“Seattle fun in the winter?” you ask. You might be surprised at all of the opportunities for fun even with the blustery weather and chilly-winded snowfall. There’s a lot of freedom for recreation in the city, and much of it is signature Seattle.
The Polar Bear Plunge is your best (and likely, only) chance to dive into the frigid water at Matthews beach with almost 2,000 other people. The event is free, and you’ll be able to take home some fresh swag to prove you did it. It’s a great way to meet some other crazy people, and you’re covered for the day’s shower.
Winter Feast is a food truck festival taking place at the European-style Fremont Sunday Market on the second Sunday of every month. With a weekly rotation of 20 trucks along the road providing variety, you can visit several times through the winter and try some of the choicest foods available in Seattle. The market’s usual attractions go along, like local crafters offering their uncommon creations and beer taps flowing the suds at nearby establishments.
The Chilly Hilly Bicycle Race is a choice opportunity to get wind-whipped while you compete with your fellow wheeled riders for first place on this local 33-mile ride along the hills of Bainbridge Island. It’s a challenging ride making the last pedal across the finishing line especially sweet. Expect hot food and a lot of celebration at the ride’s completion.
Coming from up north, the snow geese find Seattle’s Port Susan Bay quite a warm place to hang out. The local Snow Goose and Birding Festival celebrates their arrival on February 24th-25th. Birding enthusiasts will be thrilled at the sighting of these squawking white fowl’s landing spot, and there’s plenty of camaraderie with fellow birders to be had.
With all of these chilly activities, you’ll want to warm up at the Banya 5 Urban Spa where the sauna tops a roasty 240 degrees, and the experience completes with a vodka shot in the lounge. The cold plunge is available to roasters too, so you can alternate temperature extremes for the maximum therapeutic benefit. They also offer massage for your iced-up muscles and facial treatments.
This is all only the top of the iceberg. Seattle has so much to offer, but these choice adventures are sure to bring you wintertime joy.
The real estate world is constantly evolving. Regardless of whether you are purchasing a home of simply looking to enhance your portfolio, it is important that you keep track of the latest real estate trends. Real estate market analysts have begun studying the market in advance of next year. Here is a look at some real estate trends to keep an eye on heading into 2018.
Online Brands Will Emerge
Heading into the new year, many real estate agents will look to establish an online presence. Recent market data has shown that both buyers and sellers are doing the majority of their research online first. The internet has allowed potential investors to make quicker decisions. With the increased access to previously private information, everything has become more transparent and accountable. It is much easier now to find the best agents.
Increased Emphasis On Smart Homes
Analysts are pointing to 2018 as the year that smart home automation will reach mainstream America. Agents and brokers are figuring out ways to implement the new technology into their presentations. There will be increased shading and light automation, as well as hardwiring and security. With an increased emphasis on smart home automation, more players will enter the mix.
The oldest of Generation Z, or those born between 1995 and 2001, are starting to graduate from college and become players on the real estate market. Like the millennials before them, Generation Z members prefer urban, big city life. Generation Z is expected to have a large influence on different brands and industries. Retailers will be under pressure to find successful marketing strategies.
Research has shown that secondary markets throughout the U.S. have grown past major cities. Analysts believe that secondary markets are considered a safe place for foreign investors. The growth in these secondary markets is considered sustainable over the long haul. Investors have secondary markets on their radar.
2018 is primed to be the year that agents stop being generalists and start focusing on little details that can set them apart. Agents are realizing that regardless of what type of property they are selling, the small details matter.
The potential tax reforms may impact the real estate market. The low income housing tax credits may be reduced, which could damage the affordable housing market. Investment amortization and the 1031-tax free exchange program are also at risk of being slashed.
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The world of real estate investing has become one of the quickest growing means of revenue for people around the world. One of the more common forms of investments is seen in the form of commercial properties. Commercial real estate investments include offices, commercial apartments, retail and wholesale spaces and many others. These investments require patience, willingness to perform research and determination. Unlike other sectors, commercial real estate has high returns and other multiple benefits. However, to succeed in the industry, you must be ready to spend time building relationships with experienced investors and property owners.
Mostly, real estate investors start by buying a residential home for their family members. However, after some period, they familiarize themselves with commercial real estate, which has more profitable deals. Although commercial real estate investments have higher rewards than the residential sector, it has some risks that every person should know before investing. Below are crucial tips that will help you to invest and succeed in commercial real estate.
