balancing stones

Maybe the recycling post mode I find myself in is an attempt to share old, but timeless, wisdom.  Maybe, and perhaps more likely, it is because I’m busy helping sellers and buyers realize their real estate goals and there is no time in the day (or night) to write something new and witty–old wisdom will have do for the moment.  Besides, I rather enjoyed reading it again and I hope you do too. (original post written 2008)

Real estate manners are always in style even if the market is always in transition.

I’m not one for studying tea leaves, but today I did buy a new bamboo plant for my office. My resolution to remain calm and steady throughout these unstable housing market times wavered a bit yesterday. I felt like I was experiencing a Brittany-like bad day! (If you recall, Brittany Spears had a very bad year in 2008, but she turned things around and it appears the housing market is following her lead.)

My sellers and buyers remain oceans apart. Buyers, I’m sorry, but there are no blue light specials in Palos Verdes. Those half-price offers will likely be shredded. Sellers, I’m equally distressed to inform you this is not a good time to increase your asking price. This is the time to make sure your property is playing her best hand. Yes, I actually had these discussions yesterday.

Sellers, the buyers are venturing back into the marketplace. They want to purchase a home. Many are pre-approved. Most are market savvy. These are not 2005 buyers. They will not overpay for a property. It’s important to move from being the owner to becoming the seller. Please remember, the buyer of your property will propel you to the next stage of your life. He/she/they will help you move on.

Buyers, most sellers are reasonable. They want to sell or they would not go through the inconvenience of placing their home on the market. If your offer is significantly lower than the asking price, submit a personal letter justifying the price and terms of your offer. Submit comparable sales in the neighborhood. Your agent can help gather a convincing bundle of evidence to substantiate the offer. Your offer will be viewed as a genuine effort to purchase rather than a low-ball insult. You desire what the seller has, and insults rarely foster a cooperative spirit. Your mission is to court and impress the holder of the object of your affection. Win them over!

With a few steps toward each other,  you may find the current market, or any market, a bit more user friendly.