tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-101619152008-02-27T10:48:09.932-08:00Leavenworth Washington Real Estate Blog www.myLEAVENWORTH.comGeordie RomerBlogger131125tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-3578218182126114402008-02-26T14:47:00.000-08:002008-02-26T21:43:58.632-08:00Leavenworth Real Estate - No Fire Sale<p>Real estate has been in the <a id="cvd2" title="Real Estate downturn" href="http://www.realtor.org/press_room/news_releases/2008/ehs_homes_sales_slip2_25_08.html" target="_blank">national news of late</a>. The National Association of Realtors recently announced that existing home sales are at the lowest point in 9 years. </p><p></p><p>Sounds like great news for buyers and real estate investors hoping to buy at a low point in the market. It would be, if it were true in Leavenworth and Lake Wenatchee.</p><p></p><p>This summer I reported a <a id="s2tw" title="Leavenworth real estate" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/07/leavenworths-real-estate-market-seems.html" target="_blank">slowdown in the Leavenworth real estate market</a> <b>.</b> At the time we had 135 single family homes for sale and a deluge of newly constructed condos.</p><p></p><p>Fast forward to this Winter and the <a id="ni:k" title="Leavenworth market rebounds" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2008/02/real-estate-in-leavenworth-is-heating.html" target="_blank">Leavenworth real estate market looks a little different</a><b>. </b>This isn't spin from a rosy glassed Realtor, the real data look very encouraging. </p><p></p><p>Stealing from <a id="r74i" title="Doesn't own any Leavenworth Real Estate" href="http://www.myspace.com/howiemandel" target="_blank">Howie Mandel</a> - Let's play <b>Deal or No Deal</b></p><p></p><div id="rymi" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 320px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_132gvwx7tdd" /></div><p></p><p><b>No Deal</b> (Inventory is low, demand is high)</p><p></p><p><a id="kubd" title="Lake Wenatchee Real Estate" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2008/02/real-estate-in-leavenworth-is-heating.html" target="_blank">Lake Wenatchee waterfront homes</a><a href="http://www.imagechef.com/" target="_blank"> <img src="http://cdnll.img1.imagechef.com/w/080226/samp5c689f335a631e64.jpg" alt="ImageChef.com - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more"/> </a> </p><p><a id="uees" title="Fish Lake Real Estate" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/04/fish-lake-real-estate.html" target="_blank">Fish Lake Homes</a> </p><p><a id="g2ow" title="Leavenworth Riverfront for Sale" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/08/buying-riverfront-home-in-leavenworth.html" target="_blank">Riverfront property on the Wenatchee River or Chiwawa River or Icicle Creek</a> </p><p>Cabins - almost anywhere</p><p>Building lots in Ponderosa or Chiwawa River Pines</p><p><a id="bsas" title="Kahler Glen Condominium" href="http://activerain.com/blogsview/37820/Kahler-Glen-Condos-Do" target="_blank">Condos at Kahler Glen</a> </p><p><a id="i1sn" title="Leavenworth Horse Property" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/06/horse-property-in-leavenworth-wa-is.html" target="_blank">Horse property</a> </p><p></p><p>If you own a property like this and want to sell, please don't hesitate to call. The market demand is high.</p><p></p><p><b>Deal (Inventory is high, demand is low)</b></p><p></p><p><a id="hkgk" title="Leavenworth Condos for Sale" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/11/leavenworth-condo-update-in-earlier.html" target="_blank">New construction condos</a> </p><p>Condos zoned multi-family</p><p>Houses located within the city limits of Leavenworth</p><p>Steep land</p><p></p><p>If are looking for a deal, look here. If you are selling, you need to hire the best agent you can and price your property aggressively.</p><p></p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-4112751215125547062008-02-15T15:16:00.000-08:002008-02-15T15:54:42.784-08:00MEMORIES OF OUR CABIN AT THE LAKE<p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt" align="left"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">Geordie and I help a lot of customers find a cabin get-away. These clients are seeking a place to be in nature, to get away from their cell phones and computers, and to spend more time with their family. I come from a cabin culture. When I was growing up, our family had a cabin on a lake in eastern Ontario. This area created many fond memories and helped shape my love of the outdoors. Here are some of those memories. </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt" align="center"><span style="font-family:Arial;">*********************************</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">The sun shines its last rays across the water as it slips down below the opposite tree lined shore. The sky holds the orange color in a softly fading glow. The water turns from yellow to orange and finally to an inky black. The haunting call of a loon echoes across the lake. The crickets start their nightly symphony and the mosquitoes begin their evening feast. A typical night at Echo Bay on <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_of_the_Woods">Lake of the Woods</a>, Ontario.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><span style="font-family:Arial;"><div id="ao.5" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: center"><img style="WIDTH: 320px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dfxp4pd2_15dcn588d9" /></div></span><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">My family owned a small cabin on this shore. My dad bought a forested lot with his cousin, Rick, when he was 20 years old in <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1967">1967</a>. The waterfront lot was .89 of an acre with a steep drop off to the lake. After clearing a spot, the young men bought the lumber in Winnipeg, and hauled it out to the lake on a Thursday night. On Friday they started transporting the lumber in their 15' tin boat across three bays to the lot since there was no road. A fellow at the landing took pity on them and lent them his barge allowing the rest of the lumber to be carried over in one load. The following week the two men with the help of Rick's dad, framed, sided, and roofed the 20'x24' structure. The cabin was born.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">Initially, the cabin was a rough structure with one big room. My dad cooked and heated the cabin on a coal &amp; wood stove. Later propane was brought out and a stove, fridge, and lights were added. Over the years the interior configuration of the cabin changed, ending up with two bedrooms and an L-shaped living room/dining room/kitchen. </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">My first trip to the cabin was Aug <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1978">1978</a> when I was 2 months old. From then on, I made the 2 ½ hour journey from Winnipeg every weekend from May long weekend till Sept. long weekend.</span></p><span style="font-family:Arial;"><div id="wf6o" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: center"><img style="WIDTH: 320px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dfxp4pd2_16r82sbnf8" /></div></span><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">My dad’s best friends had cabins on either side of ours, and their kids were roughly the same age as me. This provided fellow participants in all our adventures and schemes. Namely made up water games or catching frogs to put in the moat around our sand castles.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">The lake was a place of firsts. </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">First time blueberry picking. The blueberries never seemed to get above a certain level in my ALL detergent bucket, but my belly was always full and my lips purple.