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The “Per Square Foot” Secret To Becoming The Expert In Your Market

       

What are the most expensive per square foot homes in America?

According to a recent study recently done by REALTOR.com San Jose Santa Clara had the most expensive per square foot averages across the country.

Drum roll — $1,500 a square foot, not far behind are San Francisco and Oakland with $1,200 a square foot.

Now what's the least expensive in the country? Least expensive is Decatur, Illinois at $102 and Youngstown, Ohio at $120 a square foot.

There's a big discrepancy between the two.

The reason I bring this up is because we need to know what our average per square foots are in our local market. And it's going to change by subdivision. It's going to change by micro markets. But overall, you need to know what your county averages are and then your subcategories in different market segments. That way you can speak to this as an expert.

The other thing you need to be able to do is bring these into a conversation with buyers and...

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The Shocking Reason Why Homes Are So Affordable Right Now

         

Affordability is on the tip of everybody's tongues right now.

Why is affordability so important?

Well, it's a measurement of how affordable it is for the average person in America to own a home.

NAR has studied this every single month and they gave us a Home Affordability Graph. And you might expect this, but home affordability has actually been going up because of something substantial, which is interest rates going down.

As interest rates go down, affordability goes up.

That's despite the fact that we've had actually super fast rising prices, right? Prices starting to go into double digit territory across the country. And then we see interest rates going down, which pushes affordability up.

But because home prices have gotten so high recently, that's actually starting to level off and come back down. But we recently had another upswing. So we're measuring a few things when we look at affordability.

When NAR looks at...

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The Social Media Secret to Becoming The Trusted Agent In Your Market

         

Something super exciting happened in the last month that we haven't seen in the last 15 years:

Home prices on existing homes exceeded home prices for new homes.

Think about what I just said:

Existing home prices exceeded new home construction. So it was actually cheaper to go buy a brand new house nobody had ever lived in than buying an existing home. Absolutely amazing.

Lots of reasons behind that. But one of the reasons is normally when you're buying new construction, you're locking in a price six months earlier. And then they complete the new construction and you move in.

Well, the market has super accelerated in those last 6 months. And guess what's also happened:

Now, if you were to try to pull that off, what's happened with all kinds of lumber, supplies, and even appliances?

Prices have gone up.

So this will probably not be repeated anytime soon because now prices on new construction are beginning to rise again.

But what...

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This Little-Known Market Contains 38% of All Sellers

       

What percentage of Americans would you guess paid off their home?

Think about that for a second: Completely own their home, free and clear.

In other words, when you're driving down the street in your neighborhood, out of 10 homes, how many people have paid their home off and outright own it?

Would it be 2 homes, 3 homes, 4 homes?

The answer is 38% of Americans have paid off their home in full, which is absolutely amazing.

The equity for homes in America is off the charts. It's incredible. So that's good.

Now, why do I bring this up?

The reason I bring it up is because people that have equity in their home actually have a huge, powerful advantage when it comes to moving up to their dream home.

And here's why:

They can actually do something that a lot of sellers can't. They could go buy a home and finance their second home (what they're going to buy next). And they won't have two mortgages.

So they have no pressure on themselves when it...

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The "4 Sells" You Must Make When Selling a Financed Home

         

Sometimes a seller will say to you, "Well, just sell it to a cash buyer. I don't want to deal with financing."

Have you heard that? We all have from time to time. When you have a seller say that to you, you need to arm yourself with good information so you counter that. And help them understand that the market isn't comprised of a ton of cash buyers.

The good news is that there are more cash buyers that there has been. We've seen a huge uptake in cash buyers. But the current number as of today, in all across the country, is that 25% of the sales done in the country are now cash buyers.

But what's the reverse of that number? The reverse of that number is 75% of the sales are not cash sales. So they're involving some level of financing. Which means that when we list a property, we have to sell it four times in order to create a sale.

We have to sell it to the market, to get them excited about that listing. That's creating that...

