Posts Tagged ‘Real estate’
It is a tough market for buyers…who would have thought. We are seeing 10-20 offers on every property listing, almost always over asking price and often cash buyers. Hang in there buyers, there is just the house out there for you, but be patient.
Recently in jest, I posted a line on Facebook about how amazed I am that pretty ladies often end up with goofy-looking guys. Let’s be honest. When you see this, don’t you wonder what makes the guy so special?
Take Ric Ocasek and Paulina Porizkova, for example. Anyone in my generation know who they are?
You’re probably wondering what this whole concept of having a beautiful woman on the arm of a goofy-guy has to do with real estate.
Imagine an ugly house. A REALLY ugly house. Then imagine a BEAUTIFUL house. A REALLY BEAUTIFUL house.
Now ask this question: Does the ugly house make the beautiful house look worse or does the beautiful house make the ugly house more tolerable?
A recent article in the New York Times goes into the effect that a down-trodden property has on a whole neighborhood. All it takes is one lousy-looking house to drag down the entire neighborhood’s image. Similarly, a too-beautiful house makes you wonder what the heck the homeowners were thinking when they over-improved a home surrounded by a sea of ugly ducklings.
Hopefully reading this post will motivate you to clean up your yards, trim the trees, pick up the dog poop left behind by yours or someone else’s canine, clear off the neighborhood juvenile’s WASH ME imprint on your car’s windows, etc. Getting involved in your neighborhood association helps too and so does knowing what the local ordinances are that help protect you from being the bad guy when neighbors need to be pushed to clean up their act.
Last year a majority of our client relations were a result of the loss of a loved one in the client’s family. These situations require a great deal of sensitivity and compassion for the family members often left with a plethora of confusing documents, bank accounts, debt, tax and property issues to handle. Adding to the stress of losing a loved one, there can be strained instances of sibling rivalry and hurdles to navigate that wouldn’t exist if there were no money or assets involved.
We’ve run into numerous situations that require care above and beyond the emotions involved with a client’s loss of a loved one in conjunction with the gain of property and other assets. We’ve had tenants of inherited property get sticky with moving out and mention of security deposits without proof of existence, we’ve had a church and a monastery on title that nobody knew about, we’ve had clients’ emotional ties to their childhood home that slowed down the will or desire to sell a property and we’ve had a short sale property that was left to a friend of the deceased to sell. The list goes on and on…
We’ve also witnessed the love between family members who trust their siblings to make the right decision on behalf of the estate. The family members work together to help choose a new owner of their childhood home. In these cases, it is usually a family with children that the heirs prefer selling the home to due to the warm memories of their own childhoods growing up in the home. Though important, money is often not the primary motivating factor in cases like these.
Being patient with what a client is experiencing is only part of the job and is often the most important part. It is very rewarding to be able to help people navigate through a difficult time in life. I know what it’s like to lose someone suddenly. My father was hit head-on in a car collision in 2000 and I will never forget the kindness people showed to me in the aftermath of that incident. Although there was no real estate property left to me or my siblings, the experience of loss has helped me with my job today.
On the lighter side, my mother who is still alive and kicking said she’d leave me everything when she departs from this life. She jokes that all she has to leave behind is a sense of humor and a big heart — and that is all I need…
Let me give it to you straight. Some real estate people give us a bad name. I remember the film “Poltergeist” when the dead bodies came out of the bottom of the swimming pool and learning that it was the agent who didn’t disclose that the new homes were built on a former cemetery!
That character was NOT a “REALTOR”.
The Poltergeist scene is an extreme dramatized version of the unsavory characters who mar my profession. I’m proud to say, however, that there is a BIG difference between REALTORS who are serious about serving the public in a fair and honest manner and those who steer clear of committing to the professional standards required and expected of a REALTOR.
This is the reason we are so involved in our local REALTOR groups with our REALTOR association and the Women’s Council of REALTORS. We see the importance of keeping our noses clean not only with the public but with each other too.
Would you like to know what we believe in and what is expected of us REALTORS? CLICK HERE for the Code of Ethics.
Note: “REALTOR” is two syllables only and should always be capitalized. There’s so such thing as a “real-a-tor”.
