atlanta: Atlanta Condo Bidding Wars - 04/14/14 01:12 AM
I listed a condo at the Museum Tower Building a few weeks ago and we ended up with a bidding war.
3 recent comparables suggested that an appraisal might come in at around $125,000.  We ended up with 5 offers all above our list price of $139,000.  We accepted an all cash offer of $145,000 so we didn't have to worry about any appraisal issues.
The Museum Tower is in a really great location.  It's at the northeast corner of Centennial Olympic Park, right across the street from The World of Coke and the Georgia Aquarium.
The inventory for condos is … (1 comments)

atlanta: Using "HAPPEN" to Make Real Estate Deals Happen - 02/07/13 12:22 AM
In previous posts I went over "tough guy" vs. "nice guy" negotiators and how I have found that the "nice guy" approach, if done correctly,  can be far more effective when negotiating residential real estate.
I also had a post about what I call "The Art of the Email Deal". How I use email to position my buyer and set a positive tone for the negotiations.
In this post I want to bring those two together. I'll show you how I positioned my buyer in order to get a home that was listed for $965,000 for only $579,000, on the first counter offer!
In my negotiations, I find … (3 comments)

atlanta: The "Tough Guy" Negotiator. Is It Effective? - 02/04/13 11:07 PM
I have the feeling that many people have an incorrect vision in their heads of what  a successful negotiator is like.  When I started in real estate in 1999, I thought that my role model should be someone who  I perceived Donald Trump to be like.  People seemed to want an agent who was hardnosed, demanding, ruthless.  Someone who would fight for them. They seem to think they need some kind of "tough guy" negotiator going to battle for them.  I just wish that it would be as easy as fighting and beating the other side into submission. 
The reality is that no one can force … (8 comments)

atlanta: Comparing Crime Stats for Atlanta, Dallas and Austin - 08/10/12 07:50 AM
I am working with a buyer who is moving to the US and is trying to decide between Atlanta, Dallas and Austin.
One key concern is crime.  It seems that Atlanta is perceived as a high crime area.  I live in the Sandy Springs area which is just north of the city limits.  Crime isn't a huge concern in my day to day life.  But as usual, I like to do some research and let the numbers speak for themselves.
I found Money Magazine's "Best Places to Live".  They had a nice city comparison tool that had statitics about several quality … (1 comments)

atlanta: HUD Foreclosures in Atlanta. What Are Buyers Offering to Win the Bids? - 07/03/12 01:40 AM
I crunched the numbers so you wouldn't have to.  If you go to you can click "Bid Results" to get to accepted bids for properties that have gone under contract over the past 14 day.
The number that they show is the "net to HUD" which means that it's the number after deducting seller paid closing costs and real estate commissions.  I took that "net" number and added back a 6% real estate commission to come up with a projected offer price. 
My spreadsheet is below. 
HUD doesn't make it easy.  They don't provide the list price information and once … (2 comments)

atlanta: How Much Will a Bank Take for a Foreclosure in Atlanta? - 06/20/12 02:36 AM
I get asked this question a lot.  Many buyers are under the assumption that banks are stuck with a ton of homes and are taking 50 cents on the dollar.  I guess the first thing to define is what is "fifty cents on the dollar"?  If a home sold for $200,000 in 2007 and is now $100,000, is that what you mean?  Or is it when a bank foreclosure is listed at a current fair market price of $100,000 and you have dreams of getting it for $50,000, especially since you are buying with cash.
Everyone seems to have a friend … (2 comments)

atlanta: 12-12-3 Buyer Plan. See 24 Homes, Make 3 Offers - 12/13/11 02:03 AM
I'm sure you've heard of 9-9-9.  Herman Cain's catchy name for his tax proposal.
It inspired me to come up with a catchy name for what I've been doing for the 12 years I've been a buyer's agent.
I call my system the "12-12-3 Buyer Plan"
Quite simply, I want you to see 12 homes in three hours on day one. Then see another 12 homes in three hours on day 2. Then make 3 offers on your top three at the same time and let the sellers compete for your business.
It's Bold.  It allows you to be Decisive. It brings Clarity to … (7 comments)

