Please Mr. Home Inspector…………..

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Home Inspections. Don't like them at all. Received an "Inspection Report" today stating the AC is five years older than the house! Never had that one before. The house is only six years old and was built by a big time national builder. The AC works great but now the buyer wants a letter from the builder stating that this is the unit that was put in the house when it was built six years ago. Now obviously trying to get this documentation from the builder, who has probably built 10,000 houses since this one, is impossible.

In my State, Florida, the only requirement to become a "professional home inspector" is a stack of business cards and an occupational license. Scary when you consider these guys can make or break a deal.

So I was wondering does your State have an agency to regulate Home Inspectors?

Does that 50 cents have to be on the HUD?

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

I just love final walkthroughs! Why is it that Buyers and their Realtors sometimes try to spoil the elated feeling I get, knowing that we finally made it to day of closing?

I get the call this morning, telling me they did the walkthrough and everything is OK, except for the hole in the living room wall. What? A hole? How can that be? I was just in the house last week and it was fine. No holes! I don’t want to hear about holes two hours before closing. I mean the house is vacant. No one has been in the house but the appraiser. Then they spring the big one on me. “What’s the Seller going to do about it?”

Personally, I think that’s a pretty good question. “What’s the Seller going to do about it?” Well, my answer is “I don’t know”. I am still trying to digest the fact that there is hole in the living room wall. Well I got lucky, the other Realtor had a call beeping in on him and decided to take it and call me back.

So, I get myself out of bed (not sleeping mind you, but diligently “working” on reading all the ActiveRain posts from last night), anyway, I get myself out of bed, hop in my SUV and burn $10.00 worth of gas to go check out the hole in the living room wall. Now I’m a pretty observant guy and would probably notice a hole in the living room wall, but I don’t. No hole. Well, maybe they meant the family room. So I go look and again, no hole. Wait a minute, what’s that? Let me see, if I get down on my knees and squint just right I can see a tiny indentation in the wall about the size of my pinky fingernail. This my friends must be the culprit. The all elusive hole!

I call the Realtor back and tell him I have been at the house to look at the “hole” and asked him if he had actually seen it, or did he just allow the Buyers to go over by themselves to do the walkthrough? Do I need to even tell you his response? Of course he hadn’t seen it! It was too far for him drive to so he just gave the buyers the code so they could do their own walkthrough! The Buyers told him there was a hole in the wall, and asked, “What was the Seller going to do about it”. Anyway, I remained calm and politely told him to show the Buyers the definition of “hole” in the dictionary and that we would give them compensation of 50 cents. After all that, the Realtor told me to not worry about it, that he would take care of the Buyers.

I tell you, you got to love this business. The things people try to get away with. And the Realtor……….well that’s good material for another post.

The Moral is: Never, ever, take the other party’s, to a transaction, word on anything. Check, double check and check again. Look out for your own customer’s or client’s interest or that “hole” may be in your wallet.

By the way………..Does that 50 cents have to be on the HUD?

FSBOs are cheap and certified idiots!!!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Broker Bryant www.CentralFloridaShortSales.com

Hi folks. I was browsing through some of my older posts today and found this little ditty about FSBOs (For Sell By Owners). To fully appreciate this post you really have to pop over and read the comment stream on Jeff’s post. YOWSER!!! 

Jeff Turner posted “For Sale By Owner: Raise the price then call a REALTOR®” a couple of years ago. Jeff’s post was basically reposting a question that a FSBO had placed on Twitter. The question was: “Got a buyer for my condo. They want me to hold the mortgage. Any advice?”

Jeff’s post was not only a Public post but it was also a Featured post. It received over 70 comments. The comments, from REALTORS® included statements such as:

  • * ……this guy is seeking free advice? After he doesn’t want to compensate a professional?
  • Never ceases to amaze me how people with little to no experience buying or selling houses seem to “wing it.
  • My advice to the seller’s, don’t reinvent the wheel, always deal with professionals.
  • …..just another example of an ignorant homeowner who thought they were doing themselves a favor and “saving” money.
  • This guy is a certified idiot.

Now, in all fairness, there were some pretty decent responses, as well, but in my opinion, the majority of the comments were just reprimanding this guy for not wanting to use a “professional”. Folks, if you think those PUBLIC comments make you look like professionals then you are sadly mistaken. Whether this FSBO made a good choice, or not, he was really just asking for some advice. If you don’t want to give him any….then don’t.

But make no mistake about it….him choosing to “go it alone” does not make him an idiot! One commenter summed it up nicely with this comment: “All sellers have four choices, don’t sell it, sell it yourself, list with any old Realtor, or hire an experienced one.” The key word of course being CHOICES. It’s the Seller’s choice…not ours.

