client protection: Q is for Quit Claim - 09/07/07 06:08 AM
Let me preface this by stating I am NOT a lawyer, I don't play one on TV, and I don't dispense legal advice.  If you need specific legal advice, you need to talk to a lawyer, not a real estate agent.
A Quit Claim Deed is kind of an anomaly in the world of deeds.  Other deed transfers convey ownership of something to someone else.  When propert is conveted with a General Warranty Deed, Executor's Deed, Foreclosure Deed, or Special Warranty Deed, these say that a person that has control and the capability to sell a property.
But, with a Quit … (9 comments)

client protection: P is for Pictures - 09/06/07 07:16 AM
If your listing doesn't have good pics, you'd better make it REALLY cheap.  REALLY, REALLY cheap. 
84% of buyers these days start their search online.  They aren't looking for prose.  They want pictures.  They want lots of pictures and they want those pictures to be good.  If there aren't good pictures from good angles that are lit in a manner to let them see the features they want to see, they move on.  
Here in the Atlanta market, there are more than 100,000 homes for sale.  Obviously these homes are in a variety of price ranges, and locations.  They feature … (5 comments)

client protection: I is for Inspection - 09/01/07 05:25 AM
This is going to be about the shortest post I've ever written...
Get a home inspection.   Don't bring over Dad, or Uncle Buck, or even Cousin Vinny thinking that they can do just as good of a job.  Even if they have the skills, if they aren't a certified home inspector, their results won't be seriously considered.  If they are certified, they probably aren't arm's length from the transaction.  (this means they are involved beyond the scope of what they are hired to do).  Also, in most cases one shouldn't use and inspector that also performs the work.  Some of … (0 comments)

client protection: E is for Ethics - 08/31/07 01:50 AM
As if it is an oddity, I'm going to step out on a limb, and make a couple of strong statements... then we'll see if I can back then up.  The first statement is:
At the core, ethics are a fixed behavior.
I do believe that ethics are learned, but I think that they are learned young.  We could have a whole Nature vs. Nurture argument here, but the main point isn't much different.  By the time someone is old enough to get their real estate license, their ethics are fairly fixed.  Of course, I do think that people can change, … (1 comments)

client protection: D is for Due Diligence - 08/29/07 08:48 AM
Welcome to part four of my A-Z journey through real estate.  Of course, this isn't a definitive glossary of real estate terminology, techniques, strategies or idea, but rather just a few answers to questions.  Of course, for every question that gets answered, at least one new question is raised.  I guess that makes it like most everything else.  
Which brings me right back to Due Diligence.  Simply put, Due Diligence is the process of gathering needed information about a property.  Some of the information is volunteered, for instance the Seller's Disclosure.  Here in GA, the sellers are required to disclose … (0 comments)

client protection: C is for Contingency - 08/28/07 03:28 PM
A contingency is simply a condition that must be satisfied in order for the contract to execute. 
In real estate, there are several common contingencies, as well as a gazillion uncommon ones.  In this post, we are only going to go over a few common contingencies.  As I said previously, a contingency is a condition that must be satisfied for the contract to execute.  In math, it would be an "If/Then."  If the contingency is satisfied, then the contract moves forward. 
The most common contingency we see is an inspection contingency, or a variation.  Here in Georgia, there are three different … (4 comments)

client protection: B is for Buyer's Agent - 08/27/07 03:05 PM
Simply put, a buyer's agent is the agent that work for the buyer in a real estate transaction. 
More importantly (for now anyway) let's talk about what a buyer's agent is not:
The nice agent a buyer works with from the new home community. The helpful agent that has listed the property (unless there is a dual agency agreement). In both of the above instances, the agent may be a great person, but they are working specifically for the seller.  Their job is to protect the best interests of the seller.  They are required to be deal honestly with the customer … (1 comments)

client protection: What does being a REALTOR(R) really mean? - 08/20/07 09:24 AM
This post has been floating around in my head for quite a while... if you read my blog regularly, you might have noticed that I've been dancing around this for more than a month.  While my son is still groggy from his nap, and content with The Backyardigans, I'll see if I can toss out my dime...
We should all be well aware that a REALTOR(R) is a member of the National Association of REALTORS(R).  I say should, because I occasionally see posts where real estate agent and REALTOR(R) (with or without the (R) at the end) are used interchangeably... by … (10 comments)

client protection: Is NAR's "non-poaching" ethic actually bad for clients? - 08/19/07 04:53 AM
I was reading Scott Daniels' blog, "It's Saturday, we can't run around for a key!".  It got me thinking about something... Always a dangerous proposition.
For those of us that are REALTORS(R), we are prevented from directly marketing to other REALTORS'(R) clients.  I understand the why of this policy.  But, it is hard sometimes.  I mentioned in this post that I regularly wander by a new development that is not being promoted by the listing agent.  Of course, I didn't point out the agent or the listing, since I don't think it is right... or ethical according to the current standards. … (12 comments)

client protection: Closing Firms facing tough choices - 08/17/07 02:03 AM
One of my lawyer friends forwarded a story to me yesterday.  He isn't involved in real estate law, but thought I might like to know what was going on.  I won't copy the whole article here, but unfortunately I can't find it online in a format that doesn't require a subscription. 
JPMorgan Chase, stopped financing the company around the end of July, HomeBanc could no longer provide funds on the mortgages it had sold. That caused a big problem for some lawyers: HomeBanc had already issued checks to these lawyers, who then disbursed the money to sellers, real estate agents, … (3 comments)

