It’s Friday, let’s sweep! | the armchair series featuring…

Ballard + Eastlake + Madison Park + Northgate + Sand Point + Wedgwood


If you haven’t noticed just yet our 2018 Luxury Breakfasts are featuring “The Armchair Series” – a series of guest speakers outside of us – a way to bring perspective outside of our everyday.This week we hosted Skylar Olsen (Senior Economist from Zillow). Matthew Gardner interviewed Skylar – very informative and yes, lively. I jotted down a few digestible bites…from the armchair of Skylar Olsen:

A recession in our midst? | Expects to see a mild cyclical recession towards the end of 2019 – fed induced. Clearly our region is strong. HQ2 is not an Amazon flight from Seattle. Plus, Seattle is not just Amazon anymore. We’ve been welcoming Zillow, Tableau, Google etc…. Our intellectual capitol is strong in the workforce. It also turns out our housing market continues to be cheap compared to those coming from LA, San Jose and the Bay area in general. We are talking median home prices in those regions in the $1.4M range.

Bets on Amazon’s HQ2? | Austin.

2018 inventory? | Skylar is now less bullish in thinking inventory will loosen up.

Impact of foreign buyers? | Zillow’s research shows there is not a spike in on-line searches from foreign buyers in our region after Canada imposed a 15% tax on foreign homebuyers. Zillow watches and grabs data from IP addresses – they believe the best way to track where people are searching from.

First time homebuyers? | They are here. A major part of our market and will be coming on strong. Currently showing up strong on-line. Median age, 33. Median age of first time homebuyer use to be late 20’s.

Mortgage Rates? | By end of 2018 expects to see conventional loans just under 5%. Jumbo market more stable the past couple of weeks, fyi.

Appreciation this year? | Median price homes = low double digits. Luxury market = will stabilize, at a slower rate.

Bubble? | Skylar mirrors Matthew Gardner opinion on this. Answer: no bubble based on fundamentals. Instead, a slow down. A mild one.

…and as we wrap up, I’ll leave you with this brain tattoo that I head this week::

Your speed of learning must exceed the speed of change for you to remain relevant.” Success will come to those of us that get in front of the inevitable. #alwayslearning

And for those of you what want to join me for the Battle of the Barristers – details again + registration here. Love love love to save you a seat!


 Stay curious my friends,

Laura Smith, General Manager | Windermere Real Estate Co.

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Ballard + Eastlake + Madison Park + Northgate + Sand Point + Wedgwood


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