Thursday, June 15, 2017

5 Things You Should Never Say to a Buyer During Your Home Sale

There are five things you must never say out loud to a prospective buyer while your home is on the market.

Looking to buy a home? Check out our free home search
Looking to sell a home? Check out our free home value report

You know the expression “Loose lips sink ships?” Well, that saying holds true for the real estate world too. If you’re selling your home, there are certain things you must disclose to a buyer, such as whether your home has lead paint, there has been a death on the property in the recent past, the home is located near a busy street, etc. However, there is plenty more information you might volunteer that you’d be much better off keeping your mouth strategically shut about. The same goes for the Realtor representing you. To help hone in on your “less is more” attitude when it comes to talking to prospective buyers or their agents, here are five things you should never utter (in no order of importance): 1. “Our house is in perfect condition.” Of course it is. Your home is your castle, and in your eyes it may seem perfect, but don’t make claims that aren’t true. The home inspection might reveal otherwise, and you don’t want to wind up putting your foot in your mouth. There is no such thing as a perfect condition when it comes to a home. Every home—whether it’s brand new or a resale—has something that could be fixed, adjusted, replaced, or improved upon.

There is no such thing as a perfect condition when it comes to a home.

2. “It’s been on the market ___ days.” Never ever discuss how long your home has been on the market with a prospective buyer or their agent. This information is already provided on the MLS or the home’s information sheet, and bringing it up—especially if the home’s been on the market for a while—can send the wrong message. No one wants to buy the white elephant of the neighborhood. If they do, it’s probably because they think they can get it dirt cheap.

3. “We’ve always wanted to fix or renovate that, but…” Mum’s the word when it comes to fixes you intended to address. This only alerts the buyer of more upcoming costs for them, and they may not even want to take on a bathroom or kitchen renovation. Why plant those extra dollar signs in their head?

4. “We spent a ton of money on (the patio/kitchen/etc).” Just because you love the Brazilian cherrywood flooring you installed on the first floor doesn’t mean prospective buyers will be willing to shell out for that. The buyer doesn’t care whether you spent $10,000 or $100,000 on your kitchen—they’ll only offer what they think the home is worth in relation to the area comparables. You would do the same thing. Save your breath, or else you’ll sound like you’re trying to justify your price, and nobody wants to hear that.

5. “I’m not taking less than ___ for my home.” I understand that you want to sell for top dollar, but it’s important to be realistic and open to offers within a reasonable range—something that’s fair to you and you would be happy with. If you send a message right out of the gate that you’re inflexible or not open to negotiation, it doesn’t invite buyers to even try to work out an acceptable price and terms with you. They may feel defeated from the very start and word might spread about your sentiment as a seller. This can cause people to avoid your house altogether. If you have any questions or need to sell your home, don’t hesitate to give me a call. I’d be happy to help you.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Real Local Real Estate Market Update

What's going on in our market right now? It's still red hot, but it's a tale of two price points.

Looking to buy a home? Check out our free home search
Looking to sell a home? Check out our free home value report

It seems like everyone wants to know what's happening in our real estate market right now. Think of it in terms of two scenarios. For example, let’s say a nicely upgraded home in mint condition comes on the market for $650,000 and the initial open house is crazy, creating urgency among buyers. By Monday morning, there are multiple offers on the home, and by week's end, the seller accepts an offer that's over asking price that will close in fewer than 30 days. Next, picture a stunning luxury home listed for $1.8 million. A few people come through the open house and the traffic is solid in the first week, but there are no offers until it's been on the market for three to four months. After going back and forth on negotiations, the seller accepts an offer that's $100,000 below asking price, taking 60 days to close. Both of these scenarios are typical in our market for their respective price ranges. The market is hot, but the higher the price, the longer it takes to sell a home. It all depends on the price points, and if it's not compelling, it's not selling. The market is sizzling hot for homes priced below $750,000, with these homes receiving multiple offers. The lion's share of sales we've seen this year has been at that price point below $750,000, too.

