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Forbes ♥ Seattle real estate market: Quick to Rebound

Posted on Nov 6, 2008

You have to love good news about our real estate market – and if it happens to come from one of the premier authorities on wealth, well that doesn’t hurt. Forbes recently published an article declaring Seattle’s real estate market as the most likely to rebound. I’m posting the beginning of the article here, with a link to the full story below:

If you’re a homeowner seeing property values plummet, look to the commercial real estate market for solace. It might tell you which areas will recover fastest–and which will likely remain weak.

The Urban Land Institute recently asked 700 real estate professionals to name the best (and worst) places to invest in commercial real estate in the coming year. Those surveyed included private developers, Realtors and Real Estate Investment Trust executives. Their answers also apply to the residential market, since the single-family-home sector typically follows the economy. As wages go up and there are more jobs, more people can buy homes, pushing prices up.

The best cities in which to invest are those that are considered gateways to international investment, have vital downtowns where people can forgo cars, and don’t have a glut of condos or office space.

These traits landed Seattle the No. 1 spot on the list. No city scored above a 6.15 on a scale of one to nine (one being an abysmal place to invest and nine being excellent).

Seattle is “a diversified market, has a good base of business and is becoming a 24-hour city,” says Stephen Blank, senior resident fellow, finance, of the Urban Land Institute. “It’s going to be in a good position to come back.”

Although the city is suffering from the loss of Washington Mutual and the downsizing of Starbucks, Boeing, and Microsoft are still relatively strong. Apartment vacancies are low and there aren’t too many new buildings going up, meaning the market won’t be oversupplied. The same is true in the retail space. 

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