The Best Paint Colors for 2020, According to Interior Designers

One of the easiest ways to update your home is by swiping on a fresh coat of paint. No matter which room you’re in — the bedroom, kitchen, or bath — adding a new color to your walls or furniture is a cheap and commitment-free way to make an eye-catching change. And because paint is totally reversible, it’s also one of the best ways to incorporate some of the latest interior design trends into your home every few years.

If you’re ready to make a major change this year, look no further than the top paint colors of 2020, which run the gamut from bubbly blush to earthy clay. To find these paint ideas, we asked interior designers which colors they expected to see in abundance in the new year. Whether your style is modern or traditional, minimalist or extravagant, there’s a 2020 paint color for you. And if you need even more low-cost ways to revamp your space, try one of these DIY home decor projects.

Read Good Housekeeping’s article

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for November 2019

Brokers with Northwest Multiple Listing Service reported “plenty of buyers” competing for sparse inventory during November, which ended with a 7% year-over-year increase in pending sales. The volume of mutually accepted offers rose even more (9.2%)  in the tri-county Puget Sound region consisting of King, Pierce and Snohomish counties, with Snohomish leading that list with a jump of about 12%.

Median sales prices also jumped compared to both a year ago and to October. For November’s 7, 216 closed sales (which were up 5.5% from a year ago), the area-wide sales price was $434,900, a gain of about 10% from the same month a year ago. Compared to October, last month’s price on sales of single family homes and condos (combined) jumped 3.5%.

King County’s median price of $612,000 led all other counties, but prices there edged up just over a percentage point compared to a year ago.

November’s 7% increase in pending sales was the highest year-over-year gain for November since 2016. In 2017, the YOY figure was a modest 1.6%, while last year’s comparison showed a drop of more than 10%

Brokers could not replenish inventory to keep pace with demand.

MLS members added 5,437 new listings system-wide, far fewer than a year ago when they added 6,399 residential properties to the MLS market area that covers 23 counties. The imbalance between new listings and pending sales resulted in supply falling to 1.58 months, the lowest system-wide level since last December.

Brokers reported 11,366 total active listings at month end, down more than 28 percent from twelve months ago when there were 15,830 active listings. November’s selection was down about 21 percent from October.

Source: NWMLS 12/5/19

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac loan limit increases to more than $510,000

The Federal Housing Finance Agency recently announced that it is raising the conforming loan limits for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to more than $510,000.

In most of the U.S., the 2020 maximum conforming loan limit will be raised to $510,400, up from 2019’s level to $484,350.

This marks the fourth straight year that the FHFA has increased the conforming loan limits after not increasing them for an entire decade from 2006 to 2016.

Read more details on HousingWire

8 Tips for Quick Cleaning Before Guests Arrive

No doubt you’ll want your home to look its best for visiting family and friends during the holidays. Here are a few cleaning tips to minimize the time you have to spend making things sparkle.

  1. Grout and tight corners
    Cleaning nooks and crannies doesn’t require elbow grease. A toothbrush is much more effective.
  2. Showerhead residue
    Fill a plastic bag with vinegar, tie it around the head and leave it overnight to dissolve mineral deposits. A vinegar-soaked rag held in place by a rubber band works, too.
  3. Microwave build-up
    Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into a small bowl of water and microwave for about five minutes. The lemon scent eliminates old food smells and condensation from the lemon water loosens caked-on grime, making it much easier to clean.
  4. Garage floor
    Don’t bother sweeping – a leaf blower is much quicker.
  5. Pet hair on furniture
    Wet rubber dishwashing gloves are magnets for pet hair. Put on a pair, rub your furniture, and leave the vacuum extension tool in the closet.
  6. Ceiling fan
    To avoid a shower of dust and dead bugs, use an old pillowcase to clean the fan one blade at a time. Slide the case over the blade and pull it back slowly and the case will capture the dirt.
  7. Toilets
    Dump a spoonful of Tang into the bowl and let it sit for a few minutes. The citric acid scrubs so you don’t have to.
  8. Garbage disposal
    Run baking soda and lemon juice, or ice cubes and lemon peels, through your garbage disposal to eliminate odors. White vinegar will do the same for your dishwasher.