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">First time water skiing. After a few turns around the bay, I felt confident enough to try dropping a ski which I tried repeatedly for an hour. The only thing I succeeded in was falling repeatedly and giving myself such a stiff neck the next day I couldn’t move it.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">First time watching the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aurora_(astronomy)">northern lights</a> dance across the night sky. I can still picture the faint glow of the dying sun and the green whisps of light gently pulsating overhead.</span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">The first time paddling a canoe with my dad. </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;"></span> </p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">The lake was a magic place that occupies a special corner in my mind. A brief thought recalls the wind in my face as we speed in the boat towards the cabin or the smell of the morning forest. </span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt"><span style="font-family:Arial;">My memories are all of family time spent together. No television, no phone, and in the beginning no electricity. Just us hanging out on the dock, taking boat rides, playing games and having campfires.</span></p><div id="yaxh" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: right"><div style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em" align="center"><img style="WIDTH: 320px; HEIGHT: 213px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dfxp4pd2_18cpns3r52" /></div><div id="i8pw" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: right"></div><div id="i8pw" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: right"></div></div>Allysontag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-13993513242161990072008-02-15T12:13:00.000-08:002008-02-15T12:32:01.079-08:00Leavenworth Real Estate Heating Up<p>Real estate in Leavenworth is heating up again after a lull this fall. Our phones and email accounts have been busy hearing from folks looking to <a id="g09w" title="Leavenworth Real Estate" href="http://www.geordieromer.com/" target="_blank">buy property in Leavenworth, Lake Wenatchee and Cashmere</a>. The buzz around the <a id="eszh" title="Windermere Office in Leavenworth WA" href="http://www.windermereleavenworth.com/" target="_blank">Leavenworth Windermere</a> office has been really positive so I decided to see what the numbers look like.</p><p></p><p>The year over year numbers for January and early February are pretty interesting. Granted, it's a small market and the sample sizes are pretty small, but the statistics about the Leavenworth real estate market confirm what we suspected.</p><p></p><p><b>Leavenworth Homes for Sale</b></p><p></p><div id="k96." style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 320px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_128dt8t43dg" /></div><p></p><p>The number of homes for sale in Leavenworth is down from the summer and fall. We peaked at 135 homes (single family residential - not condos, or manufactured homes.) In January we had 89 homes for sale and today we have 71. Some sellers have given up trying to sell in this market, some sellers are waiting for better weather and some home sellers are.. actually selling their homes! We have also seen a decline in the number of new homes placed on the market. Last year 25 homes came on the market during the 1st 1.5 months, this year it's only been 21.</p><p></p><p><b>Leavenworth Homes Selling in 2008</b></p><p></p><p>What excites me the most is not that overpriced homes are being pulled from the market, but that homes are selling. The same number of homes have closed year to date as last year (7) but the number of homes under contract or pending is up considerably. Last year 13 homes were under contract in this period but this year it is up to 21. A 60+% increase is pretty amazing.</p><p></p><p>I think it is truly amazing when you consider that the avalanches that closed Stevens Pass and Snoqualmie pass kept many of our buyers from visiting from Western Washington for a couple of weekends.</p><p></p><p><b>Home Prices Up</b></p><p></p><p>Despite day after day of bad national housing news, prices in Leavenworth have gone up astronomically year over year. Granted we only had a sample size of 7, but prices appear to have risen 35%. I think that number will moderate after we get more closings, but we won't be seeing price decreases in Leavenworth homes any time soon.</p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-82631127378685204152008-02-08T14:18:00.000-08:002008-02-08T14:25:54.088-08:00Leavenworth Snow Photo<a href="http://bp3.blogger.com/_O6wny2_qcMM/R6zWktfTE4I/AAAAAAAAADA/wZ4N57fkmf8/s1600-h/roof+shoveling+004.JPG"><img id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5164738798861620098" style="FLOAT: left; MARGIN: 0px 10px 10px 0px; CURSOR: hand" alt="" src="http://bp3.blogger.com/_O6wny2_qcMM/R6zWktfTE4I/AAAAAAAAADA/wZ4N57fkmf8/s320/roof+shoveling+004.JPG" border="0" /></a> <p>Does it snow much in Leavenworth? I guess it depends what you are used to.</p> <p></p> <p>Here is a picture I took in downtown Leavenworth, a block from the Windermere office. Try and remember that it snows a lot more in Plain and Lake Wenatchee than it does down in town.</p> <p></p> <div id="e5_-" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"></div>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-59802246581096478402008-02-08T08:30:00.000-08:002008-02-08T08:32:23.555-08:00Kahler Glen Avalanche Destroys Home<p>A home at the <a id="ib29" title="Kahler Glen at Lake Wenatchee" href="http://www.kahlerglen.com/" target="_blank">Kahler Glen</a> golf course near Lake Wenatchee was hit by an avalanche yesterday and carried 150 yards off its foundation according to the <a id="ks98" title="Lake Wenatchee News" href="http://wenatcheeworld.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080207/NEWS04/649164681/1001" target="_blank">Wenatchee World</a>. According to <a id="r_l4" title="Lake Wenatchee Blog" href="http://www.lakewenatcheeinfo.com/2008/avalanche-at-kahler-glen/" target="_blank">Lake Wenatchee sources</a>, the home was located on Pelton Place which sits above Miracle Mile Road.</p><p></p><p>KIRO TV has the best photos of the <a id="bux." title="Kahler Glen Avalanche" href="http://www.kirotv.com/slideshow/news/15252759/detail.html" target="_blank">avalanche damage and the home</a>. They reported that a mandatory evacuation was in place for 15 nearby homes, due to avalanche danger and a buried propane tank that appeared to be leaking.</p><p></p><p>It doesn't appear that anyone was in the home, but that it was a vacation rental that was scheduled to be occupied this weekend. A two person cleaning crew had been in the home earlier in the day. It sounds like a second home was also damaged by the avalanche.</p><p></p><p>The condos at Kahler Glen are outside of an area that might be effected by avalanches. However, Pelton Place, where this home was located, is on a steep slope backed by land owned by a large timber company. Local news media seem surprised by this avalanche, but last spring, a home on this road was hit by a giant mudslide doing tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of damage.</p><p></p><p>According to the <a id="x2os" title="2008 Avalanches" href="http://nwac.us/accidents.htm" target="_blank">Northwest Avalanche Center</a> this is the seventh significant avalanche incident this winter. The NWAC had predicted high avalanche danger for Thursday and warned travellers to avoid backcountry areas.