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Posts made in 2016

  • Mhysa by Sarah Troske

    September 20, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    My boyfriend Santi and I moved into our home in June 2015. I knew I wanted to get a dog quick. When we started researching different types of breeds, Santi mentioned the Wirehaired Pointing Griffon. Never hearing of it, I quickly glance at the picture of the breed and dismissed it. Who wants a gray bodied, brown headed dog? I guess I didn’t. But when I googled hypoallergenic dog, that breed kept popping up. So I took it upon myself to start researching this breed. After doing extensive research on this awesome breed, I shortly found out that breeders around this area are rare. The closest breeders I found were in mid Oregon and Idaho. So naturally I contacted all of them. Their waiting lists were 1-2+ years. I just couldn’t believe it. I didn’t want to wait that long. I am a patient person, but not that patient. Thankfully one of the breeder’s I was chatting with via Facebook led me to a breeder who recently used their stud. The breeder I was referred to was just in the Spokane, WA area. Well that’s close enough, right? I immediately called and he had one girl left from the litter.…Read more

  • Does Your Money Work for You?

    September 16, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Does Your Money Work For You? As this blog has mentioned in the past, buying a multi-family home is a profitable alternative to the standard, single-family rental unit. A multi-family home is an ideal vehicle for building wealth, as it provides extra income and more security than single-occupancy rental units. However, buying a multi-family home is easier said than done, and it can be hard to envision what the process is actually like without a concrete example. Fortunately, Pickett Street’s Amanda Weis provides us with a perfect concrete example. As Pickett Street’s Client Care Representative, Amanda has plenty of experience in property management, and she’s owned rental properties before. However, until recently, Amanda’s rental property was a single-family home that earned just $100 in profits each month. Upon selling the unit, Amanda used the profits from the sale (via the perpetually helpful 1031 exchange) to purchase a multi-family home. Or, more accurately, two multi-family homes. Starting her search in King and Snohomish counties, Amanda was initially frustrated by high property prices. However, once she moved her search to Tacoma in Pierce County, Amanda found two affordable duplexes requiring minimal up-front work. Since Tacoma’s rental market is booming, Amanda rented all…Read more

  • I Hope There Aren’t Any Bugs! (Why You Should Always Work With Traditional Real Estate Agents)

    September 9, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    “I hope there aren’t any bugs!” said the landlord as she handed me the keys to my new apartment. “I beg your pardon?” I said, a trifle dismayed that the apartment I would be renting with my girlfriend could be home to “bugs.” “Oh, it’s nothing really,” said the landlord, “it’s just that there might be bugs in your apartment.” An awkward silence ensued. “I’m not saying there definitely are bugs,” said the landlord with a forced laugh, the kind family members might use at Christmas dinner when crazy Uncle Ernie starts telling inappropriate stories. “It’s just that there might be.” More silence. I had a brief vision of the scene from the last Indiana Jones movie when one of the bad guys falls into an anthill and is eaten alive by its inhabitants. “Anyhoo,” the landlord said, clearing her throat, “who wants a cup of coffee?” There were bugs, as it turned out. I discovered one after wrestling three suitcases, two bicycles, and a box stuffed with approximately twelve pairs of flip-flops through the front door of our new apartment. As I prepared to unload my burden and collapse onto the carpet of the living room floor, I found the space already occupied by the…Read more

  • Do you want a discount from your Real Estate Agent?

    September 2, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    What You Get When You Work With a Discount Agent Here’s a hint: it’s not much. While discounted brokers might seem attractive (who isn’t attracted to a lower price tag?), a lower cost does not often equal a better experience in the real estate world. Before jumping on the discount bandwagon, take a minute to read our reasons why traditional realtors are still the kings (and queens) of the real estate world. Traditional vs. Discount Before launching into a discussion about why the traditional model trumps discount upstarts, it’s important to understand the distinction between the two. A traditional broker is a tried and true real estate agent - he or she will charge a standard commission fee (often 6% of the sales price), but will not charge any other fees. Traditional brokers generally control all aspects of the real estate transaction, such as advertising your home, working with the MLS in your state, negotiating offers, helping you discover anything unique about certain properties, developing individualized marketing strategies to ensure that a homeowner’s property gets maximum market exposure, and finding properties for prospective buyers. A discounted broker, on the other hand, charges a lower commission, often around 3-5%, but sometimes even lower. Some…Read more

