Agent Spotlight: All In, For You

At Windermere, extraordinary is our ordinary. Our agents live and work in Stanwood and Camano Island. They know the area better than anyone and are here to help you.  Every one of our agents understands how important your home is. Whether you’re buying a new home, selling a property or looking for someone to manage your rental property, we’ll take care of you. 

 

Here are three agents who know what it means to be all in, for you

 

Michael Ofstad

Michael is described by his clients as dedicated, knowledgable and hardworking. He’s the kind of agent who will catch a 6 a.m. ferry every Sunday for weeks on end for his clients, or crawl through the attic to help with ductwork. 

On one occasion when Michael was representing one buyer, the underwriter demanded that the back deck be finished in order to fund. When the seller refused to complete the project in the time allotted, Michael personally helped his client build the 600 sqft deck and the deal closed!

 

Dave Dannenberg and Tamara Matthews

Dave and Tamara operate as a team, meaning you’ll have two agents that are entirely committed to each of their clients. They’ll be there to support you – wherever “there” maybe!

When Dave and Tamara were representing one buyer, there were some last-minute contract changes before closing that required new signatures. The buyer was out of town at the RV Club gathering at the Lynden Fair Grounds and couldn’t be reached by phone. So Dave and Tamara drove 60 miles to Lynden and went around to each RV until they found their client, got the signatures and closed the deal.

 

 

April Nickerson

April is an expert when it comes to Stanwood and Camano Island, born and raised in the Pacific Northwest and highly involved with the community. Her knowledge, experience, and resolve come across in every interaction.

Once when April was representing a seller, she came by on closing day to help with some last-minute cleaning. When she got to the house, she saw that the owner hadn’t finished moving out of the home. April came back with a UHaul truck and trailer to get everything else packed up.

She said, “I was there for my clients and determined to help in any way that I could.” 

Posted on November 25, 2019 at 11:21 am
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Remodel for the Most Resale Value

 

What’s the best remodeling project for your home? The answer, in part, depends on where you live. Every year, Remodeling Magazine evaluates which projects bring the most return at resale in different markets around the country in their “Cost vs. Value” report.  For the purposes of this blog, we are focusing on the Pacific states (WA, OR, CA, AL) and the Mountain states (MT, ID, UT, CO, NV).

According to Remodeling Magazine, these are the six top projects in those two regions that currently have the best return on your investment when it comes time to sell. To see the full report, click here.

 

Garage Door Replacement

The project with the most return from Washington State to Nevada? A new garage door.

In the Pacific States, replacing your garage door will cost an average $3,785, but will increase your resale value by $4,686, recouping 123.8 percent of what you paid for it. Homes in the Mountain States will also benefit from a garage door replacement, recouping 98.6 percent of their costs.

Due to its size, a garage door can have a big impact on a home’s curb appeal.  But adding to your home’s aesthetic is only one advantage; the warranty that comes with the new garage door is also a selling point for potential buyers who can trust that they likely won’t have to deal with any maintenance issues in the near term.

 

Manufactured Stone Veneer

As long as the new stone veneer is consistent with your neighborhood’s overall look, this siding is the second-best project across the Pacific and Mountain states.

Stone veneer can replace your home’s existing siding, adding a fresh, modern look that conjures a cozy vibe all the way from the street, before buyers ever step foot inside. Along the West Coast, it can recoup 110.4 percent of the cost when you sell, and Mountain states will recoup 96.5 percent of the cost.

 

Wood Deck Addition

While building a deck might seem like a big undertaking, it’s actually a pretty cost-effective way to positively impact your home’s resale value. Pacific states can expect to pay around $15,000 and Mountain states just above $13,000, but they’ll see 87.8 percent and 74.3 percent recouped respectively when they sell.

Adding a deck extends the living space of your home and provides even more area for entertaining, relaxing, and enjoying the outdoors.  Whether you choose a natural wood deck or a low-maintenance composite deck, you can pick from a variety of styles based on the lay of your land and the areas of your backyard you wish to highlight.

 

Minor Kitchen Remodel

No need to move walls or appliances around, a minor kitchen remodel will do the trick to recoup 87.1 percent of the cost in the Pacific states, and 80.3 percent in the Mountain states.

An outdated kitchen can go from drab to fab and become a focal point with a fresh palette. Replace the cabinet doors with new shaker-style wood panels and metal or metal-looking hardware. Switch out the old counter tops with laminate that matches the new look. Think about adding a resilient flooring option, then finish the project with a fresh coat of paint to the walls, trim, and ceiling.

