Monday, October 09, 2017

Sequim Real Estate Market Report 2017

In a most recent report in the Sequim Gazette Managing Broker Doc Reiss came up with some really interesting numbers. Let's just pick up a few relating to our blog post "Sequim House Sales are soaring", which will be helpful for those who have not given up on finding the perfect house to buy in Sequim at the current house sales slowdown this September and October.

In August, 77 home sales were down 30% from the level at the same time in 2016 but up from the number sold in July. The average house purchase price of $357,507 is definitely of interest for potential home buyers which is 20% up from 2016. The lack of inventory has buyers  scrambling to buy the house they want reflecting our market observation expressed in our blog post. Last August the average home that sold was 75 days on the market. This August houses lasted  just 36 days on the market. Looking at the year so far, the average home has gone from 76 days on the market to only 54. Bottom line: Home Buyers be aware. Homes are selling 35% faster than last year.

Our personal opinion is that sales might not slow down over this fall or winter season with climate change and weather reports of devastating hurricanes, century floods and wild fires becoming the regular norm across the United States. The nice, sunny weather all over the Olympic Peninsula this summer
attracts lots of home searchers looking for moderate weather.

Sun over Sequim and dark rain clouds over Seattle in the East and Port Angeles in the West produce the most impressive double rainbow over  Sequim town

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Sequim House Sales are soaring

One of the most recent issues of the Sequim Gazette tells us and Sequim house hunters all about it. Looks like the Sequim housing market is following now the Seattle trend, which even during the house bubble burst did not seem to be affected by the down spiral of the national market but instead continuously proved solid and stable in its trend.

The recent surge in house sales led to low inventory with 270 homes for sale a month, the lowest second quarter inventory since 2005 according to Team McAleer and an increase in prices. In the second quarter 204 homes were sold, which is the highest amount ever sold in the second quarter. Since 2007, that's when we bought our house in Sun Meadow at a high real estate market, the median price sale went from $290,000 to $300,000. A lot of Sequim home buyers are coming from the Seattle area - selling their Seattle homes for a decent price and buying in Sequim to retire for half the price.

Our own observation of the fast real estate market in Sequim these days was proven by "Sales Pending" signs showing up without there ever have been a "House for Sale" sign. Realtors have their own waiting list and jump in right away when something new shows up on the market. Sequim house hunters often noticed, when they had their act together to move forwards with an offer, the home was already sold or they were at the end of a line of home buyers' offers.
Bottom line at the current Sequim Real Estate market is, if you want a house, you'd better move fast.

One last word by loan officers. They seriously recommend to be preapproved by an underwriter: "When we get into those multiple offers on homes, cash is always going to be king.  Team McAleer reports that on August 1st Sequim has 181 homes for sale at a median price of $375,000, 105 are under contract.

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

USA Today picks Sequim as Best Northwestern Small Town

What a surprise to see Sequim get chosen as the Best Small Town in the Northwest among 20 others in WA, OR, AK, ID, MT and WY. This win will definitely influence people's decisions to visit Sequim or even to move to this lovely small town with big town amenities as we did 10 years ago.

The last snow before spring 2017

It seems Sequim received this precious award just at the right time. Sequim's Irrrigation Festival Grand Finale continues on this weekend with multiple events:
Grand Parade on Saturday, Logging Show, Hot Rod & Harley, Strongman Show and more.

Sequim Irrigation Festival 2016

Not only that we celebrate Sequim's 122nd Irrigation Festival and got awarded with the Best Western Small Town, Spring is in full bloom with the lovely sweet
scent of Lilacs and colorful Rhodies everywhere after tons of daffodils in Sequim residents' front yards.

Real Cherry Tree promises big 2017 harvest

The run for a nice house in Sequim to buy, keeps realtors already very busy with several bets on houses for sale. Inventory is low and the competition is big for what's available. Ask our friend Tom Blore whose "pending" signs are all over town. Do what we did, research the area, make a list of houses you are interested in and then set up a vacation for a real visit. Don't buy 'unseen', even if it sounds more than tempting.

Cherry Blossom Trees everwhere

Sunday, December 25, 2016

The first snow in Sequim

No, we didn't have a White Christmas' but over a week ago we got our first snow to the delight of the kids and the dismay of the retired elderly generation of Sequim. Luckily for us the snow did not last long - 24 hrs at the most. However, it was definitely a surprise, after our last two winters didn't have any snow.

