Bad News For the Media

August 27, 2007

Good news for real estate and the economy usually means bad news for the media, as they “sell”  better during hard times and catastrophes.  Click here for some good news…


Leaders Who Lose Touch

August 27, 2007


Several years ago when I was an office manager and I did not sell real estate, a couple of my agents told me that I lost touch with the real estate industry since I had not listed or sold property for several years. I scoffed at that, my ego not letting them make any sense.

Fast forward to 2003 and the opening of my office, and I quickly realized that they were right to a large degree. Just yesterday, I read a magazine article in a prominent real estate publication written by a stuffed suit in a very large real estate company. This person babbled on and on about the virtues of customer service, while never really saying anything, never telling the reader “how to”, it was a just do it laced with lots of fancy catch phrases. I know personally that this Senior Vice Person has not listed or sold a home in 20+ years.  Her company uses it’s reserves of millions, maybe billions (she didn’t generate that money, she is just a stuffed suit) to acquire other smaller firms, thus adding to their office and agent count. Then they re-brand them and share their fancy marketing materials with them.

Simply put, the leaders of this industry have mostly lost touch, and have no idea what the hell the consumer really wants, needs, expects or likes or dislikes. Most leaders at the top are completely disconnected.  They would be lost for months if plopped in a real estate office and told to generate new business.

Reduce the Commission, Reduce the Price, Sell the House

August 26, 2007

If your house is priced at $405,000, and a set fee broker can save you $14,000 in commissions, you can now price your house $14,000 lower, thus making your home more attarctive to would be buyers. At a new price of  $391,000, more buyers would be inclined to bid on your property as it is now a better value.

Other than the high fees, what do you have to lose?  Keep in mind a set fee broker is not a discount broker. Typically, many discount brokers provide less marketing, less exposure. A set fee broker can handle your entire transaction from start to finish.  At Help-U-Sell, you are able to participate in the transaction, thus having more control over the process if you wish.

“Expert” Advice and Points of View

August 25, 2007

The following was taken from a magazine for real estate professionals. Please read.

 Don’t let Sellers give a personal tour of their home.

It is hard for some Sellers to resist sharing their personal experiences, but when it comes down to it, Buyers should daydream about the overall home being theirs, not concentrate on some upgraded sink faucet the Seller installed last week. You want the people to become interested in the home on a personal level, thinking of how they will go about their daily lives in it rather than notice every detail. Noticing every detail will come later.

At Help-U-Sell, we give sellers the option of shoiwng their own home. I know personally that many buyers love having the owners show the home, as there is not a question about the house which a seller doesn’t know, unlike all agents. However, some sellers need to know when to turn off the “production”.  The buyer must experience the house, feel it, and absorb it. As the magazine excerpt states, they don’t need to know about the upgraded faucet, or the 55 gallon hot water heater, etc.

Get to the Settlement Table Faster

August 24, 2007

Advice to sellers:  If a buyer wants to make you an acceptable offer, try to close as fast as possible.  This new credit crunch may change the rules on your buyer midstream, as it has already done to thousands of would be buyers. I am not saying to panic, or but if you can close the deal in 30 days, just do it.

If you are a seller on the market now, be prepared to settle in 30 days to avoid having the financing rug pulled out from under your buyer. Make sure to have your municipal inspections done where possible, be de-cluttered and partially boxed to move, and if you are really proactive, have a pre-listing home inspection done buy a legitimate home inspection company.

With many different mortgage programs being yanked off the market, make sure to answer the door as opportunity knocks. 

End of the 100% Financing?

August 23, 2007

Will the credit crunch forever eliminate 100% financing?  That’s what many lenders are insinuating lately, anyway. While some unique programs may always be available, it is quite possible that the no money down deals will fade away, as too high a percentage of them are slipping into foreclosure.

While all of this may seem like a bad thing for our economy and for real estate (as the media wants you to believe), I feel that the market and the industry are now in a self-cleansing mode.  In the end, we may have less sales, but we will also have less foreclosures.

If you will be buying your first home within the next few years, now is the time to begin saving, have a monthly personal budget, and stop wasting money on things which may bring you immediate, but no long term satisfaction.  Who knows how much your lender will require as a downpayment by the time you buy?  Save now!

But They Had to Sell!

August 22, 2007

Seller:  I want $300,000 for my home.

Agent: Well, the last 3 sales in your direct area sold for $235k, $265k and $275k.  I am not sure this market or area will produce $300,000.

Seller:  Those people had to sell. One bought another home, another was getting a divorce, and the third couldn’t afford it…I don’t think.

Agent: I understand. There are 500+ homes for sale in your town right now, and many of those folks have to sell. That’s why they are  on the market. They must move for one reason or another. It is homes like these which set the benchmarks for value.  Of the 500 homes for sale, I would guess that at least 150 of them Have To Sell.

Seller: My house is better.