New homes rising in West Seattle’s Westwood neighborhood

Reprinted from my December newsletter:

Another sign that we are easing out of the housing crisis is the spate of new homes being offered by Seattle-area builders. As lenders make more money available to builders, builders are more willing to speculate.  • You may have noticed that many older homes in Westwood are being purchased by developers who “scrape” the dilapidated structures and replace them with new construction. Most of the new homes are much larger than the older homes. As a result, we are seeing sale prices in the $400K-$500k range in our neighborhood. The average existing-home sale price in Westwood (homes built before 1950) is closer to $320K. Over time, this is likely to change the demographics of our neighborhood. It is also an indication that West Seattle’s  “east of 35th” vs. “west of 35th” mindset may be diminishing. Whether or not that has a positive impact on Westwood, remains to be seen. • Do you have an opinion about this? If so, please comment below.

I recently created a new Pinterest Board dedicated to home sales in the Westwood Neighborhood. Each month I will post info about the latest sales. You can access the board here: http://pinterest.com/aakuder/  The board is titled (not surprisingly) Westwood Home Sales.

This home at 7541 31st Ave SW sold for $535K on 10/30/12

This home at 7541 31st Ave SW sold for $535K on 10/30/12

 

Westwood Bungalow for Sale

Just listed this week! Cute, cute, cute 2 bedroom/1 bath 1928 home in the under-appreciated Westwood neighborhood of West Seattle! 8139 30th Ave SW, 98126. $259,500  MLS# 368850

This small and adorable home has been lovingly cared for and is in great condition. Crown molding, muted, designer colors, hardwood floors, granite countertops, low-maintenance landscaping… it’s all here. 720 sq. ft of living space, plus another 220 unfinished space in the basement for storage and doing laundry. Huge 7,860 sq. ft. lot with a poured foundation for a 2+ car garage or MIL unit. Plenty of room for an RV or boat or both, with easy alley access.

AND it’s in Westwood! If you don’t know about the Westwood neighborhood, you should. One of the best-kept-secrets in West Seattle, Westwood has nearly every amenity you could want. AND you will likely pay at least $20K LESS than you would for a comparable home on “the other side” of 35th! Ignoring outdated perceptions of the east side of 35th Ave can save you big bucks and provide you a great quality of life.

Here’s some of what you will find within a 2 mile radius of this great home.

Westwood Village Shopping Center; US Post Office; 4 public parks (including Lincoln Park on Lowman Beach and one brand new park one block south of the home); 1 indoor and 1 outdoor public pool; numerous restaurants; 2 community centers; brand new public tennis courts; health club; bus lines to downtown; public and private schools; South Seattle Community College; Longfellow Creek Trail; and more!

Questions? Call me at 206-708-9800.

Tree trimming mystery in Westwood

I live in the Westwood neighborhood of West Seattle and absolutely love it! The people are friendly without being nosey, they walk a lot, they maintain their homes, and they are very pet-friendly, among other attributes. But Westwood apparently has a mystery tree trimmer in its midst.

On a recent walk with my dog, I was puzzled to see some small tree branches had been clipped off and left lying on the sidewalk. A few houses down, I saw the same thing. It seemed very strange that two homeowners would have done this same thing. I kept walking and soon discovered the same phenomenon repeated over and over again all the way from SW Thistle Street to SW Myrtle Street (approximately one mile)!

As I continued my walk around Westwood neighborhood, I saw that this mystery hacker had continued his self-appointed mission on several other streets in the neighborhood.

I can only assume that someone has taken it upon himself (yes, I’m choosing to brand this person as a male) to trim any branches that he perceives to be invading the public sidewalk! That’s a pretty gutsy move, if you ask me. I might feel differently if he picked up the clippings and hauled them away but, no, he just left them along the sidewalk for others to deal with.

A couple of days later, I saw a notice on a telephone poll, apparently written and posted by an irritated Westwood neighborhood resident, declaring this tree trimming to be a cowardly and despicable act. I tend to agree.

What do you think?

Can anyone identify this mystery hacker?

 

 

Living Green in my car

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I am not a car buff. When it comes to my car, I want it to be dependable and economical with a little bit of “cute” mixed in. My 2001 Toyota Echo fills the bill. The only thing that is likely to convince me to trade it in rather than run it into the ground is the lure of an electric car (or at least a hybrid).

Yesterday’s Seattle Times ran two blurbs on the front of the NW Autos section that apply to me. The headline of the first read, “Been a while since you bought a new car? There are big advances to anticipate.” The second read, “E-FOCUS on sale.”

It’s true. When I see or hear about the features that are now standard in new cars, I feel as if I’m in a time warp. In fact, when I bought my car new, it was devoid of many of the updated features that other cars had, so now I am even further behind.

Even so, I’m pleased that I get an average of 33 mpg, have no car payments, and have logged over 110,000 miles with no major repairs. It fulfills, in part, my commitment to living green in terms of transportation. Yes, I could probably take the bus more often, but even though my job as a Prudential real estate agent requires a lot of driving, I still put fewer than 10,000 miles/year on my car. Fortunately, I live in the Westwood Village neighborhood, which is a very walkable part of West Seattle. Even in the worst snow storms I can walk to several West Seattle restaurants, grocery stores and other retailers, plus the Post Office, Southwest Community Center and more.

I suspect that it may take another 5-10 years for the auto makers to really perfect electric cars, which should be just about the time my current car “runs out of gas” (pun intended). That, and the $40,000 price tag on the E-FOCUS, give me the incentive to wait for my first electric car.

How about you? Will your next car be a hybrid or all electric?