Poll: Which neighborhood will hold up best in a downturn?

In related news, Seattle Bubble wins round 1 of the Metroblogging Seattle contest. Huzzah, time for round 2! Take a few seconds to vote for Seattle Bubble.

Please vote in this poll using the sidebar.

Which neighborhood will hold up best in a downturn?

  • Downtown Seattle (9%, 18 Votes)
  • Downtown Bellevue (8%, 17 Votes)
  • Queen Anne (22%, 47 Votes)
  • Magnolia (8%, 17 Votes)
  • Mercer Island (25%, 53 Votes)
  • Redmond (i.e. Microsoft) (18%, 38 Votes)
  • Kirkland (4%, 8 Votes)
  • Ballard (6%, 12 Votes)

Total Voters: 210

This poll will be active and displayed on the sidebar through 02.16.2008.

0.00 avg. rating (0% score) - 0 votes

About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market. Tim also hosts the weekly improv comedy sci-fi podcast Dispatches from the Multiverse.


  1. 1
    The Tim says:

    I left Medina off this list on purpose. It’s hardly fair to include it when Bill Gates owns half the neighborhood. There’s also no “other.” Pick one.

  2. 2
    coveredwagon says:

    would be nice to see a more colorful banner. it just looks overall too “whitish” and does nothing to offset the white bkg of the body. love your blog..and the changes too! –A canadian living in india. >> In early ’07 I met this gal from Seattle down in Goa; her and mom both realtors, and she was hoping for rates to fall slightly so she could buy FOUR! more homes. There was just no talking sense to her…that’s what manias do. Somehow, weirdly, the mania is still going strong in Toronto, my home town. Keep up the great work.

  3. 3
    AndySeattle says:

    As silly as the pricing is on Mercer Island, I can’t help but think that it won’t drop too much.

    Check this listing on Redfin… Gah. Frankly I think it should be listed in the $350k – $400k range, and even that would be a stretch for this fixer.

  4. 4


    Its like the Bible says, “a haughty man goes before the fall”…..

  5. 5
    Jess-Pumpkin says:

    Had North Capital Hill had been on the poll, I would have chosen it. If the rest of the city crumbles to dust, I have a feeling those mansions overlooking the UW campus and Portage Bay will be just fine.

  6. 6

    What?! No West Seattle in the poll?

  7. 7
    Derek Birnie says:

    which neighborhood will hold up best in a downturn? What about historically depressed and rapidly gentrifying neighborhoods like Delridge and White Center? One would think they are poised to at least hold property values and probably see increases until and unless population growth projections level off or decline.

  8. 8

    WaMU just decided that most of King County (and other Washington areas) are “soft markets”. There is a 5% deduction off of maximum published loan to vlaues and combined loan to values.

  9. 9
    NotaBull says:

    “WaMU just decided that most of King County (and other Washington areas) are “soft markets”. There is a 5% deduction off of maximum published loan to vlaues and combined loan to values.”

    Rhonda, would you mind putting that in context a little bit regarding what the previous LTV/CLTV would have been? I know this varies, but let’s assume a borrow with good credit, capacity to pay, and a house in the 400-600 range. Did we go from 0 to 5% down payment? 5 to 10? 10 to 15?

    Also, is WAMU the first in WA to do this, and do you think this represents a continual tightening of credit in the WA area that will soon match other “soft” areas?

    Thanks in advance for answering my questions – I’m sure others will be interested too.

    It’s great to have someone in the mortgage bidniz on this forum!

  10. 10

    NotaBull, this is based on loan to values…and quite honestly, this is new to me. In my 8 years in the mortgage biz, I’ve never dealt with “declining” or “soft” markets. The example that WaMU gave today was if someone qualified for a 100% LTV program (like the Fannie Mae Flex 100), now the most they qualify for is a 95% LTV. I did write about this at RCG tonight.

    It will be interesting to see if others follow. Chase was the first lender I saw mention any declining values in WA…but it was not King County. WaMU’s info includes most all zip codes in our state…I couldn’t find one that wasn’t there for King County (not that I’m a zip code expert). WaMU’s move is much larger than Chase’s. Chase’s was also for second mortgages which are riskier for a lender than a first mortgage. WaMU is for all of their mortgages in specific zip codes.

  11. 11
    wreckingbull says:

    My answer is “all of the above”.*

    * When compared to neighborhoods south of I-90.

    A downturn is when you really get to experience the truth in ‘location, location, location’.

  12. 12
    old timer says:

    What happened to West Seattle?
    Did they really secede from the city?

    Not that they’re immune from the RE virus, just askin’.

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