The special location of Sequim in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains provides us with plenty of blue holes in the sky and mild moderate weather throughout the year which attracts more and more people to the area. As said in our most recent  blog post the reopening of our Sequim Aquatic Center (now under the management of the YMCA) is a nice compensation for  the cold weather with gym, saunas, jacuzzi, FREE fitness classes and so much more. Those who have shown up at the Center to try it, get hooked up for sure.

Wishing everybody a Merry Christmas 2016!

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Sequim Y is open

The long waiting time of about 1 year for all of us active Sequim senior citizens is finally over with the soft and Grand Opening of the Sequim Y which has taken over the place of former SARC (Sequim Aquatic and Recreation Center). I can't emphasize enough how much we all missed our 'full work out' with the lap swimming, water aerobics, saunas and jacuzzi. The immediate sign-up of by over 2000 members proves this more than anything else. Finally, we can reunite with kindred spirit friends because 'Anytime Fitness' and 'Sequim Gym' had split our fitness community. Long story short, we are very happy to be back in our familiar fitness and aquatic center.

We are well aware of the changes the  Sequim YMCA had to take in order to make this a smooth operation and a long time financial survival possible. In the long run we see the close cooperation with the Olympic Medical Center' Rehab and the Y as a big plus. We also welcome the openness of the Y management to our feedback as former SARC members. As senior citizens on a fixed incomer we love that all fitness classes are FREE and included in the membership. I have joined the Tai Chi class with Michael, who has been teaching Tai Chi for 40 years. I love it. However, the are many more  fitness classes to choose from like: Zumba, Water Aerobics, Yoga, Active Older Adults and more. Why not giving it a try? Stay happy and healthy in Sequim with the Sequim YMCA.

Monday, June 06, 2016

Sequim Gyms & Fitness Centers

A while ago we reported here on our Sequim town blog that our beloved Sequim Recreation & Aquatic Center had to close its doors in October 2015. Basically because of mismanagement. Many months later we can finally share the good news with our blog visitors that the Olympic Peninsula YMCA in coordination with Olympic Medical Center, Clallam County and City of Sequim agreed to an alternative with the Y taking over management of the facility when reopening will happen In September 2016. SARC commissioners are using a$731K grant from the county's Opportunity Fund to replace the defunct air handler.

An additional grant by WA State Department of over $273K will be given if the Sequim Y (SARC) switches from propane to a heat pump system which would allegedly save gallons of propane and some $60,000 annually in money expenses. One wonders why PUD recommended a few years ago to switch to propane in the first place?! I assume with the anticipation of the expected savings, we'll soon see a consensus regards installing the heat pump system which might actually extend remodeling time into the middle of September.

Ever since SARC closed we joined, like the majority of senior citizens, the other available Sequim fitness centers. Keoki joined Anytime Fitness because his secondary health insurance AARP (United Healthcare) pays a considerable part of his membership fee.

As my secondary Health insurance Premera does not offer such a great benefit, I joined 'Sequim Gym' with their affordable rate and easy walking distance from our house. BTW, Sequim Gym efforts regards improving fitness, health & fun are very impressive: the gym offers over 30 classes a week at no EXTRA cost as part of the membership. Recently, some special classes were included (for an extra fee) addressing health issues like Parkinson's and Balance problems.

It's great to see how understanding, compassionate and helpful Sequim Gym instructors are. Feeling right at home there, will make it harder switching gyms another time in September but being an active swimmer the use of the lap pool is something I and many other seniors miss currently the most. Honestly, we are very much looking forward to finishing our gym workout again with swimming some laps in the pool, and relaxing in the saunas & jacuzzi plus reconnecting and socializing with all our SARC friends.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Photos from the Sequim Irrigation Festival 2016

The entire week we had the nicest summer weather in Sequim. Then Sequim Irrigation Festival weekend with the Grand Parade comes up and the weather changed totally around. It did not take away the spirit and enthusiasm of Sequim residents and visitors. Have a look for yourselves at the Downtown Sequim Parade in Washington Street:

Looking forward to seeing you at our next year's 122nd Sequim Irrigation Festival.

