2 Bed/1 Bath
There are countless ways to steadily build wealth along the path to retirement: wages, bonuses, investments and side hustles, plus an occasional windfall such as an inheritance. While it would be nice to also strike it rich in a casino or the lottery, there’s another much more realistic goldmine within reach — the house you live in right now. A lot of variables dictate how well your house or condo will appreciate from the time you buy until the time you sell. If you make educated decisions about what to buy, and when, the gains you may realize can range from a pleasant little surprise to a quite dramatic return.
I first worked with Heather back in 2012, helping her to buy her condo for around $135K, which was a great deal for a prime location at the time. She worked in Seattle’s thriving business sector, but longed to own a food truck to pursue her true loves: cooking, entrepreneurship, and sunny California living. As equity built in her condo, she realized the time was right to make a move. Heather had great interior design taste, so we staged the house using her furniture. The condo was a modest 710 square feet in an older building, so we highlighted the 1950’s charm, hardwood floors, and plum location (close to Morgan Junction, Lincoln Park, main thoroughfares and bus lines) in all of our marketing efforts. We listed for $225K and received multiple offers, closing the deal for $235K. Cash from the deal helped Heather make her move; she’s living the dream and serving up delicious dishes to her California neighbors every day.
P.S. I’m often asked about buying versus renting in Seattle, especially since many tech executives here often move back and forth between the Bay Area, New York and other technology hubs. When you rent, that money is gone, simple as that. When you buy, you invest that money for a potential return down the road — consider the national historic average of 7% appreciation when you need to or want to sell. Hip, desirable, urban neighborhoods tend to be a good investment and allow you to more easily rent out your home and enjoy the income stream if you need to relocate within a few years from buying. A good rental management company can take care of all the details for you. Plus you can deduct mortgage interest from your taxes.