Solivita. A Baby Boomers Paradise

Posted by admin January - 29 - 2013 - Tuesday ADD COMMENTS

I’m a Baby boomer. I’m one of over 68,000,000 million Baby boomers born between 1946 and 1964. I was born in 1957.

Baby boomers control over 80% of personal financial assets and more than half of all consumer spending. We buy 77% of all prescription drugs, 61% of over-the-counter drugs, and 80% of all leisure travel.

And……according to the 2011 Associated Press and LifeGoesStrong.com surveys:

  • 60% lost value in investments because of the economic crisis
  • 42% are delaying retirement
  • 25% claim they’ll never retire (currently still working)

As a Baby boomer myself I can relate to each of the above. My wife and I lost just about everything during the financial crisis of 2008.

Retirement is a pipe dream. Mostly because I’m self employed and really have no reason to retire. I work from home and truly enjoy what I do.

The Lovely Wife and I moved into SoliVita, an over 55 active adult community in mid 2010. Our last house was way too big and keeping up with it was becoming a burden. So we downsized. We moved to one of Florida’s World Class Active Adult Communities, SoliVita.

Making the decision to downsize and move into a Florida over 55 active adult community was one of the best decisions we have ever made. Since moving here our lives have changed for the better.

We get more exercise, eat better and relax more. We spend more time outside enjoying all of the amenities in SoliVita.

At age 55 we are in the best shape of our lives.

Getting old does not have to suck. It can truly be the best time of your life.

Can we help you with your SoliVita Real Estate needs? New and resale homes available from low 100s to high 400s.

The Fear Of The Solivita Short Sale

Posted by admin May - 27 - 2012 - Sunday ADD COMMENTS

As you may know, I list and sell a fair amount of Short Sales in Florida. One of the many issues I face is Sellers who are all gung ho about doing a Short Sale and then they disappear.

At any given time I could have a dozen listing packages out there that I am waiting on to be completed and returned. The Sellers and I have spent time on the phone discussing their situation and the way forward. All that’s left is for them to complete the paperwork and get it back to me.

Then…nothing. Nada. Zilch. No response and no returned calls or emails.

Why does this happen?

My opinion is that it happens due to fear. Fear of losing their home. Fear of needing to move. Fear of incurring moving expenses and rent payments on top or an already bleak financial situation.

Some of these folks haven’t made a mortgage payment in a year or more. Once the Short Sale is completed the living for free is over.

Fear of uncertainty. Not knowing if the Short Sale will succeed. Knowing that once they make the decision to move forward they are venturing into the unknown.

Fear of taking action. Not taking action can be comfortable.

Fear of being looked down on. Doing a Short Sale means admitting you are in trouble financially. The neighbors will know.

These are just a few of the reasons why taking the next step towards doing a Short Sale can be difficult.

Having been through two Short Sales myself I can relate to each and every one of these.

Making the decision to Short Sale our properties was very difficult. It was humbling. We lived in a small town at the time and I was supposedly a successful Real Estate Broker.

I feared knowing that my peers would see my properties on the market as Short Sales.

I feared my business being affected because of it. Of course business was already in the toilet so it couldn’t have gotten much worse. So my fear was really just my ego getting in the way..

BUT……in spite of my fears I made a decision to move forward with the Short Sales. As soon as I made the decision I felt better. In fact I felt smart! Smart to be taking action and smart to be unloading a “thing” that was just harming me and my family.

It was freeing. I took control of the situation and conquered it.

Today, almost 3 years later, I look back and see that my decision to get my ego out of the way and solve the problem was the best thing I have done in a long time.

Being able to relate to others who are facing Short Sales because I have “been there done that” has caused my business to explode!!

There is life after a Short Sale. And I truly believe you will find life to be much more fulfilling than it was before. So set your fears aside and take the plunge.

Use the Short Sale as a fresh start. Truly explore why you are in this situation and then make changes so it doesn’t happen again. Don’t let your ego stand between you and your new simpler future.

And that’s all I have to say about that. What say you?