</p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-88502020169119406962008-02-06T16:06:00.000-08:002008-02-06T16:08:16.764-08:00Leavenworth and Cashmere Caucus<p>Leavenworth and Cashmere residents will be caucusing this Saturday like the rest of the state to decide who will run as our presidential candidates for 2008.</p><p></p><p>I'm a long time political junkie having been raised in Olympia and gone to campaign events since I was about 6. When I was in high school, I even went down to the Capitol to heckle Ross Perot. However, this weekend will be my first caucus. In years past, the primaries and caucuses have been too little, too late for us in Washington State. This year, with tight races, we count.</p><p></p><p>In Leavenworth - The Democrats are meeting at Icicle River Middle School on Titus Road at 1 pm. The Republicans are meeting at the Leavenworth Fire Station on the Chumstick Highway (across from Cascade High School) at 12:30.</p><p></p><p>The Republicans are also caucusing near Lake Wenatchee at 12801 Chiwawa Loop Road and for folks in Peshastin or Dryden at 2592 Saunders Road.</p><p></p><p>In Cashmere - The Democrats are caucusing at the Cashmere City Hall (in downtown Cashmere, just off of Cottage Ave.) again at 1 pm. The Republicans are meeting a block away at Cashmere Valley Bank at 12:30.</p><p></p><p>If you need more info, or want to get more involved in party politics contact the <a id="y58q" title="Leavenworth, Cashmere and Wenatchee Democrats" href="http://www.chelandemocrats.org/" target="_blank">Chelan Democrats</a> or the <a id="g_q:" title="Leavenworth, Cashmere, and Wenatchee Republicans" href="http://www.chelangop.org/" target="_blank">Chelan Republicans</a> </p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-59688034070337677422008-02-06T15:17:00.000-08:002008-02-06T15:19:15.445-08:00Leavenworth's Eagle Creek Road - Wider or Not?<p>Eagle Creek Road winds up through a narrow canyon along the meandering Eagle Creek. Just a few miles from downtown Leavenworth, residents and vacation home owners along Eagle Creek get the best of both worlds - close to town and yet a very quiet rural existence.</p><p></p><p><a id="v0ah" title="Chelan County Washington" href="http://www.co.chelan.wa.us/" target="_blank">Chelan County</a> is currently considering making major repairs of this windy country road. According to a recent article in the <a id="myib" title="Leavenworth WA newspaper" href="http://www.leavenworthecho.com/" target="_blank">Leavenworth Echo</a> (article not yet online) the road was originally a wagon trail up into the mountains. The repairs would flatten and widen the road and add guardrails for safety. Currently the road is about 20 feet wide and would be widened to 28 feet wide.</p><p></p><p>An article in the <a id="b:sr" title="Eagle Creek article in Wenatchee World" href="http://www.wenworld.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080201/NEWS04/569387928" target="_blank">Wenatchee World</a> says that some local residents are against the plan. They fear that an improved road would lead to increased speeds and a degradation of the rural atmosphere that they like living on Eagle Creek Road.</p><p></p><p>I am going to add my voice to the debate. And you can contact your <a id="h2ep" title="Chelan County Commissioner" href="mailto:keith.goehner@co.chelan.wa.us" target="_blank">County Commissioner</a> to add yours too.</p><p></p><p>I think that widening the road would be a great benefit. Those of us who ride bikes can now be safely passed and cars on the road will have increased sight distance to pass as well. Even slow moving tractors will benefit from the wider roads. In rural areas it is also common to walk along the road - also safer with wider roads.</p><p></p><p>From a fiscal responsibility point of view, I think it would be irresponsible for us to give back $2.5 Million to the state when that money is allocated for much needed repairs on Eagle Creek Road. I'm sure someone in Pe Ell would be happy to spend our gas tax money on roads in the Grays Harbor area (for example) but I'd rather the funds stay here.</p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p></p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-87253176182465655962008-01-28T07:43:00.000-08:002008-01-28T07:57:59.753-08:00Lake Wenatchee Freezes!<p>According to <a href="http://www.lakewenatcheeinfo.com/">www.LakeWenatcheeInfo.com</a> <a id="etw6" title="lake freezes" href="http://www.lakewenatcheeinfo.com/2008/ice-returns/" target="_blank">Lake Wenatchee has frozen</a> from shore to shore. I have been seeing the local rivers freeze up and was wondering about the big lake. It has been below zero in the mornings at my house for the past week, though it's 10 degrees warmer now.</p><p></p><p>I have two suggestions for my readers.</p><p></p><p>1. Please respect the fragility of the frozen lake. Temps change, some ice is thicker than others. Please be careful as a frozen lake can be a dangerous place.</p><p></p><p>2. Add <a href="http://www.lakewenatcheeinfo.com/">www.Lakewenatcheeinfo.com</a> to your feed reader. I am up at Lake Wenatchee all the time, but their blog is still a great source of news for me. </p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-81917622041640031622008-01-22T08:52:00.000-08:002008-01-22T08:54:51.618-08:00Lake Wenatchee - Fiber Optics Coming SoonLakeWenatcheeinfo.com's George Wilson is reporting that fiber optics is coming soon to Lake Wenatchee thanks to the Chelan County PUD. <a id="f7ix" title="fiber optics at Lake Wenatchee" href="http://www.lakewenatcheeinfo.com/2008/fiber-sign-up-now/" target="_blank">Click here to learn about getting fiber at your house near the lake</a>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-81793396379836559962008-01-21T15:18:00.000-08:002008-01-21T15:20:41.205-08:00Leavenworth Mortgage Update<span class="226201523-17012008"><span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;">This Leavenworth Mortgage Update is from Darel Ansley at People's Bank</span></span> <span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;"></span> <span class="226201523-17012008"><span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;">Hi everyone,</span></span> <span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;"></span> <span class="226201523-17012008"><span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;">The year has gotten off to a great start with mortgage and construction rates dropping as the fear of recession is pulling the stock market down. This of course makes Real Estate more affordable for the buyer. My prediction is that we will see some more bad economic news this month as more companies report their 4th quarter earnings, and this may pull mortgage rates down further.</span></span> <span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;"></span> <span class="226201523-17012008"><span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;">Here is what I have seen so far this year: people are coming in to finance land purchases, mostly for near term custom construction, others who own lots are coming in with their construction packages, ready to start building as soon as the ground is ready. Some people are refinancing to pull money out for remodeling. I am also seeing the regular flow starting up of people buying homes and refinancing (both land and houses).</span></span> <span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;"></span> <span class="226201523-17012008"><span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;">Things slowed in December, but these lower rates are spurring activity, so it looks like we'll have another great year.</span></span> <span class="226201523-17012008"><span style="font-family:Arial Narrow;font-size:130%;">Don't forget, the NCHBA Home Show is coming FEB 8-10.