From the infamous Space Needle to the water taxi, Seattle has a lot that makes it unique, and we hope seniors looking for retirement options will think so too. Here in the Emerald City, you won’t want to tap your heels three times and return to previous locations. You’ll be too busy enjoying your retirement and taking advantage of everything Seattle has to offer — from stellar public transit services to free college degree opportunities for seniors. Let’s take a look at what makes the area one of the best cities for retirement.
A Potential Break on Taxes
Let’s be honest: Seattle is not going to be the cheapest place a senior can live. Although the city is competitive with other major metro areas when it comes to certain costs, median home prices in the area are double that of the national average. Luckily, seniors can get a bit of a break on taxes to offset housing costs. First, Washington doesn’t have a state income tax — no need to even fool with forms. Second, King County offers potential exemptions on property tax for seniors who meet income requirements.
The Opportunity to Learn More
Have you wanted to go back to college for years but simply couldn’t find the time while balancing a career, family and other obligations? Seattle colleges make it possible to earn a bachelor’s degree during retirement almost for free. Seattle Pacific University, for example, offers tuition-free education for those over age 65. You can choose to audit any number of classes as a nonmatriculated student just to broaden your horizons, but you can also work on a bachelor’s degree. Tuition and technology fees are covered, but you may have to pay specific class fees.
Numerous Housing Options
Seniors can find almost any type of home in Seattle. If you’re into stand-alone, single-residence structures, we recommend traditional ranch homes or contemporary modern designs that make use of open-space concepts. The goal is to find a home likely to support you long-term, and Seattle has plenty of properties with floor plans that accommodate options such as wheelchairs or walkers. You might also consider condo units to reduce outdoor maintenance requirements or one of the city’s senior living communities, where you can access 24-hour assistance and never worry about housekeeping tasks.
So Many Public Transportation Options
Seniors in Seattle can come and go on foot or by bus, train, streetcar or boat, depending on where they choose to settle. The city has a wide array of public transit options, and seniors can often take advantage of discounted fares. King County Metro, for example, offers reduced fares for those older than 65 throughout the Puget Sound Region. That includes fares for numerous bus lines, the King County Water Taxi, Washington State Ferries and Seattle Streetcars.
Excellent Health Care Providers
Seattle is home to top-notch medical facilities. The University of Washington Medical Center has more than 900 doctors on staff and is rated highly by U.S. News & World Report in numerous specialties, including geriatrics, oncology, and endocrinology. Downtown, seniors can seek comprehensive urgent and specialty care from the Virginia Mason Seattle Medical Center, and in West Seattle, residents can turn to Swedish West Seattle Primary Care for preventative care and minor emergencies. Other medical centers pepper the landscape throughout the city, so seniors in any neighborhood won’t need to travel far to get care for intermittent illnesses or chronic conditions.
We love Seattle and all that it has to offer and think seniors will too. We’d love to hear your retirement stories of choosing a home or living in Seattle.
I know that while I am used to using and seeing these terms on a daily basis, my clients might need a reference to all the terms they hear during the transaction process so I put together a list of words and their definitions that you will hear over the course of a transaction.
Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM)- The interest rate is tied to a financial index making the monthly mortgage payment go up or down over time.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR)- The percent of interest that will be charged on a home loan.
Appraisal- A report highlighting the estimated value of the property completed by a qualified 3rd party. This is typically done for the benefit of the buyer to ensure the property is worth what they are paying.
Association Fee/HOA Fee- In addition to a mortgage, certain housing communities such as townhomes have a monthly fee associated with maintaining the common areas and amenities.
Balloon Mortgage- A long-term mortgage loan that starts small but as a large payment due at maturity.
Closing- This is the final meeting where the buyer and seller sign the necessary paperwork, complete the transaction, and release/take possession of the property. Usually the representing agents and attorneys attend.
Closing Costs- The buyer and the seller have expenses associated with the transaction other than that of the actual cost of the home. For example, the buyer has a variety of fees due for obtaining a new loan and the seller must pay commission to both agents.
Closing Disclosure- A form that provides the final details about the mortgage loan. It includes loan terms, projected monthly payments, and how much the extra fees will be.
Collateral – Something of value (in this case your home) that is held to ensure repayment of a mortgage or loan.
Commission- A percent of the sale price of the home that is paid to agents. The seller pays commission to both the buyer and listing agent.
Comparables- Homes in the area of interest that have recently sold that have similar features.
Contingencies- Conditions which must be met in order to close. Contingencies are typically tied to a date, referred to as a deadline. If the contingency is not satisfied the contract may be cancelled.
Counteroffer- The response from the seller in regard to an offer.
