Lynden Lighted Christmas Parade & Soup Kitchen

Image courtesy of Lynden Chamber of Commerce

This year’s Lighted Christmas Parade was one for the books! If you were able to make it out on Saturday night, it was a cold one but we were grateful for no rain or wind this year. It was great to see so many locals and visitors on Front Street on Saturday not only for the parade, but all day enjoying the Christmas music, hitting up the local shops, and having fun with the Elf on the Shelf event.

Our office put on the annual Soup Kitchen, serving free cups of soup to parade watchers. We sold out of soup in under an hour, so I’d say it was a success!

Thanks to everyone that attended this year’s parade and hopefully got to warm up with a delicious cup of soup provided by the staff at Muljat Group North!

Whatcom County Holiday Happenings

Now that Thanksgiving is over, I think it’s safe to officially start the holiday celebration! Bring on the holiday tunes, neighborhoods filled with Christmas lights, Egg Nog everything and cozy sweater weather. Below are some events coming up that are sure to get you in the spirit; Happy Holidays!

Lynden Lighted ParadeIt’s the most wonderful time of the year! Join downtown Lynden Friday and Saturday for fun-filled Holiday events. Don’t forget to stop by our office for a free cup of homemade soup!

Fairhaven WinterfestLocated in historic downtown Fairhaven, there will be tons of different holiday-themed events from November 23 to December 22.

Holiday Festival of the ArtsThis indoor arts festival going on November to December 24 will be featuring over 100 different artists. Check out the vendors and enjoy live music and art workshops.

Holiday Events at SemiahmooDiscover the magic of the holiday season at Semiahmoo! From November 21 to December 26 there will be festivities for the whole family! From gingerbread house making to festive and fun crafts, curling up with a hot cup of cider or photos with Santa! There’s something for everyone.

Holiday Port FestivalGather with friends and family and enjoy festive holiday performances, free holiday goodies and so many creative gingerbread houses!

‘Tis the Season to Sell!

Image courtesy of Realtor.com

It’s nearing the end of the year, and many people are waiting until the spring to revisit the idea of selling their home. If you’re someone leaning towards that plan as well, I’m here to offer you hope that there’s still time to sell this year!

  • Buyer demand is still strong! As eager as you may be to get your home sold before the holidays, many people out there are looking to buy before the new year as well. Also, of the buyers still out on the hunt are very serious and prepared to get the ball rolling fast. With the right strategy and price, it is most definitely possible to find a buyer and even close the sale before the jingle bells ring and 2019 is upon us.
  • There is much less competition out there. It’s the holidays and many of your neighbors are busy planning for family gatherings, trips, and end of year celebrations. Take advantage of this period that most will treat as down time! Play up the holiday season by accenting desired features such as a cozy fireplace, sweeping staircase, and spacious dining room. Give your buyers a visual to get them excited about celebrating the holidays in their new home!
  • Home values are always increasing. If you’re planning on upgrading to a new home, it’s important to consider that your potential new home is also increasing in value just as your current home is that you’re planning to sell. Don’t wait for what you’re hoping to be that perfect time to upgrade because it may never come.
  • Interest rates are on the rise. As interest rates increase over time, buyers subsequently have lower purchasing power which directly affects the demand for your home. Recent 30-year fixed-rate mortgages are hovering around 5%, up almost a full percentage since January 2018. Many buyers are feeling discouraged by the increasing rates and home prices, so it would be in your best interest to put your home on the market now before purchasing power potentially worsens.

Whether you are looking to buy or sell, my priority is making sure my clients are getting top by the line services and experience a smooth transaction from start to finish. Let’s discuss your goals going into the holiday season; give me call at 360-410-1297 or email me at jerryblankers@muljatgroupnorth.com

Happy Holidays!

Younger Millennial Demographic

Image and article courtesy of corelogic.com

A recent consumer housing sentiment study conducted by CoreLogic, an industry-leading public record that services real-estate databases and analyzes home pricing trends, assessed present attitudes towards homeownership and common reasons consumers decide to rent vs buy a home. Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic stated, “Our consumer research indicates younger millenials want to purchase homes but the majority of them consider affordability a key obstacle. Less than half of younger millennials who are currently renting feel confident they will qualify for a mortgage, especially in such a competitive environment.”

