Monthly Archives: January 2014

Sellers – What to Look for in A Listing Agent

Home Selling has changed.  Market shifts, buyer needs and wants and technology has changed the way homes are sold these days. So why choose a listing agent the “old school” way?

1.  Marketing –  Just like you are looking about home selling on the internet…buyers look for ffor homes on the internet.  Old School newspapers do not reach the majority of buyers.  Internet presence is essential to ensure your home is seen by buyers and Realtors.  Quality photos, comments, virtual tours all help your home be seen by buyers.

2.  Service – You want a Realtor who cares about you and your home and can provide you the service you deserve.  Do they answer their phone and emails for interested buyers?  Do they let you know about feedback from showings?  Or are they someone who just lists a bunch of properties and doesn’t really have time to devote to any?

3.  Truth – This is your home, so you often look at it through rose-colored glasses.  You want to get the most money.  You want to sell it fast.  So, you need to think of your home as a commodity, something you see in a store.  It needs to be marketed and presented properly.  A Realtor who tells you the truth about the condition of your home, the potential sales price and what needs to be done to make the best impression to buyers is essential.   Someone who tells you what you want at first and then changes their tune to get the sale is not on your side.  Honesty is through and through.  You need to be concerned with someone who does not tell you the truth – what else are they not telling the truth about?

4.  Cost – Layers upon layers always cost more.   Internet e-marketing and places like Costco and Sams Club became popular because they cut out some of the layers and passed the savings to their customers.  If you pay less to sell your home, you make more on your home.  It is possible to get service and savings.  “Old school” brokerages charge more to cover costs of all the layers while giving your prospective buyer agent less than they get (buyer’s agents are the ones who bring you buyers to sell your home). Even sometimes deducting for administrative fees from the buyer’s agent.

When selling a home, you need to decide what kind of agent you want to work for you to sell your home.  Interview a few, think about what they are offering, what they are saying and how you feel about them – and make a decision.

Econ 101 in Today’s Market – Sellers Get off the Bench – Buyers Hurry!

Remember back in high school when we all had to take an Econ 101 course.  Most people remember one phrase – Supply and Demand.  Pretty simple concept – when there is ample supply and or low demand, prices go down…and when there is limited supply and or increased demand, prices go up.  This is the real estate market we are in now.

After years of distressed property inventory overloading the market and driving prices down (too much supply), 2013 and from all indications 2014, are low supply and more demand – prices go up.

By no means have prices skyrocketed to the highest times or even completely corrected, but some Chicago suburban areas in 2013 experienced between 5-20% increases, again depending on supply and demand for houses.

Interest rates are still low and prices are still lower than boom times.  So it is still a great time to buy and the oldest echo boomers in their late 20’s are starting to marry, start families and buy.  This creates more demand for 1st time buyer housing, which starts the move up chain to all levels of buying.

So, what we experienced last year was less distressed properties on the market, individual homeowners starting to sell, but still not enough inventory.  Result, bidding wars and increasing prices – for some homes.

For buyers this means, you need to be on top of your game.  Working with a good Realtor, knowing what you want and not afraid to leap when needed, buyers can get great interest rates and still get a good deal with future equity. It is competitive – but worthwhile, as you can save money from renting, get into your own home and make a great investment that will return many times for your future.

SELLERS GET OFF THE BENCH!!!  Many sellers have been hesitant to get back in the game for fear of pricing.  You need to get up to bat to hit a home run.  For many sellers, staying on the bench and waiting for prices will result in less buyers when interest rates are higher – less demand.  So, again – lower prices.   Plus, since you have to live somewhere – here or elsewhere – you will need to be a buyer.  So you will get the benefit of the low interest rates, future equity and getting to your new home goals.

Many buyers would rather have a home that someone lives in.  Less hassle, less work, less unknowns, easier transaction.  Distressed properties are none of those things.

Talk to a Realtor and find out what you can get for your home and what you can buy for, you may be surprised.

Buyers and Sellers both need to get in the game to take advantage of today’s market benefits. Historically, housing has been the catalyst time and time again to hold up the nation’s economy.   It touches many industries and creates jobs.  The economy is improving and so is housing.  Now is a great time to get in the game and win!