 

Grand Entrance

Looking to improve your curb appeal and create an entrance that guests and homebuyers won’t soon forget? Add a fiberglass grand entrance. This project involves replacing a standard-sized front door with a larger opening with dual sidelights (glass panels). Typically costing around $8,000, Pacific states will see 85.1 percent of that recouped in the sale, and Mountain states will see 71 percent.

 

Siding Replacement

Depending on the size of your home, replacing the siding can be an expensive undertaking. However, it’s a project that comes with high returns. For Mountain states, sellers can expect 75.4 percent of the costs recouped, and Pacific sellers will see 84.3 percent.

Not only is siding one of the first things a buyer sees, but it also serves as an indicator of the overall health of the home. Broken or damaged siding could mean that there are other problems with the home, such as pests and rot. Replacing old siding is a cost-effective way to boost your home’s curb appeal and ensure buyers are going to walk through your front door.

 

Reposted from Windermere.

Posted on November 22, 2019 at 2:47 pm
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Western Washington Gardner Report Q3 2019

The following analysis of the Western Washington real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist, Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact your Windermere agent.

 

ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

Washington State employment has softened slightly to an annual growth rate of 2%, which is still a respectable number compared to other West Coast states and the country as a whole. In all, I expect that Washington will continue to add jobs at a reasonable rate though it is clear that businesses are starting to feel the effects of the trade war with China and this is impacting hiring practices. The state unemployment rate was 4.6%, marginally higher than the 4.4% level of a year ago. My most recent economic forecast suggests that statewide job growth in 2019 will rise by 2.2%, with a total of 88,400 new jobs created.

 

HOME SALES

  • There were 22,685 home sales during the third quarter of 2019, representing a slight increase of 0.8% from the same period in 2018 and essentially at the same level as in the second quarter.
  • Listing activity — which rose substantially from the middle of last year — appears to have settled down. This is likely to slow sales as there is less choice in the market.
  • Compared to the third quarter of 2018, sales rose in five counties, remained static in one, and dropped in nine. The greatest growth was in Skagit and Clallam counties. Jefferson, Kitsap, and Cowlitz counties experienced significant declines.
  • The average number of homes for sale rose 11% between the second and third quarters. However, inventory is 14% lower than in the same quarter of 2018. In fact, no county contained in this report had more homes for sale in the third quarter than a year ago.

 

 

 

HOME PRICES

  • Home price growth in Western Washington notched a little higher in the third quarter, with average prices 4.2% higher than a year ago. The average sales price in Western Washington was $523,016. It is worth noting, though, that prices were down 3.3% compared to the second quarter of this year.
  • Home prices were higher in every county except Island, though the decline there was very small.
  • When compared to the same period a year ago, price growth was strongest in Grays Harbor County, where home prices were up 22%. San Juan, Jefferson, and Cowlitz counties also saw double-digit price increases.
  • Affordability issues are driving buyers further out which is resulting in above-average price growth in outlying markets. I expect home prices to continue appreciating as we move through 2020, but the pace of growth will continue to slow.

 

 

DAYS ON MARKET

  • The average number of days it took to sell a home dropped one day when compared to the third quarter of 2018.
  • Thurston County was the tightest market in Western Washington, with homes taking an average of only 20 days to sell. There were six counties where the length of time it took to sell a home dropped compared to the same period a year ago. Market time rose in six counties, while two counties were unchanged.
  • Across the entire region, it took an average of 38 days to sell a home in the third quarter. This was down 3 days compared to the second quarter of this year.
  • Market time remains below the long-term average across the region and this trend is likely to continue until more inventory comes to market, which I do not expect will happen until next spring.

 

 

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s real estate market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors. I am leaving the needle in the same position as the first and second quarters, as demand appears to still be strong.

The market continues to benefit from low mortgage rates. The average 30-year fixed rates is currently around 3.6% and is unlikely to rise significantly anytime soon. Even as borrowing costs remain very competitive, it’s clear buyers are not necessarily jumping at any home that comes on the market. Although it’s still a sellers’ market, buyers have become increasingly price-conscious which is reflected in slowing home price growth.