Potential buyers in the younger millennial demographic have a desire to buy, but aren’t aware of available options that are out there for them to take advantage of. The study found that “64 percent say they regularly monitor home values in their local market. However, while 80 percent of younger millennials plan to move in the next four to five years, 73 percent cite affordability as a barrier to homeownership.”

The results of this study are telling and prove there is work to do in educating the younger generations on the possibilities of owning a home. The options are out there and we are here to answer questions and set you up with the right people to get you on the right path! We work with reputable loan consultants that specialize in the financing process and would love to help in making your dreams of owning a home come true. Give us a call if you’re unsure at all about your options!

Happy Halloween in Whatcom County!

It’s the last weekend in October and just a week away from Halloween! If you haven’t had the chance to go celebrate the fall season yet, Whatcom County has a full calendar of events going on this weekend.

Still need to make a trip to the pumpkin patch? There’s still plenty of pumpkins to choose from and fun to be had at:

BelleWood Acres

Stoney Ridge Farm

Willetta Farm 

Dan Cramer’s Western Town 

Take your pick and get to carving just in time to celebrate Halloween!


Or, if you’re looking for a reason to put your costume on or get in the spooky spirit, look into one of these local events linked below!

What To Do In and Around Bellingham October 26—28

Local Market Update

What’s Going on in the Market?

Good questions! Historically, we see a dip in the market during the 4th quarter due to many factors including the busyness of the holiday season and weather changes. This is a great opportunity for any buyers that are still on the hunt because there’s fewer competition and likely less instances of multiple offer situations. This is also a great time to put your home on the market because the buyers are much more serious and motivated to make a move before the new year! If you’re looking to find a home or get your property sold before 2019, you’ve come to the right place. Give me a call; we’re happy to help you reach those goals.

Stoney Ridge Farm is BACK!

 

What better way to celebrate the fall season than to take a trip to your local pumpkin patch?! After taking a couple years off, Stoney Ridge Farm is opening back up this month and is so excited to welcome the community back to the farm! If you never visited them in past years, you can expect to find fun farm activities, animals to see, their famous cider and pumpkin donuts (YUM). They’ll also have a corn maze, wagon rides, and OF COURSE, the vast pumpkin patch to pick out the perfect Jack O’ Lantern to carve! Mark your calendars people… Starting Friday, Octover 12th, open Fridays from 1pm-5pm and Saturdays from 10am-5pm through the end of October.

It’s Harvest Season!

As the season changes from summer to fall, now is a great time to reflect on the year so far. If you’ve been working on a project and finally seeing it come to fruition, celebrate the time and energy you put in! Maybe you’re finishing up a remodel to get your home ready for the market or have been saving up funds and searching for that first home to purchase. We’re here to help you take that step and reap the benefits of all that hard work…

If you’ve been keeping tabs on the real estate market in our area, you’re aware of the extreme conditions we’ve seen this year with low inventory and record-breaking prices. Home buyers are understandably nervous, but we’d like to offer some advice on how to make the best decisions going forward:

  • Be prepared beforehand. Getting pre-approval for a loan BEFORE making an offer is imperative in order to act quickly when the time comes. Inventory that is priced correctly may have several offers coming in and you won’t want to miss out because of financial questions. That’s just one less variable to worry about when you find that property you love!
  • Find a team of experts that have your best interest in mind. That’s where we come in! It is our priority to make sure our clients trust our advice and always feel like a priority. We understand that buying a home isn’t a small decision and can stir up a range of emotions. Surround yourself with experts that will advocate for you!
  • Have patience. The local market is already showing signs of stabilizing with a drop in median sale prices from $402,500 in July down to $374,900 in August. Over this last month, we’ve also seen inventory sit longer and properties are beginning to drop in price which shows a sense of urgency and attempt to regain buyers’ attention.

We encourage buyers to be prepared, be patient in their search and find trusted experts that will help navigate the market. If you’d like to discuss your situation or have further questions about the current market conditions, we’d love to chat!

Give us a call at 360-410-1297 or email our team at jerry@jerryblankers.com.