Olympia, WA Real Estate News

By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Sometime in January pretty much every year, I start craving spring time and yearning to start planting my garden and seeing flowers and veggies again.  And although it is way too early to actually plant anything in the garden, it is a perfect time to plan and dream about what I am going to do when the weather finally says "Now!" A couple of my favorite gardening experts are Marianne Binetti (www.binettigarden.com) and Ed Hume (www.humeseeds.com).  I love to read Marianne's gardening columns in our local paper as she has not only a ton of knowledge about local Pacific Northwest gardening, but gives excellent recommendations for what you can be doing when in the garden, new plants to watch for that are good performers, and a cool sense of humor.  I remember one of her columns where she ta...
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By Cyndi Nelson, ABR, CRS, SRES, GREEN
(The Cyndi Nelson Team at MVP Realty Group)
If you are struggling to qualify for any of the current home owner rescue plans you will may find that you are eligible for Deeds for Lease. This new Fannie Mae program allows you to stay in your Olympia  home as the government takes over your deed, while offering you a rental option at market prices. This rental agreement will last for one year, with a possible month to month option plan This option is a win-win situation for the homeowner, who wants to avoid foreclosure, and the lender, who can eliminate the lengthy foreclosure process. Jay Ryan, a Fannie Mae VP feel this program helps, "eliminate some of the uncertainty of foreclosure, keeps families and tenants in their homes during a transitional period, and helps stabilize neighborhoods and communities." Above all, it will do les...
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By Mike Conner
(City Realty, Inc. - Olympia, WA)
The holiday shopping season can lend great perspective on the arts of pricing and presentation. Think about the shopping you did over this past month and tell me how many of your buying decisions were based on the amount the product was "marked down". How much did the ticketed price have to be discounted for you to say to yourself "...that's too good a deal to pass up"? Or maybe you chose one brand over another because of the way the product was presented, even though the price was higher. We can learn a valuable lesson from our Christmas shopping habits; one that needs to be applied to our real estate selling habits. Just like our holiday shopping, we are scared of overpaying for our homes too. We need to feel like we're getting a great deal, because we know we can find that same shirt...
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By Cyndi Nelson, ABR, CRS, SRES, GREEN
(The Cyndi Nelson Team at MVP Realty Group)
During this holiday season as we reflect on everything we are thankful for, let's be aware of those Olympia citizens who are not as fortunate as others. This recession has led people to celebrate holidays without a great deal of hope and prosperity. As you are shopping for that special gift for a loved one, please lend a hand to the many wonderful organizations that help those in need. There are many terrific non-profit organizations right in our backyard. Garden Courte Memory Care sponsors "suitcases for kids."  Many children who enter foster care have nothing but a plastic bag with their belongings. By donating a new or slightly used duffle bag or luggage will really help these kids feel they have some place safe to keep their special items. For more information, please call 306-491-4...
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By Cyndi Nelson, ABR, CRS, SRES, GREEN
(The Cyndi Nelson Team at MVP Realty Group)
Buying a home now may be a smart idea as the Federal Housing Administration is proposing to increase the amount of money borrowers will have to pay up-front. The reason for this proposal is to shore up the agency's finances, which have faltered due to rising defaults in its flagship mortgage insurance program. The change will also raise minimum credit scores for those who receive FHA-backed mortgages, and will limit the amount of money sellers can put contribute. This includes paying closing costs or giving free upgrades. The FHA feels if borrowers are contributing more money up-front they will be less likely to default on loans, as many have done during the economic crisis.  FHA guarantees loans issued by member banks, but losses fall back on FHA. Housing and Urban Development secretar...
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By Mike Conner
(City Realty, Inc. - Olympia, WA)
We're excited to announce a new promotion we are running through our City Realty Facebook Fan Page. We're compiling a list of our Fan Favorites from around the Olympia area and offering great prizes to our Fans for voting. We just completed our first in a series of polls for this promotion, asking our Fans to vote for the City's Best Breakfast. After tallying the votes we held a drawing of all voters and gave the winner a $50 gift certificate to the winning restaurant, Hawks Prairie Inn. To learn more about the contest rules, how to enter, and upcoming polls please visit our Fan Page! We're looking forward to hearing about all the places you love in Olympia City Realty, Inc.  
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By Cyndi Nelson, ABR, CRS, SRES, GREEN
(The Cyndi Nelson Team at MVP Realty Group)
Join Tami Bonnell, President of the US Organization of EXIT Realty Corp. International, for an informative, live webinar addressing the most common issues concerning you, the buying and selling public, as you weather today's stormy real estate market.  If you're thinking of buying, selling or investing in real estate, you owe it to yourself to get the facts from a veteran real estate expert.The December session marks the last in the 2009 series. Watch for information regarding 2010 webinars.  No obligation.  No baloney.  No sales pitch.  Just straight talk. Ms Bonnell's real estate career spans more than 25 years during which she was instrumental in building three major brands. Ms Bonnell has been featured several times in major industry publications, including Real Estate Magazine, Ba...
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Grab your coats, mittens & hats tonight and head out to watch the beautifully decorated, lighted ships parade from Percival Landing up & back thru Budd Inlet.  This is an annual event sponsored by Olympia Yacht Club (www.olympiayachtclub.org) and the ships will be on parade both tonight (12/2) and again Saturday Dec. 5th at 6:00 PM both nights. The ships will leave from near the Olympia Yacht Club at Percival landing in downtown Olympia, cruise up the east side of the inlet to Boston Harbor and back again along the westside of the inlet.  Should be a clear, dry - though nippy - evening, so don't miss the parade!