</span></span>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-84138337471170539302008-01-17T10:49:00.000-08:002008-01-17T10:50:43.664-08:00Leavenworth Real Estate Blog's 3 Year Bloggiversary<p>This real estate blog has successfully been published for 3 years now and I am pleased at how it has slowly grown and matured. The blogosphere was young in 2005 when I first signed up for a Blogger account and jumped in the deep end of real estate blogging.</p><p></p><p>In those 3 years, I have seen the growth of communities like <a id="esxg" title="Leavenworth real estate expert" href="http://activerain.com/geordie" target="_blank">Real Estate Community</a>, <a id="i:b3" title="Seattle Real Estate Blog" href="http://www.raincityguide.com/" target="_blank">Rain City Guide</a> and <a id="snax" title="Online Networking" href="http://www.linkedin.com/" target="_blank">LinkedIn</a> . I have gotten great tips about building a community through blogging and educating the consumer about Leavenworth real estate. Sites like <a id="eyjx" title="Blogging for real estate" href="http://realestatetomato.typepad.com/" target="_blank">The Real Estate Tomato</a> and <a id="p63k" title="Blog University" href="http://www.rsspieces.com/" target="_blank">RSS Pieces</a> have helped transform this blog from a short advertisements to a source for in depth news and analysis.</p><p></p><p>Blogging has helped build my business through educating buyers and sellers. I have been interviewed by the <a id="pdk4" title="Leavenworth real estate in the news" href="http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/02/02/realestate/greathomes/02havens.html?pagewanted=print" target="_blank">New York Times</a>, quoted by the <a id="sj-r" title="Geordie quoted in Spokesman Review" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2006/08/spokesman-review-blogspotter.html" target="_blank">Spokesman Review</a>, and have been invited to blog for the <a id="llb0" title="real estate blog" href="http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/realestate/" target="_blank">Seattle PI's Real Estate Blog.</a> </p><p></p><p>For years, I was the lone wolf in the Leavenworth blog scene, but recently a few folks have decided to dip their toes into the water.</p><p></p><p>Local sites include the new blog format at <a id="z36t" title="Lake Wenatchee Blog" href="http://www.lakewenatcheeinfo.com/" target="_blank">Lake Wenatchee Info</a> and the <a id="vhri" title="Leavenworth Blog" href="http://www.11worth.com/blog" target="_blank">Leavenworth blog</a> of webmaster 11worth.com. In the real estate world, Windermere's Erin and Blaine Davidson have a Leavenworth blog and Carol Williams has added <a id="v_p3" title="Leavenworth condominium blog" href="http://leavenworthcondos.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Leavenworth Condo Blog</a> to her ever growing stable of blogs. Local Leavenworth real estate agent Sam Ernst and his broker have even added a <a id="uk:z" title="Leavenworth real estate blog" href="http://blog.leavenworthleavenworth.com/" target="_blank">real estate blog</a> to his LeavenworthLeavenworth.com site.</p><p></p><p>I wish all these newcomers to the Leavenworth blog scene the best of luck. With 80% of blogs dying and giving up in the first year, I know it is a hard row to hoe especially when the benefits aren't always clear. I also challenge these new bloggers to minimize the fluff and the self-promotion. Focus on educating the consumer, and we all win.</p><p></p><p>Best wishes to all in 2008.</p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-74092118817691965192008-01-10T17:54:00.000-08:002008-01-10T18:11:07.301-08:00Leavenworth real estate and Lake Wenatchee still in demand<p><a id="jy-l" title="Search Leavenworth real estate" href="http://www.geordieromer.com/" target="_blank">Leavenworth real estate</a> and <u><a id="mqa1" title="Lake Wenatchee real estate" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/08/real-estate-at-lake-wenatchee-and-fish.html" target="_blank">real estate in the Lake Wenatchee</a></u> area remain in high demand despite recent news about <u><a id="my0o" title="real estate slowdown" href="http://seattlebubble.com/blog/2008/01/07/nwmls-seattle-off-15-yoy-king-county-off-11/" target="_blank">slowdowns elsewhere</a></u>.</p><p></p><p>Two areas that I have seen strong interest in over the past few years are <b>waterfront homes</b> and <b>condos at </b><a id="yjv7" title="Kahler Glen at Lake Wenatchee" href="http://www.kahlerglen.com/" target="_blank"><b>Kahler Glen</b></a><b>.</b></p><p></p><p><a id="f12i" title="Leavenworth waterfront homes" target="_blank">Waterfront homes</a> range from cabins on Lake Wenatchee and <a id="sia3" title="Fish Lake real estate" href="/2007/04/fish_lake_real_estate.htm" target="_blank">Fish Lake</a> to homes on the <u><a id="i6_s" title="Leavenworth riverfront home" href="http://www.windermere.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Listing.ListingDetail&amp;ListingID=19178699" target="_blank">Wenatchee River</a> </u>or Icicle Creek. Currently there are only a handful of waterfront homes available in The Leavenworth area.</p><p></p><p><a id="kas0" title="Condos at Kahler Glen" href="http://activerain.com/blogsview/37820/Kahler-Glen-Condos-Do" target="_blank">Kahler Glen condos</a> have remained a hot commodity over the past two years. Certainly I remember 2004 when you couldn't give them away for $175,000, but 2008 is a different story. The last one sold in the spring of 2007 for $325,000 and I expect the next will be at least $350,000. Buyers always ask about other condominium options at Lake Wenatchee or Stevens Pass. The truth is that Kahler Glen has the only condos near Lake Wenatchee and no projects are scheduled in the area.</p><p></p><p>I am starting to add names to my list of buyers for both waterfront homes and Kahler Glen condos. Don't hesitate to ask to add your name as well, even if the inventory is limited right now. Conversely, homeowners please don't be shy about asking me to help you evaluate the market price of your home. I may even be able to sell your home without listing it on the MLS. </p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-54934321759749773102008-01-07T21:28:00.000-08:002008-01-07T21:30:25.977-08:00Leavenworth Earthquake?!<p>Earthquake in Leavenworth?</p><p></p><p>According to the <a id="jtsm" title="Leavenworth area earthquake" href="http://www.ess.washington.edu/recenteqs/Quakes/uw01072203.htm" target="_blank">USGS</a> a magnitude 2.7 earthquake hit the Glacier Peak Wilderness area near Willow Creek. The quake occurred at approximately 2 pm Monday. It was followed by a micro-earthquake of a 2.0 magnitude. This remote area is approximately 33 NNW of Leavenworth.</p><p></p><p>To see how far from Leavenworth this earthquake was click on this <a id="t79u" title="Leavenworth area earthquake" href="http://neic.usgs.gov/neis/recent/uw01072202_l.html">map</a>. </p><p></p><p><a id="mj9:" title="earthquake info" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richter_magnitude_scale" target="_blank">Wikipedia</a> states than any earthquake with a magnitude of 2.0 or less is considered a micro - earthquake with approximately 8000 of such events occurring daily. Quakes ranging between 2.0 and 2.9 are considered minor and are generally recorded but not felt. 1000 such minor quakes occur daily.</p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-84489526719595019132008-01-04T10:54:00.000-08:002008-01-04T10:59:44.427-08:00Leavenworth Free SkiThis Sunday, Jan 6th the <a href="http://www.skileavenworth.coml/">Leavenworth Winter Sports club </a>is offering free cross-country skiing. As part of their <a href="http://www.skileavenworth.com/events/eventdetail.asp?eventid=29">Ski for Health Day</a>, a free trail pass and free x-c rentals will be available from 12pm -3pm at the Icicle River Trail. Free mini-lessons will also be available. Registration will be at the trail head and requires a valid drivers license.Allysontag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-9631958606865994142008-01-02T16:53:00.000-08:002008-01-02T16:55:54.263-08:00Leavenworth Real Estate - 2007 Year in Review<p><b>Real Estate in Leavenworth in 2007</b> - in a nutshell, prices up, volume down. (While these numbers might change with an additional last minute recording or two, I think the trends will remain the same.)