Debt to Income Ratio- A lender will look at a borrowers debt versus income to determine the amount of loan they are eligible for and if they can repay their debt plus the home loan.
Down Payment- A percent of the cost of the property that is paid up front as part of the mortgage.
Earnest Money – The deposit made from the buyer to the seller when submitting an offer. This deposit is typically held in trust by a third party. Upon closing the money will generally be applied to the payment or closing cost.
Escrow- This term has multiple meanings; earnest money is typically held by a third party until closing in “escrow” . It can also be referred to as the time period from when the contract is written and accepted by the seller to when the home actually closes.
Equity- The difference in the market value of a home versus what is owed on the home.
FHA- A mortgage that is financed through a private lender and insured by the Federal Housing Administration, often requiring a lower down payment and income to qualify.
Fixed Rate- The interest rate will remain the same for the entire life of the mortgage.
Home Equity Line of Credit- A loan or line of credit that is determined based on the equity or homes value after subtracting the loans owed.
Home Inspection- The process in which a professional inspects the seller’s home for issues that are not openly apparent, then creates a report for the buyer to review.
Home Protection Plan- An annual service that covers the cost of repairs or replacements to items covered in the plan; items like stoves, washer/dryers, etc.
Hybrid- A loan that starts with a fixed rate period, then converts to an adjustable rate.
Mortgage Insurance- Insurance written in connection with a mortgage loan that protects the lender in the event the borrow cannot repay their loan. This is usually not required if the borrower has 20% or more for the down payment.
Mortgage Note- A promise to pay a sum of money at a standard interest rate during a specific term that is secured by a mortgage.
Multiple Listing Service (MLS)- The National list of real estate properties that are available for sale. These are the most reliable sources to receive up-to-date listing information.
Pre-Approval- The process in which a buyer must provide a mortgage professional the appropriate information on income, debts, and assets that will be used to make the initial credit loan decision.
Pre-Qualification- Once approved for a loan, this is the process in which the maximum sale price, loan amount, and monthly payments are calculated for the borrower. This is not a loan approval however, it is useful to know prior to searching for a home.
Principal- The underlying amount of the loan which is actually borrowed.
Property Taxes- These are the taxes that are enforced by the city, town, county, and state government entities. These taxes are included in the total monthly mortgage payment and are held in escrow by the lender.
REO- Real Estate Owned properties or foreclosed properties currently owned by a financial institution such as the bank that made the loan to the previous owner.
Reverse Mortgage- This is specifically for seniors and it allows them to convert the equity in the home to cash.
Short Sale- A situation when the seller’s lender is willing to accept an offer and allows the sale to completed for an amount less than the mortgage amount owed by the seller.
Title- A legal document proving current and proper ownership of the property. Also referred to as a Title Deed, this document highlights the history of property ownership and transfers.
Underwriting- The process in which the potential home buyer is evaluated for their financial ability to repay a loan. This normally consists of a credit check and appraisal of the property.
VA Loan- Loans that are given to Americans who have served in the armed forces. They are administered by the Department of Veteran Affairs.
Yep it’s winter…..and yeah of course I am dreaming of a beautiful Seattle Summer and a Swimming Pool…..how can I do it? What about those who say Seattle isn’t the place for a pool….You might change your mind after reading this blog post…. I recently made an instagram post for #wouldyouliveherewednesday and found a beautiful home in New Orleans with a shipping container pool. I did a bit of internet research and realized it might not be as difficult or as expensive to put in a pool….makes it a lot more enticing to convert the backyard into a 3-months of swimming weather oasis….eh?
Plug- Fill- & Play This Australian company is the only company in the world that delivers a complete product. BOOM! Full customization…I know this isn’t a backyard but come on…this is at a racetrack…how cool is that? REALLY.
You know these….so tell me how long have you wanted one?
Is it too early to talk about 2019? Is it too early to talk about post-holiday, mid-winter blues? Not when we are talking color-
Post holiday blahs and winter blues often inspire trendy home updates…after all we begin spending more time indoors and we may as well LOVE the color of those walls.
With this in mind, the easiest way to make an update is PAINT! Who doesn’t love a fun accent wall, a brightly colored bedroom or a kitschy kitchen!
Get inspired with these 2019 color trends- You can use them all over your home (or in your wardrobe) not just on your walls. Throw in a fun, funky pillow or update your homes look with a cool accessory or new artwork.
This season brings an edgier aesthetic taste – If you love a statement you will love this years colors. From bold black variations and feisty ox-bloody reds to sparkling mean metallic this season has a penchant for punch!
