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  • Writer's pictureKim McLaughlin

March: In like a lion, out like a LION!!!

Updated: Apr 8

A lamb standing in a grassy pasture, looking straight at the camera.

The month of March is known to come "In like a lion, out like a lamb" — but in real estate, we've had to revise the famous phrase to describe this most recent March. Noise has enveloped this industry, a change in legislation consuming so much attention and bringing about a lot of misinformation; it has been difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff, and everyone's feeling a bit gluten intolerant.

Agency Law Revisions Effective January 1, 2024, the statute in Washington that governs real estate brokerage relationships (RCW 18.86) – otherwise known as the “Agency Law” – will be significantly revised. The revisions modernize the 25-year-old law, provide additional transparency and consumer protections, and acknowledge the importance of buyer representation.

Yes, there has been a shift in how the market works that may make buying or selling a home different from the past. Rest assured, however, that long-term agents and brokers with extensive experience have what it takes to navigate this change without a glitch. Read the pamphlet about the revision


As a Buyer, per Washington State Law, you will be asked to sign Buyer Brokerage Services Agreement Form 41, with terms you agree to ahead of time, BEFORE an agent may open a door to show you a home. This is the law, a new requirement that must be satisfied before you begin your house-hunting process. The good news? You know up-front that you are collaborating with this broker, and she is representing your interests! The less comfy news is that it might feel a bit like getting married before you even date; who gets married before they develop rapport? 

Nonetheless, some issues remain a bit unresolved, and the process will take some time to sort out. Ask questions. Educate yourself. If you feel you don’t understand or have listened to too many different responses, there are plenty of knowledgeable Brokers who can walk you through the changes as they take place. One thing is for sure: the current market is VERY robust, and homes are selling quickly — many over the asking price.   

If you’re looking to purchase…

  • Do your homework, set up showings with your agent, and try to review all the documents attached to the listing. Your agent will obtain and send most of them to you, as they’re not readily available to the public.

  • Have your ducks in a row, know how much you are “willing” to offer, what you’re “willing” to waive regarding contingencies (if any), and most importantly, what contingencies you deem non-negotiable.

  • You may not prevail on your first, second, third or even fourth offer. That can be very frustrating. With your Broker, decide and put a plan into place BEFORE you begin the process.

  • Your expectations may change, and that’s okay. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and if you don’t understand, keep asking until you feel you have answers that make sense to you and that you can live with. 

A cherry tree bursting with pink blossoms by a picnic table at the golf course.
Wing Point in March is exuberant!

Listing your home

You will negotiate both the commission for your Listing Broker and, if you choose to, a commission for the Buyer’s Broker (highly recommended!) Remember, those commissions are paid for the work the Brokers do to complete the transaction, and all the work that goes into helping you ready and list your home (Listing Broker) and helping you purchase by navigating the market and writing a compelling offer (Buyer’s Broker). 

What’s next

Everything that goes into both sides of a real estate transaction warrants its own blog post; that will be covered next month! I’m here with you and happy to answer questions to help you navigate through this … reach out to me with your questions or concerns (contact info is at the bottom of this page)

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Bainbridge Island real estate over the past 30 days

  • 21 Active residential listings  High $9,875,000, Median $1,295,000 Low $430,000, Average days on market 24  

  • 1 Contingent listing High $1,250,000, Median $1,250,000 Low $1,250,000, Average days on market 14 

  • 25 Pending listings   High $2,100,000, Median $995,000 Low $249,000, Average days on market 40 

  • 19 Sold residential listings High $2,790,000, Median $1,175,000 Low $380,000, Average days on market 34   

  • 1 Sold unlisted property $415,000 

  • 10 Active vacant land listings High $1,300,900, Median $700,000 Low $249,000 Average days on market 21 

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