Should I Buy A Car Before Doing A SoliVita Short Sale?

Posted by admin December - 10 - 2011 - Saturday ADD COMMENTS

Hi folks. Recently I have had several SoliVita Short Sale sellers ask me the same question…..”We need to replace our car. Should we do that before we go through the short sale process?” The concern is that once they go through the short sale their credit will be dinged and financing an automobile will not be easy. One is even paying cash and is concerned how it will look that he went out and spent $15,000 cash on a car and then turned around and asked the lender to accept a short sale.

Interesting question. And one that certainly shows that we are in a different stage of the short sale wave. The Short Sale Sellers mentioned above do not have cut and dry hardships. They are current on payments and have great credit scores.

The first wave of short sellers that started mostly in 2008 were distressed sellers. Property owners that could no longer afford to make their mortgage payments. The next wave were folks that had adjustable rate mortgages that were resetting and they couldn’t refinance as promised when they took out their mortgages.

The current wave is made up of folks that just need to sell but can’t because their properties are too far underwater. They are current on their payments and are not in foreclosure. They could continue to make payments. BUT….they have to move.

Their family has out grown the property. They have a job transfer. Or they are strategic short sellers.

Their situations are different than the first two waves of short sales…

So……should they go out and replace their car prior to doing the short sale? It depends. My response to them is……..

  • “If replacing your car is something you would be doing even if you weren’t getting ready to do a short sale then, yes, go ahead and do it. If dependable transportation is needed for job purposes then, yes, go ahead and replace it now. Do what you need to do to make sure your family is taken care of. BUT…be able to defend your position if the lender ask you about it. Be able to show that buying a car was needed and not just wanted. And…..be prepared to make a cash contribution towards the short sale lender’s loss.”

This is my opinion. What’s yours?

Do you need help with your SoliVita Short Sale?

Do You Need A SoliVita Short Sale Specialist?

Posted by admin November - 27 - 2011 - Sunday ADD COMMENTS

Am I a Short Sale Expert? I don’t think so. Even though my new CDPE designation says I am!!! Yes that’s right I am now a Certified Distressed Property Expert (R).

VISIT MY SOLIVITA SHORT SALE INFO SITE

As you may know, my partner Wendy Rulnick and I own the most active Short Sale Network in the World at ShortSaleSuperstars.com and we have been teaching agents how to do short sales for several years now. BUT….we are not Short Sale Experts.

So…..we both decided to attend the CDPE classes and get our Certified Distressed Property Expert (R) designations.

Wendy took hers online and I attended the 2 day CDPE class in Orlando Florida this week. You’ll be happy to know we both “passed”!

I was the lucky one since I didn’t have to take a test. Just show up and be present for 14 hours of class and BAM!! you too can be a Short Sale Expert.

But Broker Bryant, how was the course? I’m glad you asked. I found it to be very good. The information being taught was relevant, accurate and fairly detailed. If an agent took the CDPE course, that had zero short sale experience, they would certainly be a position to help some folks avoid foreclosure. I would still recommend they have a mentor to assist with them with their first few short sales but they would at least know the process. And they would have the forms and materials to get them started.

CDPE has a very thorough package of Short Sale documents and forms that would help any agent. Lots of good questionnaires and disclosures to protect the agents and their brokers while at the same time helping to educate the Short Sale sellers.

Plus the CDPE Advanced Membership provides you with monthly marketing materials, website and continuing support for your short sale business.

So all in all my hat’s off to Alex Charfen for authoring a very excellent Short Sale Designation with CDPE. Well done Alex!!!

But please….don’t call me a Short Sale Expert. Just call me Broker Bryant, The Best And Hardest Working Short Sale Broker You Will Ever Find In The State Of Florida. Next to Wendy, of course 🙂

Do You Need To Short Sale Your SoliVita Home?

Posted by admin November - 6 - 2011 - Sunday ADD COMMENTS

You may even qualify for a cash incentive*** from your Lender to do a SoliVita Short Sale.