If you want to try and win their business then have it…but demeaning their decision to “go it alone” will only accomplish making yourself look foolish. Not to mention the damage it does to our profession’s reputation. What say you?

Do NOT be foreclosed on! Avoid foreclosure. Short Sales DO close.

Want to find out more? www.CentralFloridaShortSales.com

***I am NOT an Attorney nor do I play one on TV. Click the button below for my Bio.

The BIO for Bryant Tutas

Copyright © 2010 http://www.brokerbryant.com/ | All Rights Reserved

 

Would your contracts pass this test?

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Received an offer for one of my listings yesterday. At least I think it was an offer. It came in on a standard Far/Bar purchase contract. The only problem, with what I was able to read, is half of the information was either missing or incorrect. Unless of course the Buyer meant to ask for a 21 day closing and include a 30 day financing contingency. Now I admit I'm not very good at math but it looks like this Buyer has up to 9 days after closing to get final loan approval. Since the address is wrong on the contract he will probably need this extra time to locate the house he just bought.

Fortunately for this Realtor I will take the time to write up a new contract and hopefully we will be able to negotiate a deal. After all my Sellers just want to sell and the Buyer just wants to buy.

As Realtors it is very important that we are able to write legible and binding contracts for our Sellers and Buyers. There is no excuse for not being able to do this. We our actually bound by Article 9 of our NAR Code of Ethics to ensure that all contracts and addendums are properly completed, signed and dated by all parties. Take this seriously as our customers and clients are relying on us to protect their interest. I can't remember where I heard it but someone told me once "to write every contract as if I had to defend it in front of a Judge." Would your contracts pass this test?

 

Newbie Realtors Beware!!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Recently I have heard several Realtors commenting on the influx of newbie and part time Realtors and why Brokers should not hire them as they are cutting into the seasoned professional‘s business. The general consensus seems to be to concentrate on our own business and let the market sort itself out. I agree with this. However I think we are missing the real issue. In my opinion the real issue is not how these inexperienced Realtors are affecting our business but how they are jeopardizing the Sellers and Buyers that are hiring them. A Seller or Buyer hiring a Realtor to help them, with what may be the single largest financial transaction of their lives, should be able to assume that a licensed Realtor is qualified to handle their transaction. This as we all know is not the case. Being licensed and being a Realtor does not necessarily mean you have a clue to what you are doing. To me this is very scary. I agree that everyone was new to the business at one time and must start somewhere. I do not agree that learning the basics of Real Estate should be a trial and error affair.

Brokers are obligated by law to train and supervise their Realtors. This is not a choice, this is law. At a minimum, new and old Realtors should be able to properly complete a legible and binding purchase contract and listing agreement. They should be able to prepare an accurate Market Analysis and be able to justify market value to their Sellers and Buyers. They should know to who and when to provide the proper Agency Disclosure. They should be able to intelligently discuss financing, appraisals, inspections, repairs and the closing process. These things need to be taught and learned prior to conducting the services of Real Estate. It is the Broker’s responsibility to make sure all Realtors are receiving this very minimum amount of training prior to holding themselves out to the public as being a professional capable of handling their Real Estate transaction. To be any less qualified than this is probably illegal and definitely unethical.

To be an experienced Realtor comes later. This IS learned by trial and error. Learning how to handle closing issues, negotiating techniques, people skills, preparing marketing plans, having a feel for a deal, being able to confidently counsel your customer/clients and many other skills that can only come from being involved in transactions. Hopefully, the more deals you do the more experienced you will become. One thing for sure about this business is you will never know it all.

My advice to new Realtors is to take as many training classes as you can. Learn the basic skills required to conduct your business. Read everything you can related to Real Estate. Find a Mentor. Hook up with a great mortgage Broker. Take the GRI classes. Take a seasoned Realtor with you on your first listing or buyer appointment. Have your Broker review all your contracts prior to presenting them. Read and understand the purchase contact including the standards. Practice preparing a Market Analysis before your first listing. And most important find a Brokerage that offers training. You can always switch to a higher commission split office later once you know what you are doing. Treat this business as a profession and dedicate your time to learning and you will find this a very rewarding business to be in.

Any thoughts on this?

By the way the message title of this post is to get your attention and is in no way an attack on new Realtors. My comments apply to all Realtors who do not conduct their business in a professional manner

Counting the chickens before they hatch!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Had a listing appointment today. Yes, I know it's Sunday and I don't normally work on Sundays, but hey, I'm the Broker, I make the rules and I can break the rules. It was either today after Church or during the week at night. Well figured I would already be dressed in my "Sunday go to meetin cloths", so what the heck, I'd drive on over there. I'd still be home in time to cook lunch for "The Lovely Wife".

