Monday, February 16, 2009


Friends, I'm here today to give you a little "tough love" when it comes to real estate.

And here's why:

Recent real estate figures stack a pretty tall deck against speedy sales and big profits in many markets, including ours. The National Association of Realtors' research estimates more than a 10 month supply of properties currently on the market across the U.S. Our market is no different.

I'm hopeful that a little tough love now will mean we can work together to solve this challenge, rather than against eachother. So here it comes.

Lending standards have tightened up significantly....but there are still buyers out there. There are a few tried and true things you can do to cature that one buyer for your home.

First: Decide if selling right now is absolutely necessary. If not, then don't! Putting your property on the market "to see what happens" is sure to find mostly disappointment. Our market will rebound, and when it does, you'll be far better selling then.

Second: When setting your price, consider multiple angles, Solds, Pending - what buyers were willing to buy in the last 30 days, and Active - who is your competition and where are they placed on the pricing scale?

Third: Be aggressive in your pricing strategy. You get only one chance to make a first impression. The greatest interest in a property comes in the first "weeks" (yes, I said weeks - not months) it's listed.

Lastly, prepare your home to be seen. Put those knick-knacks, quirky paintings and the alter to your wedding away! These personal items are challenging for buyers to look past so they can envision themselves living in your home. Consolidate and simplify, creating even greater value and appeal for your home.

That's it my friends. You've been loved up!

I'm off to a seminar this week - one that will allow me to assist homeowners who are in trouble on their look for an update next Monday.



Thursday, February 12, 2009


Listening to all the talking heads, you'd think we Realtors need a dunce cap. In spite of the "opinions" of those on your television, I think you should be buying real estate (shocking, I know!) Wait, I can explain.

First, thanks to near record low interest rates, and home prices that have moderated, the number of potential buyers who can afford to buy has increased! According to data compiled from the 3rd quarter of 2008, 56.1% of all new & existing homes sold were affordable for families earning the median income. That's way above the 40% of families who could afford a home at the peak of the market!

Second, Housing still remains the way for most of us to build wealth. Now that really sounds crazy, doesn't it. A recently released report by Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies indicates that even though housing has it's ups and downs, the average homeowner is dramatically wealthier than someone who rents. This holds true among all age groups.

Lastly, WE WILL SURVIVE THIS MARKET CORRECTION! And as we do, our housing market with perform like a bouncing ball. With that in mind, none of us knows when the market (ball) will hit bottom, but when it does, WOW - that ball (market) will pop right back up before we know it. So, as I have before, I will remind you again...the rule is, "Buy Low - Sell High." Let's get to buying.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Are you like me, making new resolutions each year, only to find yourself about mid-February having failed again? In light of that, I thought I'd share some easy ones that may help with finances so we can all be in better shape in 2010.

AVOID DEBT. Boy, don't we all wish we'd thought of that one sooner. Try to pay more than the minimum amount on your credit card, even if it's only $1.00. Though it seems small, that $1.00 amount allows you to keep this resolution, adding to your success and building your confidence.

TRACK YOUR it for just a week. This is like dieting. We all spend more than we are willing to admit to. Writing it down will allow you to know where you can cut back.

SAVE FOR RETIREMENT. If an official deposit is too much, drop a coin in a jar when you empty your pockets daily. Consider it a success, no matter how little or how much you save.

Starting with these simple goals helps all of us head in the right direction. We'll all be ready to build on our small successes in 2010.