Olympia, WA Real Estate News

By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
WOO HOO - one of my most favorite of all favorites is returning this coming Thursday (April 2nd) - the Olympia Farmer's Market  (www.olympiafarmersmarket.com) will be open again to provide yummy local produce, meat, eggs, cheese, salsa, bakery goods, crafts galore, flowers and plants - I can't wait to go see what all is there these beginning weeks!! Hours are 10 AM to 3 PM Thursday thru Sunday, and the market is a wonderful place to see friends, stroll thru the booths (undercover to keep you dry even), eat lunch or snack on goodies, listen to music and generally say a little thank you that spring must be back if the market is open! I will keep a weekly market watch blog updated with photos and details of what is fresh and ready each week - so check back often!
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By JR McGee
(Keller Williams Seattle)
This guy just makes sense. In the end of the video he talks about the need for Americans to have an internal government. "Do the right thing." If we don't, our democratic experiment called the "USA" will end before its 250th birthday. JR McGee"Your Personal Realtor"(360) 623-2388http://www.jrmcgee.com/ JRMcGee.com@Gmail.com Real Estate: Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater, Centralia, Chehalis  
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Olympia's YWCA is an absolutely wonderful resource to our community!  It manages two main programs: the Girls Without Limits and the Other Bank. Girls Without Limits is designed to inspire girls to explore math, science, technology and more.  There are free after school sessions as well as a low cost summer camp.  The topic picked each time includes presentations by people working in or expert in that field, and participation by the girls.  Fun, educational, and that incentive to realize all the possibilities there are for them to pursue! The Other Bank provides personal grooming, hygiene, and household cleaning products to low income families.  Currently the Other Bank is serving approximately 15,000 people per year and familes can come for products up to six times per year.  Over 35% ...
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Driving through downtown Olympia always makes me smile as I catch a glimpse of one of the many examples of the artwork that shows the creative, quirky nature of this city! This first example is on the side of the building where Old School Pizzeria is located - reminds me of comic strip characters run wild!       Next is a woman reminiscent of the "Rosie the Riveter" tradition; this is on the building where Bayside Quilting is located.     Then an Olympia montage of images on the wall facing the parking lot for Gardner's Restaurant.     This gnarly tree is a little like something out of a scary movie...     Giant ocean waves on the Childhood's End Gallery building.     And finally this image of community and growing food on the side of Traditions Cafe building.         And there is more ...
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
We have always had dogs and cats who are members of our family - so one of my favorite places in town is a pet food store called Mud Bay (www.mudbay.us) .  A pretty exceptional company, Mud Bay began life when Elsa Wulff bought a small farm store called The Grainery in 1988.  The store was located on Mud Bay Rd so became known as Mud Bay Grainery.  Over the years, the store grew, specializing in healthy, natural foods and supplies for dogs and cats.  They moved to a larger westside Olympia location on Harrison Ave. in 2002, and eventually dropped the Grainery (or Granary) from the name to be just Mud Bay Co.  The business has grown and flourished, now having 14 stores including a second local one in Lacey, plus their own 30,000 square foot distribution center which opened in Olympia in ...
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By JR McGee
(Keller Williams Seattle)
So many questions about real estate and the economy: Why is the economy so bad? Why did real estate go up so fast and come down faster? Who is to blame? How can we prevent it from happening again? How bad is it going to get? When will it get better? I need simple explanations to complex problems.  The video link below might help you understand what has happened. Many "experts" are saying this video by CNBC "House of Cards" is one of the best explanations. Click the link below to learn a little about how we got into this economic mess http://www.hulu.com/watch/59026/cnbc-originals-house-of-cards  
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Hanging out down along the waterfront boardwalk in Olympia offers quirky sculptures, lots of boats, views of the Capitol dome as well as the Olympic Mountains - & it is walking distance to a number of restaurants as well as Farmer's Market. The Kissing Couple sculpture is a favorite place to take a photo, or even surprise your sweetie with a marriage proposal. You can dream about owning a sailboat or check out whether there are any big ships in loading up at the port.   You can also walk over to the interactive fountain plaza that in warm weather becomes Olympia's version of an outdoor swimming pool - usually full of children (of all ages) enjoying those blasts of cooling water.  Or grab a sandwich or snack and relax on the benches along the boardwalk or in the park while the kids play....
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Mud Bay is a fascinating area west of Olympia where Eld Inlet dwindles to what are, essentially, mud flats when the tide is out.  Highway 101 dips down through this area and always gives you an easy look at whether the tides are in or out as you drive along.  The book The Highest Tide by Jim Lynch is one of my favorites - it is a cool story, but also an absolutely amazing description of Mud Bay!  There are sprinkled references to so many Olympia area things and people that it is especially fun to read for those of us who have lived here a while.  (www.thehighesttide.com )
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
Every year our local newspaper, The Olympian, has a reader voting contest to determine the best of any number of categories from Italian restaurant to place to take children & from best place to go on an inexpensive date to best auto mechanic shop.   So I am starting my own series of my favorite things in the Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater area in a variety of categories.  I would love your feedback about your own favorites! Part 1 is my favorite restaurant for a seafood dinner or a Sunday brunch - Budd Bay Cafe in downtown Olympia (www.BuddBayCafe.com).  It is located right down on the water so that most of the tables have very cool views of the bay, boats, and people strolling along the boardwalk outside.  In the summer there is outside seating too so you can relax in the breeze coming off ...
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By Sandy Nelson, your Olympia area Realtor
(Riley Jackson Real Estate Inc.)
