Moving to Seattle from across the country can be an intimidating prospect. Many people are moving from Vegas to Seattle and even farther away. The trick to buying a home in another city is having a good plan and a great agent.
The combination of technology and a great agent’s skill make buying a home from across the country a manageable process.
Picking Your Location
Moving to Seattle from across the country is made easier by use of the Internet.
While you can’t completely substitute actually visiting a neighborhood in person, you can thoroughly investigate potential areas to home hunt in. Google maps lets you search for stores that you frequent, estimate commute times from potential home areas to your new job and even tour areas of town.
Thanks to the Internet you can also get information on the quality of schools, crime rates and even more. You can thoroughly investigate potential areas around Seattle that you want to move to.
While you can find out a lot about areas via the Internet, a great local guide is invaluable. Once again, the Internet makes finding a local Seattle real estate broker easy. Look for someone that has experience in the local market and that can help you determine the best areas to search for a new home and help you buy it.
Manage Your Home Hunting
If you are moving to Seattle from across the country, multiple excursions to look at homes can become very costly. Additionally, good homes sell quickly in Seattle, so making a list, booking a flight and then coming to the Seattle area to shop doesn’t work well.
The old plan was to come over for a long weekend, do some house hunting and tie up a house. With homes staying on the market barely longer than a week, and selling for more than listing price, it sometimes takes offers on multiple properties to get an accepted offer. Additionally, having to sell your existing home is a huge liability when shopping in the Seattle market. All cash offers with the fewest contingencies is what it takes to really compete for homes.
This all adds up to something that you can not do in a weekend. This requires an extended effort and planning.
If you are moving to Seattle and have a home to sell, my best suggestion is to get your existing home sold, move to Seattle and stay in an executive rental while you are house hunting. This will give you a stable place to work from, while you are house hunting and takes some of the pressure off you if you need to put in multiple offers on homes.
Be Specific In What You Want
Beyond the ultra-competitive market, the biggest pitfall my buyers succumb to is not being decisive and knowing exactly what they are looking for. I’ve often seen buyers hesitate to make offers on homes that were perfect for them because it was one of the first few houses we looked at.
I highly suggest making a detailed list of what features your new home has to have, what is negotiable and what are deal killers. Then if a home closely fits that template, make an offer on it!
Typically I will meet with clients and go over exactly what they want and need in a new home so we can narrow our search as much as possible to ideal properties. This avoids house hunting burnout, and gives them the best chance at finding the perfect new home, as they are more confident in making an offer when we find “the one”.
Being Nervous Moving To Seattle Is Normal
Moving to a new city is a big event and it is normal to be nervous. When you start your search, you don’t know the neighborhoods, the streets, the homes and it is all slightly spooky.
However by doing your research, working with a great local real estate agent and being prepared, you can make the move to Seattle relatively smooth.
If you have more questions about moving to the Seattle area, please send me an email or give me a call at 425-773-3149