</p><p></p><p>I have mentioned it before, but as expected 2007 was the <span style="font-family:Comic Sans MS;"><i>Year of the New Condo </i></span><span style="font-family:Verdana;">for Leavenworth. Notable projects included the condos at Icicle Junction (Aspen Suites), the Boulders at Alpensee Strasse, the River Park Homes (affectionately known as the big yellow building), and Ski View on Titus. All these brand new condos certainly brought the price up for the "average" condo. The <b>average condo price was up 45%</b> to $294,000 from 2006s $201,000.</span></p><p></p><p>Perhaps more interesting, is what remains. Only 24 condos sold in Leavenworth in 2007, a mere 4 more than in 2006. 49 condominiums remain on the market with a few more projects slated for 2008. The average condo on the market today is $420,000. Does that market exist in Leavenworth? I'm not sure that it does. Only 3 condos sold above $350,000 last year and none above $400,000.</p><p></p><p>Single family home prices continued to climb in price, while the number of homes sold slowed. <b>The average sales price was up 18% for homes in Leavenworth</b>. The average price is now $415,000 up from $351,000 for 2006.</p><p></p><p><b>But price is not the only story. The number of homes sold is down 23%</b> from the following year. The time on market is longer as well. The average days on market for a home in Leavenworth is now 139 days, up 30 days from 2006 when it only took 109 days. Sellers continue to get approximately 97% of their listing price as the final sales price.</p><p></p><p>Here's one positive and surprising trend. All the "Price Reduced" signs you see around the neighborhood - not indicative of the market. The average price reduction for single family homes in Leavenworth actually <b>dropped in 2007.</b> In 2006, the average home seller in Leavenworth dropped their price 7.06%, in 2007 that number dropped to 6.8%. This number coupled with raising prices tells me that Leavenworth home owners remain confident about the market, despite gloomy real estate news on a national level.</p><p></p><p>What will 2008 bring to the Leavenworth real estate market? I think much depends on external forces. What will the U.S. economy do? How will the stock market fare? How will the technology companies like Microsoft, Adobe, and Nintendo do?</p><p></p><p>I tend to think we will see a slight increase in prices with longer market times and about the same number of homes sold in 2008 as in 2007. (Check back in January 2009 to see if I'm right.)</p><p></p><p></p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-61760354651272027322007-12-08T11:14:00.000-08:002007-12-08T11:16:00.317-08:00Lake Wenatchee Open for Skiing<p>I just received an email from my good friends at Lake Wenatchee State Park. They are now open for nordic skiing, snowshoeing and sledding. As was mentioned earlier, the Nason Ridge trails are closed this year. I won't post these updates weekly, but you can get these emailed directly to you from the park if you want.</p><p></p><p>(Please note that while the date below says December 10, I received it on the morning of December 8)</p><p></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in" align="center"><span style="FONT-SIZE: 16pt;font-size:130%;" ><b>Lake Wenatchee State Park</b></span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in" align="center"><span style="FONT-SIZE: 16pt;font-size:130%;" ><b>(509-763-3101)</b></span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in" align="center"><span style="FONT-SIZE: 16pt;font-size:130%;" ><b>Cross Country Ski Trail Information</b></span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>Date:</b> December 10 <b>Time:</b> 9 a.m. <b>Temp / Precip:</b> 23 degrees, clear</span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>General Trail Conditions:</b> One recent heavy snowfall has provided sufficient snow for grooming, though not enough for thorough “grading” of trails. Skiers may notice some side-slope and a few more irregularities than typical. Grooming out nicely in general. Note closure of Nason Ridge trails this season -- see below.</span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><b><span style="font-size:100%;">South Park:</span></b></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;">Approximately 15 k groomed trails, double-tracked. Within the state park, the total includes a series of 1-3 km loops and longer runs through forest, along the lakeshore, and above the Wenatchee River for a total of 8 k. These trails will be groomed Friday through Sunday for the next couple of weeks, more often later this month. The state park trails interconnect with approximately 7 k of trails maintained by Kahler Glen Golf Course. </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>North Park:</b> </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;">The groomed trails in the North Park area provides 5.3 k of scenic trails which loop through the campgrounds, follow the river and lake shores, and run through quiet stretches of forest. This entire trail system will have one tracked lane and a full skate lane. This area offers a less-traveled alternative to the sometimes busy trails in the South Park area. These trails will be groomed Friday through Sunday for the next couple of weeks, more often later this month. </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>Chiwawa See and Ski:</b> </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;">This area has not yet been prepped for grooming. We hope to have this area ready for next weekend.</span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>Nason Ridge Backcountry: </b>Closed for the season due to logging on Longview Timber Company land. This trail system lies almost entirely on private land owned by Longview, any grooming at all is possible due to their willingness to allow public access. </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><b><span style="font-size:100%;">Snowshoe Trail Information: </span></b></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>South Park:</b> </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;">A 1.8-mile loop is possible, though the route is not yet clearly marked or “packed in”. The route follows Wenatchee River and Nason creek then returns to the beach through a Ponderosa Pine / Douglas Fir forest. </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>North Park:</b> </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;">A 2-mile loop is possible along river, lakeshore and through forest. None of this trail system is currently marked, but good potential for those who are comfortable “finding their own way”. </span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"><span style="font-size:100%;"><b>Sled hill:</b> In great shape!</span></p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in"> </p><p style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in" align="center"><span style="FONT-SIZE: 16pt;font-size:130%;" ><b>Please remember, Sno Park Permits are required at all areas.</b></span></p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-75287522190740019222007-12-03T16:40:00.000-08:002007-12-03T16:47:14.431-08:00Mike Irwin Wenatchee Photographer- The 10 Questions Interview<span><strong>Mike Irwin is a Wenatchee area photographer.