We recently adopted a dog from the local animal shelter. He’s a real gem. The vet thinks he is around 9-12 months old, although he acts quite “puppyish” so we are leaning toward the younger end of that range. The first challenge we had was what to name him. He is a nearly all white terrier mix, with a few edges of pink and a spotted nose.
He Said: ”We need to find a good name for him, like Blizzard, or Willard (think back to the rat movie).
She Said: ”But he looks like a piglet! He has big pink ears, pink eyes and sort of sounds like a pig when he grunts. Let’s name him Piglet!”
He Said: ”Uggh. That’s no name for a dog! His name is Willard!”
You guessed it. We now call him Piglet. He does really look like a piglet. That’s not his fault.
He Said: “I call him Willard when we are watching football”.
Whatever his name is, he sure makes our house a home.
(Sigh.) I can’t tell you how often we hear questions like these in our business:
- “Got any good deals?”
- “I’m looking for a good deal.”
- “I only want to buy property if it’s a good deal.”
Then, there are folks who say:
- “Let me know if you have any good deals.”
- “I’ll work with you if you have a good deal.”
- “Maybe if you are the listing agent I can get a good deal.”
Let’s face it. EVERYONE wants a good deal. I doubt you’ve ever heard someone say “I want to get ripped off and pay way too much for a property!”
There are 7 days in a week and 24 hours in a day. In this time, our efforts will be used on our buyer and seller Clients who’ve committed to working with us and who are serious enough to have their financing and cash reserves in order before we see property together on an exclusive basis.
We take our role in representing our Clients seriously and our Clients take it seriously too. We find great satisfaction in helping to make things happen for them. We have no qualms about telling our Clients if we believe a property is overpriced or being clear that if they want the property, they’ll have to be willing to pay a premium compared to the competition of buyers for the same property. Our seller Clients appreciate that we sometimes counsel them NOT to take the highest offer but to focus on choosing the buyer who is most likely to close the sale, as long as the price is reasonable.
Now, about those good deals. When we do come across “good deals”, we’ll let our Clients know about them first. There is a huge difference between a “customer” and a “Client”, so we reserve our more in-depth communications for a select group. The last thing our Clients need is for our efforts to be diluted…
It’s a bit different now. Buyers are abundant and available homes in affordable price ranges are not. Homes garner multiple offers above asking price with many important contingencies shaved off the contract!
Here’s the deal. When a real estate professional tells you to BUY NOW, they’re not necessarily just trying to make a sale! Any of us agents who’ve been in business long enough have seen the ups and downs of the market and the frustration our clients face when they don’t get off the fence in a timely enough manner.
If you’ve set a goal for yourself to do something in life such as purchase a home or sell your home, PREPARE NOW! You never know when it will be too late to enjoy maximum benefits.
However, don’t feel pressured — the timing must be right for YOU…
We are in the midst of an interesting dilemma with pricing several properties for sale.
- A house that’s JUST on the cusp of being a short sale
- A property that is not a short sale but is stuck COMPETING with short sales
- A luxury home that is unique, rare and in a neighborhood where it appears that a “fire-sale” has taken place around the corner, lowering the average price per square foot
How do we deal with pricing?
For the potential short sale: Just price it right, based on what’s happening in the neighborhood with similar homes. Remember, the seller’s lender still has to approve the short sale amount before a buyer can purchase the property. There are programs available to qualified sellers that will give them money ($3000) for relocation assistance, such as HAFA.
For the property with equity competing with short sales: Just price it right, based on what’s happening in the neighborhood of similar homes. It’s important to be careful not to have a downward spiral of competing price reductions against those short sale sellers. Example: You lower your price, they lower theirs, then you lower yours again, then they lower theirs again…STOP the madness before it even starts!
Sometimes it’s better to stand firm on (the reasonable) list price and be willing to budge when an offer comes in. Short sale sellers often have nothing to lose since they have no equity anyway. Representing a seller who has equity takes a certain level of care…
For the unique luxury home: Just price it right. There’s nothing in the world like this home. In the absence of enough suitable properties to compare, we make sure a formal appraisal is conducted for this type of luxury estate to determine an objective third-party basis for a List Price. Many luxury sellers do not have to sell their homes. They can sit tight and wait for the right buyer to come along.
The one common denominator for determining a List Price for the three scenarios above:
JUST PRICE IT RIGHT.