It’s Friday! Let’s sweep… | selling office commissions + Olympic inspiration + $3500 + “hawk talk”…


At a glance for this week >  a discussion on selling office commissions + “400 lengths” +  a tacos & tequila tally and a little “hawk talk”. Let’s recap this week and prep for next…cheers to a weekend chaulked full of productive  work + summer play ahead, here to help – the ultimate goal.

  • Does the selling office commission matter? Thank you Dan Givens for doing this analysis!

We did an analysis of over 35,000 closed sales in King, Snohomish and Pierce Counties to see if the S.O.C. had any impact on a home’s selling price and on the time on market. For this project we looked at closed sales for all of 2015 but we only looked at residential resale under $1,000,000. We did not include new construction, short sales, bank owned properties, land or mobile homes. Here is what we found.

83% of the sellers chose to offer a 3% selling office commission. On average those homes sold at 99.7% of asking price. Those homes also sold on average in 35 days.

15% of the sellers chose to offer a lower selling office commission of 2.5%. On average those homes sold at 97.7% of asking price. Those homes also sold on average in 54 days.

So those sellers who chose to offer a lower selling office commission sold for 2% less and took over 50% longer to sell!

Their supposed savings of .5% ended up costing them 4 times more than what they thought they would save.

  • If you ever want to have an SOC conversation, give me a ring – happy to chat through strategy, talking points and the like – I’m passionate about this said topic. 206.227.7133 (cell)

What future “gold medals” have you already won? This research and storytelling brought to us by Eric Thompson, Windermere Services – Colorado…thank you Eric!


400 Lengths

Every four years I become enthralled by the Olympics. I love watching elite athletes compete at the highest level. I love the leadership and sportsmanship lessons that are on display. I love watching people excel and have their dreams come true.

The last weeks of watching the Summer Games has me thinking about this question:

When is the gold medal won?

Is it won when the swimmer touches the wall first, the runner crosses the line first, or the gymnast earns the perfect score?

Or is there more to it than that?

The answer came to me when I researched the American swimmers I cheered so loudly for in front of my T.V. Take Katie Ledecky for instance. I discovered that she sat down with her coach three years ago and mapped out her three key goals for these 2016 Olympics and her game plan to make those come true.

Then she started her training program that included swimming 70,000 yards a week. That’s 10,000 per day. That’s 400 lengths of a traditional 25-yard pool every day.

Or how about Ryan Murphy, the backstroker that set a World-Record last week? You may have seen images of the book he wrote to his mom when he was 6 years old telling her that one day he would be a world-record setting Olympic Champion.

Murphy and Ledecky won their 2016 Gold Medals a long time ago. Their success was inevitable. They decided to win and made the massive commitment it took to win.

It begs the question. What future gold medals have you already won? What are you already doing today that makes your success inevitable? –  Eric Thompson, Windermere Services Colorado


  • …Back to those Tacos & Tequila results! | Raising $3500 to the Windermere Foundation for a two hour gathering dockside at Jill & Geoff’s home all the while eating tacos and drinking tequila – not so terrible for our first go at this! We’ll be putting this event on our 2017 calendar – no doubt!


That’s a wrap for this week, looking forward to next – here to help. And hey, what future “gold medals” have you already won? Really fun to think about.

Laura Smith, General Manager | Windermere Real Estate Co + Northwest, Inc.

…and if you’ve been to Century Link to cheer on the Seahawks in their pre-season, you’ve seen we are very well represented! I’m IN > our #tacklehomelessness campaign…


It’s Friday, a light let’s sweep!


It’s Friday, it is smoking hot – keeping this one a light sweep! Plus I have 30 people in roughly 2 minutes embarking upon my home for our son’s birthday party – both kids & adults should be well entertained. Enjoy this weekend in productive work & play everyone – I sure plan to.

This week, what have I noticed? In two hours, on a beautiful Seattle day, dockside –  roughly 70 of us got together and did some good. We’ll have a final tally in for the WRE Foundation next week. Tacos & Tequila’s was a blast, for those who joined – give us feedback for next year. Yup, I said next year – why not!?! I had a “top shelf” good time. Kelland Lindsey and Rob Graham (pictured below) were tasked with being our entertainment or at least drumming it up – after instruction from Tina (Tina, yup – the one that makes these events happen) they did a darn fine job! Thanks guys – you are hired for next year. Foundation tally will be shouted out next week…

IMG_1343 IMG_1341 IMG_1340 IMG_1338Tacos & Tequila Header

Tomorrow, we race! | Summer Splash is upon us – big thank you to so many that have yet again made this happen. It will be hot! If you are curious to see this boat in all of it’s glory – 11:45am is our heat. We’ll hit the starting line anticpating our two minutes of fame…and then back to our day jobs – which we happen to love!