Anyway, I had sent these folks a preliminary CMA via E-mail last week and was really looking forward to meeting with them. I knew it was going to be a tuff one, but I felt up to the challenge. The challenge was, they had been listed for 6 months with another Realtor at $360,000, when the house, maximum, is worth only $299,000. They had already told me on the phone they were ready to reduce to $340,000. So I really had my job cut out for me. I won't take an overpriced listing so my goal was to get them to reduce $65,000. Also, since they were with a discount Realtor before, I needed to raise the commission a couple of points as well. So, if you do the math, we are looking at more than a 20% reduction in their anticipated Net.

Big challenge, but I woke up this morning ready to face it. I had prepared an analysis, to take with me, that was over 70 pages long. Now I don't know how you do your CMA's but 70 pages is a little over the top to say the least. It included:

  • Details on similar homes with pools.
  • Details on similar homes without pools.
  • Details on every pool home that had sold near theirs this year.
  • A list of every home on the market in their area.
  • A list of all of my sales YTD.
  • My grocery list from last week.

Anyway, you get the point. I was loaded for battle and well prepared to defend my position. Well I showed up for my appointment and as I had anticipated, the house, pool and yard were beautiful. So I was pleased about that. They had put a lot of time and money into it and it showed. The wife gave me the tour as I listened to her and I asked a few qualifying questions while we walked through the house. This is a very important step, as I am trying to find something that will help me in my presentation. I got lucky, one comment she made was, that when they were shopping for homes to buy, the first one they liked didn't appraise and they weren't able to buy it. Bingo! An excellent piece of info to help me with pricing.

So, hubby came in and we all sat at the table and I pulled out my arsenal of data. And of course the first thing I started explaining is how appraisals work and how they can affect the ability of a buyer being able to close on the house if it is not priced right. That was the right approach. It's true and it touched a cord with them since they had experienced exactly that. It opened the door for my discussion on pricing. Backed up with 70 pages of data, I made a strong case and after 90 minutes of hard fought discussion, we have agreed to Range Price the home from $289,000- $309,000 trying to sell as close to $299,000 as possible. Commission came up briefly but was not a factor.

We haven't done the paperwork yet, but I'm confident I have the listing. The Sellers are great people. It's an excellent property. It's priced right. I will be able to sell it. The Sellers will be able to move on with their lives. And "The Lovely Wife" had my "world famous" chicken and yellow rice with black beans for lunch. All in all, a very good day.

This listing, again, shows why it's so important to listen to your potential customers. They may just give you the information you need to succeed in your presentation. Pricing is everything in my market. Helping potential Sellers to understand this is what I enjoy doing. It gives me a great feeling of satisfaction. I just hope I'm not……….. counting the chickens before they hatch!

Are you just “hanging in there”? I can help.

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

http://ttrealtynet.com

Hi folks. Recently, I’ve read quite a few posts on ActiveRain from folks trying to decide whether or not to stay in the business. The posts don’t surprise me as I have been reading those types of posts on AR since I joined back in 2006. What surprises me are the comments from people who mention they are “hanging on waiting for things to get back to normal“. You know I hate to be the bearer of bad news but things will NEVER be “back to normal”.

Staying in the business may be the right decision. But if you are staying in to “hang on until the market changes” then you may be just hanging on for a very long time. People are going to be upside down on their mortgages for many, many years. Short Sales and REOs ARE the real estate market and will be for a long time. This current market IS normal.

So my advice is to NOT hang in there but to adapt. Learn new skills and learn how to make money in this current market. This is now the “normal” market. If you can do that then you will not “hang in there” you will not only survive but you will thrive and you will help a lot of people along the way.

So….the first thing you need to do is some market research. Log onto your MLS and start looking at data. You may actually be surprised at how many properties are closing in your area. Then once you find out how many properties are closing, and in what price range, find out who’s selling them and who’s buying them. Then all you have to do is figure how to get these Buyers and Sellers to use your services. It’s simple. It’s just not easy. It requires actual work. But it sure beats “hanging in there”!!! What say you?

***If you need some help just click on that little link down there and join the TTRealtyNetwork. It’s a work in progress but there is already a lot of free info over there that will help you in your business.

Do you need a new Broker?

Want to find out more? www.TTRealtyNet.com

 

The BIO for Bryant Tutas

Copyright © 2010 http://www.brokerbryant.com/ | All Rights Reserved

 

No money? No problem.