***These programs are not available to all Sellers and the incentives may vary from State to State.

Here are the Florida Short Sale Incentive Programs that I am aware of:


HAFA. Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative. Lender will pay the Seller $3,000 as a Relocation Assistance. Only for primary residences.


FHA PFS. HUD Pre-Foreclosure Sale. Seller can receive $1,000 for relocation assistance. Just yesterday I received FHA PFS approval increasing the seller incentive to $4,000!! Only for primary residences.


Chase Short Sale Incentive Program for select Borrowers offering them up to $35,000 to do a short sale.


Bank of America Co-operative Short Sale. From $3,000 to $20,000 Short Sale Incentive.

Citi Bank, Wells Fargo and Ocwen also have programs available for select home owners. Amounts vary from $3,000 to $35,000. Most are in the $5,000 range.

Folks if you are behind on your SoliVita mortgage payments be sure to open any and all mail you receive from your lender. It could very well be an offer to Short Sale your property. These offers are usually time sensitive and require immediate action on your part.


But why would my Lender pay me to do a SoliVita Short Sale? That’s a good question. For one, it less expensive, for them, for you to cooperate during the Short Sale process and maintain the property than it is for the Lender to foreclose and get an abandoned property back. Also, the Lender does not want you to continue living in the property for free. They would rather pay you to do a Short Sale now than have you live there for another year or so while deciding what to do. The incentive gets you to take action.

Whatever their reason is..…it’s a good opportunity for you. Any questions?

Are you under water on your Florida mortgage?

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.

Copyright © 2011 http://www.brokerbryant.com/ | All Rights Reserved

SoliVita Unveils New Model Homes

Posted by admin January - 30 - 2011 - Sunday ADD COMMENTS
SoliVita Model Home

SoliVita Floor plans

SoliVita recently hosted a Realtor(R) open house to show us their new model home park. All I can say is WOW!! The new homes are gorgeous and the prices are very reasonable. Homes starting at $126,990 for the 1,278 sq ft Marathon model up to $367,990 for the 2,980 sq ft Cordoba model.  And everything in between. 17 floor plans to choose from. Something for everyone.

The best part of course is living in SoliVita. SoliVita is Florida’s premier retirement community designed for active adults over 55. SoliVita offers 2 championship golf courses at Stonegate Golf Club. 14 heated swimming pools including the indoor aquatic center for year round water exercises and swimming.

SoliVita Amenities include: Numerous lakes and canals for boating and fishing. 2 fitness centers. Grand Ball Room. Computer centers. Library. Restaurants. Tennis courts. Pickle Ball courts. Ball field. Dog park. Shuffle board. Over 100 clubs to join. And so much more.

Folks, if you are looking to retire in Florida or just want to simplify your life then you owe it to yourself to take a look at SoliVita. I moved here in May of 2010 with my wife and have to say it has been the best place we have ever lived. I’d love to give you the tour!!

SoliVita Resales are also available staring in the 90s.

Looking for a Florida Retirement Home?

Posted by admin June - 16 - 2010 - Wednesday ADD COMMENTS

If so……why not check out Solivita? Solivita is a World class 55 and over active adult community. Solivita features single family homes from the low $100s to the high $500s. Two Championship golf courses including StoneGate. Beautiful Riviera Spa and Fitness center and so much more.

Each Solivita community has a 24 hours manned guard gate. Solivita is located in Poinciana Florida. 25 minutes from Disney World Orlando. By the end of 2012 we should have one of the most modern hospitals in Florida directly across the street from the entrance to Solivita. Buy now while the prices are good. We’d love to have you.

Now you are probably wondering what active adults do. Well check it out……

Go get me some of that business!

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

 

Ok, folks here we are, the 4th quarter, crunch time. My favorite time of year. Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve. The weather is changing. We even had a cold front in Florida today. The temperature dropped all the way down to 87. Burrrrrr! It was freezing! Ok, maybe not.