If this doesn’t sound like its your thing – never fear there is also a progression towards seaworthy aquas and cactus worthy terracotta. Let’s take a look at some of your favorite paint brands 2019 releases:
Benjamin Moore – Cool Grey’s
Yes please. These have an air of iciness don’t they?
Benjamin Moore introduces: Metropolitan.
Don’t stop with cool grey’s – there is a beautifully curated palate of other hues in the Benjamin Moore color news:
PPG Paints – Hunter Green –They call it ‘Night Watch’.
( we are ahead of the trend- we have a dog in the office named Hunter).
PPG Paints says:
TRANSFORM YOUR SPACE WITH OUR COLOR OF THE YEAR 2019
Classic luxury meets the restorative power of nature in this trending deep green paint color
“The restorative power of nature is important in society now more than ever,” explains Dee Schlotter, PPG senior color marketing manager. “Night Watch is about bringing the healing power from the outdoors into your home through color. The dark green hue pulls our memories of natural environments to the surface to recreate the calming, invigorating euphoria we feel when in nature.”
So- so -so-so good! The company describes Cavern Clay as a “warm terracotta color with ancient, elemental roots,” and explains that it’s a “nod to midcentury modern style, but with the soul of the American Southwest, which together create the desert modern aesthetic.”
I am so excited to announce I have completed the training to receive the CLHMS designation. Recognized as the mark of accomplishment in luxury markets around the world, the Certified Luxury Home Marketing SpecialistTM (CLHMS) designation assures affluent buyers and sellers that the agents who have earned it have the knowledge, experience,competence, and confidence they require. Membership with this organization will keep me on the cutting edge of the luxury market- equipping me with the right skills and network to sell your million dollar + properties.
CLHMS designation is only awarded to Institute Members with documented sales performance in the top 10% of their market.
Come join us for Pride Skate’s annual ROCK-tober Rocky Horror themed skate!!! We will have performances by the Vicarious Theatre Company, roller skating, AND we will be celebrating 7 years of Pride Skate!!! As always, we will have the AMAZING baby ketten karaoke – WA with the BEST karaoke in the back bar!!! PLUS an after party over at The Lumber Yard Bar! I see you shiver with antici… PATION!
In October 2018, Borealis a festival of light will debut in Seattle. Based at the Museum of History and Industry on Lake Union, a new world of light and color will encompass South Lake Union for four nights October 11-14, showcasing an international video mapping presentation and light art installations from Northwest and international artists. These events are free to the public and open to all ages.
A kaleidoscope of light, color and illusion will transform the South Lake Union neighborhood with a walking tour of art installations, and an international video mapping showcase embellished with performances and music. The Borealis will bring together artists and the technological world to create this inaugural, annual event in Seattle.
Seattle Met and Amazon present the 2nd Annual Cowabunga! Showcasing the best of the Pacific Northwest’s bounty, Cowabunga brings together our food editors’ top-pick chefs, restaurants, farmers, ranchers, distillers, brewers, winemakers and over 7,000 food-lovin’ readers for a weekend of celebrating what’s great about living, and eating in Seattle.
3 days of chef competitions, demos, and tastings in partnership with the Washington State Beef Commission benefiting Seattle Theater Group.
Come celebrate the bounty of our local waters and sample Washington’s most pristine shellfish. Guests can enjoy bites, drink pairings and live entertainment, plus our Best in Shell competition, where the city’s top seafood chefs face off with their best oyster dishes – from raw to Rockefeller
BEER ‘n BBQ Presented by the Washington State Beef Commission and benefiting Seattle Theater Group Saturday 10/6: 12:00 PM.–3:00 PM SLOW-COOKED MEATS; HOPPED-UP BEER
Come watch some of the town’s best pitmasters getting low and slow with prime cuts of beef, then wash these bites down with a few superlative craft brews. Our afternoon barbecue also includes culinary demos and live entertainment.
SEARED Presented by the Washington State Beef Commission and benefiting Seattle Theater Group Saturday 7/14: 7–10:30 p.m. (VIPs at 6:30 p.m.) A STEAK-FUELED EVENING OF ELEGANCE
Cowabunga’s elegant Saturday night event channels the luxury of the classic American steak house, from live entertainment to the city’s best beef bites using world-renowned Snake River Farms American Wagyu Beef. These bites are prepared by Seattle’s all-star chefs and paired with wine and cocktails. A night of steak should end with cake: For dessert, a bevy of bakers will slice up their most impressive layer cakes
COUNTRY BRUNCH – Family-Friendly Presented by the Washington State Beef Commission benefiting Seattle Theater Group Sunday 7/15: 11 a.m.–2 p.m. (VIPs at 10:30 a.m.) The City’s Favorite Brunch
Seattle Met’s Country Brunch is back, and bursting with sweet and savory brunch bites. This year’s festivities include the new Give ‘Em Hell deviled egg competition, plus lawn games, ice cream, and entertainment for the whole family.
