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Tuesday, June 6, 2017   /   by Christine Robertson

The Pros and Cons of Investing in Airbnb

Should you invest in Airbnb? I’ve laid out some pros and cons in my latest video.

Today I’m out on the water on my commute back from Vashon, enjoying one of the only 90 days of sun we get in the Seattle area. Today’s topic is about investing in Airbnb. What does it take to “Airbnb” your house? Should you look into purchasing a condo specifically for Airbnb?
 
If you’re doing this with a condo in Seattle, you need to be careful because very few condos actually allow short-term rentals. They don’t want to run a hotel and the people living there don’t want to live in a hotel so their bylaws exclude anything less than a 30-day rental.
 
If you’re buying a place, you want to know what the rules are regarding short-term rentals. Most single family residences in Seattle allow for short-term rentals. Almost no neighborhoods have zoning laws that would restrict that type of rental, so if you own or are planning to purchase ...

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Thursday, May 25, 2017   /   by Christine Robertson

How the Pick the Right Offer for Your Seattle Home

If you sell your Seattle home, odds are good that you’ll receive multiple offers. However, the highest price isn’t necessarily always the best offer.

Today I wanted to talk about how to handle multiple offers when selling your home because in today’s competitive environment, chances are you’ll wind up with multiple offers. The highest price is not always the best offer.


You want both the most money for your home and the deal to close. So why isn’t the highest offer always the best? The deal may not close, and the house may not even appraise for the amount of the highest offer. If someone offers you $1 million for your house and the next highest bid is $500,000, that $1 million is probably not coming through because the house won’t appraise for $1 million. If a buyer doesn’t offer to make up the difference, then the offer is nonsense that’s not worth the paper it’s written on.




   If you sell your S ...

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Thursday, May 11, 2017   /   by Christine Robertson

How to Handle Multiple Offers as a Homebuyer

Multiple offer situations are very common in our market right now due to low inventory and high demand, even in smaller communities like Vashon. Today I’ll go over a few ways you can win a multiple offer situation as a homebuyer. 



So, what’s the best way to beat the competition and score the home of your dreams? 



First, set your expectations. If your budget is set at $500,000, don’t look at homes that start at $500,000. You’ll need to start looking at houses that start at $400,000 to see what the market will bear. Your agent will able to talk to you about how high offers have gone over asking price in the area and help you adjust your search accordingly.



Second, you need to increase the value of your offer beyond increasing the price. There are three ways to do this:



1.) Get a pre-inspection. Obviously, if any one of the other offers has done a pre-inspection, then you will need to do so as well. You cannot compete again ...

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Thursday, April 13, 2017   /   by Christine Robertson

8 Top Ideas for Boosting Vashon House Values

From time to time it can be fun to scour the latest “Top Ten” lists of cost-conscious ways to
increase the value of Vashon house value.


Some make more sense than others. Upgrading bathroom vanity cabinets appears on some of the
house value lists, for instance—but those lists were probably thrown together in a hurry since the return
on investment is admitted to be 66%. When an investment returns two-thirds of its cost, it’s hardly
competitive. For Vashon homeowners preparing to sell, vanity cabinets don’t belong on the action list.



The best idea lists are the ones which show ROI: the return on investment. Here’s a new
compilation, offered purely as food for thought (since the “return” number for any individual case can’t
actually be verified)—


1. Yard improvement, AKA Landscaping. Return on investment registers at a hefty 303%
according to the NAR® (and even 400%, per This Old House). And it’s ...

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  vashon, vashon island

Thursday, April 13, 2017   /   by Christine Robertson

Uncovering One of Real Estate’s Blind Spots

I’ve been doing some research in writing my second book, “Real Estate Blind Spots: A Peak Inside the Black Box of Residential Real Estate,” and today I want to show you a chart I’ve created to locate a prominent blind spot people have when it comes to buying or selling a home.


As you can see in the video above, this chart resembles a coordinate plane with four different points: complex, simple, cheap, and expensive. Each section between these points represents an area where these concepts merge. A task like buying a home goes in the complex and expensive section because it can be categorized as both complex and expensive. A task like buying dinner goes in the cheap and simple section for the same reason. Each task is diametrically opposed, so they’re on opposite sides of the graph.


The blind spot connecting these two points is that sometimes people use the same logic they use to decide where to eat dinner to choose who will represent them in ...

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