IMG_1360 IMG_1353

That’s a wrap for this week, looking forward to next – here to help. Lots of good going on, and a whole lot more time in 2016 to create even more…here to help. By the way, if anyone would like to add my # in their phone – here you go, 206.227.7133 – another layer of support should you need it, anytime.

Kids are here…must run!

Laura Smith, General Manager | Windermere Real Estate Co + Northwest, Inc.


It’s “Blue” Friday! | Let’s sweep – blue Friday + a sleuth tool + “science” + city fruit + a birthday + our boat


At a glance for this week >  Blue Friday + sleuth tool + city fruit + more July “science” + a birthday + a 1936 piece of history! Let’s recap this week and prep for next…cheers to a weekend chaulked full of productive  work + summer play ahead, here to help – the ultimate goal.

Go Hawks + Go Windermere | It is our first official “Blue Friday” in partnership with our Seahawks! Our flags have arrived and are swag is flying high!

Side note, the question has been asked – How long is our Hawk partnership? Answer is: 3 years! Remember, for every home game tackle that the Seahawks make, Windermere is donating $100 to YouthCare, a non-profit organization that provides services and support to homeless youth. I’m IN > our #tacklehomelessness campaign.


Sleuthing tool | Catherine Adams (Madison Park) needed to do some investigative work on property ownership and discovered this WA State site that holds “managing partner” info on an LLC.   It is not 100% because some folks have smart lawyers who can shield their names – however this did help Catherine  get to someone that helped with a client’s desire to acquire. Click here for your new sleuthing tool. Thank you Catherine!

This week, the “science” | The NWMLS July 2016 statistical data was released – signaling us to update our Seattle statistics as well. A few talking points + #’s we should know as we continue to master your “science” together. According to the NWMLS, for Metro Seattle (140 + 380 + 385 + 390 + 700 + 705 + 710)…

July 2016 vs. July 2015 | % Change included

  • Months Supply of Inventory | 0.9 vs. 0.7 | up 24%
  • Total Active Listings | 719 vs. 600 | up 20%
  • Median Active List Price | $726,689 vs. $705,862 | up 3%
  • Pending (MTD) | 804 vs. 832 | – 3%
  • Pending (YTD) | 5,304 vs. 5,6644 | -6%
  • # of Closed sales (MTD) | 775 vs. 808 | -4%
  • # of Closed sales (YTD) | 4,307 vs. 4,545 | -5%
  • Median Closed Sales (YTD) | $644,830 vs. $554,516 | up 16%

For a breakdown my NWMLS area, click here and you are up to speed!

City Fruit | Couldn’t help but shout this local resource out. Learned about this from Jamie Roberts (Ballard office)! A wow. City Fruit promotes the cultivation of urban fruit in order to nourish people, build community, and protect the climate.

“Urban fruit trees are a valuable community resource, yet often fruit goes unused because people are not sure when to harvest it, how to best use it, or they are put off by damage caused by preventable disease and pests. We are reclaiming the urban orchard, showing people how to harvest what they need, and to share the rest with others. We help tree owners grow healthy fruit, provide assistance in harvesting and preserving fruit, promote the sharing of extra fruit, and work to protect urban fruit trees.” – City Fruit –  Click here to share this resource in your community, maybe even your home!

Happy Birthday to Ballard’s “Queen B”, manager – Darlene Sozinho – fun to celebrate with you all today, great way to start a Friday! As Cari Sulcer eloquently stated, “party in your birthday suit”…ok, at least your bee costume!

queen b

That’s a wrap for this week, looking forward to next – here to help. Lots of good going on, and a whole lot more time in 2016 to create even more…here to help.

Laura Smith, General Manager | Windermere Real Estate Co + Northwest, Inc.

