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The Joy of Giving: Windermere for Kids 2015

Nearly 300 Windermere Real Estate brokers from six Eastside offices came together on December 5, 2015 for the 15th occasion of “Windermere for Kids” since 1998. This event is a favorite for brokers who year after year choose to support “Windermere for Kids” over having a company holiday party. Together, they helped deliver the holiday spirit to 100 deserving children and their families living on the Eastside.

A special thanks to Brian Homman, Carlos Cruz, and Ronnie Dennis of Loaded Pictures in Seattle for their hard work and time in creating this video.

The morning of the event, each of the 100 children between the ages of 7 and 12 (a “little shopper”) is given a $200 gift card to Target and partnered with one of the brokers who helps the little shopper select gifts for members of their family. For many of the children, this is the first time they have experienced the joy of gift giving. Unbeknownst to the little shopper, a gift for them is also purchased. Gifts are then taken into the mall where there are six large wrapping stations, each powered by 15 to 20 brokers. The gifts are wrapped, tagged and packaged for the little shopper to take back to their family. While they wait for the gifts to be wrapped, there are Santa pictures, crafts and food and beverages to keep them busy.

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View more pictures on our Facebook page.

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Windermere Living – Winter 2015

The Winter 2015 issue of Windermere Living showcasing residences and destinations from across the West is now available! Windermere Living is the exclusive listings magazine published by Windermere Real Estate.

Read the online version by clicking on the image below.

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Understanding the Chinese Home Buyer in the U.S. Housing Market

Earlier this week, Bill Russell, head of International Development for Chinese real estate website, Juwai, spoke to a large group of Windermere agents about how to connect to Chinese buyers. Since China is a country with very different marketing tactics and a culture drastically different than our own, we were able to learn a great deal. To put things in perspective, Juwai.com currently has 2.6 million unique views per month from Chinese consumers who are searching purely for western properties; 20 percent of whom live outside of China. The United States is the number one searched country by far, followed by Australia and Canada.

So why are so many Chinese investing in land abroad? According to Juwai, 36 percent are buying for investment, 34 percent for immigration, and 16 percent for education (i.e. buying a house for their kids to live in while they’re studying in the U.S.). What many people may not know is that there is a minuscule amount of inheritance wealth in China, the majority is “new money” made in the last 10-15 years. With an average budget of $2.6 million, the Chinese typically take a year to search for the right home in which to invest, patiently taking time to research everything thoroughly. On average, they end up spending about $933,723 per property.

There are 297 different Chinese dialects, making it nearly impossible for local agents to market their properties effectively. It can also be time consuming and stressful trying to market to China since they don’t use any social media from the Western world; China has their own Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc. which all have different names. Juwai.com is their version of Zillow.com, which is bridging the gap between East and West by translating all property and marketing comments. It may come at a price, but real estate companies, like Windermere, don’t mind paying the cost of marketing on Juwai since the Chinese buyer is such an important part of the housing market (especially in Seattle’s Eastside neighborhoods).

Cities like Seattle, San Francisco, and LA are popular destinations for Chinese immigrants and investors, and they’re representing larger and larger pieces of the real estate pie. Experts don’t see this changing for the foreseeable future, so it’s in a real estate professional’s best interest to get to know the Chinese consumer. A big thank you to Bill Russell for coming out and helping us do just that.

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Sellers Get Their Million Dollar Listings Exposed

29 sellers get their million dollar plus listings exposed to over 100 Windermere luxury agents.

At Wednesday’s Premier Breakfast, 108 brokers from across the Seattle area and the Eastside met at the Overlake Golf and Country Club to network and discuss trends in the local luxury market. Among the discussion and presentations were 29 new luxury listings now on the market. This is a great way for us to give exposure to your property by meeting firsthand with other brokers who may know your potential buyer.

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Alan Pope, luxury real estate appraiser, also gave a presentation to our brokers. His experience and knowledge of real estate trends helps boost our agents to become experts in the luxury real estate market.

