Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Housing is making a comeback!


Amazing. The report actually said that "home sales surge." Wow! That's pretty impressive considering how poorly the housing market has done recently. With the federal money for first time home buyers available ($8,000 tax credit) and move up buyers allowed a $6500 tax credit until April 2010, things are looking good. Is it time for you to move? If so, give me a call!! There are lots of good deals out there.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Issaquah Alps Real Estate Specialist

Hi all, if you are looking to buy or sell a home in the Issaquah Alps, call me! This is the area that I specialize in. Cougar, Squak and Tiger Mountain. Great locations, super houses. The foothills of the Issaquah/Bellevue area of King County are sure to offer something to please you. Are you looking for a view? Nice neighborhood? A bit of land? An estate? I can help you find just the right home! Call me at 425-890-0124

Monday, September 21, 2009

$8,000 First Time Buyer's Bonus

Here is a link to a video explaining the $8,000 buyer's bonus. Check it out!


You are running out of time, so call me and we can arrange a time to find your new home!

Saturday, September 19, 2009


If you are looking for a great deal in Issaquah, call me! Especially if you don't have a down payment. I know of some single family townhomes that are almost sold out and the lender is offering zero down with 4.125% interest rate on a 30 year fixed mortgage. How can you pass that up??? Perhaps it is time for you to stop throwing money away on rent and own your own home. You will love these homes. They have 2 car garages, gas fireplaces, granite counters, 2 bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths and are a real bargain. Call me at 425-890-0124 and we can arrange a time for you to see them. Only 4 left, so HURRY!! Oh, there is also no mortgage insurance required!!

Friday, September 4, 2009

FHA and Mobile Homes

If you are looking to purchase a mobile home and hope to use FHA financing, you will need to get creative because FHA is no longer offering to finance mobile homes. If you need some help figuring out how to buy a mobile home without FHA, give me a call. I would be happy to assist you!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Get tons of Real Estate Info from my WEBSITE

If you are looking for information about selling your home without an agent, want special reports on how to prepare your home for sale, want to search for your new home by map, need a referral for a handyman or some other specialty or wonder why you should use me for your next real estate transaction, CHECK OUT MY WEBSITE: www.sandyyoung.net

And check back often. You can check on the weather in any location, get information about our local schools or community reports. I have what you need on my website. And if you can't find what you are looking for, send me an email. Perhaps I can add it!

I am only an email or phone call away. I always look forward to your feedback and want to help you in any way I am able.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Orange Chocolate Sugar Cookie Bars

I admit that I was watching TV on Thursday while babysitting my granddaughter...aawww....and saw Giada DeLaurentiis making this dessert. I just had to try it! Here is what you do. Lightly spray some cooking spray in your 10x13" pan (approx.)Take a roll of sugar cookie dough (Pillsbury is good) and smoosh it flat in the pan so it is about 1/4" thick. Bake it at 350 in your oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and spread some orange marmalade over the top. Toast about 1 C of nuts of your choice (I used almond and pecans) and then chop them and sprinkle them on top of the marmalade. Then drizzle some melted chocolate chips over the top. Let it set for a few hours so the chocolate hardens (oops, I didn't do that) then cut apart and enjoy! EASY

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Short Sales - Selling your home for less than you owe

Before you decide to sell your house "short" and get out of a bad situation, talk to me. Although banks can and will agree to sell the house for less than you owe, guess what! Unless they put in writing for you that they are waiving any balance owed by you, you are still going to need to pay the bank off! You may close the transaction and breathe a sigh of relief that you got this lousy home loan taken care of, but down the road a week, a month or a year, you could find out that you are in a huge financial bind that you were not prepared for.

Many people are going into foreclosure or selling short and the general public assumes that it is a clean and simple way out. Not so fast!! Be sure you talk to a REAL ESTATE ATTORNEY to find out what your best option is BEFORE you list your house for sale. Foreclosure, Short Sale or Bankruptcy are all options and an attorney can help you decide your best plan of action.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Gardening Class near Issaquah

Hands on Gardening Class!