atlanta: Atlanta Surveryor Still Charges Only $325. Most Readable Surveys I've Ever Seen - 12/08/11 03:06 AM
Since surveys aren't required by lenders anymore, I have difficulty trying to convince buyers of the importance of getting a survey.  It's been especially difficult in the past few years when most surveyors seem to be charging close to $500. 
I'm so excited about finding Brendan Blake of Blake Engineering and Land Surveying.
The quality of the surveys and the quick turnaround times are the real value.  I've seen so many surveys where it's almost impossible for anyone to decipher what they mean.  Brendan has everything spelled out and provides incredible details on the survey. 
He also does rush orders at … (3 comments)

atlanta: Local Unemployment Charts Around Atlanta. Some Markets Hit Hard - 12/10/10 12:51 PM
The housing market depends on the job market.  If people don't have jobs, they're not going to be able to pay their mortgage.  If they can't pay the mortgage you are going to see a lot of foreclosures.
So what areas around Atlanta are best for jobs and which ones have the most unemployment? 
The Georgia Department of Labor puts out monthly unemployment numbers.  I've always heard of the statewide number being reported in the press but I only recently found out that they actually keep data for more localized areas.  They not only have the data for the Atlanta MSA (Metropolitan … (1 comments)

atlanta: Case-Shiller Graph of the 20 Market Areas. Are Some Cities Bouncing Back Before Another Fall? - 09/28/10 03:08 PM
The Case-Shiller housing numbers came out today.  I updated my chart showing the twenty different market areas. 

I put in that purple line that represents the government's assessment of the rate of inflation.  In the long run, one would think that housing should keep up at least with the rate of inflation.  If it's too much above that rate, you might still be in a bubble scenario.  If it's less than that, it's reasonable to believe that your downside risk is less, if there isn't something special that is driving prices down.
So when I look at Atlanta, I see that … (0 comments)

atlanta: Atlanta Market Stats for Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Alpharetta, Roswell and Cumming - 09/28/10 07:39 AM
Here are my charts for the average price of homes in areas around Metro Atlanta.  These are updated with the August 2010 numbers that just came out.
These charts here are the 12 month moving averages weighted by sales volume.  For days on market and list/sales price ratios for all of the areas, go to my main website.
Prices in many areas around Atlanta have been flat for the past year.  A few areas are starting to see a little blip up in prices.  Some areas are still trending down.
Let's first start off with the area wide picture.  Prices seem to … (0 comments)

atlanta: What Is a Short Sale? The Difference Between a Foreclosure vs a Short Sale - 08/27/10 04:03 PM
I know. I know. Not another post about short sales.
If you are an agent, just click on by. Nothing new to see here.
If you  are a person who has never bought a home or if you haven't bought a home in a few years, you might not know what a short sale is. I didn't know about short sales until a few years ago.
"Short sale" is an oxymoron.  It takes a long time to get through a short sale transaction.  Three to six months is the norm.  I've heard of some taking over a year.
But a short sale … (3 comments)

atlanta: Short Sale Approved. Buyer Ready and Willing. Seller Decides She Wants to Keep Living Free for as Long as Possible. - 07/28/10 03:08 PM
I had a buyer ask me to check on the status of a home that was showing up as "Pending Sale".
I saw that it was a short sale that went under contract in April and the proposed closing date was at the end of May.  I figured that it was already closed but I called the listing agent just to make sure.
The listing agent told me that she had a super qualified buyer who was ready and willing to buy and she also had the short sale all approved by the seller's lender.  But the seller had gotten used … (6 comments)

atlanta: Foreclosure Deal in Sugarloaf Country Club Snapped Up. - 07/05/10 06:32 AM
I was looking over some foreclosure deals that closed this past week to examine the particulars.  It's always good to figure out what it took to get a good foreclosure deal.
Some buyers who just started the game might think that they are in the driver's seat and banks will take whatever they offer.  But the banks aren't the issue.  It's other competitive buyers.  What are others willing to bid on some of these foreclosures?
A beautiful foreclosed home in Sugarloaf Country club was listed: 
List price June 9th: $799,900Tax assessment value:  $1,364,100Sold in 2003 for $1,325,000
It sold and closed in 23 … (0 comments)