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
  Downtown Olympia had the holiday spirit going strong yesterday!  There was a holiday parade & Santa Claus - and a singing Christmas tree that delighted the crowd gathered downtown by Sylvester Park. The display of gingerbread cottages was totally fascinating for young and old - so much creativity and LOTS of gingerbread and candy! 
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By Cyndi Nelson, ABR, CRS, SRES, GREEN
(The Cyndi Nelson Team at MVP Realty Group)
Many people feel they are too busy to search for a home during the holiday season, but what a great gift to yourself if you are a buyer! How wonderful would it be to celebrate Christmas in your new home!  Being in by next month might be difficult if you need financing, but  if you buy now, you will be able to share the joy of a new home with friends and family very soon. The story of how you looked for a home in the midst of the year's biggest shopping season will be part of holiday lore for years to come as you celebrate future holidays there. Lawrence Yun, National Association of Realtors chief economist noted that mortgage payments have significantly decreased recently which is allowing more people to buy homes. Due to lower home prices and low mortgage rates a typical mortgage paym...
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By Cyndi Nelson, ABR, CRS, SRES, GREEN
(The Cyndi Nelson Team at MVP Realty Group)
It was good to see nearly 5,000 Realtors in Washington rally together to help convince Congress how crucial the Home Buyer Tax Credit is for an economic recovery in our country. This will have a great impact here in Olympia where home values have dropped over 13% in the last year. Largely as a result of lobbying by the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) and other groups, two groups of home buyers will benefit.  New home buyers will be eligible for the $8000 tax credit which has been extended through April 30, 2010. Buyers will have to the end of April to sign a purchase agreement, along with a sixty day grace period to complete financing.  Current home owners will also benefit from this wonderful tax break. Over 60% of current home owners will be eligible for a $6500 credit if they...
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Don't miss Olympia's annual Christmas Forest with over 50 trees sponsored by local businesses and displaying elegance, clever & unique ideas, sheer beauty - a feast for the senses!  This is a community charity event presented by Providence St. Peter Foundation and it runs, this year, from November 26th - December 2nd. at the Red Lion Hotel, 2300 Evergreen Park Drive, Olympia. It includes musical and dance performances, a kids day with special craft activities, a Santa Breakfast and other special happenings - check www.providence.org/giving for more info.  You will marvel at the creativity that goes into these special Christmas trees!
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By Bernie Moats
(Van Dorm Realty Inc)
2010 will be a good time to buy real estate if you have been waiting for prices to hit bottom. I think we are almost there. Investment property, rental homes and condos will be ripe for the picking. Start shopping early in January and you will not be disappointed.
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By Mike Conner
(City Realty, Inc. - Olympia, WA)
If you are thinking of entering the market for your first home and need some additional information about financing options (including down payment assistance and closing cost assistance!) then you'll enjoy this brief video from www.wahomeowners.com . It exposes some little known programs available to new homebuyers. If you'd like to talk about the homebuying process, real estate market trends, budgeting, or the many benefits of home ownership please give me a call or email. I'd love to hear from you! Enjoy!  
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By Bernie Moats
(Van Dorm Realty Inc)
Banks need to seek out advice on short sales and bank owned properties to help them sell in a timely manner. Delays caused by bank bureaucracy can kill a transaction and cause a good client to give up hope on a property. Wise bankers have an agent they call for advice and use as a consistent agent.  Loose less money call a REALTOR.
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By Alex Bautista, Lewis-McChord & Fort Lewis Area Real Estate
(Hathaway Real Estate Group)
Taken at Latins Farm, Olympia Washington   Photo taken by Alex Bautista, Realtor® with the Hathaway Real Estate Group. Specializing in Military Relocation, First Time Home Buyers, and Foreclosures in the Fort Lewis, WA area. Helping families find the right home / neighborhood in both Thurston County (south of base) and Pierce County (north of base).    
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By Alex Bautista, Lewis-McChord & Fort Lewis Area Real Estate
(Hathaway Real Estate Group)
Taken from the parking lot of the Hearthfire Grill in the Olympia Harbor.   Photo taken by Alex Bautista, Realtor® with the Hathaway Real Estate Group. Specializing in Military Relocation, First Time Home Buyers, and Foreclosures in the Fort Lewis, WA area. Helping families find the right home / neighborhood in both Thurston County (south of Fort Lewis) and Pierce County (north of Fort Lewis).    
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By Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS, South Puget Sound Washington Agent/Broker!
(Fathom Realty Washington LLC)
Just coming back from the sailboat races with jaws Photo taken by Paul S. Henderson, ABR, CRS, GRI, SRES, Realtor® with RE/MAX Professionals & Four Seasons Inc. of Dupont & Lacey, WA. Making real estate services a positive experience for home buyers and sellers in DuPont, Lacey, Olympia or Pierce, Thurston, Mason, and Kitsap counties for over 10 years now.  ©2009 Paul S. Henderson, Just when you thought it was safe in Olympia, Washington, All Rights Reserved Shared
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Olympia's Farmer's Market is going strong with autumn harvest goodies and a color feast for the eyes! Admire - and taste - the different varieties of apples.  Then buy plenty so you can munch some raw, bake up a pie or two, maybe even cook up some apple sauce.  Yum!   Then move on over to the intriguing shapes and colors of gourds and pumpkins.  Imagine the fall display you can take home to decorate your table or front porch! And don't miss these peppers which just glow with the summer sunshine captured within (and some come with a bit of the blazing heat of that summer sunshine as well!) Enjoy this season and all of its bounty for the eyes and tummy!!
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