Seattle Real Estate Secrets of Kim and Mark Hobbs from Windermere


In 2010, as the Seattle real estate market emerged from the Great Recession, my husband and I decided to buy our first home. We stopped by an open house in Loyal Heights on a whim, where the merry seller’s agent patiently answered our multiple (probably stupid) questions about the housing market and how we get there. takes to buy a house. Our conversation lasted 10 minutes, but in the end my husband and I decided that she was nice and that she should be our broker.

It was the best stupid chance I could have asked for. Eleven years later, Kim Hobbs, along with her recently retired husband, Mark, helped us buy and sell three homes. During various car rides, open houses and exhibitions, they regaled us with their adventures in real estate and shared their market know-how. Here are some of their most memorable stories and some great advice.

Broker Details

Which: Kim Hobbs, broker at Rain City Homes of Windermere Real Estate, and Mark Hobbs, recently retired broker
Years in the company: 21 (Kim), 23 (Marc)
Summary in seconds: “I try to be more of an educator. I think if you focus on helping your client get the information they need, they’ll make the best long-term decisions for themselves, ”Kim says.

By showing houses transformed into Fear factor

Mark: I had booked a home visit and when I arrived the key box was not in the usual location, usually at the front door. So I asked my customers to wait and walked around to see if the key box was there. I was able to retrieve the key and enter the house. When I opened the door, all the blinds were closed and the lights were out. I started to turn on the lights. When I entered the third room, there was a boa constrictor that was easily eight feet long, probably bigger, that was loose. Thank goodness I turned on the light because if I hadn’t I would have stepped on this boa constrictor, and I don’t want to know what happens when you step on this boa constrictor.

When a buyer aroused suspicion

Kim: There was a time when Mark started to feel like something was wrong. We were representing the seller and Mark began to investigate the buyer further. Lo and behold, after more research he found out that the buyer had actually made an offer under a fake name and a fake social security number, and that was before 2008.

When they entered a scene from Bridgerton

Mark: I had clients interested in a downtown condo, and I made an appointment with the listing broker, who told me that the occupants would not be in town and that I was free to show the condo. . Reception provided me with the key and I arrived on time with customers in tow. As I opened the door, I announced aloud that I was from Windermere. I did not get any answer. We walked around all the rooms, and when I opened the door to the last bedroom there was a trio having a good old time. And they didn’t stop, you know, they just kept doing their thing.

Their secret to winning a bidding war

Kim: It is communication with the listing broker. Many brokers wait until offer review day to have fun, but if they wait until offer review day, the broker is completely overwhelmed. You know, they can be sitting with three to 15 deals on their desk or in their computer, and they’re basically trying to tick the boxes, right? They are looking for the best price and the best conditions for their seller. And they don’t necessarily take into account the level of professionalism of the buyer’s broker. Pricing and terms are surely key, but it’s common to view the buyer’s broker as a tiebreaker when comparing offers. So having a good idea of ​​who will be the best broker to complete the multitude of steps up to closing seamlessly, with someone who can easily go through a bump with some grace, I think that’s is incredibly important because our market is just too fast-paced to align with people we don’t have mutual respect for.

When the bidding wars get out of hand

Kim: We’ve probably represented a seller with about 15 bids and a buyer with about 25. We haven’t actually seen this ourselves, but I’ve heard of people competing with 35-40 bids…. Our ads, the highest was around 15 percent above ask. For buyers, I think the high we hit was 30 percent above demand. And I’m actually 15 percent satisfied. I think the reason we don’t get 25 deals is because I think we tend to list them in what I would call the sweet spot. We don’t recommend listing the perfect spot to induce that insane energy below, because if you list something at $ 500,000 that is worth $ 800,000, you’ll get 30 offers, right? I don’t want to promote this.

What they predict will be Seattle’s next red light district

Kim: I would say the Central District and Beacon Hill near the new light rail on Rainier, then the International District and Northgate and Maple Leaf in Victory Heights and Licton Springs. On the other side, I would say White Center and South Park. All this because of transport and the proximity of shops and services that will be nearby or which are currently nearby.

Where they think the Seattle real estate market trends are heading

Kim: I think we’re back to a normal summer market, a very, very busy summer market. But last summer, there didn’t seem to be an end in sight. There hasn’t been that kind of typical slowdown as we head into July and August. In what I would call our cyclical market, it tends to calm down as we move into July and decrease more as we move into August, then rise again in September, then begin to calm down again. as we head into late October and mid-November before Thanksgiving. And then we see a gradual slope again, in January, then the spring months are usually very busy. I think we are seeing a more normal market trend for the summer. But I think we’ll be back in increased sales in September.

The real estate clients they try to avoid

Kim: What is interesting is that our clients usually come from direct referrals. And direct referrals tend to attract another like-minded person. They might not have the same personality, they might not have the same background or what have you, but they tend to be nice people. Nice people tend to refer nice people. It’s very rare that we have someone who isn’t smart, collaborative, and kind. It is very rare that we have a client that is Jekyll and Hyde. But every once in a while you have Jekyll and all of a sudden you have Hyde. And that’s when your professional experience becomes incredibly more important in navigating these really difficult situations. But, you know, we try really hard to avoid the jerks.

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