  If you're familiar with driving through Olympia's South Capitol Neighborhood, you may have noticed the new neighborhood welcome sign. The sign project, two years in the making, was finally concluded by the end of 2008. In December the neighborhood received the first of two welcome signs. Funded by a City of Olympia neighborhood grant, designed by yours truly, Sandy Nelson, manufactured by Esco Pacific Signs and installed by Mark Jobson and Bob Thomas. This sign is a monument to the South Capitol Neighborhood's special character and friendliness. The sign is located on the green space between Capitol Way and Washington St. We hope to have another sign greeting visitors travelling south through our neighborhood at Maple Park by the end of 2009.   Sandy NelsonOlympia Realtor®, Associate ...
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By Sandy Nelson, your Olympia area Realtor
(Riley Jackson Real Estate Inc.)
Olympia's South Capitol Neighborhood quickly became the most popular place to live when the Capitol was being built on the hill. The oldest home dates from 1878, but the majority of houses were built between 1900 and 1928. You can find almost every popular housing style of the early 20th century in this neighborhood.   With over 400 well preserved homes, varying in styles from the English cottage look, Spanish style, to Victorian and Craftsman. In 1991 the entire South Capitol Neighborhood was listed on the National Register of Historic places. Many of the homes in our neighborhood can be found on the Olympia Heritage Register.   The neighborhood's most prominent resident is most likely the current Governor of the state of Washington. Besides the Governor's Mansion, there are two other...
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By Bernie Moats
(Van Dorm Realty Inc)
During this incredible time of reduced real estate values, position yourself to be ready to purchase. The first thing to do is find out what your credit score is and improve it if necessary. Pay off any debt you have accumulated on credit cards and start saving for closing costs. Thinking about buying a new car, wait until after you buy the new home. Set goals with a lender on how to position yourself for success. 
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By Bernie Moats
(Van Dorm Realty Inc)
Some buyers are holding back hoping to purchase when and if prices get lower. My response is don't wait !  Now is the time to take advantage of the current opportunities. The interest rates are at an all time low. Lots and land are "dirt cheap" and short sales have driven the single family residential market to new lows in Washington state. Strike while the iron is hot and you won't kick yourself later for having hesitated. When the stock market crashes $$$ disappears, not so with real estate, you can sell, rent or put a tent on it.
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By Bernie Moats
(Van Dorm Realty Inc)
This is the time to buy, don't be shy. All the negative press about the rotten economy and housing slump tends to paralyze people. There are screaming deals all over the country. Do you have a little nest egg of money pegged away that wasn't hit by the stock market crash. Now is the time to aggressively purchase Real Estate across the country. The "short sales are driving down prices and the interest rates are incredibly low. Are you a risk taker, now is the time to buy a second home in Florida or Arizona or collect rentals, GO FOR IT! Your time to prosper has come! 
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
I think one of the wonderful recreational things in the Olympia area is the huge expanse of paved walking trails that have been created along former Weyerhauser log transport railroad lines.  We have lived immediately adjacent to the trail now in two different houses (yes, we chose the land to build our current home on in no small part because it was next to the trail).  The opportunity to walk, jog, exercise dogs, ride bikes, roller blade, ride horses - any non-motorized vehicle travel basically, is just amazing!  My favorite section starts at Martin Way and runs north for approximately 6.2 miles.  It goes through primarily wooded, gorgeous natural areas with some scattered homes, pastures, and a couple of ponds, and ends at Woodard Bay Nature Preserve.  The trail crosses a number of r...
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By Nancy Conner, Olympia/Thurston County WA
There will be a wonderful free celebration happening in Olympia on Monday January 19th to honor Martin Luther King Jr.  It is at the Washington Center for Performing Arts at 4:00 PM and will feature singing, dancing, music and other performances.  I have attended this in other years and thoroughly enjoyed the event - but this year I think it may be an extra special event, coming as it does just one day before the historic inauguration of Barack Obama.   
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By Dan Bradstreet, Real Estate Agent - Vancouver WA
(ReMax equity group)
Olympia WA is the bustling capitol city of the state of Washington located in Thurston County, and has been ranked #8 on Forbes Magazine "Best Places for Business and careers" list in 2008 due mainly to govenenment related activity. Olympia is located along the I 5 corridor, between two larger metropolitan cities, Seattle Wa and Portland Oregon.
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By Sandy Nelson, your Olympia area Realtor
(Riley Jackson Real Estate Inc.)
  The most common pre-requisite I hear from people looking to relocate, is to find a safe and secure environment. The fifth annual Framers Insurance Study has just been released and it ranks Olympia, Washington as the safest mid-sized city (150,000 - 500,000 inhabitants) in the US. This is the second consecutive year Olympia was honored with being ranked number one. http://www.bestplaces.net/docs/studies/Secure.aspx#medium The study compiled health data such as weather, air quality, life expectancy, as well as economic data such as housing depreciation and unemployment numbers. The presence of strong industries such as Microsoft, Boeing, and the military installations of Fort Lewis and McChord AFB help keep a stable economy. The Pacific Northwest region scored particularly high in the r...
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By Bradley Altman
(Altman Insurance Agency)
As a business owner or a contractor, you know that having the right contractors insurance is imperative. Construction sites or homes that are being remodeled are prime places for accidents. Any kind of contractor needs insurance. Most people and companies won’t hire you if you don’t have coverage. Having contractors insurance will cover injuries or damage that happen during work, and will protect you from lawsuits. Contractors and those who hire them must consider worst-case scenarios. Are you prepared for what would happen if you were suddenly faced with five injured employees after scaffolding collapsed, or a faulty elevator dropped them down a floor? Everyone understands that accidents will happen, but sometimes we don’t think about accidents happening to more than one employee at a ...
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