Cowabunga is generously supported by our founding partners: Amazon, Washington State Beef Commission, Glenfiddich, Campari, Washington State Wine Commission, Lagunitas Brewing Company. La Panzanella, Laura’s Lean Beef, Moonstruck Chocolate, Bryte Mattress, Pelican Brewing Company, Cambia, Wild Roots Vodka
Darkness falls across the land. The midnight hour is close at hand. Fluffies dance all through the night. And show paws and tails to ward off fright……
Cause this is FetchNW!!! AGES: 21+
FetchNW is Seattle’s only furry boat cruise, and we’re bringing you an all-new party: BARKTOBER! The first furry Halloween-themed boat party on a fracking FERRY. Be spooky. Be fluffy. Dance until your paws hurt. And get this, you spoopy animals. This time there’s an all-new boat! Feast your fearsome eyes On the HIYU.
The Hiyu gives us a spacious outdoor deck, two well-appointed indoor passenger bar lounges, programmable lighting, a full sound system throughout the vessel, and 6 BATHROOMS. You want more space to dance? You got it. You wanna hang out on the deck? It’s there. You wanna chill by the bar? Done. And you know we’re gonna have great music. Grab a ticket, grab your fursuit, your friends, your friends’ fursuits, and come to have a great time.
Times to remember!Boarding Time: 5:45 PM SHARP! Shove Off: 7 PM SHARP!!! Docking Time: 10 PM
Address: S. Lake Union Park 860 Terry Ave N, Seattle, WA 98109
DO NOT GO TO THE ADDRESS LISTED FOR THE HIYU ON GOOGLE MAPS
FOOD: There will be a food truck on board to serve you tasty foods for the drunk and hungry.
Fursuiters: It’s cool to bring totes or bags and store them in the Headless Lounge. Security will search your stuff as you board.
Puppies: Pup hoods and gear are welcome. Show up and doggo your dog self. Keep in mind that there aren’t any mosh mats or fire hydrants on the boat.
Party Rules:All sales final, no refunds. Tickets will be used by the ticket holder. You can give your ticket to a friend or sell it but whoever is holding the ticket when we scan it will get into the party. Don’t give away your ticket unless you really mean to. No outside food or drink No smoking cigarettes or weed on board. Government-issued photo ID required. FetchNW In Heat is a 21+ event. You must be 21 or older to attend. All guests subject to a security screening and bag check, including action packers or fursuit bags. Anyone obviously under the influence of drugs or alcohol may be denied boarding. You are responsible for your own behavior and hold FetchNW, LLC, On the HIYU, and Menagerie Inc. harmless in the event of death or injury from stupidity or all causes whatsoever. Listen to the Captain and staff and do what they say, it’s their boat!. Don’t break the boat. You break it you bought it. Don’t be a dick; we’re all here to have a good time together. Don’t fall overboard or we’ll laugh at you and video will go all over the interwebs.
Tickets are between $50-$100 and can be purchased here.
We Are All Made Of Light, by Seattle-based artist Maja Petric, is an immersive art installation that utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) to create interactive light and sound sculptures. These environments are formed as the AI-driven technology recognizes and captures the shape of visitors with encompassing light. Over the course of the exhibition, visitors’ physicality is recorded and represented through a collection of light forms, documenting the growing history of visitorship and space. Petric’s collaborators include AI Microsoft Researcher Mihai Jalobeanu and 3D Sound Artist Daniel Peterson.
Artist & collaborator bios:
Maja Petric uses cutting-edge technology to create transformative experiences. She received a Ph.D. in Digital Arts and Experimental Media from University of Washington and a master’s in Interactive Telecommunications from New York University on the topic of transforming the poetic experience of space through the experimental use of technology. She has exhibited internationally and been recipient of many awards and fellowships. https://www.majapetric.com
Mihai Jalobeanu received a Ph.D. in Robotics from Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, Romania. He is a Principal Software Developer at Microsoft Research. His research spans machine learning, robotics, automation, distributed systems, computer vision, programming languages, and anything else that can be used to make robots smarter.
Daniel Peterson is a 3D Sound Artist living and working in Seattle, WA. He completed a Master of Music in Composition at the University of Washington and is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the Center for Digital Arts and Experimental Media (DXARTS) at the University of Washington. His work has been shown internationally. His research interests include spectral analysis, ambisonics, and the exploration of relationships between literature, philosophy, and music.
