How it works

Buying real estate

Buying real estate can be one of the most exciting processes you’ll ever go through, or it can be one of the most frustrating. To help insure that it’s more the former than the latter, it’s really, really important to know what you’re doing, and follow the process.

Earnest money promissory notes

Some buyers, however, in order to protect themselves against the perceived strength of the seller, refuse to back up their earnestness with cash. Instead, they offer a different kind of asset.

“I’m the #1 real estate agent!”

I’m the person who cares most about getting you through your real estate transaction quickly, easily, and profitably. After you, no one else even comes close.

The two types of real estate agents

There are two very, very different types of real estate agents. I’ve seen each group look with disdain and complete incomprehension at the other. They are so different, they find it just about impossible to “get” the other.

The need and value of staging the kitchen

In reality, when you put your home on the market, it should feel like something you would want to live in. If it’s something you want to live in, then it’s sure to be something that someone else wants to live in.

You need to price your property right

No matter how you slice-and-dice it, you want your property to be ready to sell the day it hits the market. You don’t want to be doing anything that will delay you getting it under contract.

Are you losing money by not using a real estate agent?

There’s an undercurrent among buyers and sellers that real estate agents are too expensive, and that we literally take thousands — and thousands — of dollars out of our clients’ pockets. The desire to bypass a real estate agent can be strong.

The real estate business is an odd business

In most transactions, the buyer and the seller each have an agent. Each of those agents has two goals: take care of their respective clients, and get the house sold. In order to do the former, the agents need to compete. To successfully complete the latter, however, the agents must cooperate.

Going paperless: lessons learned

The things I generate as I go through a transaction, but aren’t worthy of scanning and saving electronically just need to be saved. That’s all. Just saved. What an epiphany! What a time saver!

Are real estate agents obsolete?

The predictions of the death of the real estate agency model came from everywhere, and a lot of them pointed to the collapse of the travel agency model as proof that consumers could get along quite well without any agent skimming homeowners’ profits.

We’re not getting any showings!

Selling a house is an emotional process, and you need to recognize that. You also need to recognize that you might not be getting physical showings that you can see and count, but very likely you are getting showings. You’re just getting showings you don’t know about.

Narrowing the focus

There’s a concept in sales known as “niche marketing” that holds that greater success comes from dropping the jack-of-all-trades mentality, and focusing on one group of prospective clients. It might seem counter-intuitive to think that more success might come from fewer potential sources of business, but I do believe it will be the case.

It is what it is

We balance those three factors — product, price and packaging — so that we can achieve a seller’s goal: highest price in the shortest time with the fewest challenges. If the product is lacking in some capacity or another, we have to fix it somehow. Sometimes, we can physically fix the product (what it is and how it is), but sometimes, such as with a poor location, we can’t. Then, we have to rely on adjusting the price or the packaging.

Location, location, location

Location, of course, is the one thing about a property that can’t be changed. Because, if ya could, it’d be a different property now, wouldn’t it? This point was driven home last week when I had a chance to sit down with a seller whose property was on the market, but not generating any interest. Not a single showing in almost three months on market, even in this crazy real estate market. Clearly something was wrong.

I had an epiphany today

For any given market, the total time it takes to go through the entire process of selling real estate is about the same for all properties. Which is better for you, physical or emotional work?

Real estate as an investment

Just as your home and your body are systems unto themselves, they are also part of a the greater neighborhood and community. You also need to look at your home as part of other systems that are important to you: your own personal financial and comform systems.

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Steps to your door

More importantly, the system is accessible to the buyers, so they can always see where they are, too. Every step of the way toward buying a home is clearly explained, so buyers always know what they need to do, why they need to do it, and when it needs to be done so that the process of buying a home can move forward.