In an actual landscape
instead of a classroom,
get familiar with:

· Caring for Ornamentals Organically
· Basic Landscape Design Concepts
· Avoiding Deer and Slugs
· Knowing Weeds vs. Plants
· Growing and Harvesting Food
· Incorporating Backyard Chickens
· Composting
· Plant Propagation

When: 4 Thursdays—July 9,23, Aug 6, 20
6:30-8:30pm or 10am-12pm. Limit 8 attendees.
Who: Adults and youth 6th grade and up
Where: Tiger Mtn. area of Issaquah.
Tuition: $80 (incl 4 classes, pro-rated if start late)
Instructor: Samantha Zistatsis of Toad Hollow Designs.
For registration and directions, call Toad Hollow Designs at 425-765-4767 or e-mail at toadhollow@integrity.com

Toad Hollow Designs
Beautiful Landscape with Purpose for People, Pets, and Wildlife

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

If you own a rental home, read this!

Have you thought about what might happen if your rental home were to catch fire or be flooded? Sure, you have homeowner's insurance, but it doesn't cover your renter's personal property. If you were to make it a requirement in your lease agreement that the tenant have renter's insurance, it just might protect you as a landlord from paying for their damaged or destroyed goods. Now that's something to think about!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Island Curry Layers - Appetizer Recipe

Summer is right around the corner and here is a yummy easy recipe for your next gathering.


8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 cup mango chutney
1/3 cup shredded coconut
1 cup cooked chicken, diced
1/2 C. raisins
1/2 cup salted peanuts

Mix cream cheese, cottage cheese, sour cream and curry powder together until smooth. Spread over bottom of an appetizer plate.

Add layers of chutney, raisins, coconut, chicken, and peanuts. Cover. Chill. Serve with crackers.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Behind in house payments, need help?

Here is a link that may help you find some helpful advice:


Some of you may be struggling with a difficult decision. Should we let our house go back to the bank (they really don't want it!) in a foreclosure, do we need to sell short, which requires bank participation to agree to let you sell the house for less than you owe on it. Perhaps another alternative is to see what our government has made available in the way of help. Lots of people bought their homes with a very high debt to income ratio which has made it very tough for families to make their house payment and still have money for food, clothing, etc. If you are in this category, check out the link and see if there is a way for you to refinance, or reduce your payment amount in order to be able to stay in your home. If you have questions or would like to talk about whether to sell or refinance, give me a call at 425-890-0124.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

SNAILS and your garden

So, look what I found on our sidewalk today! This is the first time I've seen a snail on our property, although my husband said he's seen a few. Slugs yes, snails no. I guess this is a reminder that it is time to get outdoors and clean up the garden, put down some slug and snail bait, plant some new flowers and think about some minor changes to the landscape. You may be one of those people like me who appreciates the look of the yard and yet doesn't have time to learn all about what plants are best in what exposure, so is intimidated about putting things in the ground. After the fact is usually when I find out it is not the best spot for that particular plant. I have a solution. Hire a professional! If you live in the greater King County area and would like to find someone to help, I have a solution for you. Consider hiring Samantha of Toad Hollow Designs. She will do a consultation (usually 2 hours) and will discuss your particular landscape needs and come up with some terrific ideas. I know Samantha and she is someone you can trust and who KNOWS HER PLANTS! Oh, and she doesn't charge an arm and a leg for her services! Here is her information:

What do you want to do?
· Renovate an existing landscape
· Create something from scratch
· Add easy care edibles
· Go Organic
· Attract beneficial wildlife
· Deter deer and slugs
· Identify the plants you have
· Incorporate more color
· Make use of materials on hand
· Learn pruning techniques

Other services:
· Speaking for groups
· Plant shopping
· Preparing home for sale
· Full-scale design

Toad Hollow Designs
Beautiful Landscape with Purpose
for People, Pets, and Wildlife
Samantha Zistatsis
Landscape Designer/Consultant

Now do yourself a favor and give her a call!!!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Unemployment, interest rates and FEAR!!

There is so much fear nationwide about our unemployment rate. Go to http://www.data360.org/dsg.aspx?Data_Set_Group_Id=44 to look at a statistical chart listing unemployment rates from 1948 to March 2009. I know there are many ways to compile statistics and of course, it is 100% if it is YOU, but look at overall 8.5% nationally in March. And we here in the Seattle (9.2% and going down) area are faring much better than other parts of the country (like Detroit which is at 21% unemployment with the average price of homes at $18,513.) YIKES!!