Take Time to Perform Research
Investors should first take the time to learn about how the sector operates. You should gather learning resources and acquire crucial information about commercial real estate. Online platforms that deal with real estate matters can guide you to thrive in the industry.
Additionally, you can look for a mentor to guide you on how to succeed in commercial real estate. The mentor should be a friendly person who is willing to teach you the tricks and vocabularies of the sector.
You should formulate a plan that guides you on how to make wise investments. You should not accumulate several commercial properties without a proper plan. When starting out, it is advisable to focus on a single investment at a time. The process will enable you to make a good profit and succeed in the industry. You should not purchase properties that do not accumulate profits.
Work With Reputable and Motivated Real Estate Agents
If you want to buy a commercial property, you should work with an experienced agent. Reputable dealers will educate you several commercial real estate metrics, including cash on cash, net operating income, and cap rate. Additionally, they will sell you a property at a market value or below. However, you should get recommendations from friends and experienced investors when choosing a commercial real estate agent. They will direct you to the best dealer in the region.
Learn Environment and Location Issues
The location of a commercial property can determine its cost and demand. If you purchase or build a commercial building in an area that is not developed, you will unlikely get serious tenants. It will limit your cash flow. You should purchase a property in a populated area that is likely to develop massively in the future.
Conclusively, you should note that every sector has its trends. Things keep changing every time. Therefore, to succeed in commercial real estate, you should keep learning new tricks from experienced investors, media, and other sources.
The industry of real estate continues to grow at a rapid pace all around the country. With more people wanting to buy earlier in life than previously, the markets are booming with properties needing sold. Real estate agents are in high demand right now and getting into the field is proving successful for many. If you’ve ready the previous installment of this blog series, you know that having good communication skills and being knowledgeable will get you far. Being a real estate agent encompasses a great deal of responsibility and pride. Here a few more habits that will help any new agent take their career far.
One of the most crucial steps a real estate agent can take in order to further their career is to expand their professional network. Attending networking events in your area is a great place to meet others in your profession. Although some people may be your “competition” it is always good to know fellow agents that you trust for times when you’re in a bind. Making connections with investors, contractors, and developers will give you a great platform for references down the line. In addition to personal networking, real estate agents should be utilizing social media tools to promote themselves. Most people will buy a house in their lifetime, so posting on properties such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram can capture an untapped audience you may not have known existed. Consistently networking should be a habit of any real estate agent that truly wants to thrive.
Invest in Yourself
Though you may be working for a home sale company, most real estates have the flexibility of setting their own schedules and rules. A successful real estate agent makes sure to invest time and money into bettering themselves personally and professionally. You’ll notice that most real estate agents present themselves very poised and put-together. Image is important (but not everything) in real estate. New clients are trusting you to help them find something that will mean so much to them. This being said, your presentation plays a major role. And as in any profession, take the time to learn and cater to yourself. Know your own strengths and weaknesses and use them to your advantage.
The Seattle real estate market is one of the hottest markets in the country. Over the past few months, home prices have started to accelerate even more quickly. The economy of Seattle is strong, and this is encouraging many people to move to the area. Not only that, but there is less traffic in Seattle than other major cities.
The biggest driver behind higher housing prices in Seattle is a lack of inventory. It is fairly common for a home to sell within a day or two of going on the market. There are many people who want to buy a home in the area. The problem is that there are few homes within an affordable price range.
The good news is that many building companies are working on new homes. However, it is going to be several years before the new homes will catch up with demand from buyers. Over time, this should be an issue that gets worked out with more homes being built.
As a buyer in the Seattle market, reacting quickly is essential. If you see a property that you are interested in, you need to submit an offer quickly in order to be considered.
Over the past year, home prices in Seattle have increased by more than eight percent. This is a massive increase in prices during one year. Many real estate experts believe that this trend is going to continue into 2018. With more demand from buyers than ever before, sellers have an incentive to continue increasing the list price on their home.
Real Estate Investors
Investing in real estate is a great financial decision over a long period of time. There are many real estate investors who are looking in Seattle for a property to purchase.
This is another factor that is increasing the overall cost to live in the area. Real estate investors typically react quickly when a home goes on the market. Seattle is a great market to find a rental property in because of all the population growth. Rent prices in Seattle have also been rapidly increasing in recent years.
