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Five Properties Worth Buying Along Metro Bus Route 68

Seattle has buses. (Really, they're throughout King County, and reach into the neighboring counties, too.) Use them! In which case you might as well find a place to live along a line. One line at a time. Here's the next one, selected at random for the fun of it.

All day long, or at least for about twelve or thirteen hours, Route 68 runs from Northgate to the U District, shuttling people from stores to schools (and undoubtedly more.) Maple Leaf and Ravenna have attractions, too. Right?

↑ Congratulations to the generations of owners and residents who've maintained this 1921 classic. The sellers are asking $779,000 for this 4 bedroom, 2 bath house that has 1,750 square feet. The character distinguishes it, because it still has it. The wooden siding, the trellised front porch, the fireplace, and even the post (not a pole) in the bedroom seem like they're from a quieter and simpler time. Of course, that was the Roaring '20s. So much for quiet. Maybe it's a good place to settle in to as we wait to see how the next '20s work out.

↑ It's zoned commercial, allows residency, has been a vacation rental, and has a sign out front from an island business (but where's the island?). It can, however, return to its original 1925 incarnation which was probably a house. After ninety years and so many variations, it may be hard finding the oldest bits. Now, it is listed as a 5 bedroom, 2 bath property with 2,180 square feet and has an asking price of $680,000. Vacation rentals can be comfortable because people expect them to be relaxing. Enjoy the leftover touches built in for tourists, and maybe pretend you're on a protracted sabbatical.

↑ A 2 bedroom, 1 bath, 970 square foot apartment for $245,000? What's the catch? The catch is that there's a tease. The space isn't available until the current lease runs out in July 2016. In the meantime, it has a convenient location beside Northgate Mall, some reasonably new-looking appliances, and an image of two dogs and a cat watching over the space.

↑ What's so much better about a unit at nearly the same address? It's available. It's also cheaper, at $165,000. That's probably because it only has 1 bedroom, 1 bath, and 744 square feet; though for some, smaller is better. And, in this case, smaller is cheaper and available. Moving in now instead of two seasons from now can be a luxurious experience. The other luxury is being on the ground floor. That may not be quieter, but you might find a bit more space for a container garden.

↑ For some people, 3,550 square feet is enough for one house, or maybe just a wing. In this case you get two, count them, two 2 bedroom, 1 bath units for $899,000. Either this three story becomes a couple of rentals, or a owner-occupied rental, or an opportunity to knock out walls and connect floors - you get to choose. (Regulations and legalities permitting, of course.) It has probably changed dramatically since 1908. That two car garage and those two balconies look a bit more current; that's part of staying up with the times. Considering Seattle's interest in densification, maybe change again and turn it into a quad.
· Route 68 [Metro]
· All Bus Tours coverage [CS]
Written by Tom Trimbath