Dear Jim and Kim, Frustrated Condo Shoppers

I had something unusual happen yesterday – something I have always joked about to my friends and neighbors. When taking my cute little dog for a walk around the neighborhood I would be trolling for clients…

Yesterday around 4 pm I took Sophia for a “spin around the block”, just to stretch our legs and get a break. I had moved my Sunday open house to Saturday to sync with my husband’s schedule since he had to drive to Portland Saturday – so we both were tied up Saturday and could spend Sunday together.

As I walked down SW Raymond I noticed a Toyota Prius park on one of the side streets. Prius’ are not uncommon in my Built Green neighborhood of High Point in West Seattle. But people headed for the “view point” of downtown Seattle directly from a car was a little less usual.

Being the neighborly sort, I approached them and asked if they had any questions. Kind of cheeky, but this neighborhood hosts so many tour groups (national and international), and I have led many tours of the community myself, it is a natural tendency of mine to offer assistance. I disclosed immediately that I was a resident and also a real estate agent. They said they saw a 1-level condo online and were curious. As we walked and talked I learned Jim manages a big downtown building and Kim works for a highly-respected architectural firm. They want to have a better commute downtown, since they are currently driving from the north end. Since I used to do that commute over a decade ago, before moving to West Seattle, I could completely sympathize.

I offered to show them the unit for sale in the building across from mine – forgetting momentarily there was more than one 2 bedroom suite for sale in my subassociation of Redwood High Point. The unit at 2830 SW Raymond had expired as a for sale listing and now was for rent. I stopped by my home office and printed out the listing and called the agent then proceeded to show them the unit.

It’s a great top floor suite, nice entry, vaulted ceilings, great deck with a 270 degree view of downtown, including downtown and the Cascades. 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, gourmet kitchen and all SS appliances, kitchen / office nook, etc. The initial listing had expired and now it was advertised for rent but had “purchase option available” in the comments.

It was not to their taste. Even though the floor plan is 1,275 square feet it didn’t feel that way to Kim, and I sense that they would like something with more high-end interior finishes. They stressed “one level home”, and when I said it was hard to find new homes that were not townhomes, they said they weren’t hung up on “new”, which was good news. I picked up on “bus route” since 1/2 mile (it’s about 5 blocks) to the bus stop seemed too far. I also heard “elevator” in there, and obviously they would like a home with a view, since that is what drew them to the High Point neighborhood in the first place. It goes without saying West Seattle has some of the best real estate values inside the city limits and it would be perfect for a downtown commute, especially with the water taxi going full time in 2010.

So, Jim and Kim, since I’ve not been able to stop thinking about my accidental meeting with you yesterday, I am performing “self-therapy”. Maybe one of your colleagues will solve the mystery I’ve created and tell you about this blog post. Then you will have an online preview of the homes I would show you. Since I gave you my card you might call me up and give me an excuse to play hooky from my Sunday open house next week. The world is full of possibility for all of us!

I am a good listener…
Square footage may be an issue, since some of these are actually smaller than the home you saw yesterday – but it is all about layout, so try to forget about the numbers. But otherwise:
Elevator – check!
One level condo – check!
View – check! (if not from the unit, then from the rooftop of the building)
On bus route – check!
Price? – I kept it under $500k, since the unit you came out to see was in the low $300s and we did not discuss anything financial.

So it will be fun to see if anything comes from this. At least now I got this off my chest, and I can get on with my day! I am preparing a tour of Environmentally Certified homes in West Seattle – let me know if you would like to join me.

A view of downtown Seattle as seen from High Point View Point Park.

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