Contact Us

text: (425) 502-5397

Posts made in January, 2017

  • Neighborhood Profile: East Hill

    January 27, 2017 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    Imagine you could live in an urban neighborhood with an international flavor without having to brave the hustle and bustle of Seattle. With Kent’s East Hill neighborhood, you’ll have the benefit of a diverse, vibrant community without the craziness of the big city.   For a large chunk of its 120+ year history, Kent, Washington was a prosperous farming community. In fact, the city was originally named after the County of Kent in England, as both shared a talent for growing quality hops. However, even after aphids destroyed the hop crops in the late 1800s, Kent continued to prosper, becoming a major supplier of produce and dairy, and for a time the city was known as the “Lettuce Capital of the World.” Today, Kent is a thriving urban center with unique neighborhoods, including East Hill.   East Hill is known for being a diverse neighborhood in an already diverse city. In fact, the households in East Hill speak many languages in addition to English, including Russian, languages from South Asia, and languages from a variety of African countries. Overall, the presence of many different ethnicities and nationalities gives East Hill a culturally rich character, and it’s an important addition to…Read more

  • Who’s Afraid of the FHA?

    January 12, 2017 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    At the beginning of the week, the Federal Housing Administration announced it will decrease its annual mortgage insurance premiums by .25% annually or from .85% to .6% per year. This measure will go into effect for new mortgages closing or starting disbursement on or after January 27, 2017. This is the first reduction in insurance premiums since January 2015, when the FHA reduced premiums by 50 basis points. While this decrease might seem modest, experts estimate that it is likely to save consumers hundreds of dollars each year. For instance, with this reduction a homeowner with a $200,000, 30-year fixed rate mortgage can expect to  save about $500 annually. Looking at the larger picture, it’s expected that the reduction in insurance premiums will in total save $5 million for about 1 million borrowers. The announcement arrived on the heels of the FHA’s fourth straight year of economic health. In fact, since 2012 the FHA has reportedly increased its assets by over $40 billion. With such successful economic growth, the FHA has determined that offering lower prices to borrowers is fiscally responsible. The FHA’s decision further cements its importance for prospective homeowners. Since the Great Recession, FHA loans have been vital…Read more

  • New Year’s Reflections (Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Broken Toilet)

    January 6, 2017 /
    Pickett Street Properties Team /

    If you had been in my family’s living room at about 2:30 on Christmas morning, you might have heard urgent mutterings and a disturbing hissing sound coming out from under the bathroom door. Had you ventured to inspect the situation further, you would have observed my stepfather and I as we removed the cap of the toilet tank, endured a generous vertical explosion of water, and fumbled with the toilet’s innards for several feeble minutes before replacing the cap and catching our breath. You would have watched us repeat this cycle for quite some time. It’s hard to come up with fresh ideas when your face is repeatedly doused with cold toilet tank water, after all. You might wonder how I got myself into such a situation in the wee hours before dawn on Christmas. It all began when I woke up at about 2 o’clock in the morning to the sound of the toilet running upstairs. Now, the bathroom in my childhood home has been subject to all kinds of problems (sharing one toilet and shower between 7 people puts quite a lot of stress on the pipes, as it turns out), and though the house’s plumbing has limped…Read more