A Tale of Three Conversations

Conversation 1
Mr. Seller: I keep reading that it’s a seller’s market- and I have to agree! I decided to sell my home myself without hiring an agent.
Friend: Are you sure that was the wisest thing to do?
Mr. Seller: Heck yes- I put the sign in the yard and it sold in 2 days! I saved that seller’s commission and got full price! Well- that deal fell through because the buyer wasn’t qualified for the loan, but we got another offer right away- we just had to pay buyers closing costs and do about $3000. in repairs, but we did that all by ourselves- without an agent!
Friend: Really? Congratulations??


Conversation 2
Agent 1- I’ve noticed that the housing inventory is pretty low now, making it pretty hard to get listings, but also making the transactions a little more complicated, don’t you think?
Agent 2- I represented a buyer in a sale from a FSBO (for sale by owner). It went pretty smooth on my end.- I had a good qualified buyer thanks to some preliminary work we did to get all credit issues cleaned up and financing prequalified. Unfortunately for the seller, when we got to the closing, the seller found out that his property appraised for several thousand more than he sold it for. I guess he might have benefitted from some expert advice.
Conversation 3
REALTOR®- Now Mr. and Mrs. Smith, I want you to understand that getting offers will be easy with your home. We have it staged to sell, all repairs and maintenance addressed and home warranty offered. But you need to be aware that I will be checking to make sure that all offers will be pre-qualified (We don’t want to tie your property up with offers that can’t close); and the marketing gets out to everyone right away so that we can get the best offers early on in the listing and that we’ll have a good strategy on handling offers/multiple offers.
Mrs. Smith- Multiple offers? You mean we don’t have to accept the first offer we get?
REALTOR®- Not necessarily. Each situation is different and your options in dealing with each will vary based on lots of details. When you get into this kind of fast moving market- details matter, so we’ll carefully examine each thing as it happens- to come up with the best final contract we can for you!
Mr. Smith- I must admit- I didn’t agree with Mrs. Smith about hiring a REALTOR® since I was pretty sure I could handle selling this house myself, but after hearing about pricing it right, marketing it immediately and in the right ways, double-checking the buyers, handling objections and requests and analyzing and managing multiple offer situations- I realize that hiring you could end up costing me a lot less than doing it myself! Mrs. Smith is usually right….
The point of these conversations is this- you may not know how much you don’t know about what could go wrong in a real estate transaction until you find yourself in a pickle and don’t know how to undo what has been done by an amateur-you! You don’t want to spend money that you shouldn’t, you don’t want to leave money on the table, and you don’t want to miss out on opportunities that a pro might see that you don’t! Hire a professional- hire a REALTOR® You don’t want to save a dime- just to lose a quarter!
Peggy R. Smith is the Association Executive for the Old KY Home Board of REALTORS®. The Old Kentucky Home Board of REALTORS® owns and operates the MLS for the Nelson, Washington, Marion, Larue and Hart Counties in Kentucky and has over 50 years serving our local area.
Member of Kentucky Association of REALTORS® and National Association of REALTORS®.


Should I Stay or Should I Go?

You have made up your mind- you’re going to sell your house.  After all- all signals say it’s the perfect time, with the low inventory and high demand.  It should sell right away at a premium. But wait a minute… where will you go?  Are there any homes to move to?  You’ll have the money you need to get that dream home- but where will you find it?

Here’s the reality home sellers have to face right now with this brisk house market.  The challenges could either be a road block to getting into a home you really love and having to settle for something that misses the mark; or (if you handle it right) could set you up to be the victor in a multiple offer situation.

Here are some things you’ll want to be PREPARED for in order to come out on top when the battle is on for the limited properties available:

*Hire a good REALTOR® you don’t want to go into a championship game without a coach!  Having a game plan includes more than know how to dribble and shoot.  There are strategies that include marketing, sale, pricing, closing , possession, transition negotiating, … Even one of those elements can throw the whole game and once the game starts , it’s hard to get the game plan together.

*Know your home’s true value   Your REALTOR has access to tools that will give you real facts on what has sold, what is for sale, and what may be adjusted in terms of finishes and condition and location to get your property value at its maximum level.

*Make sure your agent is clear about what you are looking for.   Locations, school district, size, number of bedrooms/ baths, amenities you can’t live without, things you are flexible on.  The more your agent  know about your needs the better they can be at hunting up the right properties to zero in on and maybe catch the early drift on properties  suitable for you.

*Allow your REALTOR to do some “bird-dogging “ on your behalf if there are no properties that match your needs.  He/she can do some research and let homeowners of qualified homes that he is working with buyers who are ready to make an offer on a home like theirs.  This practice, if done in a professional manner could open some doors that might not be already open at the time.

*Negotiate timelines. One of the most important and frustrating parts of selling and buying at the same time is getting the timing right.  And since you may not know when you negotiate the selling of your home, what the terms will be on the buying of your home – you’ll need great skill and flexibility and the willingness adjust your expectations if necessary to accommodate other parties, while leaving room for adjusting for the purchase contract that you haven’t made yet.

*Avoid contingencies when making offers.  Because of the scarcity of properties- you may be in competition with your offer to buy.  Because of that- you should go into any offer situation with contingencies and demands at a minimum.  You may miss the chance to drop those demands if you are competing with another offer with no demands.

*Be fast out of the gate.  If you have talked over all your needs with your REALTOR and she knows what you need, when you find it- be ready to make an offer right away.  If you’ve had these discussions with your REALTOR, then you know how he will prepare your offer and how aggressive you want to be.  Always remember that sometimes while a buyer is sleeping on whether to offer, another buyer is buying!

Peggy R. Smith is the Association Executive for the Old KY Home Board of REALTORS®. The Old Kentucky Home Board of REALTORS® owns and operates the MLS for the Nelson, Washington,

Marion, Larue and Hart Counties in Kentucky and has over 50 years serving our local area. Member of Kentucky REALTORS® and National Association of REALTORS®.