Monday, May 09, 2016

Sequim started its 121st Irrigation Festival

When Washington's longest running festival started Friday May 6th in Sequim, I was right there 'downtown' - not that Sequim visitors can get lost in our downtown area! I was actually going for one of my visits to the Sequim Gym, when I noticed the many tents already set up across Washington Street for the Saturday Farmer's Market with arts and crafts and many green veggies in pots - some still teeny tiny and others nice, big and juicy looking ready for harvesting.

Photo of cherry blossom trees in Sequim before the Irrigation Festival

For more information on the festival events this week, visit IrrigationFestival or SequimGazette. The Grand Finale Weekend this week includes the carnival, Sequim History Walking Tour, Logging Show, Truck and Tractor Pull, golf tournament and more. My favorites are the Fireworks on Friday night May 13th 9:30pm and the Grand Parade the next day May 14th 12 noon - 2pm.

Get an impression of the Grand Parade with our Sequim photos from previous parades:

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

To all our Sequim visitors 'Happy New Year 2016'

Happy Healthy New Year

May all your plans moving to Sequim work out the way they are supposed to

The early morning sun is hitting the clouds building up behind the Olympic Mountains.

A few minutes later the sky cleared up and the snow on Hurricane Ridge - our most visited sight on the Olympic Peninsula - sparkles in the sun.

Sun rise view from Sequim over another part of the Olympics - a feature which every home seller likes to list. The ever changing sun shine and cloud cover make the mountain views unique and special. We prefer those over the water views.

Sequim Town blog loves to hear from you. We are happy to answer your questions about a vacation in Sequim, life on the Olympic Peninsula, moving here, anything beyond our categories on the side bar. Scroll down the list: Sequim Relocation Resources, Moving to Sequim, Vacation rentals and B&Bs, Sequim Hotels, Vacation Highlights and more and you will find a lot of answers about Sequim.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Lucky we live in Sequim

Dear Sequim town blog visitors,
We can't believe it, our 10th anniversary of our life in Sequim is coming up on January 12th 2016. Time to celebrate! For all those of you who seriously consider to move to the Olympic Peninsula now or in the near future, let us tell you, we never regretted the move here one bit. Reading the news about nasty weather reports like tornadoes, snow storms, floods, icy roads and more in states like Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico make us even feel better. Visit Sequim, check it out and make your decision. We welcome new arrivals on a daily basis. Realtors are happy about the 'rush'.

New Railroad Bridge

We are closing the old year 2015 with some good news. In February the rain and high winds from a passing through storm damaged the Railroad Bridge at Dungeness River Auduborn Center and resulted in the closure of the bridge. As the bridge is part of the Olympic Discovery Trail and is frequently used by Sequim residents - we love our bikes past Sequim Airport to Robin Hill Park - and visiting bikers as well, the closure caused lots of inconvenience and detours. After about a 10th month waiting, the new bridge is completed (see my photos from Christmas Day). There will be a Grand Opening of Railroad Bridge steel truss trestle on December 30th at 1pm at the Railroad Bridge Park. See you there!

New riverbed of the Dungeness River

Location of Dungeness River before storm

Another big event negatively affecting the lives of hundreds of active, health oriented Sequim senior citizens happened when our beloved SARC Sequim Aquatic Recreation Center closed at the beginning of November - totally unexpected, we were promised by the board members that SARC will stay open at least till August 2016. Prior to the closure we attended a final meeting at the City Hall about the necessary closure. Hearing that SARC was working on its last reserves of about $20K(!), we were totally shocked and especially surprised when people in charge did not take responsibility for the failure by resigning from their position. This failure did not happen from one day to the next. No private business could have done that.

To cut a long story short, after lots of discussions and meetings of all the different entities - such as Clallam County, City of Sequim, Olympic Medical Center, Sequim High School - which realize how important SARC is to the healthy life styles of Sequim residents is, finally joined forces and a solution for SARC's reopening is in sight. Please, follow the discussions at the Sequim Gazette and at the Peninsula Daily News We are all very happy that a reopening of SARC has become feasible but we are very disappointed about the set time frame for July 2016. Til' then we signed up for two different gyms: Anytime Fitness offers AARP members (United Health) an affordable alternative but I signed up with the general affordable fees of Sequim Gym. Last but no least, forget about doing your swimming at the William Shore Pool in Port Angeles - they raised the daily fees FOR SEQUIM RESIDENTS from $3.50 to $10.50, which we consider totally unethical because the majority of Sequim residents are seniors on a fixed income.

We are looking forward to reuniting with all our kindred spirit Sequim friends at SARC soon.