There is much room for fear to creep in to our thinking. However, there are signs that the housing crisis is leveling off and beginning to improve. Personally, I am seeing more buyers getting off the fence. Interest rates are at a SUPER LOW rate of under 5% on a 30 year fixed loan. That number can change throughout any day and different companies offer different plans. If you would like to talk to a lender to see about refinancing out of your ARM or to get a better rate than you now have on your conventional loan, call me and I would be happy to refer you to some really good lenders, who will do all they can to treat you with integrity and offer the best rate possible.

If you are desiring to buy a new home, NOW IS THE RIGHT TIME!!! If you wait, interest rates will be going back up and so will housing prices. There is still a good selection of homes and you can negotiate a super price. And if you are a 1st time buyer (haven't owned a home in the past 3 years) you may qualify for up to an $8,000 tax refund if you close on your purchase before November 30th. Don't delay. CALL ME at 425-890-0124

Monday, April 6, 2009

What is the Annual Percentage Rate? (APR)

If you are in the market for a home right now you will see some amazing offers out there from the lenders on new construction. Really low rates, of say 3.875%, but then there is that small print where it lists the APR at 3.9883%. Or perhaps they will say that the interest rate does not include tax and insurance. Whoa, Nellie!! That can be a BIG chunk of change! You may be thinking that you are getting a great deal on your interest rate and can afford more house than you thought, when in reality, you can get sucked in and then when you have an emotional investment in that beautiful new house, you find out that you really can't afford that high of a payment!

Bottom line is that you need to be aware of all the somewhat sneaky ways that lenders appeal to your senses and though they are being honest about their rates, the average person doesn't have a clue how they package all the fees associated with the loan and can be shocked when they are in the middle of this process.

So, PAY ATTENTION, PLEASE! The APR on a loan is higher than the stated interest rate on your loan because the "points" (one point equals 1% of the loan amount) that you have to pay to buy down your interest rate to this low, low, low percentage costs money! And that is usually tacked onto your loan. Then there are loan origination fees that may or may not be tacked on. How about the pre-paid interest, which is the interest paid from the date that the loan closes to the end of the month. Most companies assume 15 days of interest when they calculate this, but some companies may use any number between 1 and 30! You will also have a loan-processing fee, underwriting fee, document preparation fee and PMI (private mortgage insurance.) Sometimes the loan-application fee and credit life insurance (pays off the mortgage in the event of the borrowers death) are also added in to the APR.

Be sure you find out just what you have to pay for to get that interest rate. And don't be fooled into thinking that the low percentage is really what you will end up with. Look at that APR number! Also be sure you find out how long your rate is "locked" for. It is possible that a 10 day rate lock may have a lower APR than the lender who offers a 60 day rate lock. This whole business is confusing!

Bottom line is to check with 2 or 3 lenders when you refinance or purchase that new home. Whether you are looking to buy a new home or resale, rates are the best they have been in decades! Back in the early 80's when people were paying up to 17% interest rate to buy a home, it was unreal! When you look back to those days and even the more recent 8-10% rates, it is certainly a perfect time NOW to buy your home. How long can interest rates stay at 5-6%??

Remember to think about how much it will cost in points to buy your rate down further and factor in how long you plan on staying in your home.

Be sure you call me with all your real estate needs. If there is information you need, I can help. And if there is something I'm not certain of, I will go to the experts to get the answer!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Where does WA rank in foreclosure rates in Feb. 2009?

Right in the middle! Number 25, showing a total of 3,021 homes. Number 1 is Nevada with 15,783 for the month. And Number 50 is Nebraska with only 13. These placings must be made per capita since Florida had 46,391 in February but ranked 4th. Unfortunately my information doesn't explain how the states arrived with their rank. If you look at Nevada's % change from February 2008, foreclosures are up 155.93%, where Florida is up 42.97%. Washington is up 36.08 from 2/08 to 2/09. And Nebraska is down 94.37%! For those of you that like statistics you might find all this interesting. We hear a lot about the worst states for foreclosures, so it is no surprise to find These top 5: Nevada, Arizona, California, Florida and Idaho. At the bottom are Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont and Nebraska.