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How to Take Advantage of The Tsunami of Listings Coming in The Next 6 Months

          

We've just had some excellent news about where homeowners' heads are regarding selling their home.

The latest study shows that 67% of homeowners believe today is a good time to sell, which is one of the record highs we've seen with this kind of thought process.

But when we go deeper into those numbers, according to Realtor.com, it shows this:

1 in 10 homeowners plan to sell this year. 1 in 10!

Think about that when you're driving home tonight and you're driving through your neighborhoods. 1 in 10 of these homes that you're driving by is going to be listed in the next year!

But here's something that's even more exciting:

63% of those are going to be listing their home in the next six months.

The only question is... Who are they going to list with? Is it going to be with you or your competitor?

And if it's your competitor, why did they get the listing when you missed out? The reason is they did one thing that you didn't do:...

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Two Key Reasons Why Potential Sellers Should Come to Market Today

        

There's something happening in the market right now that really will impact your sellers. And that is interest rates are starting to climb a little bit.

When interest rates climb, it affects sellers in two different key ways:

1. It affects what's called buying power of all the buyers in the marketplace.

Here's what that looks like when you're talking about buying power:

If you're a buyer who is going to get a loan of, let's say $300,000, and you had your average down payment that would equal a payment and interest charge of about $1,225 per month. Now that interest rates have come up about a half percent, what does that mean for you?

If you still want to have that same payment, roughly $1225 a month of principal and interest, your buying power actually goes down because interest rates have gone up. You can no longer afford the $300,000 mortgage. Now you can only afford $285,000.

This puts "pricing pressure" on the market.

Now we know...

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Why Pending Signs Dump Ice Cold Water On Your Most Qualified Buyers & Sellers

         

Why would you use a pending sign? A lot of REALTORS use a pending sign because they want to encourage people to list their home with them. And they want to show off to the marketplace that their marketing actually worked.

But a pending sign can actually be the worst possible thing you can do for your marketing.

Why?

Because when homeowners in your neighborhood see your listing go up, that's when they're most likely to call you and be curious about the home. The pending sign can help a little bit, but you're going to miss out on the most qualified buyers you can have. 

And I'll give you a classic example:

My wife and I have identified an area of town we want to live in called Echo of the Pines. It's a beautiful area with some nice homes in the neighborhood but very few homes come on the market. The other night when we were driving home, we saw a new for sale sign. As a REALTOR, I get all these alerts, but they become noise and I tune them out.

...
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Fewer Listings or Velocity of The Market?

       

You learn something new every day in real estate. Even after 31 years in this business, I'm still learning.

I learned something fascinating this morning based on a study from Zillow:

In the last half of 2020, the number of listings taken week by week were about even with 2019.

There's a sense that there's a lot less listings in the market as a result of of us not taking as many listings, but it's just not true.

In the last half of 2020, we've taken as many listings as a nation as we did in 2019. But it doesn't feel like that.

So why doesn't it feel like that?

It's like if you own a grocery store and had a delivery guy come every Friday to fill your shelves with the same order. But what has changed is the number of buyers walking into your grocery store and how many products they're buying each time they come in.

If more buyers are coming into your store and buying more products from your shelves, it's going to seem like there's not as much on the shelves...

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Using a Marketing Sequence to Attract More Buyers and Sellers

        

One thing we're all challenged with right now is the speed of the market — or how fast listings sell as soon as they hit the market.

When you listed a house in a traditional market, you would have 90 or 180 days of market time. During that market time you'd able to be able to put out just listed cards, call and farm neighborhoods, host multiple open houses, and receive sign calls from your marketing. And with all that marketing, you would be able to convert those interested people into more buyers and sellers.

So every listing could easily lead to five or six more opportunities for more buyers and sellers.

But today things have changed. Every time you put a house in the market, it's generally selling within a few days with multiple offers. So you're getting robbed of that extra marketing opportunity.

But you can change that by using what I call a Marketing Sequence.

A marketing sequence simply means that you have a strategy about how you...

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