Yes, There Are Still Affordable Homes in the Seattle Market - If You're Looking
Seattle is a hot job market -- what about Seattle housing and the suburbs? 2018 is the year to buy a home here and start that high paying job in tech. Don't wait though because housing prices may one day be too high. If you buy now, you stand to earn a lot of home equity over the next five years.
Amazon.com and Google are expanding in Seattle. Seattle has five major world-leading corporations with their headquarters here. Amazon alone has contributed $30 billion to the local economy and $55 billion in spin-off improvements to the area. The decision to develop 350 acres and infrastructure as well as significant "courting" of Amazon.com led to their decision to add new state of the art buildings and thousands of jobs to the Seattle economy.
Amazon was at first a radical online bookseller that took several years to show any profit. But today it dominates the online international market with amazing innovations. All of these concepts come from the collaborative efforts of brilliant people and many of these will be coming to Seattle. This is great news for Seattle.
Not only will there be more high tech jobs in Seattle, but those businesses that are in the service and supply sectors will see dramatic increases in business as the demand for their products increases. All of these technology companies have a reputation for high paying jobs and there will be many persons locally and from out of state competing for them. But there will also be jobs of more moderate salaries as well and these employees will be seeking housing that matches their incomes.
Any affordable housing in Seattle?
"Affordable housing" actually means what you can afford to pay within your budget. Seattle and the surrounding communities offer a wide range of good, affordable housing that suit the lifestyles, incomes and dreams of new employees and locals as well. Amazon's Jeff Bezos has stated that the type of innovative employee he seeks prefers an urban environment and that Seattle offered just that.
This has led to a "crunch" in the city limits or available housing.
Welcome to Seattle! You'll love it here -- once you're settled in
Admittedly, Seattle is the 8th highest real estate market in the country. Entry costs for a home can start in the $600,000 range and the inventory is tight. Newcomers need not be deterred from considering the wide range of houses in the city limits. But opening up the search to other neighborhoods and even nearby cities is a workable and pleasant option. Seattle city residents spend 30% of their income on housing expenses. But nearby cities cost less and most are within a half hour's scenic commute of Seattle.
Best of all, if you choose to live in a suburb you get the relief of escaping the urban woes that can come with life in the big city. Plus, if you're into the outdoors, the suburbs put you closer to ski resorts and biking trails, lakes and rivers for fishing, boating and water sports, and an assortment of hiking and photography opportunities.
Major league salaries in high tech provide more options for home buyers
High tech jobs have major league salaries and this will energize the housing market to an even higher pitch. Realistically, this will produce enviable commissions for energetic realtors. But the growth of technology jobs also means a growth in other sectors. Service sector, supply and support, retail, health and even public sector employment will increase as well as the area adds newcomers.
This will push another market, the need for affordable housing.
Affordable housing if Seattle want's to keep service providers
In most minds affordable housing usually brings thoughts of subsidized or low cost rentals or houses. This is not quite accurate. Affordable really means how much the buyer can afford and this can vary. Seattle has many high quality neighborhoods that fit the lifestyle of homeowners without compromising convenience, comfort or access to the area's enviable features of recreation, leisure and culture.
High-tech boom is boosting real estate prices
Realistically the hi-tech boom is affecting real estate prices and it's a sellers' market. But Seattle's rich employment market also means that the salaries are worth a commute in this scenic landscape to work in town and still enjoy comfortable living and recreation. A number of communities to the north and south have all the benefits of Northwest living, recreation and a decent commute while staying within a safe budget.
Lower home prices in the Seattle suburbs
While Seattle residents generally devote 30% of their income to housing costs, these cities offer cost effective and excellent housing at savings:
Federal Way: 20.1%
Seattle house-hunting newcomers
House-hunting newcomers will soon realize that they are buying into more than a house but into a living experience. Washington's extraordinary scenery, opportunities for fishing, boating, skiing and mountain-based sports as well as a cultural and social experience few regions can equal are part of the package. The extended reach of Seattle's high tech employers will expand jobs and employment in the neighboring cities as well as salaries rise and more people purchase and consume more goods and services, as the old saying goes "a rising tide lifts all boats". Whether it's a yacht or kayak the growth of Amazon.com, Google and the other high-tech giants will mean increased prosperity for the region.