</strong> I met him through one of his current gigs shooting photos of houses for <a href="http://www.tourfactory.com/">TourFactory</a>, the provider I use for the <a href="http://www.geordieromer.com/index.php?page_id=231">virtual tours of my real estate listings</a>. Mike has shot a couple of tours for me in the Leavenworth area. He can be found on the web at <a href="http://www.irwinfoto.com/">www.Irwinfoto.com</a> <strong>1. Tell us about your background. You started in journalism?</strong> I was born into a newspaper family and never really emerged from it. My father owned and operated two weeklies down in south Louisiana. At age 6 or 7, I was hanging out in the backshop with the typesetters and pressmen and, by age 10, was pretty good at flipping huge sheets of newsprint into the old flatbed press. When we converted to cold type -- computerized typesetting -- I soaked up all the early technology and was fascinated by it. It seemed miraculous. Through high school, I was part of our family's newspaper design team -- grocery store ads and special sections -- but soon fell in love with photography. The newspaper's foreman, Fred Herzog, taught me to see light, to record it on film, and to manipulate it in the darkroom. He was a great mentor and a primary influence in my life. After journalism school (LSU), I worked in television for a couple of years, but then left Louisiana for the wilds of Washington State. I served as publisher and editor at weekly papers in Twisp and Omak, and then got my dream job -- roving reporter for the Wenatchee World. That was in 1988. I worked with a great staff of editors and learned a lot about north central Washington and myself. <strong>2. Who is Mike Irwin ... in a haiku?</strong> Much to see, to learn. Delve into the mysteries. I tie my shoes tight. <strong>3. You do a lot of your non-real estate work in black and white. Can you sell a house in black and white? How would you "tell a house's story" in black and white? </strong> As a teenager, I learned to see and compose in black and white because, well, color film and color printing (both for photos and newspapers) were just emerging into popular use. My eyes still scan a scene in black and white, searching for luminous highlights and deep shadows and all the shapes formed by these contrasting values. It's a habit I can't escape. I'd love to photograph structures in black and white, but the industry standard for house images remains full color. Also, I recognize that black and white would work best on a special type of architecture -- angular, high contrast, sun-drenched. Luckily, the Wenatchee Valley is dotted with this type of house, so I'm hoping that sometime I'll get the chance to experiment with a black and white shoot. (See my Architecture gallery at www.irwinfoto.com) The story of a house in black and white would stress its exposure to sunlight, sky, and views. And, perhaps, how the house fits onto -- and into -- its environment. You can tell the same story in color, of course, but black and white would emphasize the home's form and shadow. Those are qualities that we all see and feel, but might not acknowledge on a first visit to a new place. <strong>4. What do you enjoy most about taking photos of houses for Tourfactory?</strong> Tour Factory provides maximum exposure for a home by capitalizing on the magic of digital photography. It allows 180-degree and 360-degree views of a room or a property through the digital stitching of a series of still images. It scans like video, but it's inexpensive by comparison. I'm an explorer at heart and love learning about the world. And photography gives me a reason to do this. Meeting new people (real estate agents and their clients), visiting new homes, and facing new photographic challenges are some of my favorite aspects of Tour Factory. For the most part, it provides the means to be out in the world and not behind a desk. <strong>5. What aspect of photographing houses do you find challenging?</strong> Broadly speaking, the real challenge comes in uncovering a home's pleasures and mysteries -- somehow depicting how the home feels. Sometimes those aspects are obvious; sometimes they remain hidden. But the search is always fun and rewarding regardless of the outcome. More specifically, the toughest challenges are small dark rooms, cluttered walls and floors, and obnoxious pieces of furniture. It's hard to make a green and orange paisley sofa look tasteful. <strong>6. What kind of house or feature in a house would you like to shoot that you haven't yet? </strong> Shooting a swimming pool at twilight with the house reflected in the water -- that'd be a nice challenge. And I'm still trying to master a way to match interior lighting with exterior, so the outdoors is seen clearly through, say, a living room window. This works about half the time, but I'd like it to be a sure thing. <strong>7. What have you learned about real estate or marketing real estate from working with lots of different real estate agents?</strong> Real estate agents are my best teachers, and they provide new insights at every shoot. Many agents are diehard optimists who believe every house -- no matter how run-down or just plain weird -- has a buyer who will love its quirkiness. Many top agents aren't satisfied unless both parties -- seller and buyer -- walk away happy. And, for the most part, agents really love the "personality" of a great house. The excitement they feel about a beautiful, functional house is palpable, and it's not just about money. They want to find the family that will make this beautiful empty house a true home. And, no, some real estate agent didn't pay me to say all this. <strong>8. Tell us about your favorite house image that you have shot so far?</strong> It seems like I'd been wrestling forever with electronic flashes -- trying to get the light balanced and properly exposed -- when in frustration I shot a burst of natural light photos that surprised the hell out of me. The light was rich, the colors full and luminous, the details sharp and clear. It was a shot of a small, empty wet bar with tiny windows and ugly carpet, but it came out beautifully. It changed the way I've come to view the lighting of a room. <strong>9. Canon, Olympus, or Nikon- and why?</strong> I say this with no hesitation: Canon. Over the years, I've owned a lot of cameras, but only Canon comes close to organizing its camera functions in the same way I think about photos. It seems more intuitive, in the same way Apple is more intuitive than Microsoft. All the major functions are on accessible buttons or dials, not three levels down into a computer menu. Batteries, memory cards, and other accessories are easy to replace. Physically, the camera feels good in my hand -- light yet solid. Last March, I spent three days at a Nikon workshop and walked away absolutely convinced that I wouldn't buy a Nikon. Total immersion in the Nikon world did not convince me to buy one. For many, the Nikon is a dream camera, but not for me. By the way ... the new Olympus digital SLRs with the live LCD screens are really snazzy. I love the option of composing a shot either through the viewfinder or on the LCD screen. Pretty soon, most digital SLRs will have this feature. <strong>10. If you could ask 10 questions of anyone, alive or dead, who would it be?</strong> Without a doubt, it would be my #1 hero ... Sir Richard Burton, the 19th century English explorer. His travels through Africa, India, and the Middle East lifted a veil on foreign cultures and helped expose England's stodgy society to the extremely exotic. He not only explored foreign lands, but also delved into their religious and sexual taboos. He and his wife were also ardent dabblers into the paranormal. A man of many tastes and endless inquiry. </span>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-35670664781671199652007-11-28T17:27:00.000-08:002007-11-28T17:28:40.898-08:00Leavenworth News Update<p></p><p></p><p><b>Water Moratorium Continues</b>-The city council voted to extend the water moratorium currently enforced in Leavenworth for another six months. The vote came at a council meeting on Nov. 13th. The initial moratorium was enacted due to 1200 applications for water hook ups and only 112 hook ups available. The city plans to devote a large portion of the Dec 11th meeting to revisiting the moratorium and possibly giving smaller projects within the city and urban growth boundary an exemption.