Although Seattle is a great place to live, many people are having a hard time finding a home in the area. Some people are starting to look at cities around Seattle in order to find more affordable homes to purchase. The inventory shortage in Seattle will continue in the next year.
For many people, real estate investing is a great way to achieve financial independence. However, real estate investing is a difficult process. There are various people who struggle to get started with investing.
In addition, there are many ways to make mistakes with real estate investing. Too many mistakes can result in financial failure. Here are some of the most lethal real estate investing mistakes that you should avoid.
Borrowing Too Much Money
Perhaps the biggest mistake that new investors make is to borrow too much money in the beginning. When you first start investing, you are often really excited to buy your first property. Borrowing too much money does a couple of things to your finances.
Not only will borrowing too much money impact your monthly cash flow, but it also increases the risk that you have in business. Some people struggle to pay for all of the debt that they take on.
Lowering Your Rent
Some real estate investors believe that lowering their required rent is the best way to attract quality tenants. However, having rent prices that are too low is the wrong approach to take as an investor.
As a real estate owner, there are various expenses that you must deal with. Rent payments help the owner pay for repairs and other maintenance in the home. Make sure to conduct thorough research on the area before setting a price for your monthly rental requirements.
Maintenance is one of the most important aspects of owning a home. There are many people who want to avoid maintenance expenses whenever possible. However, this is the wrong approach to take for a variety of reasons. Maintenance expenses are much cheaper than repairing a major problem.
You should conduct thorough maintenance in your home whenever possible. This is the best way to avoid major issues later on.
Selling in a Panic
If the housing market starts to drop, one of the worst things that investors can do is sell in a panic. Trying to sell a home quickly is only going to reduce the total price that you can get. Instead, focus on ways to hold your home through an economic downturn. This is the best way to enjoy price appreciation when the market picks up again.
Overall, real estate investing is a great way to build wealth and change your financial future. Avoiding major mistakes is essential to achieving financial success.
In real estate, growing your network can be one of the most beneficial aspects you create for yourself. Knowing people in all facets of the industry can help to boost your career to new heights. While people work hard to learn as much as they can about the field, you can be better allocating your time to making connections.
Creating relationships with others in the real estate industry gives you a leg up when it comes to growing as a professional. You could have all of the knowledge about real estate but if you have a limited network to collaborate with, you will seldom see as much success. As an investor, it is important that I seek contacts within all other facets of real estate. Knowing contractors, brokers, architects, and agents are all a crucial part of running a successful investment company. Having these connections with those who are experts in areas that you are not, helps to guide you along your project’s journey. The complementary relationships that you build with other businesses allows room for growth and learning as well.
In today’s world it has become just as important to network online as it is to do in person. Creating a strong online presence is an aspect of networking that many people neglect or feel as though is unnecessary. Utilizing sources such as LinkedIn and ActiveRain are amazing networking tools. Everyone from investors to brokers should be utilizing these sites to help boost their relationship and establish themselves within the real estate community. Making sure that your profiles are optimized to their fullest potential will also have a great impact on your social networking abilities.
As vital as online networking has become, there is still much force behind making personal connections with colleagues. It can be especially useful to host or attend local networking events. In the real estate industry we are lucky to have extensive groups of us working around the country towards common goals. For those who may have already established networks in their community, expanding your connections to surrounding areas is never a harmful tactic.
Professionals of all industries should be focusing a decent amount of their efforts towards expanding their networks and relationships. Having strong online and personal connects gives you more power than all of the knowledge in the world.
To be a part of the real estate industry doesn’t necessarily mean you need to become an agent or broker. The markets around the country are standing on relatively solid ground and we owe a great deal of that credit to the investment side of the industry. Real estate investors are doing very well for themselves right now and there’s a good reason why. While the markets may be contributing to successful investments, there are certain habits that many prosperous real estate investors live by.
Following the Markets
Besides the stock market, real estate, is one of the most fluctuating markets in our economy. When investing in the industry, someone who has succeeded spends a significant amount of time researching. To continue thriving as a real estate investor, keeping up with the trends and developments of the market are a must. Everything from interest rates to unemployment statistics should be closely monitored by investors. The more that an investor knows about their market, the more promising they can expect their business to be. Another crucial trend to keep an eye on is consumer habits. By knowing which audiences are driven to your investments can provide you with the tools you will need to properly invest.
