To buy or not to buy????

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To buy or not to buy????

Postby EastSider » Sun Feb 18, 2007 11:20 pm

I have watched the eastside market for the past couple years hoping that the prices might drop. But, alas, I see no signs of a price drop on the eastside. Should I wait for some more time or take the plunge & buy a home?

Thanks in advance.
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Postby downpayment » Sun Feb 18, 2007 11:49 pm

Can't tell you what to do, but I would wait at least until 2008 before thinking of buying any real estate (just MHO). This market needs to equalize, and until then, I would put my down payment into a money market or international index fund to, if anything, just keep pace with inflation.
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Postby FirstTimeBuyer » Mon Feb 19, 2007 12:02 am

Hi EastSider,

I am in the same boat or delimea rather. For me, the decision will come down to

1) my need for a home (ie: if you're getting married or having kids)
2) Whether or not the I can afford it.

I currently dont need a home but I would like to live in one ( I am tired of living in an apartment). But most of the homes within reasonable distance to MSFT are unaffordable for me (even with a ~80K Job at MSFT), so I've been holding out. I think whats puzzling for me is to see inventory going up, pending sales down, and only to medium home prices up YOY. I attribute this strange behavior to the rich buying more higher priced homes (maybe someone on this forum can give some input as to why this is happending on the EASTSIDE).

Going back to your question, if you can afford it and need a home, then you should buy one. Even if the market turns, you can live in it. But I wouldn't buy for the sake of speculating because homes are priced to perfection, leaving little or no room for the next homeowner for appreciation.

Whether or not the market will depend on the number of speculators on the market. On the east side (and without numeric proof), I dont see "too many" of these people. Most of the new home buyers I know on the east side are MSFTers who are moving up from renting because they've recently gotten married. And these home owners are not going to be selling their home at a loss because they'll just live in it regardless of what happens to the market.

Painfully watching on the side lines...

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Postby synthetik » Mon Feb 19, 2007 4:47 am

Why do you think you NEED a home? Is renting really that painful?

Why risk your financial future by buying at the PEAK?
“If fascism ever comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” - Sinclair Lewis
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Postby rolandovich » Mon Feb 19, 2007 7:03 am

This person appears to be facing a similar decision:

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/opinion/3 ... son19.html
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Postby T, V & Mr. B. » Mon Feb 19, 2007 7:11 am

Regarding the Median prices going up on the East side, despite inventories and lenght of time on the market, those are so misleading. IE.
If you have 50 homes sold at 249K and 50 homes sold at 2 Mil, your median is 250K. BUT if you have 49 homes sold at substantially less money at 220K 1 House a bit higher at 274K and 50 homes at 1 Mil which would be substnatially less as well, then your median actually rises to 275k.
So even the upper crust homes may be selling for less, and the majority of the lower homes selling for less, but your median would still rise. IN this scenario, it rose 10%.

Wehn I drive around on the East side on the weekend, I see more open houses than I have ever seen in my life. I have a cousin who is a realtor on that side..She would not consider the market strong at all.
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Postby synthetik » Mon Feb 19, 2007 7:27 am

Yes, it's been an adventure. We were so excited about getting a fresh start at midlife in such a beautiful place. Now I wonder, how could two hard-working people with good hearts and the best intentions end up feeling so ... unwelcome?


Hrm, well, maybe you should have grown a brain first and done a little research before moving from Boise to Seattle. Seriously, if you are planning a major move which involves selling your home, finding new employment, etc, you'd think affordability would be one of your top concerns.

Eeeeediots. Seriously, boo freakin' hoo!
“If fascism ever comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” - Sinclair Lewis
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Postby dan » Mon Feb 19, 2007 7:33 am

Looking around at my neighborhood, Mercer Island, things are still very tight below 1M. I realize this is a tiny sample, but the houses that are in this price range and not completely horrible have been moving quickly, even over the past few weeks.

I posted this graph on seattlebubble a few weeks ago - please ignore the fact that it's from a realtor's website, but I think it shows that we haven't yet seen a major slowdown on the east side:

http://workingforyou.typepad.com/reales ... ry_ea.html

I don't know how long this will continue - for quite a while, I've expected things to at least level off...
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Postby synthetik » Mon Feb 19, 2007 8:45 am

With the way Vista is taking off, property values should continue to spin up, up and away. I don't see them coming down on the eastside, like, ever.

Boeing and Microsoft provide the kind of jobs that allow people to afford $750,000 starter homes.
“If fascism ever comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” - Sinclair Lewis
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Postby Lake Hills Renter » Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:00 am

A little off topic, but am I to suffer eternal MS slights on this site now as well? It's funny a few times, but gets old in virtually every thread. I guess I should start making Mac/Unix cracks and we can rekindle the OS wars. :roll:
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Postby EastSider » Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:06 am

synthetik wrote:Boeing and Microsoft provide the kind of jobs that allow people to afford $750,000 starter homes.


Are you being serious? Most of the MS employees that I know cannot afford a $700+K home, unless they use "creative" financing or have ready wealth.
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Postby EastSider » Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:13 am

synthetik wrote:With the way Vista is taking off, property values should continue to spin up, up and away. I don't see them coming down on the eastside, like, ever.


I don't think the verdict on Vista is clear yet (check out http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=u ... 1113669668 ). Assuming Vista ends up doing well for the company, it's still not clear that it will translate to significant monetary rewards to its employees (or create new jobs).
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Postby Puget Sounder » Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:13 am

synthetik wrote:With the way Vista is taking off, property values should continue to spin up, up and away. I don't see them coming down on the eastside, like, ever.

Boeing and Microsoft provide the kind of jobs that allow people to afford $750,000 starter homes.


That's true, but there are only so many Microsofties around -- and plenty of them own homes in the Montlake, Laurelhurst, and Madison Park areas of Seattle. Don't believe me? Look at all the nice automobiles stuck in traffic from 148th street in Redmond all the way to the water on SR-520 on the evening commute.

Money for these prices will have to come elsewhere than Microsoft.

I know several Boeing employees and children of Boeing employees. Boeing salaries aren't insanely high -- they are pretty much pegged to the market rate of the Puget Sound area. A lot of Boeing employees seem to live in the unincorporated area of Fairwood, east of Renton. 350-400k will still get you a decent home there.
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Postby synthetik » Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:39 am

Sorry guys, I was totally joking.

Vista is a flop and MS and Boeing employees making $70-120K cannot afford a median priced home here in King County using a traditional mortgage.

Not going to happen... At least not for a few years! :)
“If fascism ever comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” - Sinclair Lewis
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Postby synthetik » Mon Feb 19, 2007 9:45 am

Lake Hills Renter wrote:A little off topic, but am I to suffer eternal MS slights on this site now as well? It's funny a few times, but gets old in virtually every thread. I guess I should start making Mac/Unix cracks and we can rekindle the OS wars. :roll:


It's not my intention to slam Microsoft, although from 1986-2003 I was involved in computer network integration and saw firsthand how MS killed off its competition, one by one. That's just the nature of the Corporation, but MS was especially adept at it. If we still had anti trust laws in place, we all might be using a different OS. Gates' foundation may be a good thing, but it only serves to stave off criticism of MS business practice imo.

My point was one that Tim and others have made many times - home values in Seattle are not sustainable/affordable no matter how many new people Microsoft or Boeing bring in. Incomes have not kept pace with inflation while housing has bubbled into the stratosphere.
“If fascism ever comes to America, it will come wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” - Sinclair Lewis
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