 

ABOUT MATTHEW GARDNER

As Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, Matthew Gardner is responsible for analyzing and interpreting economic data and its impact on the real estate market on both a local and national level. Matthew has over 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

In addition to his day-to-day responsibilities, Matthew sits on the Washington State Governors Council of Economic Advisors; chairs the Board of Trustees at the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington; and is an Advisory Board Member at the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies at the University of Washington where he also lectures in real estate economics.

Original post from Windermere.com.

Posted on October 28, 2019 at 9:59 am
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

House Hunters on Camano Island with Jerry Evans

Jerry Evans is a Windermere agent, an Air Force veteran, and a proud Stanwood-Camano resident.

Whether you’re looking for a beachfront getaway, a comfortable forever home, or something else entirely, our Windermere agents are the experts you can trust, and we won’t stop until we find your new home. 

 

One of our dedicated agents, Jerry Evans, recently demonstrated his resolve and local expertise on HGTV’s House Hunters. Dan and Kristi, a couple from Mill Creek, were interested in buying their forever home and moving in together on Camano Island. They were hoping to find a home that featured a gorgeous view and would allow them to comfortably host their families and friends. Obviously we won’t give away which house they chose, but spoiler alert: Evans helped them find the perfect place in their budget, and the couple is loving life here on Camano Island! 

 

“It was amazing to be featured on House Hunters,” Evans said. “I got to show HGTV’s viewers a little of what makes Camano Island such an amazing place for anyone looking for a home, and of course I got to help my clients find their first home together.”

 

Evans has been a Camano Island resident for seven years and worked as a Windermere agent since 2013. He and his wife, Miranda, work together to deliver the best possible experience for every client. They are highly involved in the community and pride themselves on their extensive local knowledge. Evans also takes regular courses and stays on top of industry trends, making sure his clients always have the most up-to-date information and cutting-edge tools at their disposal. 

To watch the complete episode, visit HGTV.com.

Posted on October 16, 2019 at 10:35 am
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

#TackleHomelessness with Windermere

We are proud to be part of the Stanwood and Camano Island community. We believe it’s important to stay connected with our neighbors and keep a pulse on our community. That’s why you’ll find us grilling hot dogs at National Night Out and passing out hot cocoa at the Holiday Tree Lighting. We also believe it’s our responsibility to operate in a way that brings value and positive change to our community. That’s why we’re raising money for the Stanwood Camano Community Resources Foundation through our Friday Night Lights campaign this fall. 

 

Photo by Evan Caldwell, Stanwood Camano News

Windermere Stanwood Camano teamed up with the Stanwood Spartans football team and will donate $50 per touchdown this season as part of their #tacklehomelessness campaign. Money raised through Windermere Stanwood and Camano Island and the Windermere Foundation will benefit the Stanwood Camano Community Resources Foundation. 

 

“We chose the Stanwood Camano Community Resources Foundation because their anti-poverty programs are strategically designed to relieve the effects and address the cause of poverty in our community,” said Marla Heagle, owner/broker of Windermere Real Estate Stanwood and Camano Island. 

The Stanwood and Camano Island offices will be one of 10 Windermere franchises fundraising for the Windermere Foundation and the #tacklehomelessness campaign this fall, including Windermere Real Estate as the official real estate company of the Seattle Seahawks. 

 

“We’re grateful for this opportunity to engage with our community in such a meaningful way, and we feel privileged to be able to give back to the place where we live and work,” Heagle added. 

 

Photo by Evan Caldwell, Stanwood Camano News

In 30 years since its inception, the Windermere Foundation has raised $38 million to support nonprofits that help low-income and homeless families. A portion of every transaction with Windermere agents goes toward the Foundation and the charities it supports. Additional donations from Windermere employees and community members have helped more than 500 nonprofits and changed thousands of lives since 1989. 

 

Come cheer on the Stanwood Spartans with us this season, and donate to the Windermere Foundation and its efforts in Stanwood and Camano Island online at windermere.com/foundation. We’ll see you in the stands!

Read full article here. 

Posted on October 3, 2019 at 3:44 pm
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Agent Spotlight: All In, For You

At Windermere, extraordinary is our ordinary. Every one of our agents understands how important your home is. Whether you’re buying a new home, selling a property or looking for someone to manage your rental property, we’ll take care of you. 

 

Here are three agents who know what it means to be all in, for you

 

Hans Ostrander

Hans is the type of agent who always gives 110 percent – he’s even been known to help sellers pack up their belongings, and he consistently receives the highest praise from his clients. 

