If it’s not right, it’s wrong . . . unless you’re a Realtor?

What if you found out that your Realtor worked at a company where only 10 of the 100 company Agents followed recommended business practices?  Shocking as that might sound, 10% is pretty typical for industry standards.

Ok, I’ll give it to you . . .  “recommended business practices” is a pretty loose term.  So, for clarification purposes in this video we are referring to these key points:

“Documents” referring to State of California C.A.R. forms (required).  And “recommended business practices” referencing client care and customer service, i.e. using organized communication system, tracking and returning correspondence, regular transaction updates, quality marketing tools, etc.

What are your thoughts?  Should Realtors (as independent contractors), be allowed to practice without any substantial accountability in place?  Or should modern real estate mandate a more consistent and protected experience for the consumer?  I would love to hear your thoughts.

 

Citrus Heights Market Update

MLSCitrus Heights Market Update

The median list price in Citrus Height’s this week is $364,000.00.  The 120 properties have been on the market an average of 14 days.  This week 22 homes Sold and 46 houses went Pending. Inventory is up 7.1% compared to what it was last year at this time.  The market is still hot as we approach Fall.

Supply and Demand

Real Estate prices rise and fall based on the laws of supply and demand. When the demand for real estate is high, prices tend to rise.  If the number of available properties increases, prices tend to drop.  Supply and demand is difficult to balance in the real estate industry.  Often it is just not possible for the supply to increase in time to meet consumer demand.  Understanding the basic principles of supply and demand can help a consumer decide when the best time is to buy or sell a property.

Days on Market

The homes for sale in Citrus Heights have an average of just 14 days on market (DOM).  The number of homes going into escrow (pending) has increased by 4.7% from this same month one year ago (2016).  The number of Citrus Heights homes that have sold this month have not increased or decreased from this same time 1 year ago.

If you are thinking about selling your home, the Fall Market is traditionally known as the second best selling season of the year!

 

*Stats provided by the MLS.  All information is deemed reliable, but not guaranteed.

Real Estate Q&A

Q and AThis is a column dedicated to answering frequently asked questions we get from our clients  while working in real estate.

Question:  “Should I wait to buy a home over the holidays or winter time to get a better price?”

Answer:  This is one of the most common questions we receive and I want to just summarize the pros and cons of a winter/holiday purchase briefly.  We have all heard it said before that the best time to sell a home is in the spring/summer market.  Pricing in real estate is often influenced by supply and demand.  Usually homeowners will choose to avoid selling their home over the holidays because they want to get “top dollar.”  A buyer may find that there is less competition from competing buyers and that sellers price more aggressively when purchasing a home over the holidays/winter months.  However, a challenge that catches buyers off guard when house-hunting over the “slower” months, is low inventory.  Low inventory often results in buyers not having as many choices when trying to find a home making it difficult to purchase a home that meets their needs.

In summary, when is the best time to buy?  Many factors play into this decision including if you have to sell a home first, local market conditions, and ultimately personal goals and strategy.  The best time for you to purchase a home might not be the best time for your friend to buy a home.

Why Millennials?

A couple of Realtors have questioned my emphasis on reaching Millennials when it comes to marketing.  So I wanted to address why we feel this is so important.  Keep in mind the following:

  1. National Association of Realtors reports that Millennial’s are powering the Housing Market recovery as they become the largest group of Home Buyers (34%).
  2.   Over 90% of people are reported to search online first for products and services.

 

In summary, how important is online marketing, video and technology?  It’s absolutely vital that we as Real Estate Professionals utilize the latest technology available in our marketing and communication so that we can meet the largest segment of home buyers (Millennials) on their turf . . . online.

Down-Payment Assistance Success!

Down Payment AssistanceIn the Greater Sacramento area, it is a brutal multiple offer market out there for the buyers that are maxed out at $275,000.00.  I have had buyers that wanted to write offers on properties that had any where from eight to twenty two offers per home!

I am known among my peers as the “Calhfa Girl” because so many of my buyers are 1st time Homebuyers that are using Down-Payment Assistance (DAP) financing.  Due to the lack of familiarity with this financing, many Listing Agents are terrified of DAP offers.  A Down-Payment Assistance offer also indicates that the borrower has limited funds so this is a red flag that there could be additional challenges during the escrow period when it comes to repairs, appraisal, etc.

When I first begin Real Estate, I made a commitment to help every person I could and promised myself to never get caught up in “chasing a paycheck.”  It seems many great people make poor decisions when it comes to money.  Many of my fellow Realtors have told me that they write offers without disclosing the Assistance and hope that the Listing Agent does not ask them for “proof of funds.”  But with my commitment to my value system, I have always chosen to disclose upfront to the Seller on the RPA (Residential Purchase Agreement) that my buyer is using Down-Payment Assistance.

I wrote an offer this week for my Buyer who had fallen in love with a beautiful investor flipped home!  This house was perfect for my buyer in every way.  Once again I found myself writing a Calhfa offer on a home with multiple offers.  I did my typical routine of disclosing my buyer’s financing, submitting the offer with a cover (motivation) letter from the buyer decked out in cute family photos, explaining in detail why we were confident we would close the loan and including a link to Calhfa’s turn around times.

Much to my dismay, the Listing Agent called our lender and shared that they would not accept a Calhfa because of the terrible experience they were having as they were currently on Day 60 of a 30 day Calhfa escrow with a buyer on a different property the seller owned.  I knew my buyer would be devastated to hear this news.  Many people commented things like “She just needs to save her money and try again when she doesn’t have to use assistance.” and “Well, Calhfa’s just don’t get accepted in today’s market.”

I refused to take “no” for an answer and we sprang into action!  I reached out to another Listing Agent that we closed a Calhfa loan on the past several months, shared my situation and asked for permission to list them as a reference.  I sent an email to the Listing Agent on the property and acknowledged their concerns.  I provided them a statement of why their experience with us will be different and then I gave them property information from the MLS including days in escrow and a list of former Listing Agents (contact information) that could be used as references.  We submitted this last attempt to save our chances and crossed our fingers.

I received the following email back:

“Cara,

I appreciate you elaborating further on our concerns. It helps reassure us that you and your team are capable and competent of closing quickly with Calhfa.”  This was accompanied with the fully executed contract and my buyer got the house!

Multiple offers?  Down-payment Assistance?  Through detailed preparation, experienced presentation, and skillful negotiation, helping buyers purchase homes using Calhfa financing is our passion!