Think different.

Home prices continue on their upward trajectory across our area (September prices were up 10.3% vs. a year ago both in Seattle and on the Eastside.) and the inventory picture remains tilted in favor of sellers. But subtle changes are afoot, creating interesting opportunities for clever buyers looking to make a move. I’ve waited until mid-October to say it, but it’s now clear that after the feeding frenzy of last spring and early summer the market’s normal summer slowdown is bleeding into fall.

There have definitely been fewer multiple-offer situations in the marketplace over the past 90 days and many of those that do occur are less competitive. In addition, more listings are remaining on the market past their “offer review” dates (i.e. without offers). Frustrated buyers seem to be taking an extended break from their searches and many sellers are getting overly aggressive in pricing their homes. The end result is that there are opportunities out there for buyers willing to “Think Different” as Steve Jobs might say. Here are a couple thoughts:

** Buy first. Take advantage of the market’s fluctuations and buy your next home now while things are a bit quieter. Then sell your current place after the first of the year when things heat back up. (Yes, I think they will.) I can introduce you to resources who will provide you with a financial “bridge” to the sale of your current home, if needed. This scenario allows you to avoid the stress of the classic “nowhere to go” scenario, and may also be less expensive than leasing an interim home. You will only have to move once and would have time to make some repairs or upgrades to your new place before moving in.

** Find the road less traveled. Work with someone who knows the market and can identify and negotiate with the motivated sellers. There are properties that have been on the market for a while or are no longer listed that just need the right offer to trigger a deal. Don’t waste time and raise your blood pressure in competitive situations that don’t make sense for you or trying to educate less than reasonable sellers. Life is too short!

The deals are out there if you know where to look. Give me a call and let’s talk about how to take advantage of both the current lull and the coming frenzy! It can be done…