Thinking About Selling? This May Be The Time!

The past couple of months have been crazy! Homes that are in good condition, show ready, and priced right are flying off the greater Dallas market. It’s almost like the good old days. Two of our recent listings had multiple offers within a week of going on the market and several of our buyers had to pay list or above in order to secure a contract. The buyer’s market in north Dallas area is over in the under $200k price range.

There’s been a lot of speculation as to the reasons but many first-time home buyers have been sitting on the fence waiting for rates to bottom out or the economy to stabilize.

This may last well into the normal spring sales season unless something bad happens to the economy. The run-up in oil prices and the impact on fuel prices could send them back on fence.

If you’ve been thinking about selling your home and moving up this may be one of the best times in history to do so. Homes under $200k are moving, prices are likely at the bottom, and interest rates are insanely low. We closed a home a couple of weeks ago with a 15 year mortgage at 3.00 percent and another recent closing had a 30 year FHA mortgage at 3.875 percent.

We have many resources on our website:

Home Value Request – What’s my home worth?

Seller Tips

Are You Show Ready?

Looking for an experienced team of agents with a proven track-record to sell your home? Click here.

Feel free to contact us if you have questions or need more information.

It’s a Bit of an Awkward Situation

I recently received a couple of requests for a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). As I did the basic research, I discovered that both of the properties were already listed with other brokers.


Licensed from iStockPhoto

In both cases, the seller was feeling “awkward” because the listing agent had brought a buyer for the property they listed. In each case, the offer brought by the listing agent was substantially low. This left both sellers felling like their agent was not representing them in the best way possible.

In Texas we do not allow dual agency. We handle it in one of two ways. The first way is with two agents under the same broker. The Broker serves as an Intermediary and the two agents represent their respective clients. The other way is with a single agent acting as a transaction coordinator. Neither party is represented. The agent’s role is to facilitate the deal.

In the first case, the listing agent has done a really good job of marketing the property. The listing agent tried to force a low offer and it left the seller feeling like the agent had “done them wrong.” 

In the second case, the marketing was fair. The photos were marginal at best.  The seller had had the property professionally appraised and yet the listing agent brought an offer at 85 percent of market value from one of his own buyers. The seller related that, “it’s a bit of an awkward situation.”

All relationships are based upon trust and the trust had been damaged in both cases. When will listing agents learn that trying to double-end deals is not the way to go?

I Saw A Foreclosure Listing on RealtyTrac

I was out showing one of my Short Sale listings today. The showing went well, but the house did not really work for them. Before I could ask them if I could help them find something else, they asked me about a property they had seen on RealtyTrac.

Foreclosure For Sale

Licensed from iStockPhoto

RealtyTrac bills itself as a ”Foreclosure Real Estate Listings” site.  According to their website, “Save up to 50% off market value! RealtyTrac lets you search the most foreclosure properties in your neighborhood.” It’s a pay site after a free trial period.

In Texas, it appears RealtyTrac gets some of their data from the county records. The property they showed me was not listed, had not been foreclosed on, and the owners were still living in it. I suspect the lender filed for a substitute trustee (one of the recorded first steps in the trustee sales process) or actually posted it for a trustee sale.

Even if the property had been foreclosed on, it may not be available for purchase. The lender has to make sure the property is vacant and in some cases, wait for the redemption period to expire before they list it with a local REALTOR®. They asked about contacting the lender to purchase it directly from the lender. While I don’t have extensive REO experience, I have two big REO agents in my office and they tell me that it’s not possible to purchase a single property directly from the lender.

I explained this to them and I told them if they were truly looking for active foreclosure listings, the data was available in the MLS. I offered to set up a foreclosure search for them.

My advice to them was to work with the MLS data as it is likely the most accurate source of actual foreclosure real estate listings unless they wanted to try to purchase a property at a trustee sale.