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Negotiated a deal on one of my listings yesterday. The Buyer is purchasing using 100% financing with Seller paying closing costs. My market is affordable housing with the majority of homes priced from $190s to $250s and it seems like most of the Buyers lately have been purchasing with no money down. Now don’t get me wrong I am in favor of home ownership for everyone but I fear a lot of the Buyers are going to have financial difficulties in the near future. With high insurance costs, property taxes and mortgage payments I am seeing payments of close to $2,000 per month for a starter home. That’s a pretty big nut to crack every month in my area where most families are regular working class people and don’t have any reserve funds if they should encounter a financial setback.

Also, a good number of these purchases are being made with ARMs with the Buyers basing their ability to pay on future raises at work or a part time job that they may or may not be getting. In my opinion Mortgage Brokers and Realtors are being overly aggressive in selling these folks on the advantages of home ownership without really taking the time to counsel the Buyers on the true costs involved. And since they don’t have to come up with any money at closing they are sitting ducks for Mortgage Brokers who are charging them sometimes outrageous fees for doing these types of loans.

So my challenge to Realtors who are dealing with first time Home buyers with a little or no money down is to really take the time to explain the pros and cons of purchasing a home. If the Buyers are fully informed and are wanting to move forward then help them to negotiate fees or guide them to the myriad of programs available that can help them with financial assistance. Placing a Buyer in a home he can’t afford can damage them for years. It can cause bankruptcies, divorces and even illnesses. So let’s “Protect the public” it’s what Realtors are supposed to do.

I’ll never work with them again!!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

Have you ever had such a bad experience working with another Realtor that you swore you would never work with them again? I know it’s hard sometimes but we must remember that we are in business to assist Buyers and Sellers achieve their objectives. It’s tempting to not show a Realtor’s listings or suggest to your Seller not to accept a deal from a particular Realtor who we have had a bad experience with in the past. As difficult as it is, always try not to hold the Realtor’s incompetence against his customer/client.

The reality is, the Seller just wants to sale and the Buyer just wants to buy. Work towards helping them achieve these goals to the best of your ability. This may require dealing with unprofessional and rude Realtors on occasion. Bite your tongue, put on a smile and muddle through it. Take charge of the transaction. Be the one person in this stressful and difficult deal to hold it together and get the job done. Not only will your customer/client be impressed but the other Realtor’s customer/client will also become your biggest fan. This is how you build a long term successful business.

Anybody can handle a smooth transaction it is getting through the difficult situations that set you apart and make people remember you. Maybe your professionalism will rub off on the other Realtor. One thing is guaranteed the problems and issues we have with unprofessional Realtors will always be a part of our business. It’s our job to rise above it and keep moving forward with a good attitude. That is something we can control. That’s why they pay us the big bucks!!!!!!!!!

My listing has already been sold!

Posted by admin December - 31 - 1969 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

My mom, I love her to death, sells timeshare resales. She has been in the timeshare business for almost 30 years and can sell ice to an Eskimo. She has won many National sales awards and is excellent at what she does.

But she has a hard time understanding what I do. Whenever I call her, and mention I sold a house today, she always says the same thing "Did you sell it? Or did another Realtor sell it". "Mom" I say "No, I didn‘t sell it, it was my listing but another Realtor sold it."

But you know, that is so far from the truth. I sold the house. I sold it when I spent 90 minutes convincing a Seller to price it right. I sold it when I talked the Seller into having a professional cleaning crew go through the house, or suggested they rip up the dirty carpet and lay down tile. I sold it when I positioned the house in the MLS, to get the most exposure. I sold it when the Realtor called me on a different listing and I talked him into showing this house as well. I sold it when I educated my Seller on paying closing costs for the Buyer. There are many things we do as listing agents that contribute to the house being sold.

As a matter of fact, if these things aren't done properly, there will be no sale. The house would be another property that sits on the market for 6 months only to expire or be withdrawn.

I heard a statement somewhere, "that a bad appraisal begins at time of listing." That is so true. It is also true "that a house is sold at time of listing".

A good listing agent will make the Buyer's agent job very easy. Priced right, clean, easy access and knowledgeable Sellers makes for an easy sale. So next time I talk to Mom, I think I will explain this to her. In the meantime, bring your Buyers on by…………….My listing has already been sold!

About us

I am a licensed real estate Broker in the state of Florida. My opinions on real estate have been formed from my experiences and 15 years of working in the business. My opinions are in line with Florida Real Estate laws and the REALTOR(R) Code of Ethics. Your State’s laws may differ. So do your own homework before implementing any of my business practices into your business.