</p><p></p><p><b>Good Morning America</b> sets up shop for a live feed from the village green on Thursday Nov. 29th. The feed will begin at 4am, 7am New York time, featuring the Bavarian village lights and general Christmas theme. Many shops plan to be open for the gathered crowd including Uncle Uli's Pub and Starbucks.</p><p></p><p><b>The Gypsy Cafe</b> has opened its doors. Leavenworth's newest restaurant, located at 931 Commercial St, offers paninis, soups, salads, and a revolving dinner menu. Their focus is on healthy organic food. Hours are 8am to 8pm everyday except Tuesday.</p>Allysontag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-79460682861675934172007-11-16T10:53:00.000-08:002007-11-16T13:55:43.164-08:00Leavenworth Shorts: Nov 16<ul><li>Leavenworth will have a new mayor starting Jan. 1, 2007. Rob Eaton, a <a href="http://www.cityofleavenworth.com/council.htm">Leavenworth City Councilman</a>, ran unopposed in this year’s election. Eaton said he is very excited and “looking forward to continuing the tasks that have been laid down.” </li><li>Local Olympian, <a href="http://www.wenatcheeworld.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071112/NEWS04/711120006">Torin Koos</a>, got pulled over last Saturday for obstructing traffic on his roller skis. A local resident called the police a Koos started up Beaver Valley Hill leading out of Plain. The resident was concerned since the road has no shoulder and hairpin turns. Koos is a two time cross-country ski Olympian. </li><li><a href="http://www.skileavenworth.com/">Leavenworth Winter Sports Club</a> is holding their annual fundraiser this Sat Nov 17th at the Enzian Inn from 6:30pm to 9:30pm. This year's main goal is to expand Junior and Adult ski programs and instruction. There will be a silent and a live auction. Tickets are $18 and can be purchased at the door. </li><li>The Cascade High School football team continues to win. They defeated Cle Elum 42-14 last Friday night. Cascade will head to Pasco this Saturday to play Royal (11-1) in the second round of the state finals. Cashmere High School also made it to round two of the state finals and will play Connell (11-0). Both teams face tough opponents, as Royals only loss was to Connell. </li><li>A few inches of snow still covers <a href="http://www.stevenspass.com/">Steven’s Pass</a>. The Pass received 8 inches earlier in the week but today’s rain has compacted the snow. The ski area typically opens when there is 24 to 36 inches on the ground. <a href="http://www.missionridge.com/">Mission Ridge </a>continues to make snow and hopes for a Thanksgiving weekend opening. Keep your fingers cross! *News from <a href="http://www.leavenworthecho.com/">Leavenworth Echo </a>Nov 14,2007 (volume 104, No 46), <a href="http://www.wenatcheeworld.com/">Wenatchee World</a> Nov 12, 2007.</li></ul>Allysontag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-38806421616419062852007-11-12T14:25:00.000-08:002007-11-12T14:26:48.855-08:00Leavenworth Condo Update<p>Leavenworth Condo Update</p><p></p><p>In an <a id="x6jp" title="Leavenworth Condominium article" href="http://activerain.com/blogsview/86531/Leavenworth-Wa-Condo-Market" target="_blank">earlier post I called 2007 "The year of the new condo" in Leavenworth</a>. We have seen 5 new projects come on the market this year. <a id="fgat" title="Leavenworth Luxury Condos" href="http://www.myleavenworth.com/2007/09/luxury-condos-in-leavenworth-washington.html" target="_blank">River Park Homes</a>, The Boulders, Aspen Suites at Icicle Village, Haus Wunderbar the newest on Titus Road. Condominiums have always been a hot item here in the <a id="ib96" title="Leavenworth WA" href="http://www.leavenworth.org/" target="_blank">Bavarian Village</a>, but we probably didn't need so many new condos all at once.</p><p></p><p>The number of condos listed in Leavenworth so far this year is up 176%! Last year 50 were listed and this year the number is 138.</p><p></p><p>The number of sales and the sales prices are up considerably, but there is still too much inventory for the market to absorb.</p><p></p><p>As of today's date 23 Leavenworth condos have sold. That's up 53% from last year. The average price is up to $298,000 up 48% while the median price is up 65% to $325,000. Of course not all condos in town have gone up that dramatically in price, the majority of the price increase is the large numbers of new construction condos that have sold.</p><p></p><p>The market is slower than many developers might admit. Currently there are only 5 pending sales and 69 active condos on the market. That's a pending ratio of merely 7%. (A hot market would be at least 50%) At least one project has offered deep discounts and I suspect the others would be willing to make some concessions. I think there are some good deals to be had in this market (and some bad deals to avoid.)</p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-58437518443252324462007-11-07T17:20:00.000-08:002007-11-07T17:47:11.387-08:00Leavenworth Shorts: This week's news Highlights<ul><li>-The <a href="http://www.cityofleavenworth.com/council.htm">city council </a>has decided on the design firm for the <a href="http://www.cityofleavenworth.com/press.htm">Leavenworth Train Station </a>to be located on North Rd. HNTB Engineering Firm of Bellevue will be designing the platform. The plan is to break ground spring of 2008 and have trains stopping by the fall. </li><li>-<a href="http://www.tierralearningcenter.org/">Tierra Learning Center </a>is closing their doors. The future of the 315 acre site is uncertain but a local couple is looking into educational uses for the site. The 2 acre organic share farm will continue next year. </li><li>-<a href="http://www.skileavenworth.com/">The Leavenworth Winter Sports Club </a>is having their <a href="http://www.skileavenworth.com/events/eventdetail.asp?eventid=26">ski swap </a>this Sat, Nov 10 from 9am to 11:45am at the Cascade High School. A $1 donation is accepted at the door. </li><li>-<a href="http://www.cascade.wednet.edu/">Cascade High School </a>football team has made into the first round of the state championship. They play Cle Elum on Friday night. </li><li>*Information from <a href="http://www.leavenworthecho.com/">The Leavenworth Echo</a>-Nov 7, 2007, Volume 104, No. 45 </li></ul>Allysontag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-44532301747861617322007-11-05T14:02:00.000-08:002007-11-05T14:04:42.100-08:00Lake Wenatchee Ski News<p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Lake Wenatchee XC Ski News from <a id="bifl" title="Lake Wenatchee near Leavenworth WA" href="http://www.parks.wa.gov/parkpage.asp?selectedpark=Lake+Wenatchee" target="_blank">Lake Wenatchee State Park</a> </span></p><p></p><div id="wmem" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 260px" height="193" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_95fp56nhdv" /></div><p></p><p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Hello everyone,</span> </p><p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">We're starting out the season with some unfortunate news. We will have no trails groomed out Nason Ridge this season due to logging on Longview Timber Company lands which begin immediately South of Kahler Glen Golf course and include most all the trail system "up top". </span></p><p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">We will be grooming our "core trails", including 8k in the South Park, 5.3k in the North (limited skate lanes), and 8k at Chiwawa See&amp;Ski (skate lane full distance). </span></p><p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Though we never know for certain year-to-year, Longview believes the logging will be completed this season and access to their land next season will likely resume. Many thanks to Longview Timber Company for allowing access to their land in the past, and we hope to be skiing up there next year!