Journal of the San Juan Islands


Spring: busiest real estate season of all — Guest column

April 9, 2013 · Updated 12:32 PM

Gary Franklin / Contributed photo

By Gary Franklin

Purchasing a home is one of the most important decisions in a person’s life and deciding on a particular house comes with many options.

Forty-five percent of recent buyers used open houses as a way to narrow down their choices and find their dream home. Buyers on San Juan Island will have the opportunity to do just that on Saturday, April 20, when Windermere realtors hold open houses as part of Realtor Nationwide Open House Weekend.

The Journal’s April 17th edition will feature a list and map of the open houses.

“Spring is typically our busiest season when it comes to home buying, and to kick-off the season Windermere Realtors are taking part in Realtor Nationwide Open House Weekend,” said Gary Franklin, owner of the Windermere San Juan Island office. “This event is a great way for buyers to get an idea of what they can afford and what kinds of homes are available in the local market. It’s also a chance for sellers to market their home and attract potential buyers.”

Windermere Realtors will be available at open houses to answer questions about the island home buying process and local market conditions. An island map of the open homes will be available at the Windermere Spring Street office.

According to data from the National Association of Realtors, the typical recently purchased home was 1,860 square feet and was built in 1996. The typical buyer purchased a home with three bedrooms and two full bathrooms, while about half of the homes purchased were on a single level. When it comes to home features, buyers prefer central air conditioning the most, while walk-in closets were second. The two most common rooms buyers were willing to spend more for were a laundry room and a den/home office.

“Buyers need to have a clear idea of what features are important to them and know where they are willing to compromise,” Franklin said. “That is where visiting open houses can be helpful. Also, working with a realtor can be a real asset. Realtors visit hundreds of homes with buyers each year, and have a unique understanding of what buyers value in their local markets. Their expertise and knowledge, especially on this island, can help you achieve the dream of homeownership.”

Detailed information about open houses will be available at the Windermere Real Estate office at 50 Spring Street, in Friday Harbor and online at SanJuanIslandOpenHouses.com.

— Editor’s note: Gary Franklin is owner/broker/partner of Windermere Real Estate/San Juan Island.


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