Uh Oh, It’s Magic

Uh Oh, It’s Magic

If you know me well, you know I love magicians. It fascinates me to watch good ones perform and stun their audience. Some seem to read your mind. Others seem to predict the future. I love to be freaked out and wonder, HOW DO THEY DO IT??? You will ask yourself the same thing when you work with a great Realtor. They make it look easy. They get things done. My job is to work behind the scenes to fix all the things that go wrong when selling or buying a home. What, you don’t think anything went wrong when you bought or sold your house? That’s probably because you had a great Realtor on your side. Things always go wrong. They are not always big things that can cause deals to be delayed or to fall through but, trust me, there is always something. Lenders get the wrong document signed, they somehow have the wrong close date or purchase price. Title companies find undisclosed tax liens on the property that is supposed to close in 5 days. A Seller takes a refrigerator that they were supposed to leave. An appraisal comes back low. A Buyer forgets to mention a bankruptcy. The list goes on and on. Some things can’t be fixed, but most can. Don’t give up. I have been able to get a major home builder to pay closing costs, and replace items they initially said they would not. Lenders have jumped through hoops. Title companies have gone to bat for clients and other agents have worked with their clients to come to amicable solutions. In the end, everyone wants the same thing. We all want the house to sell. Sellers want to sell it, Buyers want to buy it, and all the vendors want to be paid. Most Realtors don’t get paid until closing, therefore, they should do everything they can to find solutions for issues that arise. I have been asked if I can move a house to a different location. I actually do know people that can do that! Bottom line is, make sure you have realistic expectations of the magic that can be performed. Also, though, be satisfied that your real estate agent is working hard for you and if you’re not, get another...

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You’re Not All That

You’re Not All That

  You’ve met them. Those people that the minute you meet them you know they think they were born to bless others with their presence. They think they can do nothing wrong and you are stupid if you think otherwise. Don’t you just want to tell them, “you’re not all that”? Yeah, it goes the same for some people in the real estate market. They think that their $20,000 under asking price, cash offer, first day on the market should make Sellers run to sign the papers and ask if they want all their furniture too. We have a great real estate market in the Nashville area. Over the past two years, I have taken many calls from real estate investors from other states that heard that Nashville was a great market and a great place to invest. They are looking for a “deal”. Well, those days are gone for now. Prices have risen, and Sellers are smart. I have had to explain to more than one person that while cash is great, if it doesn’t accompany a strong offer in other ways, it just might be “prince” instead of “king”. Certainly, there are circumstances where a cash offer makes most sense but if the offer price is a lowball offer, most Sellers will say, “No, thank you”. Think of it this way, if you are a Seller and your house is on the market for 2 days. You get two offers. One is for full price, is contingent on the Buyer’s 90% conventional loan and they are pre-approved by a reputable lender. The other offer is for $15,000 below asking price but is all cash. In most cases, Sellers would take the risk to make $15,000 more. However, the offer may have included things like no appraisal, or no inspection, in which case, the Seller may want to consider value and condition of their home prior to making that decision. I try to get my Buyers to be reasonable in their offers. It is never a good idea to offend or make a Seller mad with the spirit of negotiation in mind. Some people know it’s not personal while others take it very personally and are very offended by a lowball offer when a property is priced well and a Buyer is just out fishing for deals. Life and real estate is about compromise – negotiation. If you start off offending, chances are not good that you will come to a resolution and an outcome that you are hoping for. So, just because you have cash and think your *you know what* doesn’t *you know what*, doesn’t mean that you will get that house. They may just tell...

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5 Tips to Expand Your Network

5 Tips to Expand Your Network

Some weeks I write about real estate. Real estate tips, tricks, advice, trends, etc. Sometimes I just write about life. This week I want to help you expand your network. If you are a business owner, a sales person, or someone who has just moved to town, these tips can help. Get active Over a year ago, I joined Pure Barre. It just so happens that it is in my neighborhood and I told myself I had no excuse not to go try it out. Well, I love it. In fact, one might say I’m a bit addicted. I typically go at the same time and I see a lot of the same people. We socialize before and after class – mostly talking about how we can barely walk from the workout, but that’s beside the point. We bond. It creates a sense of belonging. I never intended to get business from working out, but conversations naturally gravitate toward what people do outside of the setting we are accustomed to seeing them. Here’s another thing I realized: People are watching you even if you don’t know it. They will assess your ability to, for instance, sell your house, by how committed you are to working out and how much effort you put in when you’re there. Get in shape and expand your network at the same time. Get charitable A lot of us have some sort of cause that we are passionate about. For me, it is animals. Get involved with a local organization or charity. People will see your heart and that will go a long way in them wanting to get to know you and/or do business with you. Again, you have to be committed. You can’t say you’ll be involved and then only show up to half the meetings or not do what you say you’re going to do. Stick with it and you’ll not only be doing something you feel great about, but you will expand your network while doing it. Get talking If you’re like me, once you are done “working” for the day, the last thing you want to do is talk. I’d much rather go home, pet my dogs, and read a book than go to a networking event or business gathering. However, you will never be able to reach the full potential to expand your network if you don’t actually talk to people. It is so easy to text or email and for a lot of things, that is perfectly acceptable, and even preferable. However, when you are looking to grow your business or make new friends, you must communicate face to face at some point. People are relational, even those...