Five easy-commute places to live and still work in Seattle
Marysville is located 35 miles north of Seattle; locals would say it's not an easy commute, tough at times. But if you're coming from the Bay Area, Los Angeles, Chicago, NYC, Houston, or another area with high population and horrible traffic, the Marysville-Seattle commute may not seem that bad to you at all.
Marysville has homes with a median price of $339,888 A wide variety of styles and features are available. Out of a population of 67,626: 26% are single, 79% are homeowners, and the median age is in the '30's. 96% are commuters. Median income is in the $60,000 range and 29% are college grads. Something that Marysville has nearby that newcomers will find a surprise is a casino. The Native Peoples in Washington have invested in tourism and operate luxury resorts and casinos. The Tulalip Tribe has 2,600 members and resides on a 22,000 acre reservation. The Native Peoples' heritage here is rich and deep and newcomers will be intrigued and impressed at the lifestyle and culture of the First Peoples. The Casino offers 5 star nightlife and luxury accommodations.
Tacoma has a wide variety of available homes. The median sales price is $260,819. This remarkable place is south of Seattle and has a total population of 211,277 with a mix of 38% singles, and 63% homeowners. The median age of residents is in their 30's and 29% are college educated. Median income is in the $50,000 range. The commute north to Seattle is between 36 and 44 minutes. The area is rich in cultural attractions and museums, outdoor activities of all kinds at the foot of majestic Mt. Rainier and offers quality golf courses and clear lakes for boating and fishing. Puget Sound offers an astounding list of things to see and do as well. The city has numerous parks for camping. You can work in the Seattle area and still have a year-round stay-cation at home here.
Auburn is a city of 77,472 to the south of Seattle, and is a 31 minute commute on I-5.28% of the residents at singles and the median age is 40; 71% are homeowners. The median household income is in the $67,000 range and the median price of homes here runs in the $349,000 range. The city enjoys a wonderful climate with an average of 151 sunny days per year and no extreme winter lows or summer highs. The city has a horse racing track, Emerald Downs and the Muckleshoot Casino. The Native Peoples are numerous here and each has a unique and fascinating heritage. Newcomers will be very impressed by the distinct cultures. These casinos are a stay-cation dream and accommodations, attractions and dining that are not customary in the eastern USA. The Native Peoples' casinos are another unique Washington State offering.
Kent has some high numbers for its residents. This city of 127, 514 has a median income is in the $70,000 range, 34% are college grads and median age is 37. Life in Kent offers a speedy 26 minute commute to Seattle to the north over I-5. Median house price is $368,000. If you like speed sports you will love it here. There is an auto racetrack, Pacific Raceways and a museum of racing and speedboats, The Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum. There is literally something exciting for everyone here.
Federal Way has a population of 96,757. This quality location to the south of Seattle has a median age of 37, median income in the $62,000 range and 35% are college educated and 72% are homeowners. The median home price is in the $344,000 range. Federal Way has several unique features you won't find elsewhere. There is a museum devoted to the ancient art of Bonsai, the Pacific Bonsai Museum and a botanical garden, The Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden. There are bayside parks and more attractions than can be listed here to make living in Federal Way a 365 day a year pleasure filled experience.
Of course the whole reason the Pacific Northwest is on the map in the first place is Seattle. If you're an out of stater, it's probably one of the iconic cities that comes to mind when you picture life on the northern west coast of the United States.
If you are moving to Seattle to work in the booming high tech industry, congratulations, you will probably love it here. If you can't find the home of your dreams right away, remember that several nearby cities offer short commutes with amazing scenery on your way to work. They also have their own local attractions and appeal. No matter where you live you will always be glad you came to work and live in Seattle.