In spite of the real estate market slowdown, I am seeing more people out looking at houses and just had papers signed around on one of my listings yesterday. So if you are thinking of selling your present home, give me a call. I would love to help!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Refinance now!

If you have an ARM (adjustable rate mortgage) or are paying a high interest rate, now is the time to talk to a qualified and reputable lender and see about refinancing your home loan. The federal reserve has made more money available and interest rates are now really low. Read the following article and find out for yourself why you should consider refinancing. Be sure to consider how much of a difference this will make in your payments and factor in the cost of the new loan. Talk to your lender and if he/she can't help or you are unhappy with your lender for any reason, feel free to call me or send me an email. I am happy to make recommendations for some great lenders who I know you can trust. Call me at 425-890-0124 or email me at sandyyoung@cbbain.com


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Blog is back! And here is a recipe for CAKE IN A MUG

OK, so ignore my previous post. It looks like making a new post has kick-started things and all is well in my blog-a-sphere! Here is a recipe that I have not tried yet, but found it posted by a friend on my facebook page. Here goes:


4 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional and of course we chose this option!)
a small splash of vanilla extract
1 large coffee mug
Add dry ingredients to mug, and mix well. Add the egg and mix thoroughly. Pour in the milk and oil and mix well.Add the chocolate chips (if using) and vanilla extract and mix again.Put your mug in the microwave and cook for3 minutes at 1000 watts. The cake will rise over the top of the mug, but don't be alarmed! Allow to cool a little,and tip out onto a plate if desired. YUM!

Thanks Jenny!

Where are all my previous posts?

I'm confused! My blog is empty and I don't know what magical force in the universe has erased everything. If anyone has any ideas as to what has happened, please let me know!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Hailey Madison Myron has arrived!

Our daughter, Shauna, gave birth Friday morning to Hailey who was 6 lb. 6.5 oz. and 18 3/4" long. Isn't she a cutie pie???

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Bellevue is growing

Did anyone notice the article in the Seattle PI last week titled "Bellevue condos still selling well"? Amazingly, the Bellevue Towers condo project, which are 42 and 43 stories tall, is going strong, even in our difficult economy. They have reportedly sold 180 of their 534 units. These aren't cheap units! They sell between approximately $500,000 to $9 million and the average unit is slightly over $1 million.

The population for downtown Bellevue is also growing, up 73% from the year 2000. Last year there were 5000 residents and the city is projecting that by 2010 it will increase to 9800, by 2020 to 10,989 and by 2030 they project 14,914 residents in the city. All you have to do is look at all the cranes in the downtown area to see that the Bellevue economy is booming!

If you are considering moving to downtown Bellevue, give me a call and I will help you find just the right match for your style and pocketbook.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

RECIPE for Chicken Divan

This is easy and VERY tasty. Try it!


Cook in ¼ C. water until barely tender 1 lb. Broccoli (Fresh) cut into pieces

Place broccoli in buttered baking dish.

Place over broccoli 1 ½ to 2 lbs. Cooked chicken breasts,
cut into chunks (bake at 350, covered w/foil)
25-35 minutes

Mix and pour over top 1 can cream of chicken soup
½ C. mayonnaise
1 Tb. Lemon juice
½ tsp. Curry powder

Sprinkle over top 1 C. shredded cheddar cheese

Sprinkle over top 1 C. bread crumbs
¼ C. melted butter or margarine

Bake at 350 until bubbly (about 30 minutes.) Fit for company! Serves 6

Monday, January 12, 2009

Looks like Buyers are GETTING OFF THE FENCE!


How about this news article in today's Seattle PI! Finally someone is giving us some positive news about real estate in our area. Personally, I have had more calls from buyers since January 1st than I've had in a long time. I even had real buyers come to my open house on Sunday. It sure looks to me like people are ready to buy. Although there are those out of work, this area still has a fairly strong employment base. I'm looking for 2009 to be the beginning of a good thing, as Martha Stewart would say. Thank you Seattle PI for reporting some good news! I'm betting that we have hit bottom and will remain stable for awhile. If you are looking for a home here in the greater King County area, call me. I love the hunt! And I enjoy negotiating a good deal for you. (425)890-0124