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By Virginia

What’s wrong with this house?

Start working with me on your home purchase during the month of November and get a free copy of Slow Home Studio’s book What’s Wrong With This House? – A Practical Guide to Finding a Well-Designed, Sustainable Home.

The architect authors run a combination design studio/real estate firm in Calgary, Alberta, and have over 20 years teaching and researching at the University of Calgary.

I’m not going to send you to Calgary to buy a house, but you will be happy you took a good look at the practical, down-to-earth design advice that focuses on the substance of the way a house works, rather than on its superficial appearance.

If you’re new to buying houses or condos, download the “Steps to Buying” eBook for a good explanation of how to get from today to living in the new place!

 

By Virginia

Steps to Buying for First Time Home Buyers

The Steps to Buying guide is now a downloadable ebook. Topics inclue a quick intro to short sales & foreclosure properties, Earnest Money, Making an Offer, and more.

This is a great intro to home buying for people who have never done it before and need some info to get started. Get it here and share it with your friends!

By Virginia

What is it about Pink Bathrooms?

What is it about those pink bathrooms?!

Mostly, I guess, it’s that they are so shockingly different from anything we’ve created in a long long time. They make my clients laugh, but guess what – everybody looks good in the mirror in a pink bathroom.

In Seattle the Pink Bathroom is iconic in late 1940’s and 1950’s brick ramblers. As it turns out, they were popular all over the U.S.in that period – read Save the Pink Bathrooms’ nod to Mamie Eisenhower for starting this post-World War II color trend.

Save the Pink Bathrooms is doing their part to reverse the demolition trend by supplying links to pink-tile suppliers.

For me the Pink Bathroom is the symbol of the well-built 50’s house in our area: what are the odds, I asked my fellow agents, if you find a house that has a well-preserved Pink Bathroom, that the house is solid as well? “Extremely high!” was the unanimous response.

Then, what to make of Kohler’s brand NEW Pink Bathroom featured in Rebecca Teagarden’s recent Pacific Northwest article? Gorgeous, slick, and definitely 21st century!

By Virginia

But what school would my kids go to?

If you’ve got young children, probably one of the most important criteria in your home search is “What school would my kids go to if we lived here?” And there are various websites where you can see how a particular school scores, relative to others in Washington state – for example School Digger – but often these websites can frustrate you as much as inform you. For example, of the “top 10 public elementary schools in the state” according to School Digger, only 2 are inSeattle, and those are in neighborhoods that many buyers with young children can’t afford.  Only 2 are inBellevue.

I’m a firm believer in getting out there yourself and checking out the school; meeting the principal, finding out what kids go to the school, what special programs there are, what challenges the school has. And one of the most important: understanding your child and knowing where he or she is most likely to thrive.

We have some first-rate private schools in our area, but we also have some wonderful public schools.

If you’ve seen a home online and want to check the public school assignment, click here for Seattle addresses, or here for Bellevue.

Please contact me if you have a school you want to rave about (or rant about): I would love to hear from you.

By Virginia

Who Pays For What?

 

CW Title recently put out a list summarizing closing costs on typical transactions. Some of the costs are more or less fixed, like the cost of the appraisal, but others are based on the purchase price. Check out their information here, and feel free to contact me for estimates of specific dollar amounts. We can choose a listing (and a hypothetical closing date) and use it as a sample to work up the numbers.


By Virginia

What will it cost me?

Sometimes it’s nice to know, even before you start actively looking at homes on the market, what the monthly payments would be like in different price ranges. You may find that your lender will pre-approve you for MORE than you actually want to spend on housing each month. Here’s how to get an idea…

By Virginia

Thinking of Selling?

I’ve helped sellers get top dollar for their houses, in widely varying economic times: from the markets of multiple offers or markets where the buyers are few and far between. Find out more about my background here.

What’s wrong with this house?
Steps to Buying for First Time Home Buyers
What is it about Pink Bathrooms?
But what school would my kids go to?
Who Pays For What?
What’s out there for me?
What will it cost me?
Thinking of Selling?