</span></p><p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Thanks,</span> </p><p></p><p><span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Rick Halstead</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Park Manager</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;font-size:85%;">Lake Wenatchee State Park</span> </p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-80369069185118024202007-10-11T17:08:00.000-07:002007-10-16T10:19:48.098-07:00Win a Leavenworth Night Out!<p>I just started a new ad campaign and I need to see if anyone is seeing it. It should be starting soon in the greater "Eastside" area - Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Mercer Island. </p><p></p><p>If you are the first to spot my new ad I'll send you a $50 gift certificate to your favorite Leavenworth restaurant.</p><p></p><p>Good Luck...</p><p><strong>Update 10/16</strong></p><p>For every guess or attempt that gets logged here as a comment, I will provide a hint. The more guesses, the more hints I will provide until someone wins. (Emails to me are nice, but only "comments" will result in hints. Jim, Holly, Mark, Jordan, and the rest of the lurkers... I'm talking to you.)</p><p><strong></strong> </p>Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-42871068089427097332007-09-18T10:48:00.000-07:002007-09-18T10:56:43.562-07:00Foreclosures 101Foreclosures, short sales, and auctions seem to be on everyone's mind as the media continue to squawk about the national real estate slump. We don't see a lot of foreclosures in Leavenworth and I don't expect we will. Appreciation has been strong the past 3-4 years (giving home owners lots of equity). Additionally, we rarely see buyers who are using exotic loans like negative amortization or interest only. I see a lot more cash sales than I do buyers paying less than 20% down. The people I see in Leavenworth getting in trouble are those people who used their house as a piggy bank with HELOCs and multiple-refis. Jason Schwieger, of Brio Realty wrote a great article about <a href="http://activerain.com/blogsview/208179/Foreclosures-may-be-the">Investing in Foreclosures</a>. This is required reading for anyone thinking of getting into the investing game. Allyson and I get lots of questions about this and I think Jason did a great job explaining how it works.Geordie Romertag:blogger.com,1999:blog-10161915.post-55546189417132467362007-09-06T08:35:00.000-07:002007-10-20T08:58:12.081-07:00Leavenworth Luxury Condos<p><a id="ht.5" title="Leavenworth Condos" href="http://www.iciclecondos.com/" target="_blank">Luxury Condos in Leavenworth Washington?</a> Yes, it's true. </p><p></p><p>The condo market has been going strong here for a number of years and 2007 has brought Leavenworth a number of new condominium projects. </p><p></p><p>For the first time, Leavenworth has condos that meet the upscale needs and desires of the luxury real estate market. <a id="ioba" title="Windermere Real Estate" href="http://www.windermereleavenworth.com/" target="_blank">Windermere Real Estate</a> in Leavenworth is proud to represent both the <strong>Boulders Condominiums on the Wenatchee River</strong> and <strong>River Park Condominiums</strong> overlooking Blackbird Island in downtown <a id="na0u" title="Leavenworth WA" href="http://www.leavenworth.org/" target="_blank">Leavenworth</a>. </p><p></p><p><strong>The Boulders</strong> are 6 units on Alpensee Strasse on the East edge of Leavenworth overlooking the <a id="u.mq" title="Wenatchee River" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wenatchee_River" target="_blank">Wenatchee River</a>. All units have two bedrooms and two baths and are 1500 square feet in size. They have fantastic 10 foot ceilings, gas fireplaces in the living room and master bedroom. Gorgeous well appointed kitchens and most importantly - great windows and decks for viewing the Wenatchee River. At this time only 3 units are still available. Prices start at $595,000. </p><p></p><div id="mxfm" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 320px; HEIGHT: 240px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_82c55vctck" /> <div id="qach" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><div id="id-y" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><div id="s4dd" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 320px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_86gcrf9pf9" /></div><img style="WIDTH: 419px; HEIGHT: 246px" height="288" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_84rrkp987z" width="681" /></div><div style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><div id="a.u9" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 421px; HEIGHT: 294px" height="296" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_85234cmg7" width="577" /></div></div><img style="WIDTH: 320px; HEIGHT: 240px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_83d9qccgf4" /> </div></div><p></p><p><strong>The River Park Condos</strong> are located in the heart of downtown Leavenworth. Owners and guests can have easy access to all of Leavenworth's festivals - from <a id="siko" title="Oktoberfest" href="http://www.leavenworthoktoberfest.com/" target="_blank">Oktoberfest</a> to Christmas Lighting, shopping, restaurants and more. Or you can relax and enjoy the huge decks and the expansive views of Wedge Mountain and Tumwater Canyon. All units are two bedrooms and two baths and sizes range from 1096 to 1484 square feet. Prices run from $<strike>329,000 to $624,900</strike> <strong>New Prices</strong> $325,000 to $539,000. All units come with gorgeous granite kitchens and baths, wood floors and private indoor parking. Corner units are larger and include a soaking tub in the master bath. At this time 14 units are still available. <strong>Prices have recently been reduced</strong> and the seller will consider contributing to closing costs or other incentives. Click here to see more of these <a id="vo11" title="River Park Condos in Leavenworth" href="http://tours.tourfactory.com/tours/tour.asp?t=365447&amp;idx=1" target="_blank">luxury condos in downtown Leavenworth.</a> </p><div id="hksp" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 469px; HEIGHT: 173px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_87hqp8h6px" /></div><div style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><div id="vsnc" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 472px; HEIGHT: 173px" height="227" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_88f68v3jt8" width="671" /></div><div id="ley6" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 475px; HEIGHT: 192px" height="239" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_89g6h8h2hn" width="552" /></div><div id="k2fs" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 476px; HEIGHT: 232px" height="236" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_90gqk3z7dp" width="576" /></div><div id="e4k7" style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1em; PADDING-TOP: 1em; TEXT-ALIGN: left"><img style="WIDTH: 320px" src="http://docs.google.com/File?id=dg9fgtnm_91fndds4hm" /></div></div><p>Click here to schedule a <a id="h5j8" title="Luxury Condos" href="mailto:info@geordieromer.com">private appointment to view these condos</a>.</p><p></p>Geordie Romer