A panel of Windermere Real Estate experts talked about the waterfront market in Seattle, Mercer Island, Lake Sammamish and the Eastside. You can find reports for these markets at thewaterfrontreport.com.

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Take a look below to see all 29 new Premier listings:

8105 Overlake Dr W, Medina – $2,980,000
10228 NE 21st Pl, Bellevue – $2,550,000
3615 42nd Ave NE, Seattle – $4,700,000
4939 NE Laurelcrest Ln, Seattle – $10,400,000
2215 Killarney Wy, Bellevue – $7,380,000
5482 Beach Bluff Dr, Freeland – $1,250,000
4416 95th Ave NE, Yarrow Point – $12,000/Month
9615 SE 16th St, Bellevue – $4,500,000
2415 11th Ave W, Seattle – $1,795,000
6643 NE Windermere Rd, Seattle – $2,675,000
1507 Mukilteo Lane, Mukilteo – $1,750,000
Undisclosed, Auburn – $2,400,000
832 SW 295th St, Federal Way – $2,475,000
7507 131st Ave SE, Snohomish – $1,275,000
260 Fay Ln, Camano Island – $1,395,000
1655 10th St W, Kirkland – $4,000,000
2736 Broadway Ave E, Seattle – $1,995,000
16520 Shore Dr NE, Lake Forest Park – $3,500,000
9211 SE Shoreland Dr, Bellevue – $3,880,000
707 94th Ave SE, Bellevue – $5,998,000
1425 80th Ave NE, Medina – $2,998,000
18685 NE Woodinville Duvall Rd, Woodinville – $2,200,000
Undisclosed, Blaine – $1,947,000
4727 NE 36th St, Seattle – $2,295,000
1126 235th Pl SE, Sammamish – $1,300,000
1042 W Lake Sammamish Pkwy SE, Bellevue – $2,200,000
6220 E Mercer Wy, Mercer Island – $5,600,000
10400 47th Ave SW, Seattle – $1,100,000

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Market Reviews – Third Quarter 2015

Our Eastside Market Review and West Bellevue Market Review are now both available for the third quarter of 2015.

Eastside Market Review

Read the Issuu publication here or click below for the online PDF version.

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West Bellevue Market Review

Read the Issuu publication here or click below for the online PDF version.

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Bellevue Farmers Market

11866246_1105330509496357_2425004591938826685_nThe Bellevue Farmers Market has been a staple on the Eastside for nearly 12 years. Founded in 2004 by Lori Taylor, this farmers market was created as a way to support the farmers who work hard to provide us with food.

The market’s mission is to fully support the farmers and the hard work they do every year and each season. It also gives the growing, urban Bellevue a chance to break away from the fast-paced city life. The food is so fresh and wonderful, usually harvested or made that morning or the day before. You can’t always get food that fresh from the grocery stores. Additionally, visitors get a chance to build relationships and create a sense of community, not only with other customers at the market, but with the farmers and the people who are growing the food.

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While the Thursday market is the larger of the two markets, Saturday continues to grow as the need for fresh, local food increases with the population of the downtown urban dweller.

Windermere has been a corporate sponsor of the Bellevue Farmers Market since its opening in 2004.

You can visit the Bellevue Farmers Market Thursdays at the Bellevue Presbyterian Church parking lot from 3-7pm until October 15, and Saturdays at Compass Plaza from 10am-3pm through November 21. Remember, both markets have plenty of free parking available.

For farmers market addresses and more information, make sure you visit BellevueFarmersMarket.org and take a look at their blog, Urban Farm Junkie.

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Windermere Foundation Recipient: Jubilee REACH

IMG_9691We continue to add to our list of great organizations supported by the Windermere Foundation. Jubilee REACH is a local nonprofit supporting students in their schools and communities in Bellevue, WA. Their mission is to LOVE, LISTEN, & LEARN, build relationships, and earn trust to hear the deeper need. This grant will provide practical and emotional support with a hand up, not a hand out, to more than 50 students from Lake Hills Elementary before and after school.