 

One time, Hans was representing a seller who lived out of the area. His seller asked him to meet the septic service technician at the house, but the lid was buried. Hans grabbed a shovel and dug around with the technician for two hours trying to find the tank. When they finished, the technician laughed and said, “Never in all my years has a real estate agent helped me dig.” 

 

Michael Borthwick

Michael is our resident Property Management expert. He’s been in the business for almost a decade, and he believes it is his job to find qualified tenants for his landlords and take good care of them. 

 

On one occasion, Michael received a call from a tenant on the southend of Camano Island: water was gushing from an outside faucet and his wife was in labor. Michael immediately drove down to the property and assessed the situation. He turned off the water and called several plumbers in an effort to find an available one. He knew his tenant would need the water when they returned home with their newborn baby, and he didn’t want his client’s property to be seriously damaged so he made sure the leaking shutoff valve was repaired right then and there. 

 

 

Jeni and Andy Bottin

Jeni and Andy work together to help people find their slice of paradise on Camano Island. They make a commitment to each one of their clients to support them every step of the way, including on moving day. 

 

For one particular client, Jeni and Andy actually helped sell their home in another location and buy a home on Camano Island. The buyer was excited to pull everything together so Jeni arranged a storage unit for her client to use during the transition, and lined up a moving company to assist on the day of. Excellent agents through and through, Jeni and Andy wanted to be sensitive to their client’s needs and see it through to the end. 

Posted on August 29, 2019 at 2:40 pm
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Western Washington Gardner Report Q2 2019

Western Washington Real Estate Market Update

by Matthew Gardner, Chief Economist, Windermere Real Estate

The following analysis of the Western Washington real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact your local Windermere Agent. 


As Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, Matthew Gardner is responsible for analyzing and interpreting economic data and its impact on the real estate market on both a local and national level. Matthew has over 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.
In addition to his day-to-day responsibilities, Matthew sits on the Washington State Governors Council of Economic Advisors; chairs the Board of Trustees at the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington; and is an Advisory Board Member at the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies at the Unversity of Washington where he also lectures in real estate economics.

Original Blog post from Windermere

 

Posted on July 26, 2019 at 3:07 pm
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Western Washington Gardner Report Q1 2019

Western Washington Real Estate Market Update

by Matthew Gardner, Chief Economist, Windermere Real Estate

The following analysis of the Western Washington real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact your local Windermere Agent. 


As Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, Matthew Gardner is responsible for analyzing and interpreting economic data and its impact on the real estate market on both a local and national level. Matthew has over 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.
In addition to his day-to-day responsibilities, Matthew sits on the Washington State Governors Council of Economic Advisors; chairs the Board of Trustees at the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington; and is an Advisory Board Member at the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies at the Unversity of Washington where he also lectures in real estate economics.

Original Blog post from Windermere

 

Posted on May 1, 2019 at 10:02 am
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Local Market Stats For October

Marla Heagle, Windermere Stanwood Camano Island Owner

Every month, Windermere Stanwood-Camano publishes a snapshot of the local real estate market. Our Brokers use this data to help determine listing prices, realistic offers, and tailored advice for their clients. We also like to make this information public, to help you with your real estate journey. Here are our key takeaways from October 2018.


Camano Island

Looking at the current market on Camano Island, there are some positive points for both buyers and sellers. As of November 12, there are more active residential listings this year at 102 compared to 94 last year. Buyers will be happy to see the increase in inventory, even if it’s only up by 9%.

The average days on market for sold listings dropped from 57 last year to 42, which is a plus for sellers considering homes tend to stay on the market a little longer this time of the year. Sellers will be happy to know that the average list price is up by 12%, too.

 

Windermere held 38% of Camano Island listings in October. Our large market share of listings is a testament to our knowledgeable agents who are familiar with the ins and outs of Camano Island!

 

The largest quantity of homes sold so far this year on Camano Island fell into the $350k – $399k price range. This same range includes the largest quantity of active listings as well. If you’re a Camano Island homeowner and you’ve been thinking about selling, it’s still a good time to list.

 

 

View Full Stats – Camano Island

 


Stanwood

In October, the average days on the market for sold listings was just 44 days – two days less than October 2017. So, even though we’re hearing about market slowdowns in areas like Seattle, Stanwood is still a hot sellers’ market.

 

 

Inventory dropped slightly at 5%, from 75 active residential listings last year to 71 this year. This is a sign to potential sellers that now’s a good time to call your agent and start the process of getting your home on the market. 

