Beacon Bits: foster fashion, home values, and music at the park

Neighbors on 12th Avenue South enjoyed the Night Out block party last Tuesday. Photo by Bridget Christian.
Neighbors on 12th Avenue South enjoyed the Night Out block party last Tuesday. Photo by Bridget Christian.
Neighbor Brook writes with an interesting observation about Beacon Hill real estate prices on Zillow:

“Every other neighborhood I’ve checked has followed pretty much the same curve, but North Beacon Hill and Columbia City each have unique curves. They’ve settled into a flatter line where average house values are now just above values in Greenwood. The other exception about North Beacon Hill is that it flattened out in 2006. Maybe the start of the subprime meltdown was felt in the neighborhood first, or maybe it was buyers getting scared away by the giant blue walls, but either way we were spared the last gasp of superheated speculation. Either way, it totally bucked the trend.”

What does this mean? Perhaps the beginning of the much-heralded light rail-powered price increase? We don’t know, but it’s interesting.


The cat adoptathon we mentioned the other day was a success! We’re told there were 15 kitties adopted. If you missed your chance to bring home a kitty, there will be another adoptathon on October 10 from noon to 3:00 pm at the Jefferson Community Center, 3801 Beacon Avenue South.


Project Treehouse will feature local celebrities escorting 14 specially-styled foster kids down the runway on Wednesday, August 12, from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm at Treehouse, 2100 24th Avenue South. The event is aimed at raising awareness for Treehouse’s free Wearhouse store which serves nearly 3,000 foster kids every year by providing them with new and like-new clothing, school supplies, and other things that kids need.


The Rainier Valley Post has some great pictures of last Saturday’s Jose Rizal Music and Arts Festival at Jose Rizal Park. We were unable to be there, but it looks like everyone had a good time and enjoyed some great music!

7 thoughts on “Beacon Bits: foster fashion, home values, and music at the park”

  1. this real estate analysis is offbase based on my experience. i bought in the heart of N Beacon at the top of the market, in july 2007. since then my home’s value has dropped considerably. my official king county appraisal pegs my home’s value as down 12 percent over the past year. i also had a private appraisal done, which showed that my current value is 10% lower than the price i paid. this is just my experience…i’d be curious to know what other people are seeing as they refinance, get their KC appraisals, etc.

  2. I assume Zillow is basing this graph on historical sales data, and that it represents the average. It shows the peak in 2007 at $379,000, and the current value at $336,000. Off the top of my head that looks a drop of roughly 10%-12%.

  3. (Disclaimer 1: not actually Melissa)
    (Disclaimer 2: I do work at zillow, but have no insight into the algorithms)

    Zillow says “Half the Zestimates are above this number and half are below it”.
    So it isn’t really an average or a median.
    I would describe it as 50th percentile.

    On the other hand, both North Beacon Hill and Columbia City have more of those ugly condo conversions than the rest of SE Seattle. That will skew the numbers in low transaction neighborhoods.
    One of the graphs if you click “more metrics” is total homes sold in each neighborhood. That graph shows sales volume at 10-20 per month for all these neighborhoods.

    On the bright side, I have read that in both Denver & Phoenix, prices for properties near new light rail stations appreciated 10-15% than houses in other neighborhoods.

  4. We’re seeing lower appraisals from both the county and a private appraiser. It didn’t make sense for us to refinance after the remodel because the overall value dropped so much.

  5. I finally got around to looking at Zillow and our “Zestimate” has gone up an astounding $100,000 in the last nine months. Only $68,000 in the last year, though (the value dropped from August-November last year, and then started climbing again, with a few stalls until May, and since then it’s been consistently rising). I don’t know if this actually means anything, but that is a major jump.

  6. Wendi, if I remember correctly, your house is zoned commercial. You’ll be seeing different numbers than those of us in the SF 5000 zones. Or Zillow could be totally wacked. Our last real appraisal, at the beginning of this year, was dead on with the “Zestimate” but I kind of wondered if the appraiser, who didn’t normally work in Seattle at all, might have been influenced by Zillow instead of vice versa.

  7. Zillow did not seem to be using the commercial status in their estimate as far as I can tell. (And it didn’t change in the last 9 months, that is for sure.) They could be totally wacked. I prefer to think that our house is just that awesome. 😉

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