4 Tips to Help Kids Adjust to a new School After a Move

At any age, a move can be stressful. But for school-age kids, a major move means changing schools, adjusting to new curriculum and finding new friends. Here are a few things you can do to help ease the transition and encourage kids during a school transfer.

Acknowledge their anxiety.

The first day of school is always knee-knocking and nerve-racking. The first day at a new school can be even scarier for kids. Let them know that their feelings are completely natural and understandable. Affirm their feelings, and then offer advice or personal anecdotes about times you have been nervous about a situation that turned-out O.K.

Take a trial run.

If the new school doesn’t host an official orientation for new students, try to request a tour for you and your child. Younger kids can be comforted by seeing their classroom and playground, and learning the location of the bathroom and the bus port. Older kids may like to walk their first day’s schedule: from the bus, to the locker, to their different classrooms.

Meet the neighbors

Meeting your neighbors and parents at your new school can be a great help for your kids. You can hear first-hand how families have navigated the school district, and even arrange play dates or meet-ups between your kids and other students. Start making connections as a classroom volunteer, or mingling at the bus stop to chat to other parents.

Pack a special lunch.

If your kids bring lunch, make it a special one filled with their favorite snacks and an encouraging note from you.

Thinking about moving to a neighborhood with a better school district? I’ll be happy to help; contact me today!

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4 Potential Surprises When Buying a Home

No. 1: Low inventory means you have to act fast …

In many cities around the U.S., inventories are tight, meaning there are too few homes on the market for potential homebuyers. Homes in good condition that are priced appropriately sell fast. The competitive market means buyers may find a home and make a serious offer in just a few days (sometimes 24 hours!). In extremely low inventory markets like Denver, Seattle and San Francisco, buyers may end up in bidding wars, paying more than the home’s asking price.

Professional real estate agents understand the unique trends in your market and can help buyers zero in on the right house and act quickly.

No. 2: … But closing takes longer than you think

According to Realtor.com, the average home sale takes approximately 50 days from the moment your offer is accepted to the time you move in, but this is contingent on a variety of things. As the days tick by during this comprehensive process of inspections and appraisals, you may find yourself impatient to move in and add Pinterest-worthy decor.

The good news? Advanced technology has helped streamline the exchange of a vast amount of paperwork. And, an experienced real estate agent will be able to set expectations and keep you informed every step of the way.

While you anxiously await the keys to your new place, you can occupy yourself by preparing your things for the move and planning an epic housewarming party.

No. 3: Home inspections leave nothing uncovered

For the benefit and protection of a new buyer, most home inspectors conduct a very thorough inspection of your new home, leaving a detailed and often intimidating list of recommended repairs and improvements. Remember, not every item on the list may need to be repaired for the home to be safe or for you to take possession. Yet again, your real estate agent will be able to walk you through this lengthy report, advising you on what you can and should ask the sellers to consider fixing.

No. 4: Closing costs may leave you asking: “I owe WHAT?”

Just when you think you know the bottom line, some additional closing costs can sneak up on you. Things like loan origination fees, prepaid property taxes, title insurance and more can add up at the end of the process. In fact, on average, closing costs can range from 2% to 5% of your home’s purchase price.

Now that you know, you can ask your agent for more details and factor this in when you prepare to buy. If you or someone you know is considering a purchase or sale, I’ll be happy to help; contact me today!

27414 236th Place SE, Maple Valley, WA 98038

$485,000

5 bedrooms; 2.5 bathrooms; 2,820 square feet

Welcome home!! Located in Maple Valley’s Hampton Grove, this has it all… central A/C, 5 bedrooms up, HUGE family room with gas fireplace and eat-in kitchen with all NEW SS appliances, new water heater, new privacy fence in back and picket fence in front, carpet replaced in 2013… house is light and open, backyard is private, low maintenance with ample space for all… excellent access to schools (Glacier Park Elem, new Maple View Middle, new Tahoma High), Lake Wilderness park and trails, shopping, dining and all amenities…

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August 2017 RE/MAX National Housing Report

Home Sales Decreased in July, but Sold at Faster Pace

While July home sales decreased slightly, homes sold at a faster rate than any month in nearly a decade, according to the August RE/MAX National Housing Report that analyzes housing data in 54* metro areas.

July home sales declined 0.8% year-over-year, and the Median Sales Price of $239,950 – while slightly lower than June’s – was 7.4% higher year-over-year. Homes sold quickly in July, with an average 45 Days on Market, a record low for the report.

Other notable numbers from this month’s RE/MAX National Housing Report include:
-Sales increased in 19 metro areas even as home sales declined 0.8% compared to July 2016.
-The Median Sales Price of $239,950 was the highest for any July in the nine-year history of the report.
-Inventory dropped 14.1% year-over-year, with 46 metro areas seeing fewer homes for sale or remaining unchanged. Year-over-year, inventory has declined every month since November 2008.
-Months Supply of Inventory hovered at 3.1 months, a new July low in the report.

Read the full article in RE/MAX’s newsroom

Watch the 40 second summary video on YouTube

Washington State NWMLS Market Snapshot for July 2017

2 Major Reasons Why Inventory Is So Low

Inventory of available homes on the market is the lowest it’s been in two decades, but the reasons may surprise you. Two of the likely culprits are baby boomers and homeowners who are simply satisfied with their home, according to realtor.com®’s Housing Shortage Study.

Baby boomers are showing a desire to age in place in their current homes, and their refusal to sell is creating a clog in the market, according to the study. Eighty-five percent of baby boomers surveyed say they are not planning to sell their home in the next year. That means 33 million properties—many of which are urban condos or suburban single-family homes—will stay off the market. Many of those properties would be popular choices for millennials, a generation still largely waiting in the wings to break into homeownership.

Read the full article on RealtorMag…

What Are You Worth Per Hour?

You know the old saying: “Time is money.” That’s especially true when it comes to determining how to value your time as a real estate professional on a per-hour basis. At a “normal” job, you trade your time for a paycheck based on a set hourly rate. Though you’re now paid on commission, it is possible to determine your hourly rate by dividing your total income by the number of hours worked.

It’s no secret that you’ll make more money selling more expensive homes, but even some daily business tasks are worth more per hour than others. Getting a sense for which tasks can be tied directly to additional sales allows you to allocate your time better and focus on money-generating activities such as prospecting, following up, and meeting with clients. By knowing you’re worth on an hourly basis now, you can make goals for what you’d like your time to be worth in the future. Then you can make your current income (or more) while working less. Here are some worthwhile lessons to take to heart as you assess your per-hour value.

Read the full article on Realtor Mag…