Anyway, I hear, from different sources, that this is a slow period for Real Estate. People are gearing up for the Holidays and let’s face it, who wants to move between Thanksgiving and Christmas? Well, if you have been reading my Blog, then you probably know by now, that I don’t subscribe to the status quo. I just don’t like it. To me the 4th quarter is a very important part of my business  year. It’s time for me to get busy and finish the year with a big bang. I have a quota to make and I’m not there yet.

So here's a short list of some things that may help you in finishing strong for the year. Also, you may pick up some listings, so you can have a good beginning for next year. 

 

  • Adjust your attitude. Expect to finish strong and you will.
  • Reduce the price on your listings. Let the Sellers know they need to get under contract before the holidays.
  • Increase you marketing.
  • Be available. A lot of Realtors will be taking time off.
  • Stay positive. Don’t read negative news.
  • Get out of the office and into your market area.
  • Remind Buyers and Sellers that there are tax advantages to closing this year.
  • Concentrate on Buyers and Sellers that need to move, job transfers etc.
  • Offer a year end discount.
  • Stay out of the mall!

These things are very basic, but believe me they will work. December is normally my best month for closings.

So, I don’t know about you, but I think I will polish up my signs, load up on contracts and………….. go get me some of that business!

Is your listing priced for success or priced for failure?

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

“Broker Bryant, how much do you think my house is worth?” Have you heard that before? How do you answer this question? In this more difficult market, my answer is always the same. “Well, I’m not here to tell you how much your house is worth. I’m here to tell you how much it will sell for?” There is a big difference between what a house is worth and what it will sell for. If you are listing homes right now at what they are worth you may just end up with a lot of listings that are just sitting there. In this more difficult market, pricing a home properly, has never been more critical.

I hear from Realtors all the time wondering why their listing is not selling. Usually they say the same thing, “It’s priced right”. Well, my answer to that is, "If it is priced right, it will sell". That’s right folks, homes are still selling. There may be record amounts of inventory but homes are still selling. My goal, is to make sure the homes that are selling, are my listings.

Well, Broker Bryant, how do you do that? First you have to get the potential Seller to look at reality. They have to forget about how much money they need and how much Mr. Smith down the street got for his house 9 months ago. You have to remind them that based on your suggested price they are still getting a 45% return on the house they bought 2 years ago. You have to keep reminding them of why they are selling.

My rule of thumb is, that if they “need to sell” i.e. job transfer, have another home under contract, financial difficulties, illness, divorce or just plain hate where they are living, then these are Sellers I can help. I will do everything I can to get them priced right, at selling price, and sold in 60 days or less. These are hot leads. These listings are what I am searching for.

On the other hand, if they are “want to sell” i.e. would like to have a bigger home, think we would like to pull our equity out and travel, wouldn’t mind moving to Georgia etc. These are Sellers I may not be able to help. They are going to be a little more difficult to get priced right and probably are going to want what their house is worth. I may not be able to help these folks.

With inventory at all time highs, I choose to be a little more picky with what homes I want to list. I only want “need to sells”. I know I can help them. And I know I will get paid for my efforts. I learned along time ago, that Sellers love you when you sell their house and talk bad about you if you don’t. No matter how good a job you did for them, if you don’t make it to the closing table you have failed. Personally, I don’t like to fail. If you work with Sellers, as I do, your success in this business is determined at the listing table. The listing table is your arena. This is where your money is made. This is also where your reputation is made. If you can’t get it priced right, then walk. Say “no thanks” and walk. It’s that simple.

I met with a lady today. She was a “need to sell”. She moved to Poinciana from NY about 2 years ago and she just does not like it here, at all. She is not happy, she does not like the school system and she wants out. She wants out bad. She has a beautiful 2900 sq ft pool home that is full of upgrades and just beautifully decorated. You know the kind, tile flooring, granite counter tops, crown moldings, wood floors, vinyl fencing and all the bells and whistles. She just had an appraisal done that came in at $369,000. After looking at her house and talking with her I agreed that her appraisal was right on the money and that her house was “worth” every dime of $369,000, if not more.

