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Published May 2006

Real Estate Briefs

New mortgage company in Silver Lake
Bickford Mortgage has opened at 10025 19th Ave. SE, Suite 100, in the Silver Lake area of Everett. Loan officers are Kristin Ford and D.J. Caple. For more information, call 425-334-4700 or go online to www.bickfordmortgage.com.

Apartment vacancy in county
at 5.6 percent for first quarter

Snohomish County’s apartment market recorded a 5.6 percent vacancy rate during the first quarter of 2006, according to apartment research firm Cain Inc.

The county outperformed King County, which had a 5.9 percent vacancy rate. Correspondingly, the impact of concessions in Snohomish County was also less, $12 per unit per month compared to King County’s $18 per unit, according to Cain.

The strongest submarket in Snohomish County was found in the north and east, including Arlington, Marysville and Monroe, which had a vacancy rate of 3.9 percent.

The highest rents in the county were found in the Mill Creek and Bothell area, with an average monthly rent of 99 cents per square foot.

The least expensive rents were found in the central Everett area, with an average monthly rent of 80 cents per square foot.

Everett OKs 40-unit
condo building near downtown

After months of vehement opposition from neighborhood groups, a developer received approval from the Everett City Council in April to build a 40-unit condominium building near downtown.

The five-story condo being developed by Joe Zlab and his wife, Shawna, will replace four crumbling houses on a stretch of Rockefeller Avenue that bridges the gap between Everett’s burgeoning downtown and the quiet neighborhoods to the north.

The couple lived there in one of their four properties for two years until 2004. They spent tens of thousands of dollars updating the homes but finally decided to draw up plans for apartments before upgrading them to condos.

When the Zlabs brought their plans before the city’s planning commission, members of the Port Gardner and Bayside neighborhood associations protested, fearing the condos would be an unsightly box.

Council members repeatedly asked the Zlabs to skew the designs to avoid large expanses of flat walls and to bring in more project details, including a list of construction materials that would be used, to ensure the quality of the development.

“I am satisfied with the clarification Mr. Zlab has provided us,” Councilman Mark Olson said.

Home listings grow slightly, while prices soar
Home sales in Snohomish County picked up a bit in March, while prices continued their upward climb, the Northwest Multiple Listing Service said.

The number of homes on the market grew slightly in March, up 3.8 percent to 3,242, stopping what has been a steady decline in the number of homes for sale in comparison to this time a year ago. Closed sales also were slightly above 2005 figures, up 2.8 percent to 1,537.

The biggest change was in the median price.

Combined prices for both condos and single-family homes hit $309,950 in March, a 20.33 percent increase from March 2005. That was among the biggest increases in the Puget Sound area, although smaller than in Skagit County, where homes appreciated by 35.7 percent.

For just single-family homes, the Snohomish County median price was $330,000. For condos, it was $189,970. Median price means half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

Bothell office building sold for $37 million
An office building overlooking the Canyon Park business campus in Bothell has sold for $37 million to a national real estate investment firm.

BlackRock Realty Advisors bought the three-story Canyon Park Heights building at 21540 30th Ave. SE from PF Global Real Estate, according to Snohomish County records. PF Global is an investment fund sponsored by Prudential Insurance Co. and Prudential Investment Management.

The office building’s price tag was more than $16 million above the building’s most recent assessed value. Three years ago, it sold for about $23.7 million.

Canyon Park Heights has more than 144,000 square feet of space. Its tenants include Molina Healthcare, which leases more than 40 percent of the space.

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