RE/MAX National Housing Report for October 2019

Sales and Prices Increase,
Inventory Sharply Declines

Home sales, which lagged during the first part of 2019, continued their recent rebound with another strong month in October. October 2019 sales finished 3.9% higher than in October 2018. At the same time, inventory posted a steep 9.0% year-over-year decline across the report’s 54 metro areas, while the Median Sales Price of $254,800 set an October record.

With May, July and September already in the positive column, October became the fourth month of the past six to post a year-over-year increase in sales, which hadn’t happened for nine months prior to May.

Meanwhile, inventory resumed the skid that has dominated the last decade. October’s year-over-year decline of 9.0% was the largest for any month since May 2018. The downturn resulted in October’s Months of Inventory dropping to 3.1 – the lowest October amount in the report’s 11-year history. The 49 Days on Market was the second-lowest figure for October in report history, trailing only 2018’s 48.

The Median Sales Price of $254,800 set an October record for the report and the 8.4% increase year over year was the highest for the month since 2013.

Read the full article

Watch the 40 second summary video

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for October 2019

Active listings of homes and condos totaled 14,379, the lowest level since April. Compared to a year ago, last month’s selection declined more than 21% and was down 10% from September, according to the new report from Northwest MLS. The year-over-year and month-to-month volume of new listings also declined last month. On a positive note, MLS figures show system-wide gains in October’s pending sales (up nearly 5.6%), closed sales (up 4.1%) and prices (up nearly 7.7%) compared to a year ago.

MLS figures for its 23-county service area show 1.73 months of supply overall. Ten counties, mostly in the Puget Sound area, have less than two months of supply of single family homes and condominiums, whereas 4-to-6 months is a level industry-watchers use as a gauge of a balanced market.

Northwest MLS records show the last time the supply of homes and condos exceeded three months was February 2015, when there was just over 3.5 months of supply.

Compared to the same month a year ago, October’s supply of active listings declined by double-digits in 18 of the 23 counties in the NWMLS report. Thurston County had the sharpest decline (down 35.5%), followed by Pierce (down 28.7%) and Kitsap (down nearly 27%).

Despite the slim selection, demand was strong as the volume of pending sales (9,517) outgained the number of new listings added during October (8,394). Nine counties reported double-digit jumps in pending sales compared to 12 months ago.

Northwest MLS figures show sales prices continue to be wide ranging, not only when comparing counties in the report, but also within many counties.

In King County, for example, the median price on last month’s 2,757 completed transactions was $605,000, down about 1.4% from a year ago – one of only two counties where YOY prices slipped. (Clark County reported a drop of 2.75%.) Within King County, where Northwest MLS tracks 30 sub-areas, median sales prices ranged from $371,000 (in Des Moines/Redondo Beach) to $1,892,500 (in Bellevue west of I-405).

Year-over-year price changes ranged from a drop of nearly 20% (in Vashon) to a jump of more than 21% (in Bellevue west of I-405).

Northwest MLS members tallied 8,335 closed sales last month, improving on both the previous month (up 4.7%) and same month a year ago (up 4.1%). Through 10 months, closed sales are lagging 2018 totals by 1,140 units (-1.4%).

The area-wide median price on October’s completed transactions was $420,000, matching September and surpassing the year-ago price by nearly 7.7%.

Source: NWMLS 11/7/19

How a Death in a Home Affects Its Value

Death is never an easy topic, but some real estate agents have to deal with home sellers who disclose a grim past and wonder if the property’s history will take its toll and leave them with fewer dollars in their account. So, yes, death has an unsuspected impact on real estate and like many, you would like to find the value of a house after death.

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