…and oh, snapped a photo of these Olympic rings at Pocock Rowing Center this week during our Summer Splash Corporate Cup practice. One more race and your Windermere boat hits the waters of Green Lake at Summer Splash 2016. ***This is an actual Olympic flag  from the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin – yup, The Boys in the Boat gold medal race. I thought a fitting add to our sweep this week as we continue to find “our swing” together. Grateful you are in our boat, I like our boat lots!



It’s Friday, Seafair weekend! | Let’s sweep! > your influence + browsers + market “pulse” + all things pink…


At a glance for this week > You have influenced our TouchCMA product + a note on “browsers” + market “pulse” storytelling + all things pink!  Let’s recap this week and prep for next…welcome to Seafair weekend! Cheers to productive work + play ahead, here to help – the ultimate goal.

TouchCMA redesign + you | Your comments directly influenced our design team in creating the next generation of digital presentations. Thank you. We are listening. That giant WORC feedback button continues to be a fantastic landing spot for your feedback – “specific” feedback is the very best! You are influencing our products – as it should be – they are designed for you.

Feedback***screenshot of WORC to show feedback button.

Ok, on Tuesday, August 2 we are launched the redesign of TouchCMA. The additional features and new modern design will elevate your presentations and give you a competitive advantage. I’ve heard many of you are very happy with the redesign. Again, a quick recap of what changed + what did not…

  • Mobile-friendly: Presentations will resize to fit any screen size, including desktops, laptops, tablets, and phones.
  • Same great content, with a facelift: Build presentations the same way you do today but now they’ll appear within the new modern design.
  • A presentation you helped build: Many of you provided feedback about the current version of TouchCMA, and we heard you!

What’s Changed?

  • All existing and new web presentations will be updated with the new, improved design.
  • The slides “Pricing Summary” and “Estimated Pricing” will be combined. You can still omit average sold comparable price based on square footage using a new “Pricing Summary” page option.
  • The “Averages By Status” section of the “Comparable Market Information” slide will now be grouped on the slide “Averages of Comparables.”

What Stays the Same?

  • Building your presentations doesn’t change at all, since the redesign update only affects the end result.
  • The PDF and iPad app presentations are not changing.
  • Your custom pages are not changing.
  • All of your saved presentation profile settings will still be honored.
  • Existing presentations will automatically be updated to the new presentation style.

A side note on browsers | I was reminded this week of how important it is to swap to a different browser if you are experiencing any issues on TouchCMA, Transaction Desk etc…every now and again we’ll see one browser work and one not so much. Reminds me of  the good old days when we’d get a “blue screen of death” on a PC and the fix was simply to restart the computer. Anyhow, a gentle reminder of the wide world of browsers and technology. Worth shouting out.

Market pulse | …# of offers is a conversation these days, no doubt. Look carefully at this snapshot below – this is a sample sales sheet from last week’s Ballard office meeting – it is telling us a story. It is a story that we need to be discovering and “showing” as a collective whole. Note how many sales are showing “only one” offer. It should also be noted this sales sheet does not reflect homes that did not receive offers – those exist too. Pricing + setting expectations with Sellers will be uber important (as always) in these next few months. Let’s help them understand sometimes there is a disconnect with what the media might portray to what is happening. Our local market shifts weekly, do all you can do to collaborate on what the “market pulse” – the banter in your offices, out on tour etc…are all good landing spots for such storytelling. Let’s help each other educate the market. It helps us all navigate and move the market. Pricing a home, receiving a full price offer and a Seller not accepting (as they expected more money vs. their asking price) is not a position we want to be in and it is happening more + more. It comes down to education. Kudos Ballard for keeping the “pulse” in front of you!

BDoffers ***note: left hand column – # of offers

Things went pink! | Our long-time manager, Dave Hale (Madison Park) is expecting his first grandchild – so what does one do? Bedazzle him in pink! Dave thought we were getting together to chat all things Madison Park. Instead, a good old fashioned surprise – had to share. Dave Hale, pink looks good on you! I know you + Beth are counting the days – so exciting!


Ok, that’s a sweep for this week! We should be hearing the Blue Angels shortly – get out and enjoy where + when you can. Seattle is indeed showing off today. We are lucky.

Laura Smith, General Manager | Windermere Real Estate Co + Northwest, Inc.

WREcupBoat Day #3 of Summer Splash Corporate Cup prep!