client protection: I can't say... - 08/11/07 05:50 AM
I know you've been asked a question about a particular area that you just couldn't answer.  Ok, you could answer, but at the peril of losing your license.  You know the questions.
Here is another tool in the arsenal to give to clients to find out before moving what the pitfalls and pluses are regarding specific areas. 
I've found that it is better than a lot of other forums.  Of course there are people on there that are alarmists or apologists, just like any other member driven media, but if your clients are able to look past the extremists, they … (2 comments)

client protection: Are there just too many real estate agents? - 08/02/07 09:52 AM
OK, stick with me here for a few minutes.  I think this is becoming a more valid question.  Looking at the most recent numbers I could find in a quick internet search, I found that there were over 1.3 million REALTORs (as of November 2006), and that doesn't count the ones that aren't NAR members. 
And, those agents averaged 12 sides per year. Link to source here.  Their average income was about $49,000.  I chose this source for this, since it didn't normalize for a mythical 40 hour week.  In reading a little background, I ran across a NAR paper that … (6 comments)

client protection: Hello, Media... Are You Listening? Real Estate is LOCAL. - 07/25/07 08:12 AM
How many times do we have to hear that the housing market is doing one thing... and that must mean that the whole market is doing the same thing? 
When the price of a barrel of oil goes up, it is a singular commodity moving.  While there are different grades of oil (sweet light crude, heavy crude, rough crude, etc.) they are interconnected.  If one moves, they all move because their value is interconnected.  
When prices move up or down in GA, there is little correlation to prices in Maine.  They aren't interconnected.  There may be a few instances when … (7 comments)

client protection: What is a RE license really worth? - 07/24/07 11:42 AM
I alluded to this here, but didn't really jump into it.  There is another part of the story though...
Let's recap.  I said in the previous post that I thought that real estate licensing requirements (from the state) should be relaxed or eliminated.  Pretty bold, huh?  Here is what I think the exam should look like.
1.  Are you breathing? Y N (if yes, provide proof)
2.  Are you a convicted felon?  Y N (if no, please provide proof)
3.  Are you a citizen or legal resident alien that is allowed to work?  Y N (if yes, please provide proof)

client protection: Maybe it's time to bury dual agency - 07/24/07 10:52 AM
First, let me say that I work for a brokerage that does NOT allow dual agency, but does allow designated agency.
Second, let me say that I work in a state which does allow dual agency, if it is disclosed on the contract to all parties. 
But, as I look at the landscape, I see something I don't like.  I don't like the idea of dual agency.  And, further, I think it is time that the NAR step up and stop the practice among its members.  I don't want to see the government take the lead, and I don't want … (8 comments)

client protection: The Dirty Little Secret that the FSBO Companies won't tell you. - 07/24/07 01:56 AM
I keep seeing and hearing about "dirty little secrets" that real estate agents won't tell their clients.  Most of them turn out to be pretty stupid points.  However, today while going through my morning routine (dead-heading, so my brain needed something to do) I thought of the dirty little secret that FSBO companies don't tell their customers.  We all know what it is, but many of us just might have never thought of it this way.
They don't care if you sell your house using their service.
That's it.  It doesn't affect their business plan if you sell or don't sell … (24 comments)

client protection: What is going to happen to interest rates? - 07/23/07 06:26 AM
OK, the water is chest deep now.  I started wading in here, and I just don't know when to stop. 
So, what do I see happening with interest rates?  Overall, I see them going down.  But, I think they'll go up first.  Was that vague enough that I can claim victory no matter what?  
First, the case for rate rising.  In the short term, I see rates going up a bit.  Not a lot, but somewhat.  We won't even get close to the credit card looking rates that Jimmy Carter left the mortgage market with, but rather people will think … (2 comments)

client protection: Are we on the edge of a calamitous housing bubble? - 07/23/07 06:05 AM
Boy, am I going to wade into it this time...
I was wandering through the FOXNews Real Estate section, and came across this feature story.  Reading this, one would think we were seriously in trouble.  "... from San Francisco to San Diego — is predicted to decline 50% in the next five years."  The story goes on to say "... that America's top 40 cities are facing a average 47.2% decline: Boston is 49.4%. Miami 44.8%. New York 44.6%. And Chicago is 27.3% overpriced."
I'm wondering about here in Atlanta.  I'll be going out to get a look at the book, … (6 comments)

client protection: Pictures are the first (and maybe last) impression you will give a buyer - 07/19/07 03:04 AM
So, don't screw it up. 
Do you feel like you should rush out and buy this house?

This particular house isn't listed with an agent (to my knowledge), but is FSBO.  But, this is the foot they are putting forward to try to get a buyer.  Unfortunately, I have run across NUMEROUS examples that were as bad, or worse, that WERE listed with agents.
In some other cases, there are problems when moving away from native resolution.

Normally, when one clicks on the picture, a full sized image pops up.  In this case, it doesn't.  
Make sure … (9 comments)

client protection: Customer dis-service Pt. II - 07/18/07 10:05 AM
Here is the other one...
There is some infill near where I live.  There are some VERY nice houses being built in the $500k-$600k range.  A couple of these were finished late last year.  Now, the builder is building a small subdivision (I think it will be about 10-12 houses) next door.  The first two houses haven't sold yet, and the new ones are coming along nicely.  
All good so far...  Now the not so good.  
The two completed houses have grass.  Weedy, uncut grass.  No other landscaping.  No pinestraw.  No mulch.  Nothing.  Just weedy, uncut grass and a few … (0 comments)

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Lane Bailey

Realtor & Car Guy

Suwanee, GA

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