The largest quantity of active listings falls into the $400k – $449k price range. However, the largest quantity of homes sold over the last 12 months was in the $350k – $399k range. The biggest takeaway for Stanwood homeowners is that it’s still a good time to sell regardless of the ensuing winter. A slight decrease in inventory means less competition.

 

 

View Full Stats – Stanwood

 


 

Posted on November 16, 2018 at 9:05 am
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized

Western Washington Real Estate Market Update

Western Washington Real Estate Market Update by Matthew Gardner, Chief Economist, Windermere Real Estate

The following analysis of the Western Washington real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact your Windermere Agent. 

 

ECONOMIC OVERVIEW

Washington State continues to be one of the fastest growing states in the nation and there is little to suggest that there will be any marked slowdown in the foreseeable future. Over the past year, the state has added 105,900 new jobs, representing an annual growth rate of 3.2%. This remains well above the national rate of 1.65%. Private sector employment gains continue to be robust, increasing at an annual rate of 3.7%. The strongest growth sectors were Construction (+7.4%), Information (+6.2%), and Professional & Business Services (+6.1%). The state’s unemployment rate was 4.5%, down from 4.8% a year ago.

 

All year I’ve been predicting that Washington State’s annual job growth would outperform the nation as a whole, and we now know with certainty that this is going to be the case. Furthermore, I am now able to predict that statewide job growth in 2019 will be equally strong, with an expected increase of 2.6%.

 

HOME SALES ACTIVITY

  • There were 22,310 home sales during the third quarter of 2018. This is a significant drop of 12.7% compared to the third quarter of 2017.
  • The number of homes for sale last quarter was up 14.5% compared to the third quarter of 2017, continuing a trend that started earlier in the year. However, the increase in listings was only in Seattle’s tri-county area (King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties) while listing activity was down across the balance of the region.
  • Only two counties had a year-over-year increase in home sales, while the rest of Western Washington saw sales decrease.
  • The region has reached an inflection point. With the increase in the number of homes for sale, buyers now have more choices and time to make​ a decision about what home to buy.

 

 

HOME PRICES

 

 

As inventory levels start to rise, some of the heat has been taken off the market, which caused home prices in the Western Washington region to go up by a relatively modest 6.2% over last year to $503,039. Notably, prices are down by 4.4% when compared tothe second quarter of this year.

Home prices, although higher than a year ago, continue to slow due to the significant increase in the number of homes for sale. This, in my opinion, is a very good thing.​​

When compared to the same period a year ago, price growth was strongest in Lewis County, where home prices were up 15.3%. Six other counties experienced double-digit price increases.​

Slowing price growth was inevitable; we simply could not sustain the increases we’ve experienced in recent years. Lower rates of appreciation will continue until wage growth catches up.

 

 

 

 

DAYS ON MARKET

  • The average number of days it took to sell a home dropped by four days compared to the same quarter of 2017.​
  • Across the entire region, it took an average of 39 days to sell a home in the third quarter of this year. This is down from 43 days in the third quarter of 2017 and down 2 days when compared to the second quarter of 2018.​
  • King County continues to be the tightest market in Western Washington, with homes taking an average of only 19 days to sell. Every county in the region other than Skagit and King — which both saw the time on the market rise by 2 days — saw the length of time it took to sell a home drop when compared to the same period a year ago.​​
  • More choice in the market would normally suggest that the length of time it takes to sell a home should rise, but the data has yet to show that. That said, compared to last quarter, we are seeing some marked increases in days on market in several counties, which will be reflected in future reports.

 

 

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s real estate market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors. I started to move the needle toward buyers last quarter and have moved it even further this quarter. Price growth continues to slow, but more significant is the rise in listings, which I expect to continue as we move toward the quieter winter period.

 

I believe that psychology will start to play a part in the housing market going forward. It has been more than 15 years since we’ve experienced a “balanced” market, so many home buyers and sellers have a hard time remembering what one looks like. Concerns over price drops are overrated and the length of time it’s taking to sell a home is simply trending back to where it used to be in the early 2000s.

 

 

 

Mr. Gardner is the Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, specializing in residential market analysis, commercial/industrial market analysis, financial analysis, and land use and regional economics. He is the former Principal of Gardner Economics and has more than 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K. 

 

 

Link to original article from Windermere corporate blog.

Posted on November 4, 2018 at 8:45 am
Windermere Stanwood Camano | Category: Uncategorized