Posts Tagged ‘ listings ’

First Look Gives Home Buyers An Edge

First Look Program

Fannie levels the field

New Incentives
Fannie Mae markets its REO through its Properties. Under the new incentive program, owner occupants and public entities that buy a HomePath Property between now and December 31, can receive up to 3.5% of the purchase price in closing cost assistance. The sale must close within 60 days of acceptance of the offer and no later than December 31, 2010.  The incentive must be requested in the initial offer.

What Is It
Individuals and public entities are given a period of time, generally 15 days after a property is listed at (a Fannie Mae site). is the listing site for about 190,000 properties held by the GSEs. Individuals and public entities (read non-profits) have a lead time over investors to inspect  and submit an offer to purchase. After 15 days, the listing is open to all potential buyers.

The idea is to offer first to those who would live in the home and become stakeholders, adding stability to the community and to avoid  too quickly putting property back into a supply laden market. By offering a sneak preview to owners first, Fannie hopes to encourage home ownership without the edge professionals may have and avoid the pressures of bidding against professional investors.

Why Should I Care
Levels the playing field and it’s working.

Fannie has moved more than 29,000 homes out of its owned real estate portfolio of properties acquired by the  through foreclosure to owner occupants. Some 800 non-profits have also bought an additional 5,000 properties through First Look.


Posted by: Howard Sobel on September 29th, 2010 under Buying or Selling a Home

1 Comment »

If I Didn’t Know … Would I Know?

If I wasn’t constantly being told be the TV, radio, newspaper, and magazines that we are in a financial downturn, would I know that from my every day life experiences over the last year?

My answer is no.reporters-news-propoganda

My life has gone on pretty much unchanged from what it was prior to this “down turn.”  No, that’s not right.  Truthfully, it is much better. My business has remained very good. As a matter of fact, the last couple of years were the best in my career.  There have been a lot of eager buyers — eager to buy a home, and eager to take advantage of the $8000 tax credit.

In some ways, business is much easier now.

Sellers are much more willing to deal and try harder to put a sale together and keep it together.  Also, builders are paying nice bonuses for selling their homes — homes that I probably would have sold anyways to the buyers that I have.  Everyone seems much more appreciative of my efforts — co-op agents, builders, mortgage lenders, title companies, etc.

As far as listings go, sellers have been less likely to try to cut commissions. Continue reading this post


Posted by: Barry Karch on January 29th, 2010 under Market Trends


Top Tips for Realtors in 2010

I’ve seen many business plans in my day. Although I’m a great advocate for planning and setting goals, I believe there is something even more important. In fact, I believe that without this critical ingredient, no great game plan or strategic goals will get you where you want to go.

It’s adaptability.

This past year is a great case in point. Our team duly met prior to the year’s beginning to lay down the tracks new-year-2010-tipsfor the coming year’s business. Since we’ve historically focused on home listings, listings were at the heart of our discussions. We fine tuned our listing presentations and geared up to handle all the details that would come from an increase in listings.

Who knew that normal listings would go into the toilet because home sellers were afraid to compete with REOs and Short Sales?

Had we stuck with our game plan, we would have ignored the long queue of home buyers lining up at our door to cash in on record low prices, rock bottom interest rates and the first-time buyer tax credit. Our business would have slammed to a halt.

Bottom line: We quickly switched our focus and game plan. By reacting to the market and adapting, we ended up doing 2 ½ times the total business we’ve ever done in any previous year.

A great example is a football running back. The play is called in the huddle, the ball is snapped and the running back swings into motion. What if the planned hole in the line doesn’t materialize? Continue reading this post


Posted by: Carl Medford on January 3rd, 2010 under Motivation


Should I Bother Listing My Home During the Holidays?

This is a pretty common question this time of year. I think the answer depends on your personal situation. I met with two homeowners within the last week that want to list their homes and both couples asked this same question.


My advice was that there is no reason to wait because it was not going to disrupt either of their holidays.

If either of them were having visitors for the holidays or was a large family with kids running around the house all day I probably would have advised them to wait.

Here are 5 reasons to list your home during the holiday season:

1.  This time of year many Realtors are taking time off or advising their sellers to wait until January to put their home up for sale. That means fewer listings are coming on the market. Wouldn’t you rather be 1 of say 10 new listings versus 1of 40? Your listing will be noticed more to those who are actively looking. There are always buyers on the sidelines waiting for new listings. Many of them receive new listings daily via email. Listing your home during the holidays might mean that you stand out more amongst all of the other new listings.

2.    If a home buyer is looking during the holidays there is a strong chance that they are motivated to purchase.

3.    The first time home-buyer tax credit has been extended. This might have created a sense of urgency and motivation for some to buy. Continue reading this post


Posted by: Marc Rasmussen on December 18th, 2009 under Buying or Selling a Home

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Is It Time To Start Taking Those Overpriced Listings?

I absolutely hate taking an overpriced listing and simply would not do it. It seems like one big waste of time to me since the market has been declining for the last 4 years. It is like going to work and not receiving a paycheck.

If a seller is overpriced from day one then they will really be overpriced 3-6-9 months down the road.  However, the market is looking more positive as inventories are declining and unit sales are up. It appears that we are in or coming close to a bottom. home-seller-overpriced-listing

So should you start building your listing inventory even if the sellers are overpriced?

If you ask some of the largest producers in your market they will probably say yes.

I’m always looking to learn in this business so I like to observe the biggest producers. Most of them take a lot of listings. There is definitely a direct correlation between being a huge listing agent and selling a lot of real estate. If you look closely at some these large producers you will notice that they don’t always take a listing at an aggressive price.

In fact, many of their listings are over priced. However, in time they manage to get the seller to see the light and eventually many of them sell.  Start observing the larger producers in your market and I think you will see the same patterns.

I read recently that a seller accepting the realities of the market is similar to the stages of the grieving process.

Stage 1 – Denial Continue reading this post


Posted by: Marc Rasmussen on December 8th, 2009 under Market Trends

1 Comment »

Outside of Price, Photos are the Most Important Marketing Component

Bad photos seem to be a part of many a real estate agent’s marketing plan. You’ve seen the fuzzy, blurry or pixilated pictures. My personal favorites are the ones that have the real estate agent’s rear view mirror in the picture and bad-real-estate-photothen, to no one’s surprise, it will be the only photo on the listing.

It took me about 1 minute to find this one (shown left).

The disregard of the most important marketing piece that we as agents have full control of boggles the mind.

A decent camera is cheap from a business perspective and 10 minutes to get out of the car and take a few pictures seems well worth it to me, but, that’s obviously not the case for all amongst us.

A decent camera is cheap and an appropriate camera is not cheap, but is still inexpensive for the ROI. The pictures are certainly worth the expense though. I enjoy photography so I take my own photos. If you aren’t into taking your own photos, let a professional handle the work load for you.

Locally, you can get 25 high resolution photos and a virtual tour for about $100. It would take anyone 3 or 4 hours to get out the property, take the photos get them back and edit them so the time involved to hire a pro may be worth it.

I’ve seen a lot of bloggers over the last few years offer up opinions about what you need and what you don’t need if you want to take great real estate photos and most don’t have any idea what is required to take them. If you don’t use a digital SLR camera, you won’t have the capability required to take exceptional photos of your listing.

To shoot the interior of a home, you need a true wide angle lens, but not a fisheye.  A wide lens will keep straight lines straight and allow you to see a whole room. Continue reading this post


Posted by: Ryan Ward on December 3rd, 2009 under Online Marketing


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