Real Estate In Seattle

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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Take a big breath as you start searching listings for real estate in Seattle. The selection is splendid, but the vast array of choices will be dizzying. Renowned for its ruggedly beautiful natural surroundings, and despite having a bad rap for clouds and drizzle, the Puget Sound area is a wonderful place to live. Not only that, but real estate in Seattle is a sound financial investment. It's hard to go wrong with that kind of combination.

So, where do you start? Once you get the family and work considerations out of the way, you need to decide if you want a more urban or a more rural setting. If you've done that and are set on finding real estate in Seattle proper, it's probably time to get organized on finding a local realtor. Be sure, however, that you've got the basics of your mortgage planning underway and a firm idea of what kind of property you want and can afford.

Given the choice of neighborhoods--and more on that momentarily--the expertise of a savvy local realtor will come in very handy indeed. It's not enough to talk to your college friend who's lived in Queen Anne for the last 15 years, or to your colleague's nephew who studied architecture in Seattle and now practices there. You need to consult with a professional who's got a finger on the pulse of the market and an inside line on available properties, someone who's grown up in Seattle and knows the neighborhoods and amenities personally.

Real Estate in Seattle: Neighborhood Overview

Think of compass quadrants, for a start. Seattle's population of 560,000 people lives in approximately 84 square miles and some 258,000 homes. The city is divided north to south by the Lake Washington Ship Canal, built in 1911. The old neighborhoods of Pioneer Square, Queen Anne, and Eastlake lie in the west section. Capitol Hill, Judkins, and Montlake lie in the east. The more familiar you are with the neighborhoods, the more smoothly your search will unfold.

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