  • Top Perks of Puget Sound Living

    August 24, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Growing up in the Puget Sound permanently spoiled me. There are few places in the world that enjoy such an enviable intersection of nature, economic opportunity, and cultural vibrancy. As such, I’m always judging other locations against the impossibly high bar set by Puget Sound living, and so it’s hardly a surprise that even the most exotic destinations seem to pale in comparison to my beloved Seattle. But don’t take my word for it: read on to learn more about the top perks of Puget Sound living. Booming Economy Seattle is quickly establishing itself as one of the most prominent economies in the country. Though the city has plenty of job opportunities for multiple skill sets, the tech industry is definitely leading the pack, with local heavyweight Amazon continuing to expand its influence, while imports like Google and Facebook are establishing a firm presence. With a bountiful influx of wealth and employment, Puget Sound living keeps getting better and better. Natural Beauty Northwest natives might take the region’s beauty for granted, but that doesn’t make it any less astonishing. The Puget Sound is one of the country’s largest estuaries, and it’s home to a diverse body of wildlife, including whales, octopi, seals,…Read more

  • What are the Top Millennial Housing Trends?

    August 15, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Being a millennial, and being perpetually in the process of moving, I’ve been thinking about my generation’s real estate trends quite a lot recently. There’s an abundance of talk out there about what millennials (the generation aged about 18-35 and born between the early 1980s and early 2000s) want in a home, but it’s often hard to tell fact from fiction, and so millennial home buying trends tend to remain a bit of a mystery. To set matters straight, here are some of the most important trends millennials consider when buying a home. Uber Urban This one’s kind of a gimme. It’s pretty well known that millennials favor hip urban centers with ready access to bars, restaurants, services, and cultural centers. Rather than dreaming of making it to the suburbs like their parents, most millennials want to be where the action is. This trend is at least partly responsible for the boom in urban populations, and it has made cities such as Seattle, Portland, Denver, and Austin hot spots for the young. Along with this urban focus comes a fondness for an industrial style. Instead of looking for spic and span spaces, millennials are favoring styles that are tastefully messy.…Read more

  • Gratitude: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

    August 5, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    “Well this is an unfortunate turn of events,” I thought as the oncoming SUV drove into my bicycle and knocked me onto the asphalt. I don’t remember what happened immediately after impact (vehicular accidents tend to dull the senses, it turns out), but I do remember being rather proud of my admirably calm mental observations, given the circumstances. For instance, I remember it was a fine, crisp January morning and that there were birds singing in the trees. Also, the sky was filled with plump, fluffy clouds, the air had been scrubbed clean by recent rain, some stranger was grabbing me by the shoulders and asking if I was alright, and a police officer was rushing toward me and calling an ambulance. Now (I wondered), why should I be receiving so much attention all of a sudden? Oh yes: I’ve just been hit by a car. Since my brain is liable to wander off into some pretty weird places during even the most normal circumstances, it’s hardly surprising that the loopiness of my post-crash mental excursions was exponentially magnified. Sitting up in the street in a befuddled and bruised state, I allowed my mind to wander through the little-used vaults…Read more

  • Mortgage Rates are Low: Why Should You Care?

    August 2, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    We’re only a little more than halfway into the year, and already the housing market is flexing its muscles with a strong showing from new home sales. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has announced that there were 592,000 new home sales in June, a figure which outpaces original expectations and estimations by tens of thousands of units. The number of new home sales has increased about 4% in the last month, while current new home sales are roughly 25% higher than they were in June 2015. More to the point, June 2016 saw the highest new home sales since 2008. All in all, demand for new housing remains strong, and the housing market is not only continuing its robust, post-recession recovery, but also continues to be a primary contributor to the U.S. economic recovery. The success of new home sales has relied in large part on currently low mortgage rates. For individuals and households with favorable credit history, the average 30-year, fixed rate mortgage is about 3.5%. Back in June 2015, the average 30-year rates were hovering around 4% (which, it’s worth mentioning, was an already low figure). With rates arriving at even lower levels, it’s no…Read more

  • You wont believe this is in Bothell!

