Geordie Romer's blog

Lake Wenatchee Website

I wanted to take an opportunity to plug Dave Neir's LakeWenatcheeInfo.com Dave has done a great job making the Lake Wenatchee and Fish Lake area accessible to visitors and locals alike via the web. Dave has a great understanding of the possibilities such a resource can be. I'm amazed at how many websites are static and become quickly dated or useless. Not the case here. LakeWenatcheeInfo is always adding something new and I'm pleasantly surprised when I come to visit. He just pointed out his local classifieds to me. Need a truck?

Owning a Vacation Rental

A frequent request we get is a buyer who wants to buy a vacation home, but would like to rent it out when they aren't using it.

It sounds like a great idea in theory, but rarely works out. First of all you need to consider zoning. In the city limits of Leavenworth nightly rentals are only legal in commercially zoned areas. There are a few houses in the commercial zones, but mostly this means buying a condo. It's not the cabin that most folks dream of, but it is easier to rent and to maintain.

More "non-traditional" homes for sale

Since I posted about homes without permits, wells, or septics being put on the market we have seen a few more. Both are being offered under $100,000 and fit into the tear down category. The previous offerings were nice little cabins, even if they didn't meet current legal or health requirments. The newest offerings? Little to no value as structures, in my opinion. (I think the prices reflect that, so a pat on the back to the listing agents.) I wonder what other strange listings this Summer will bring.

Absorption Rates

What is an absorption rate? It is the average number of houses that sell per month and it tells us what kind of inventory we have.

I ran some numbers today which confirm what I thought was the case. Currently there are 57 single family homes (not including condos or manufactured homes) in the general Leavenworth market. This includes Plain, Peshastin, and Lake Wenatchee. The average home is listed at $536,000. From the buyers I talk to and e-mail day in and day out, this is out of most folks price range. For 2006 so far this year, the average sold price is $310,000.

No permit, no well, no septic

Think this might be a problem for selling a house? Apparently not in today's real estate market for Leavenworth Washington.

Two homes recently popped on the market just outside of town. Nice little fixer upper cabins. Cabins without water, wired for generators and hooked up to sketchy homemade septic systems. Both received multiple offers in just a few days. A surprise to a number of agents in the area.

Fortune Magazine "Real Estate Survival guide"

My new issue of Fortune came in the mail today. I've been a fan of the mag the last year or so. I don't really have the energy to pour through the Economist like I used to, nor do I feel like I need to start each day with the WSJ or NYT. I tried Money, but was often dismayed by their lack of insight on real estate matters. Anyhow, the new issue of Fortune:

Market Review

The local Windermere offices in Wenatchee and Leavenworth have recently published a market review which has local real estate statistics for 2005. (I will mail you one for free if you ask.) Average prices for local towns (excluding new construction):

Wenatchee $189,000
E. Wenatchee $188,000
Cashmere $182,000
Leavenworth $267,000

Those prices seem ridiculously low, don't they. Yep, that was 2005. Old news.

As of May 1, 2006.

Interest Rates

In my discussions with my favorite lender, Darel Ansley of People's Bank, it sounds like interest rates are starting to nudge up again. (Around 6.5% +/-) Mortgage professionals are guessing it could reach 6.7% later this summer. The good news is that this is likely as high as it will get for a while. If rates stay under 7% for a few years it will really help the real estate market. I haven't worked in an era of 12% or worse 18% rates and I can't say I really want too.

20%

20%. That's the big number that just came out from the recent Real Estate "Snapshot" put out by Pacific Appraisal in Wenatchee. There has been an overall gain of 20% value in real estate in the Wenatchee Valley since last year.

Not all properties appreciated at this rate. Some market sectors are hot and others less so. Ramblers and their convenient one story living continue to be money makers. Cabins and condos seem to be the hot item in the Leavenworth area. Multi-family investment properties are also very popular throughout the valley.

Cruise Ship Condos

Condominiums have been a popular seller here in Leavenworth and in Kahler Glen for some time. There are even four new condo projects being built here as I type.

I just read that about a new cruise ship, Magellan that will be selling on board "condos." The ship is at sea year round visiting exotic ports and units are priced between $1.8 million to $8 million. A one month fractional ownership is a mere $156,250.

If you are thinking about buying one of these condos give me a call first. I could find you something nice on the water in Leavenworth for a little less :)

Allyson and Geordie Romer

Leavenworth real estate agents - Allyson and Geordie Romer

For over a decade, Allyson and Geordie have been serving clients in the Lake Wenatchee and Leavenworth real estate market. Together, they work tirelessly to stay on top of the regional market and present the most relevant opportunities to their clientele.

When not in the office, they can be found exploring the endless recreation opportunities of the area in all of its seasons.

 

Testimonials

 

Geordie provided excellent real estate representation! We appreciated his detailed knowledge of the market, his up front and honest approach, and his negotiation skills.
As reviewed on Zillow  – 

- Laura Anderson

 

 

As “west siders” looking for a getaway near Leavenworth, Geordie provided insight … his knowledge of design features important in a “snowy winter wonderland” was appreciated. Thanks Geordie!
As reviewed on Zillow  –
 

- Jean Stern

 

 

Geordie made this somewhat complicated transition easier for us…going above and beyond to help us work through issues that came up during the sale of our parents home. We appreciated his knowledge, attentiveness to details and his willing spirit.
Our family is grateful for Geordie!
As reviewed on Zillow  – 

- Terry Foster

 

 

Geordie was great in every way. We have been looking in the Leavenworth area for some time, and Geordie was absolutely the best for local knowledge, history and depth on neighborhoods, developments and the local market trends. He was very quick to respond (even when he was on his vacation) and worked very diligently to get all of our questions answered in a very timely fashion. We would recommend him highly to anyone looking to buy or sell a home. Very friendly, and helped us navigate all of the local options before we made an offer on the property that we purchased. Thank you, Geordie!

As reviewed on Zillow  – 

- Ryan Olsen

 

 

It was such a pleasure to work with Geordie and his wife, Allyson on our cabin purchase. They showed us a variety of locations, listened to what we wanted and helped us find the perfect match. Everything was smooth and not stressful, just relaxed and easy. We would definitely recommend Geordie and use him again if the need arises!

As reviewed on Zillow  – 

- Cammie Schlosser

 

Moving to Leavenworth?

Are you looking for a cabin or a condo in Leavenworth that your family can use as a home base when climbing, skiing or hiking around Leavenworth or Lake Wenatchee?

Maybe you rent a house here and have decided to stay, surprised how a summer of rafting somehow turned into seven years.

Maybe it’s time to escape the hustle of the big city (and its rain) and move to Leavenworth with its four seasons.

Maybe you bought a condo years ago, don’t seem to use as much, and it’s time to sell.

Whatever your motivation, we are here to help. If you are buying a home, the best place to start is with our Homebuyer’s Guide to Leavenworth.