The market is still sizzling hot, but the higher the price, the longer it takes to sell a home

The $750,000 to $1 million price range is still hot, depending on the city. However, on average, it takes a couple more weeks (or even months sometimes) to negotiate a deal compared to the lower price range. There simply aren't as many buyers looking to purchase a home in that price range.
It's a completely different story above the $1 million price point. That market is decelerating as we speak. The expected time for a home in this price range to sell is four months to a year. There aren't enough buyers in this price range for all the competing sellers. Regardless of the price range, though, there will be a lot of new homes coming on the market now through September. The active supply of homes will grow, but demand will stay about the same. The expected market time it takes to sell a home will grow as well, and you can expect to start to see some price reductions for more serious sellers who realize that more homes on the market means more competition for them. No matter the price point, it's imperative for sellers to price their home according to the marketplace with an exemplary marketing plan to avoid wasted market time. Interest rates are still low and homes are still selling, but the window of opportunity won't stay open for much longer. If you have any other questions about the market or you're thinking of buying or selling real estate in the LA and Orange County market, give me a call or send me an email today. I'd be more than happy to help you!

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

With Rates on the Rise, Can You Keep Waiting to Buy?

Mortgage interest rates are on the rise, so should you stop waiting to buy a home? Our preferred lender joins us today to explain this topic.

Looking to buy a home? Check out our free home search
Looking to sell a home? Check out our free home value report

With mortgage rates on the rise, should you wait to buy a home? I've brought in our preferred lender Lauren Williams with Vision One Mortgage to help me discuss this topic. Rates have gone up over the last several weeks. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Mortgage Bankers Association, and the National Association of Realtors all agree rates will continue to go up over the next four quarters, too. Because of this, some buyers regret the fact that they might not be able to get an interest rate of less than 4% on a mortgage. However, you must realize that current interest rates are still at historic lows. Back in the 1970s, interest rates averaged 8.86%, and in the 1980s, the average was as high as 12.7%.

Current interest rates are still at historic lows.

The bottom line is that although you may have missed getting the lowest mortgage rates ever offered, you can still get a better rate than your older sibling did 10 years ago, your parents 20 years ago, and your grandparents 40 years ago if you buy a home or refinance your mortgage now. If you're interested in buying a home or refinancing your mortgage, don't wait to get in touch with Lauren at 714.625.0130 or at If you have any other questions for me or you're thinking about selling your home in LA and Orange County, give me a call or send me an email. We look forward to hearing from you!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

How I Can Be Your Resource

I want to be a resource to you, and here’s how I can do that.

Looking to buy a home? Check out our free home search
Looking to sell a home? Check out our free home value report

Who can I put you in touch with? I ask because it’s my job to be a resource to you, and I can do that in so many different ways. One way is by referring you to the right person. Over the years, I’ve retained many relationships with people in all different lines of work. Are you moving out of state? I know and network with the top agents all across the country, and I see them in person at multiple events every year.

I’d love to be your resource.

I can put you in touch with virtually anyone, be it mortgage brokers, trust attorneys, financial planners, home cleaners, tax attorneys, landscapers, contractors, local and out-of-state movers, and many, many more. So, if you or someone you know has a question or a project coming up and need some help, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’d love to help!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Are You Ready for the Spring Market?

When does the spring market start? According to the calendar, it should be March; however, the spring real estate market kicks off much sooner than that.

Looking to buy a home? Check out our free home search
Looking to sell a home? Check out our free home value report

When does the spring market start? Officially, according to the calendar, the spring market starts in March. However, in real estate, the spring market starts in January. Immediately after the new year we have a whole new set of buyers coming into the marketplace. Then, after the Super Bowl in early February, the spring market will continue to pick up speed, sometimes all the way through the end of June. As we begin the new year, families across the country will be deciding if this is the year they sell their current house and move into their dream home. Many people think that they should wait until March to list their home, which made sense in the past. However, this winter is not like recent years.

The spring market starts right after New Year’s.

Thanks to recent increases in mortgage rates, buyers have been forced off of the fence and into the marketplace. At the same time, inventory levels of homes for sale have dropped dramatically compared to this year. So, right now there is incredibly high demand from buyers and low competition for home sellers, making now a great time to put your home on the market. The bottom line is that the spring market has already begun. If you have any questions about the market or about listing your home, give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you!