substantially more than what statistics would have indicated? (Not an...

 

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