Develop a Niche
When first starting out in real estate investing it is important to determine which style of real estate best suits your wants and needs. Choosing whether residential, commercial, or land it is important to know which area you want to focus your attention to. Learning everything there is to know about your chosen niche will give you the confidence to make smart investments along the way. Understanding as much as possible before moving on to another type of real estate can help an investor project long-term success. Once a particular focus is mastered, the investor can then choose if they are ready to move on and put their money towards another type of real estate.
In any industry it is important to surround yourself with those who support and share your goals. Real estate investing is no exception. For those new to the investment side of the field, finding someone with already established success is something worth taking the time to do. If you plan on starting your own investing company, it is worth it to know someone who can help introduce you to their seasoned colleagues. Not only is networking in the real estate industry but finding trustworthy contractors, realtors, and architects will help take your investments to new heights.
If you’ve tuned into HGTV recently, you’ve likely stumbled upon one of their many shows about tiny homes. These small accommodations have swept the nation, and many people are now looking to downsize for their next home buying endeavor. These small houses have made such an impact on not only people’s personal well-being but the nation as a whole. Many cities around the world have embraced the concept of tiny homes as a solution to homelessness. Whether it’s for personal or communal gain, these tiny homes have swept the nation and are likely not leaving anytime soon.
There are an abundant amount of reasons that people are choosing to live small. The main benefit to having a smaller home is the financial savings it provides. People who have downsized to tiny homes have saved money in the buying process and beyond. Tiny homes average selling point is between $19,000 and $50,000, over half the cost of a standard single-family home. Due to its size, these homes also save on almost all utility bills. For those who have a stationary tiny home, you are looking at an average savings of 50% on your electric and gas bills. For those with the ability, splurging on items such as cars and vacations becomes more feasible when living in a tiny home. There are endless benefits that come with being a tiny home owner. Everything from sustainably to eliminating clutter is achievable when choosing to downsize to a tiny home.
Our very own Seattle is making great strides at putting the tiny house phenomenon to a good use. As affordable housing is a constant concern for many cities around the world and such locations are struggling to find answers. Seattle is making strides, through tiny homes, to improve homelessness. Earlier this year, it was found that there were only around 100 affordable housing apartments available in the Seattle area. This was nowhere near enough to accommodate the number of homeless citizens in our city. Seattle city council members agree that tiny homes are a more appropriate solution to homelessness. The tiny homes that the city is providing for its homeless residents are sustainable and sufficient living situation. As of now, there are five communities that exist. The tiny homes cost around $2,000 and are assembled by volunteers. If the expansion of tiny home communities continues, the city can expect to a decrease in homelessness. This means fewer people sleeping in tents or cars and more people getting their lives back.
Real estate is quickly becoming one of the most desired professions around the country. There is a major process involved when it comes to being a realtor. Making the decision to become an agent can end up becoming one of the most rewarding experiences. Nothing compares to the feeling of helping people find the home they will make many memories in. Once you have decided that real estate is your calling, follow these steps to obtain a real estate license in the state of Washington.
The state of Washington requires anyone seeking a real estate license to complete 90 hours of education. This education is broken down into two parts. The first part is 60-hour course regarding the Fundamentals of Real Estate. Across the country, realtors must complete this portion of the course. The second part of the course, which is only applicable in certain states teaches Real Estate Practices. Fortunately, you are able to complete these courses online. Organizations such as, Kaplan Education offer online programs for those seeking their license. Once you have completed all of the necessary educational course you can continue onto the exam portion.
Washington has a specific provider that proctors the exam. The Broker’s exam can be taken with Applied Measurements Professionals Inc (AMP). The school where you completed your education can pass along your proof of completion to the testing organization. Once AMP has received your credentials you are then able to apply to take the exam. You can apply for the exam online, via phone, or mail. There are various testing sites around the state. Find the one closest to you by visiting AMP’s website.
- License and Background Check
Once you have successfully passed the exam you are then able to apply for your real estate license! During your exam, you are given a fingerprinting card. With this card, you must go to one of the designated centers and get your fingerprints done. Upon receiving your clearances, you can submit your application for your license. Finally, upon receiving your license, you are allowed to start your exciting new career!