georgia: Are You Violating the Law or Ethics? - 11/02/15 05:06 AM
Between real estate law and the code of ethics, it’s very easy to step out of your comfort zone.
Does anyone remember the part about putting your client’s best interest above your own? How about the part on staying within your field of expertise? If you do single family residential homes as your main service, are you even qualified to do large tracts of land? What about a multiunit apartment? What about a warehouse or big box anchor shopping center?
Many people think land would be easy. After all, it’s just lying there, right? How tough is that? Do you understand mineral rights? … (81 comments)

georgia: New Listings Down … Why? - 10/26/15 09:49 AM
After suffering through what was at least arguably the worst real estate correction in history, most of the surrounding county markets seem to be coming back. For some reason, Pickens is trailing behind. Following are three charts to illustrate (residential listings only):
This chart represents the number of new listings in Pickens versus the number of units sold.
Over the last year, new listings and the number of homes sold were trending up, then in July both columns starting dropping. This could be for a number of reasons, but my theory is that old inventory is either priced incorrectly or has other issues, … (0 comments)

georgia: Pickens Selling Seasons - 08/31/15 10:07 AM
In 2011 I looked at seasonal home sales in Pickens County. It covered the previous eight years of sales, and concluded that Spring/Summer and Summer/Fall were the best selling seasons, with Fall being slightly better.
 I decided to revisit those numbers and do it a little differently. This time I divided the year into quarters that represent our seasonal temperatures, so the first quarter starts in December and ends in February. I also went back five years to sort of pick up where we left off. Following is a graph illustrating the results: 
This illustrates that real estate is local. While metro markets … (0 comments)

georgia: Short and Sweet Stats Review - 08/14/15 07:43 AM
The second quarter review of real estate in the metro Atlanta area was very interesting. Everyone raves about how hot real estate is in Atlanta, and most people complain that Pickens is much slower in performance. 
Looking at the numbers, we find that listings are up slightly in Atlanta while sales are up about the same percentage, and pended sales are up nicely.  
In Pickens, units for sale are down 7.3%, while sales are up 43.9% and pended sales are up 31%! On top of that prices have stabilized.
I suppose the question is after people have gone through such a tough period in … (0 comments)

georgia: “I Saw It on Zillow” - 07/14/15 04:15 AM
I remember when people used to come in the office and ask the question, “Can you help us buy a house”. Wow. That even sounds like a long time ago as I write it! Of course, personal computers had been around for forty years, but the internet was just starting to gain a lot of footing, and real estate search engines for consumers did not really exist yet. The listing organizations were just starting to perfect platforms that replaced “the book”, when real estate agents were pretty much the gateway to buying a home unless you bought it unlisted directly from … (3 comments)

georgia: My Agent Is Worthless ... - 05/31/15 05:17 AM
My friend and neighbor has his home listed. Probably better to avoid that listing and preserve the friendship, but I get to hear all the reasons why the three agents they've had so far are worthless. 
The home is beautiful, but in my opinion over-valued. It's been on the market for over two years. They keep hiring miracle agents that don't live in the area on the pretense that their home is special, and local agents are somehow not worthy or capable to handle the sale. Apparently no one else is either!
The latest is that the last agent didn’t show the property … (8 comments)

georgia: New Listing Technique ... - 05/27/15 05:17 AM
A couple of years ago, I was doing a little maintenance in my neighborhood. Actually, I was trying to keep the kudzu from getting any worse until my neighbor got moved in, which is a common southern chore.
I happened to be on the side of a very steep hill. Four ladies came driving down the hill in a brand new red golf cart. I waved as they passed, even though I didn't know them. After a few minutes, I realized the cart had stopped at the foot of the hill.
Two of them were older, and one of them was struggling to … (2 comments)

georgia: Mortgage Rates Are Your Friend – Or Not! - 04/03/15 06:58 AM

Planning when to sell your home is important, and there is a lot to consider. The home must look good to attract buyers, so you probably need to break out the elbow grease or checkbook to get those repairs and improvements handled. You need to be concerned about curb appeal and staging. You also need to speak with your Realtor® about pricing your home so it will sell. Everyone wants to sell their home for the most they can get, and the buyer wants to pay the least he has to pay … not a difficult concept there.

georgia: What Just Happened? - 03/27/15 05:03 AM
Last Friday something happened to me that doesn't happen very often. I didn't get the listing.
I can't remember the last time I made a listing presentation and lost. Frankly, sometimes I get them and I don't even try that hard! If I have an appointment, I usually just assume I have a new listing.
This time I was dealing with a widowed senior. She is a charming but starchey lady, so I ironed my shirt and shaved. I was once told that half the job is won when you show up on time, and look and smell as good as … (4 comments)

georgia: Another Shot at Real Estate Agents - 03/01/15 07:55 AM
I just read an article in "Consumer Reports" that was very disappointing to me. For a magazine that is supposed to rely on credibility to attract readers, this article was all bad advice and hyperbole.
It encourages sellers to spend thousands of dollars getting a home ready to sell, promising they will get their money back and a 20% additional profit! While I agree that their suggestion to paint the front door, and possibly some rooms, and clean out the clutter are fine, they go on about how much money sellers will get back by remodeling bathrooms! That's just bad advice, … (6 comments)