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‘Tis the Season

‘Tis the Season

  To be jolly…or to buy a house! So many companies and industries slow down this time of year. Offices close for days at a time, the phone barely rings and employees get caught up on their personal errands. Unless you are a Realtor in the Nashville area. People are out buying houses. They are out in droves. One of my agents has three buyers looking for properties and can’t find what they are looking for. We are receiving calls to list properties and calls to purchase properties. ‘Tis the season in Nashville. So many potential Sellers think they should wait until Spring. They think it is a bad time to sell when it’s cold and gets dark at 5:00 PM. Not so. The Buyers who are looking now are serious. Why else would they want to be out when it’s cold and gets dark at 5:00 PM? It is a little extra hassle during the holidays, I understand. However, your house probably looks very homey if it is decorated with lights and festive items. There is something about coming into a house that looks warm and like it could be in a Christmas movie (more like “It’s a Wonderful Life” and less like “Christmas Vacation”). Buyers are less likely to be “looky-loo’s” so you may get less showings but the ones you will get will be more qualified and more seriously interested in your home even before walking in the door. Buyers need to realize that there will be less to choose from during this season, however, the properties you will find will typically not be the leftovers you may get in September when all the other great houses have been scooped up during Spring and Summer. They are likely people who need to move. A lot of companies transfer at the beginning of the year and a lot of Sellers get compensated to move. More often than not, the Sellers that are selling in this season are willing to bend a little more than a Seller in a time when they are receiving multiple offers during a hot selling season. So, when you’re marking things off your long list of to-do’s this season, make sure you consult your Realtor because this may be the best time to buy or sell. Happy...

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Nashville Investment Property

Nashville Investment Property

  Nashville is the “It” city. It has been ranked the #1 housing market in the nation. Depending on the day, we hear that 80-100 people move to Nashville every day. We were named the #1 Minor League Baseball city. We are in the Top 20 cities for tech jobs, #6 for young professionals and #7 for millennials. We are among the Top 10 cities in which to launch a career and Nashville has the third fastest growing large Metro economy. The list goes on and on. But, with all these accolades, does that mean that Nashville is a great place to buy investment property? Yes and no. With Nashville’s influx of residents, we have also had low inventory. Because a lot of those are millennials and young professionals, the demand for properties under $200,000 has increased significantly. Typically, this is where investors like to buy. They can get in a property for a decent price, rent it out for an attractive price, and still get a nice return on their investment every month. We were getting multiple calls a week for a while from people all across the country that wanted to invest in Nashville. Most used the word that investors dream about, “deal.” “I want to get a deal.” “I’m looking for a deal.” “Where can I find a deal?” and “If you find a deal, I’ll buy it.” Well, the truth of the matter is, there really aren’t many, if any, “deals” in Nashville right now. First time home buyers, young professionals, millennials and investors are all competing over the same property. Investors that have cash may be more attractive to sellers, however, cash is not always king and not all investors have cash. Some sellers don’t want to sell to an investor and will take an offer from an owner-occupant over an investor because they either want to help the “little man” or they don’t like the thought of renters living in the home they have loved for years. Another pitfall of investors is thinking that cash is king – no matter the offer. Sellers won’t necessarily take thousands less for their home just to have it close in two weeks. Some would rather wait another 2- 3 weeks and make more in the long run. If you plan on investing but you are getting a loan, you are in the same boat, for the most part, that owner-occupants are in and you will find the Nashville market a tough one to compete in. The best thing to do is to find the properties before they go on the market or at very least, the same day. Find a Realtor that diligently hunts for properties...

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No Pain, No Gain

No Pain, No Gain

  No pain, no gain. I thought this as I hobbled out of my workout studio today after a particularly grueling class. We hear this term a lot when talking about getting in shape. But what about when we are selling a house? I know many of my clients have thought about the pain long before they understood the gain. I have had many Seller clients practically do mini-makeovers on their house just to sell it, and guess what? It works. Is it a pain? Yes. Would they say it is worth it? Absolutely. If you are a Seller. Don’t skimp. If you have bold color on the walls, paint it neutral. If your carpet has been “loved” by pets or children, replace it. Don’t think that in today’s market, Buyers are OK with a “credit” or “allowance”. First of all, lenders rarely allow this any longer and Buyers that are paying top dollar in a hot market want the house to be move-in ready. You will find the one that has to have the school system or the pool, or the one unique quality that only your house possesses but you need to be attractive to the masses. It’s true that it only takes one Buyer for your house but in a hot, Seller’s market, you want to put your best foot forward to get multiple offers. Why have one Buyer wanting your house when you can have five? You may need to become a weekend warrior, hire a handyman, or sucker your friends into helping for some pizza and beer. Just get it done. Mulch the beds and plant a few flowers. Paint the front door and clean the windows. Rearrange furniture and drop-off to Goodwill. De-clutter and clean. Think of it this way, you’ll get some exercise, feel a bit more invested in the process and you will appreciate it all the more when that Buyer walks through the door and says, “I’ll take it!” No pain, no gain isn’t just for working out...

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