There are lots of fun events coming your way! Get out and explore all this beautiful city has to offer! Enjoy! (..and let me know if you get to any of these events!)
Amazon Symphony Orchestra of Seattle Halloween Spooktacular – 2018 10/19 As the leaves fall and the air cools, join the ASO for a symphonic scare! We invites all ghosts, skeletons and ghouls for a frightfully fun concert featuring sinister selections like Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, Saint-Saens’ Danse Macabre and the mystical music of Harry Potter! Come adorned in your most impressive Halloween costume; prizes await the attendees with the most dazzling digs! We promise we won’t trick you – it’s sure to be a treat! Register
Night out for Caring 9/21 Looking for a fun way to give back? Want to meet other people who care about doing good in the community? Shocked to hear that Washington state is 42nd in high school graduation rates (i.e., nearly last!)? Come to the biggest, best party of the year. The Seattle Mariners and United Way of King County care about kids’ education and want to see you at Night Out for Caring on Friday, Sept. 21, at Safeco Field. You’ll enjoy food, drinks, music and fun with a few thousand do-gooders who like to have a good time. Meet some local celebrities, have plenty of instagrammable moments (like singing karaoke in Macklemore’s Cadillac) and celebrate all the awesome things going on in our community—thanks to the help of caring people like you. Plus explore Safeco Field like never before! #SeattlesNightOut 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM PDT Safeco Field Get Tickets Here.
Smart Kitchen Summit 10/8-9 Smart Kitchen Summit is the industry’s leading event about the future of food, cooking and the kitchen. Benaroya Hall Times and prices vary.Get Tickets Here!
Karin Stevens Dance 10/11–14 Two collaborations with composer Kaley Lane Eaton and music both acoustic and electronic: first, a remount of their disconcertingly lovely 2017 opera Lily; then the premiere of Lung, exploring the main aspect of performance musicians and dancers share: breath. Times and prices vary. Erickson Theatre Off Broadway, Capitol Hill, 1524 Harvard Ave.; 206.329.1050; karinstevensdance.com
Seattle Latino Film Festival 10/5–13 From the dark surrealism of Buñuel to the flamboyant camp dramedy of Almodóvar, Spain’s filmmakers have been some of Europe’s most celebrated. Each year since 2009, the SLFF has focused on a different Hispanic nation, and this year Spain is showcased in its packed schedule of shorts and features. Times, prices and venues vary. 971.704.5849
A Thousand Splendid Suns 10/5–11/10 “I wanted to get beneath that kind of iconic picture of a woman in a burka walking on the street,” said The Kite Runner author Khaled Hosseini in the years right after 9/11, which led to this 2007 novel, the story of two Afghanistan women of different classes and generations whose friendship grows as the Taliban rises in power. Here, it is adapted for the stage by Irish-Indian playwright Ursula Rani Sarma. Times and prices vary. Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Center, 155 Mercer St.; 206.443.2222
Ampersand Live 10/25 Land conservancy organization Forterra is sponsoring a night of readings, music, photography and dance—sort of a stage-show version of its periodical Ampersand, or, as the nonprofit puts it, “an evening of storytelling….about nature, cities, community and critters.” Brass quartet The Westerlies, dance artist Zoe Scofield, wildlife photographer David Moskowitz and 2017 Seattle mayoral candidate Nikkita Oliver are among those scheduled to appear. 7:30 p.m. $15. The Moore Theatre, downtown, 1932 Second Ave.; 206.682.1414
Earshot Jazz Festival 10/7–11/4 Earshot sponsors performances year around, but it really piles it on for a month every autumn. Once again, organizers have planned more than 60 concerts, featuring several dozen solo musicians and ensembles, from acclaimed high school bands to free improvisers. For this iteration, there’s a special focus on women in jazz (including award-winning jazz violinist Regina Carter, Seattle composer Dawn Clement and R&B hip-hop guru SassyBlack) and on this year’s festival resident artist, pianist Jovino Santos Neto. Times, prices and venues vary. earshot.org
Urban Unveiled 10/7/18 The annual Urban Unveiled event, held this year at the sophisticated and storied Fairmont Olympic Hotel, is more than a wedding show; it is a celebration, a cocktail party for nearly-weds and the regions most creative wedding vendors, ready to make dreams come true. This evening of elegance is a chance for brides and grooms to meet and mingle with the Urban Unveiled partners who can make nuptial visions a reality, while guests enjoy fine wines, nibble on sumptuous cuisine, indulge in to-die-for desserts. The evening ends with an amazing raffle and an awe-inspiring fashion show by the legendary Luly Yang. Times, prices and venues vary. Get Tickets Here.