georgia: Is Your Broker Ethical? - 02/25/15 05:08 AM
I have a broker's license, but I don't expect I'll ever be a managing broker, simply because I no longer have the patience to listen to people who would rather whine than work. Surely that does not apply to the majority of agents, but to the ones it does apply, I just don't have time anymore.
The other thing that would cause me consternation is competing against my own agents. Were I in that position, I would probably give away transactions just to make sure that the other agents were being treated fairly. Fortunately, I work in an environment where the … (3 comments)

georgia: Property Tax – A Balanced Assessment - 02/23/15 04:32 AM

In Pickens County, Georgia we have heated subject that recycles itself from time to time regarding our lack of school tax exemption for senior tax payers. In fact, most counties in Georgia do not have the exemption.
Before I begin, I will state that I am a senior. I hate taxes. I do not belong to any group seeking or attacking an education exemption on property taxes for seniors. I hope that when you read this you will appreciate the balance of facts. I don’t blame anyone for trying to save money.
When my kids were in … (1 comments)

georgia: Pickens County Real Estate Wrap 2014 - 01/15/15 05:43 AM

Here is a brief overview of the 2014 year end numbers in Pickens County compared to a year earlier.
While there are still naysayers on the return of the real estate market, I think most would agree that sales and activity are much better than a couple of years ago. There are a lot more statistics available than most people care to see, so just focus on these for now:
Also consider that the months of inventory based on sales in December was 7.9, compared to 15.5 months last year. The rule of thumb … (0 comments)

georgia: "But I Stayed at a Holiday Inn ..." - 12/19/14 05:47 AM
I am negotiating a contract on a commercial lot.
I've had this listed for a long time, but I know the owner, and the market has been slow, so we just keep trying. I got an offer last week from a well respected company. Oddly, I got another offer almost immediately. That usually sets off my radar, and in the end it was an agent trying to parachute on a tip he should not have even known about. At any rate, it started a small bidding war.
In the end we got full price after two increases, and felt like we … (0 comments)

georgia: You Are Looking, Not Inspecting! - 11/30/14 05:10 AM
Yesterday, one of my clients was visiting his vacant house that I have listed. I was just there a few days ago. In the meantime, a prospective buyer apparently decided to turn on the HVAC to see if it works. It was set to keep the house at a chilly 50 degrees during Thanksgiving week when we are having occasional hard freezes, not sweltering weather.
Here are a couple of tips for those who are touring homes:
1. Read the disclosure. If the HVAC has a problem that is not noted, you would not have to repair it. That is the … (4 comments)

georgia: "Yer' Not From Here, Are Ye'" - 11/18/14 05:04 AM
Being from Indiana, my accent is almost non-existent. Therefore, since Atlanta is also a melting pot, I don't hear this as often as some, and most people in Georgia assume I am from Atlanta. I do have some country stuff working, but I don't try to make it work, it's just there.
I've seen agents from New York and Boston do well in the south, because they don't try to say y'all. It isn't you-all. They just dive in with their Bronx accent, and take a lot of ribbing about talking "funny", but they take care of business.
Then I've seen … (2 comments)

georgia: "So This Is the Kitchen?" - 10/30/14 04:15 AM
I have a philosophy about being a Realtor® ... NO ONE EVER SOLD A HOUSE.
But Ron, you say, I just sold a house last week. I can show you where MLS has it's status as sold, so you're wrong.
Let me ask you, did you sell it, or did you set the stage for someone to become interested in buying it? We as Realtors® are marketers, not salesmen. The old days when agents were the gatekeepers to what was for sale are long gone. In those days, people walked into the office looking for a home, so the agent would … (7 comments)

georgia: “Buckhead Agent Blues” - 10/03/14 05:02 AM

If you owned a home in Miami, would you call an agent from Atlanta to list it for sale? If you answered yes to this question, you can stop reading this and go to the classifieds or something. If you’re still reading I assume you would not hire an agent from Atlanta to list a home in Florida. Why would you? They probably are no smarter, they probably can’t speak Spanish, which may be important in that area, and they probably don’t know the local market. Right?
Now let’s say you own a home in Talking Rock, and … (3 comments)

georgia: You Do Want to Sell, Right? - 08/01/14 04:00 AM
Showing homes yesterday, I ran across a listing my clients wanted to see. The owner has had a homemade sign on the highway since the Korean War, so he obviously needs some help here.
I called about showing. The agent, who is excellent, told me it would probably be fine but she would check. She further explained that they would insist on being present for the showing, and not only would they not become invisible, they would follow us around on a guided tour with narration. She further said we would probably get stuck listening to them talk, so she suggested … (28 comments)

georgia: Disclosure Is Your Buddy - 07/13/14 04:13 AM

So often when I am doing the paperwork for a listing, the seller complains about filling out the disclosure statement. They whine because they are selling the property “as is”, so why do they have to disclose anything, which is the opposite of the point of disclosure. They ask me to fill out the form and let them sign it, which means if they don’t tell me the facts correctly, I’m the one in trouble because I filled it out. Or they reluctantly agree to fill it out and send it to me, and then somehow just forget to … (3 comments)

Ron Barnes, "Most agents claim they're #1 - I THINK YOU'RE #1! (Associate Broker at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Georgia Properties) Rainmaker large

Ron Barnes

"Most agents claim they're #1 - I THINK YOU'RE #1!

Jasper, GA

More about me…

Associate Broker at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Georgia Properties

Address: P.O. Box 1503, Jasper, GA , 30143

Mobile: (678) 520-6648

Fax: (678) 672-2990

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