IMG_9524Jubilee REACH meets Bellevue’s growing needs by focusing on their core values, also known as R.E.A.C.H. (Relationship, Education, Assistance, Community, and Hospitality). Wrap-around services that include 36 community programs, 38 Jubilee REACH Athletics & Activities that run in the 7 middle schools and 3 elementary schools, and the Jubilee REACH Thrift Store mean they can make an impact throughout Bellevue and provide assistance to those in need.

Thank you for everything you do in the Bellevue communities, Jubilee REACH!

Visit their website to find out more and see how you can be a volunteer or lend your support.

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Windermere Foundation Recipient: Backpack Meals

IMG_1904We’re highlighting another Eastside Windermere Foundation recipient today making a difference in our local community. Backpack Meals for Kids provides free, easy-to-make meals each Friday for children so they have food to eat over the weekend. Backpacks are also provided free to children who need them when they join the program. This grant provides weekend meals to Bellevue students who are homeless and would otherwise go hungry.

DSC01303Backpack Meals for Kids serves the nearly 200 homeless children in Bellevue. Over 4,000 students from low-income families qualify for free or reduced priced meals, including:
• 69% of students at Lake Hills Elementary
• 47% of students at Highland Middle School
• 41% of students at Sammamish High School

For too many children in the Bellevue Public Schools, the only meals they eat are at school. On the weekends, they go hungry. Backpack Meals for Kids is working to fill that gap.

Thank you for making a difference for children in our community, Backpack Meals!

Visit their website to find out more and see how you can help support them as they prepare for the new school year.

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Windermere Foundation Recipient: Eastside Baby Corner

ebc-2015Here’s another organization we’re highlighting from last year’s Eastside Windermere Foundation recipients. The Eastside Baby Corner helps kids thrive by providing the basic necessities that every child needs. They leverage the impact of direct service providers by delivering essential goods to the families they are helping. This grant provides basic essentials like diapers and formula to economically disadvantaged children ages birth to 12.

logoEastside Baby Corner (EBC) was founded in 1990 because Karen Ridlon, a local pediatric nurse practitioner, became concerned about the large numbers of babies in her practice that began life without adequate food, clothing, beds or safety equipment.

Her commitment to giving these children a stronger start grew from an idea and a few items gathered in her dining room, into an agency that in 2014 distributed 51,396 orders of absolute essentials to local children.

For 50 weeks each year, volunteers and staff at Eastside Baby Corner collect community donations, purchase and distribute children’s and maternity items to families in collaboration with virtually every organization helping families in our area. Case managers from partner agencies assess the needs of the family, request the items from EBC, pick up and deliver them to the family. Serving a broad area across King County that extends to the Cascade foothills and from south of Renton into south Snohomish County, EBC serves as a diaper bank, a clothing bank, and a food source for more than 500 kids each week.

For more information and to find out how you can help support the Eastside Baby Corner, make sure you visit their website.

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Windermere Helps Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center

LittleBitTomorrow the staff and brokers at Windermere Bellevue Commons will be spending their day volunteering at Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center for Community Service Day 2015. Little Bit’s mission is to improve the bodies, minds, and spirits of children and adults with disabilities through equine-assisted therapy and activities, and to be an inspiration and educational resource to the therapeutic riding profession, both regionally and nationally. Their programs, Adaptive Riding and Hippotherapy, provide life-changing physical benefits like hand-eye coordination, strengthening muscles, and preventing bone weakness. They also helps other aspects of daily living such as promoting confidence and independence and improving communication skills.

BellevueCommonsThis is the fifteenth year Windermere Bellevue Commons has spent Community Service Day with Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center. This year, they’ll be replacing rail posts, cleaning fencing, weeding, pressure washing and planting flowers. Their indoor activities will be stuffing packets, cleaning the staff and family lounge, ironing ribbons, cleaning the kitchen and readying the facility for their horse shows. The volunteers also have a couple big projects outside including building a shed and staining the loafing sheds.

Want to find out more about Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center? Check out their website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter!

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