The problem is, she has the nicest house on the block, by far, and most homes in Poinciana are priced from $200,000 to $300,00. So I had to explain this to her and let her know that most people looking for a house in the $350,000+ price range are wanting to purchase in a $400,000+ neighborhood. This is certainly not Poinciana.

So after a good discussion, I was able to “Range Price” the house from $339,000 to $359,000 trying to sell as close to $350,000 as possible. In this case 5% below the house’s “worth” should be enough to get it sold. And since it is “Range Price”, $339,000 will be the MLS list price and this is almost 9% below “worth”. So my chances of selling this house are very, very good. She also agreed that if we don’t have any showings in 10 days I will be reducing the price another $10,000.

So folks the lesson is, be very picky on what listings you take. No amount of marketing in the world will sell an overpriced listing. Price it right and you will be the hero. Price it wrong and you and your name will be mud. 

Is your listing priced for success or priced for failure?

Real Estate is about people, not money! Part 2

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

Today I met with another pre-foreclosure Seller. I sure am getting a lot of these lately. Anyway, I spoke with this gentleman yesterday and could tell he was really stressed out. Life had dealt him a bad hand this year, health wise, and he has found himself disabled and unable to make mortgage payments. In fact he hasn’t made any for 5 months. His wife has just started back to work, so they are now in a position to start making payments, again. So that’s a good thing.

I’m writing this post to bring to your attention “predatory lenders” and how they prey on good people’s misfortunes. First, these folks have no other debt except their house, which has a mortgage balance of approximately $170,000, including missed payments and a prepayment penalty. Fortunately, the Lender has not started foreclosure proceedings and have not tacked on Attorney fees, yet. When I walked in today, the first thing the Seller started telling me, was how he was working with a different Lender, to see about refinancing his house, to “help” him out and how they should have an answer for him in 3 weeks. With this is mind, he only wanted me to list the house for 3 weeks, if I could sell it before the loan came through then good, if not he would take the loan being offered. Well needless to say this did not appeal to me and my immediate thought was to just give this guy some quick info, politely bail out and leave. But I couldn’t do it. He was very stressed so I decided to get some more info from him and see if I could give him some advice.

Well to start, his house is only worth $245,000 to $250,000 max. It turns out, the lender that is willing to “help”, has told him that he can do a loan for 65% LTV based on an appraisal of $300,000! And will only charge him $10,000 in closing costs. Now if you do the math, it means the Seller will have a new loan balance of $195,000 and after paying closing costs MAY get a check for around $13,000. His current payment of $1,400, that he can’t afford, will go up to $1,500 (this is what the lender told him). Now what is wrong with this picture? Well first, how can a house appraise at $300,000 that is only worth $250,000 max? FRAUD. How can they quote him a payment of $1,500 on a high interest loan of $195,000? LIAR. How long will this Seller be able to make payments before he is in foreclosure again? SAD.

Now being the good little Realtor that I am, I pointed this stuff out to the Seller. I explained to him that they are ripping him off and if you take them up on their “help” you will be digging your hole deeper. I also explained to him that his current lender does not want to take the house back. I suggested, that if they are now in a position to start making payments, then they need to contact the current lender and negotiate a loan modification. Since he has no other debt and has a legitimate reason for his financial difficulties, there is a better than good chance, that they can work it out and keep their house. I could actually see the glimmer of hope come into their eyes. They have been buried in stress and have been getting letters from “sharks” everyday wanting to “help”. They did not know they had other options. They don’t want to move. They love their house and just want to get beyond the financial hardship.

So folks, it was a great listing appointment! I did give them some info on selling but really do not think they need or want to sell. I told them if things don’t work out with the bank, then give me a call. I will be there for them.

They both walked me out to my car. Mrs. Seller gave me a hug and asked me for a stack of business cards. And Mr. Seller was really excited and pumped, about having another option, instead of selling or refinancing.

Folks, I’ve said it before and I will say it again, “Real Estate it about people, not money” As Realtors and Lenders, we can make a difference in people’s lives. Make it your goal to listen and to give sound advise. I left this listing presentation with my sign in my car and a smile on my face. To me, that’s priceless!

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.