What does Days On Market really mean? Here’s The Truth

It means almost nothing, especially on a large scale.  In real estate we try to find numbers that normalize the ups and downs of activity.  Similarly, the inventory number is a theoretical number that says, if sales continue at this pace and no new homes were added to the market, this is how many months it would take to deplete the inventory.  That situation would never happen but it is a number to look at to show trends but it’s not perfect. Just like Days Continue reading →

What is a Moving Mob?

Imagine only being requested to help a friend move one single box, give a high five, and get on with your Saturday. Wouldn’t that be nice? I mean. it’s always a Saturday isn’t it? The same friend that would take a bullet for you will likely find an excuse not to help you move. Why? Because moving sucks and it’s usually disorganized as hell. When someone imagines helping someone move they think of sweat, dusty boxes, two people arguing over the tetris like qualities of Continue reading →

How Zillow Is Inadvertently Helping My Business

I’m not worried about Zillow and Trulia like some agents.  Actually I’m all about open information, and that is what Zillow gives, to a point.  But only up to a point, and that is how their product actually helps me. One issue that agents have with Zillow is the Zestimate which Zillow’s estimate of the value of your home as a price range.  From Zillow’s website:  Remember, the Zestimate is a starting point and does not consider all the market intricacies that can determine the Continue reading →

When A Realtor Sells Their Own Home Part 2

I can’t get too deep in the details of selling this home but we got four offers in two days.  The pricing was not fun, which I will talk about when the deal is over. By far the most interesting aspect of this is watching Jessie, my girlfriend.  I get to watch her from a Realtor’s perspective and as someone involved in the transaction with her. I learned recently that a doctors group did a study and found that only 20% of what a doctor Continue reading →

Selling “Different” Homes – Lessons From OKCupid

[Originally written January 2011] “Sexy, to me, is the way you carry what you have. I have a big nose, but I rock it.” – Justin Timberlake. Our Multiple Listing System recently started tracking and reporting view counts on RMLS.com, RMLSweb.com, and when a listing is emailed to a buyer.  It’s wonderful because now we can see how many online impressions we get versus actual showings. As I am recently single I have perused OKCupid. [Update: That changed in Feb 2012] I have marveled at their Continue reading →

Realtors and Incentives

In the video above the authors of Freakonomics talk about Realtors and how they are not incentivized to get the best price for your home.  A $10,000 reduction in sales price is only a few hundred dollars reduction in commission. First, are there agents like this?  Absolutely.  I also know of agents who won’t show a home if their cut of the commission isn’t big enough.  I don’t think they tell their clients though. Are there economists that make erroneous claims or write harsh, misleading chapter titles Continue reading →

Do Real Estate Agents Limit How Many Homes A Buyer Can Look At?

(Excuse the distracted talking. I was watching for my clients.) Over the years I have heard agents brag that they never show more than 10 homes to a client. I always sat in disbelief that they would think like this. In my nine years in real estate it has never occurred to me to do that not even when times were lean. A few of the agents have said that they are so good at getting from the client what they want that it is Continue reading →

How To Pick A Realtor

It’s so hard to pick a good Realtor because most people don’t buy homes often enough to get a good gauge on the process and know what to look for or what works for them. Do you pick based on sales?  I know a Realtor that had 60 sales in one year and your best interest is the very last thing on his mind.  I had ten sales in one month and I don’t even remember it because things were so crazy. Do you pick Continue reading →

Holiday Sales Slowdown

It’s that time of year, so much to do, so little time it seems.  That’s why real estate slows down so much during the holidays.  Few people are motivated enough to buy or sell a home once the middle of October hits with Thanksgiving around the corner. Once January rolls around the market gets flooded with new listings.  Don’t be discouraged by the lack of homes for sale if you are a buyer, they will come back.  If you area seller, this is a great Continue reading →

Buy her the moon or at least some acreage there.

Dennis Hope, a Nevada entrepreneur, has been selling lunar real estate, priced at $20/acre, for the last 20 years. By exploiting a loophole created during the 1967 United Nations Outer Space Treaty (the Treaty stated that no country or government could lay claim on extraterrestrial land, but did not mention private individuals or corporations), he has basically laid ownership claim not only on earth’s nearest satellite, the moon, but also on seven other planets, and their individual moons. His business, called Lunar Embassy, is booming. Continue reading →