When to buy a condo in Seattle?

I've just graduated and got a job in Seattle. My Salary is $155K. I will be able to save around $60K in 6 months for the down payment of a condo (around 450K). Do you recommend me to wait for a year or two and then buy a condo or just buy a place after six months?
  • May 29 2014 - Seattle
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Answers (11)

Congrats on the new job, I hope you are enjoying it so far!  This question really depends on what you are comfortable with.  Waiting a year or two should conceivably allow you more options in terms of price but then again you might prefer the additional freedom of owning your own place in six months.  I will say it's never too early to start monitoring the condo values in areas you think you want to live.  Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions.

Wendy

  • July 17 2014
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Historically the best time to buy a condo in Seattle is in the mid fall or winter when there aren't as many buyers shopping.   I'd say save until December and start making an offer.  You can make an offer with a 60 day close and get pre-approved before making your offer.   Contact me if you need further assistance.
  • July 13 2014
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  • July 11 2014
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Who the [Removed by Zillow Moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy.] Seattle is so over priced
  • July 11 2014
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  • July 03 2014
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Greetings, 

Great question and a lot of great answers.  The one point that I did not see addressed here that may limit you is your employment history.  Typically a lender will need longer than 6 months of even a year to finance your home purchase.  There may be some options out there but you should speak to a local lender now to see what your options are.  Typically a lender needs 2 years of verified employment history but again there may be some options for you.  

Also 60K would not be the ideal down payment for a 450K property.  The greatest financial benefit beyond 5% down is 20% down to eliminate mortgage insurance (which can be a hefty monthly payment).  If you have any follow up questions please don't hesitate to ask.  All the best.
  • June 23 2014
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I would encourage you to buy when you have your down payment. Are you working with a loan officer yet? They can advise you about rates, help you through things you may not know you have of your credit, educate you on the different type of loan products and get you a much needed preapproval letter when you are ready.

Just think in two years from now you could be turning your condo into an investment property. I would be happy to set up a time to meet to discuss what you are looking for. It does not hurt to start the search now to see what is out there and know what you get for your money.

Warmly,

Stephanie Stetler
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  • June 05 2014
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I know of a great realtor, here name is Connie Ly - you can find her through find a pro tab.  She is awesome and knows Seattle.

  • May 30 2014
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Profile picture for AdrianChu
Welcome to Seattle!
 
You should not spend $450k for a condo in Seattle if you are looking for a good investment.  If you are treating it as a lifestyle, then sure, go for it.  With $450k, I would suggest a townhome or even a single-family home. Most townhomes in Seattle do not have HOA dues, which means instead of paying $300-400 a month to the HOA, you can put that towards your mortgage payment and afford more house for the buck.
 
If you care about appreciation and future potential and want to live in a condo, you can consider condos that are in the low $100k price range (for 1 bedroom) in North Seattle.   I recently posted an answer on Quora which may be helpful:
 
"This might sound like a lame answer but the ones with best resale value are those that you buy for below market value. This was easy in 2012, but not so much anymore in 2014.  Within Seattle city limits, I would recommend buying those in the low $100k range for 1 bedrooms, in North Seattle. At the lower end of the price range, there is much less risk, and much more potential for appreciation, because they can go up in price for a larger percentage and still be considered affordable."
Let me know if you have any questions.  Good luck!
  • May 30 2014
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With those facts I think the biggest factor might be how well you like or hate where you live now!  Many years ago we did a major remodel on our old house and had to live in an apartment for a couple of months.  We hated it, so much so that we moved out early into a one bedroom condo I owned.  The daughter had to sleep in the living room for a couple of weeks, but it was better than that apartment.

Seemingly if you like the place you're at then you could start looking to buy as soon as you are able, but still look at your leisure for just the right place, and that's a good situation to be in.
  • May 30 2014
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Profile picture for daveskow
if you definitely plan on buying -I would recommend  buying as soon as you have the down payment  for 2 reasons ....1) rates are  very low now  and might now be so low in a " year or two "  and 2) values likely to increase

fyi .....if you are able to locate a condo thats FHA approved - the down payment can be as low as 3.5% of the price  ($15,750 ) ........if  using a conventional loan - down payment can be as low as 5% of price ( $22,500) ....ideally a down payment of 20%-25% down is best as you will eliminate the need for mortgage insurance and also get best rates and fees ,,,,,,,,,,,,,
feel free to contact me via my profile should you have any other needs or questions ( located in Seattle as well )
  • May 29 2014
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