    July 22, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    It’s difficult to find a home that meets all of your needs, and some homeowners might find themselves making sacrifices to find a home that’s good enough. Luckily, no sacrifices need to be made for Pickett Street’s latest listing, a masterfully crafted luxury home in Bothell. Weighing in at more than 4,000 square feet, this stunning property has enough amenities, add-ons, and hidden luxuries to satisfy any homeowner’s needs, and it’s all rendered in a virtuosic blend of stone, metal, and wood. With an elegant game room, an open sports field, a versatile auto shop, and a huge patio, this Bothell home has everything and more.   Accompanied by rich mahogany detailing, this Bothell home’s game room is sure to catch anyone’s eye. The space is perfect for weekly poker games, casual (or not-so-casual) pool competitions, or even just a friendly drink among friends. A sliding barn door connects this space to the great room, a stunning, expansive combination of a living room and a kitchen that promises to become a bustling hub of activity and the life of any party. The living room boasts a linear gas fireplace, wet bar, and access to a courtyard with a patio and…Read more

  • Find the Perfect Home in Bothell!

    July 15, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Sometimes, you want all the amenities of living in the city without actually living in the city. While it’s not always easy to have your cake and eat it too, in Bothell you can have the best of both worlds. In close proximity to both Lake Washington and I-405, Bothell enjoys easy access to the city and the slower pace of the suburbs. As such, it’s a great choice for those of us who want to enjoy a Seattle lifestyle without actually living in Seattle proper.   Now part of the Seattle metropolitan area, Bothell began as a much sleepier logging and farming town. The region derives its name from one David Bothell, who built the Bothell Hotel in 1885. Bothell began to grow in stages, first when the railroad came through, and then in the early 20th century when cars became king. With these new transportation options, more and more people could live in Bothell and commute to Seattle for work. So began a trend that crowned Bothell as one of Seattle’s most popular suburbs.   Bothell has experienced something of a renewal in recent years, with city officials and residents alike striving to maintain the city’s charm while…Read more

  • Colorado, Ho! (Part 1)

    July 8, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Way out in the wilds of Oregon, an overstuffed hatchback is laboring up the side of a tiny mountain at about eight o’clock in the morning. Though the recommended speed limit is a brisk 70 miles per hour, the wee beleaguered hatchback is huffing and puffing along at a sluggish 35, due to its general and aforementioned overstuffed-ness. Now (if you’ll humor me), let’s peek in the window of this particular hatchback and take a closer look at the driver: keeping his grumbles and complaints to a bare minimum, the driver (who, it’s worth mentioning, is a devilishly handsome fellow) stoically switches on the emergency blinkers and guides his vehicle gamely up the giddy steepness of the mountain slopes while, in the passenger seat beside him, the driver’s patient and long-suffering girlfriend encourages him with well-chosen words bursting with good-natured positivity. There’s a light drizzle pattering over the windshield, and everyone involved is suffering from a more-or-less dramatic lack of caffeine. I mention this seemingly random scenario because it’s exactly the situation I found myself in a few days ago as I set off on yet another move to yet another state. As you probably guessed, I was the driver,…Read more

  • The Art of Seattle Architecture

    July 5, 2016 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Seattle is famous for many things - coffee, music, natural beauty - but, strangely enough, few people are familiar with the architecture of the Emerald City. Or, if they are familiar with it, their knowledge is probably limited to the Space Needle. This gap might not seem significant for most folks, but to a Seattle native like me, it’s nothing short of a travesty. Seattle is home to some quietly majestic architecture, and the residential construction of Seattle houses is particularly striking. In that case, it’s time that it was recognized. Below, you’ll find some classic styles for Seattle houses. The Seattle Box A quintessential style for Seattle houses, the Seattle Box offers a simple but highly customizable aesthetic. Sometimes called the Four Square, these Seattle houses are primarily characterized by their boxy style, hip roofs, modest dormers, and generously proportioned porches with columns. While the overarching characteristic of the Seattle Box is elegant simplicity, the model is also something of a blank slate and looks great when elements from other styles, such as Craftsman architecture, are added onto it. The Bungalow These Seattle houses exploded onto the scene during the first third of the twentieth century, remaining wildly popular…Read more