Buyers come from many places

Steve Kraght Realty Report
Posted 2/28/17

On a day-to-day basis, I am frequently asked where buyers are coming from to purchase property in Jefferson County.

My answer differs and is subjective to the buyers I have been working with …

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Buyers come from many places

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On a day-to-day basis, I am frequently asked where buyers are coming from to purchase property in Jefferson County.

My answer differs and is subjective to the buyers I have been working with directly over the past few years. I decided to get a wider perspective and took a poll of a few active real estate agents to see not only what areas their buyers were coming from, but also to find out the purpose of their purchases.

I polled five Jefferson County agents about where the buyers they had represented in their past six transactions had come from. The agents polled were Terry Smith of Re/Max (Port Townsend), Ellen Niemitalo of John L. Scott Real Estate (Port Townsend), Val Schindler of Windermere Hood Canal (Brinnon), Nikki Casal of Coldwell Banker Best Homes (Port Ludlow) and Steve Crosland of Windermere Real Estate (Port Townsend).

The results were as follows:

Q: Where did their buyers come from?

A: Local, 32 percent; California, 21 percent; Seattle, 18 percent; Arizona, 9 percent; eastern Washington and Oregon, 6 percent; and one buyer each from New York, Montana and Olympia, Washington.

Q: Why did they purchase?

A: Second home, 32 percent (most with the idea of eventually retiring here); retirement home, 24 percent; first-time home buyer, 18 percent; relocation, 15 percent; investment, 9 percent; and one single “move up” buyer.

Most local buyers fall into one of the following categories and for one of the following reasons: Investment/rental property, as rents are increasing at a dramatic rate; first-time home buyers, due to consistent low-interest rates; and relocation for the purpose of downsizing. It is not surprising that we saw a large percentage of Seattle and California buyers. Those buyers are coming from extremely hot markets, making Jefferson County prices affordable to them.

It is hard to imagine the trend of Jefferson County being a “retirement destination” slowing down. With its natural beauty, mild climate year around and proximity to outdoor activities, it is easy to see the attraction. Interest rate levels and prices will determine whether we see first-time home buyers continue to be a solid percentage in Jefferson County.

(Steve Kraght, president of the Jefferson County Association of Realtors, is a broker at John L. Scott Real Estate in Port Townsend.)

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