atlanta: S&P Case-Shiller Index Shows Atlanta Home Prices Still Scraping Bottom - 04/27/10 09:24 AM
The S&P Case-Shiller Index just came out with their latest numbers.  They are a few months back so this is for homes sold through February 2010. 
Atlanta is back to its lows that we saw back in February 2009.
The good thing is that Atlanta is almost back to where it was in the year 2000.  That's 10 years of no appreciation.  In order to just catch up with the government stated inflation rate, home prices would have to rise by about 25%.
Of all the 20 metro areas covered by Case-Shiller, only Detroit, Cleveland and Las Vegas have lower index … (0 comments)

atlanta: Atlanta Market Stats for December 2009 - 01/28/10 01:51 PM
The December stats came out from the FMLS.
I updated my ongoing chart with the new data.  The 12 month moving average for number of units inching up a bit but the average price is flat.  Maybe we're creating a solid bottom for prices.
These charts are for the entire metro Atlanta area for single family detached homes.
For charts for 30 more localized areas around Atlanta, go to my main site.
The latest Case-Shiller index didn't change much for Atlanta. As you can see, Atlanta is near the bottom of the list which means that housing is comparitively cheap … (0 comments)

atlanta: S&P/Case-Shiller Index. Chart Showing Atlanta vs. 20 Other Markets Along With Inflation - 01/12/10 12:01 AM
I think it's important to know how the Atlanta market has reacted in comparison to other markets around the country.
S&P/Case-Shiller  follows the price of homes in 20 market areas. These aren't average prices.  They supposedly have a huge set of homes that they follow throughout the years.  So it's supposed to follow the actual price changes of specific homes over the years.
The markets are equilibrated at the year 2000 at 100.  So a reading of 200 means that prices have doubled.  You also see how different market prices have changed relative to each other.
One line that I added … (4 comments)

atlanta: Quarter Inch of Snow Shuts Down Atlanta. My Kids Go Sledding Down the Driveway - 01/08/10 03:17 AM
It happens about once a year.  Atlanta gets an inch or two of snow and it shuts things down.
Last night we got a dusting of snow.  It was so little I really don't think you could measure it.  But the temperatures plunged into the teens immediately and it created a really thin layer of ice and froze the snow onto it. 
Atlanta doesn't have much snow removal equipment so once the roads ice up, you pretty much have to wait for Mother Nature to do most of the melting itself.
It gave my kids and I a chance to sled … (2 comments)

atlanta: How's the Atlanta Market? Depends on What Part of the County You Live In. - 12/31/09 09:16 AM
It really amazes me how different parts of Atlanta have fared in the last few years. 
In the middle of 2007 the real estate market in Atlanta finally began to take a hit.  In some areas the bottom seemed to drop out.  Other areas have held up reasonably well in comparison.
Below are market graphs for single family detached homes in various parts of the Atlanta metro area.
First the overall numbers that get reported in the local media.
Then I have comparisons for
North Fulton vs. South Fulton County. North DeKalb(Dunwoody)vs. South DeKalb(Stone Mountain), East Cobb vs. South Cobb and … (0 comments)

atlanta: Atlanta Real Estate Market Statistics for November 2009 - 12/31/09 08:34 AM
Below are the latest charts for the Atlanta real estate statistics.  They are for single family detached homes.
Average sales price Units sold Total days on the maket Sales price to original list price ratio Both raw numbers and 12 month moving averages for each stat. These numbers are from the entire FMLS area which covers a large portion of north Georgia.
For a more specific area, go to my site that has Atlanta real estate market statistics for 30 market areas around Atlanta.
From the 12 month moving averages, you can see that the number of units sold made a … (2 comments)

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Tim Maitski

Truth, Excellence and a Good Deal

Atlanta, GA

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Atlanta Communities Real Estate Brokerage

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