26 April 2012

Seatte Real Estate Market Update ~ Inventory Way Down, Prices Up

The Seattle single-family home market continued to show signs of improvement in March.  (April statistics are due out in a couple of weeks.)  Highly competitive multiple offers abound and prices in some areas showed marked improvement over last March, with the following areas showing dramatic growth:
  • Area 700 - Queen Anne/Magnolia:  up 30.99% - $469,500 to $615,000
  • Area 710 - NE Seattle:  up 22.94% - $388,000 to $477,000
  • Area 390 - Capitol Hill/Madison Park/Central Area :  up 21.04% - $477,000 to $577,375
  • Area 705 - NW Seattle:  up 11.27% - $377,475 to $420,000
It must be noted that prices are fluctuating from month to month and that we are not seeing these big gains on a consistent basis, which to a certain extent is a relief.  This level of growth is a new phenomena, as the market has kicked into a higher gear in the past couple of months.  Conversely, we have not seen this kind of growth  since the boom years.  The effect of low inventory cannot be understated.  Months of inventory based on pending single-family home sales is down to an anemic 1.7 months.  Segregating non-distressed homes and distressed homes (ie:  short sales and bank-owned properties), months of inventory for the two categories continue to be nearly equal, clocking in at 1.7 and 2.1 months respectively.  Values are up year-over-year from $380K to 411K, with non-distressed homes selling at median price of 460K and distressed homes plummeting to 218K.

Lack of inventory is seen at all price points, areas, and property types.  Seattle condos show an improved position, and moving out from the Seattle and Eastside core, lowering inventory in the outskirts of King County and into Snohomish and Pierce Counties may be finally slowing depreciation.  The seeds of stability can be seen in a colony of North Seattle town homes I recently analysed, where prices had grown from roughly $290K to $320K in one year's time.  Growth of this magnitude in the city is hopefully a harbinger of growth moving outward into the rest of the region.

Below you will find detailed statistics.  As always, let me know if I can be of help in anyway! 

These charts represent all single-family homes (not condos but including town homes) in all Seattle areas.

19 April 2012

Casa Fiore's Cucina Returns Saturday, May 19th!

You are invited to another round of food and fun in Casa Fiore's Cucina Cooking Class!  We'll learn some new but classic dishes, savor copious amounts of good eats and drinks, and enjoy lots of laughter courtesy of my lovely wife Lisa, aka Miss Intermission!  This is a can't-miss event!  Let me know if you'd like to join us...details below.

Fantastic Vashon Island Beach Home Just in Time for Summer

Casa Fiore #65: Published, Posted, and in the Mail!

This month's offerings include:
  • From the Chef and Gardener:  Prepare Your Winter Larder TODAY!
  • Invitation to Casa Fiore's Cucina, Saturday, May 19th
  • Observations From the Field:  It's a Sellers, Market for Many Sellers
  • A Beach Home Just in Time For Summer
Stay tuned to CasaFioreOnline.com for the web release of selected articles.  Care to join the hundreds who receive the old-fashioned, snail mail version of Casa Fiore at their door step?  Send along your address and let me know!

12 April 2012

From the Chef and the Gardener ~ Prepare Your Winter Larder TODAY!

How can I dare mention wearying winter on the heals of our first glorious 70°April day? Because on days like these you plant tomorrow’s meal of beets and peas.  As a gardener-chef, delight is found in delayed gratification, and that’s why I am thinking ahead to fall, when I sit down and inventory all the flavorful and nutritious tidbits I will have at my disposal over the long, wet winter.  The list reads like a sailing ship’s manifest, only tastier:  “A bottle of dandelion wine, 9 containers of strawberry freezer jam, 391 kiwis, 2 rows of carrots, 2 cases of Pocky’s Red Ale, 5 stalks of Brussels sprouts...”, all proud products of my 5000 ft² Green Lake lot.  Think of this like the time spent waiting for pizza dough to rise, only a little longer.  For me, the kitchen starts in the garden, and thus June’s dinner starts right now.  I can already taste black currant jam on my 2013 January toast, I’m already savoring over-wintered chard in my gnocchi.  There shall be no dine until it’s time, so plan ahead, get your seeds in the ground, and get your fantasy pantry in motion for those short, gray days in the distance!

Plant berries.  Berries of all varieties hit the mark in many ways, as they are easy to maintain year after year for super tasty homegrown food.  Just follow the recipe on the box–quick and simple to make, and no canning involved.  Strawberry jam is loved dearly by my girls throughout the winter!

Consider canning.  Whenever I have canned, the reward was great!  How awesome is it to pull a jar of my pears with cinnamon and cloves off the shelf in the middle of December?

Plant with an eye for the future.  Start beets, leeks, carrots, and other cold weather veggies now; if space frees up, seed another patch later.  Don’t touch them until the weather turns, and then let the outdoors become your auxiliary fridge.

Consider other ways to preserve summer’s bounty.  Homemade liqueurs, freezer pesto, dried herbs, oven-dried tomatoes, and “lazy man’s canning”— gallon Ziploc bags filled with tomatoes prepped for making sauce, pie-ready rhubarb and berries, and shelled fava beans for soups and sautés.

06 April 2012

"Check, Please" TV Appearance was a Blast!

What a lot of fun it was to be on Check, Please!, KCTS 9's new Seattle restaurant review show!   As everyone knows about me, I LOVE to talk about food, so this fulfilled a fantasy of mine!  To view the show, click on the link attached to this post or find it listed below under Favorite Links. 


03 April 2012

Fiore to Review Restaurants on TV

 Please tune in as I get to do something I love . . .


Check, Please

on KCTS 9

Thursday, April 5th, 7:00pm

Check, Please is a new KCTS 9 show in which three viewers discuss one another’s favorite restaurant.  Can you guess which restaurant I picked?

Click on the link below to learn more.  You can see a preview
by clicking the "Watch Preview" button at the bottom of the image.