Your agent is the reason why your Pacific Beach condo didn't sell

Commercial Real Estate Agent with Matthews Capital Markets NMLS 2415712

Jill was a good client of mine.  I funded an FHA loan for her when she bought her condo back in 2010.  She was sitting on $100,000 in profit in just five years.  Her original real estate agent left the business so she found an agent who advertised on Zillow  (Jill is pretty tech savvy).  She listed the property with this agent instead of calling me for advice.  The condo didn't sell, Jill called me to ask why, and I had to tell her the truth:

"Your agent was the reason why your condo didn't sell, Jill"

I told Jill of the tale of two real estate agents:  Barbara and Mike. 

Mike listed lots of properties...LOTS of them.  He was constantly on listing appointments, advertised those listings heavily online, and had things down to a "system".  His signs were all over her heighborhood and each listing was prominently displayed on his website;  he was a tech savvy property seller's dream agent...BUT...

Mike didn't know a darned thing about condos and condo loans.  Thus, Mike was always presenting offers which Jill had to decline because Mike assumed that, because the condo didn't have an FHA or VA approval, only cash or conventional offers would be funded.  Naturally, Jill was shown a lot of "low-ball, all cash" offers from investors and Mike told Jill "I guess the market has shifted".  Jill's $100,000 profit looked more like $50,000 when Mike was finished presenting the offers.  Naturally, Jill declined those offers and the listing eventually expired.

I had Jill speak with my friend Barbara, an agent who worked condo listings all over town.  Barbara spent a good bit of time with me after I funded a loan for one of her VA buyers (way back in 2009).  Since then, Barbara has done one thing...just one thing..which helped her take less listings but sell each and every condo listing she DID take, for full price.

Barbara insisted that the seller order the condo docs before it went into the MLS.

Barbara explained to her sellers that they would eventually have to order those condo docs when they were in escrow.  Unlike Mike, who "shotgunned" his listings approach by saying "don't pay for them before you have a contract",  Barbara explained that the couple of hundred bucks investment (in the condo docs), could add tens of thousands to the sales price, if the property qualified for FHA or VA financing.  Barbara would order those docs immedialtely and send them over to me.  I would take one look at them and say one of three things:

1- Barbara, I can get that complex both FHA and VA-approved
2- Barbara, I can get the complex VA-approved but you'll only be able to accept 20% down conventional, VA, or cash offers.
3- Barbara, that complex will only work for 20% down conventional loans and cash

Armed with that information, Barbara entered this into the marketing remarks on the MLS:

"Property may be eligible for VA or FHA financing.  Approvals pending through World Wide Credit Corp.  Call them at 858-777-9751 for cross approval"

Barbara explained to clients that that representation attracted twice as many buyers to her listings and justified charging a "premium" price--that meant more profit for her clients.  You know how the story ends...

Jill listed with Barbara, we ordered those HOA docs, and Jill sold the property to an FHA buyer...for a price which was much closer to what she wanted than the offers she received when Mike had the property listed.

Wanna be like Barbara?  Call me today at 858-777-9751.  We'll grab a cup of coffee and I'll break it all down for you.

Comments (8)

Vera Gonzalez
RE/MAX Suburban, Inc. - Sterling Heights, MI
Gonzo For Real Estate

Great blog Brian Brady . This is why interviewing the agent is important. 

Nov 05, 2015 03:17 AM
Dan Hopper
Dan Hopper - Gold Way RE - Westminster, CO
Colorado Broker / Referral Services

  , always lay the ground work up front on condos / townhouses, prior to listing them.  The proper information in the MLS can make a difference in getting the right broker and buyer to them... good topic!

Nov 05, 2015 03:18 AM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Prop. Mgr, Wenatchee, WA

Nice blog post, Brian Brady .  Enlarging the buyer pool is so important!  

Nov 05, 2015 03:48 AM
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Eighteen Years Experience in Brevard County

Excellent post.  It pays more to be the informed agent than the one with all the listings who is marketing signs only!

Nov 05, 2015 03:53 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

Brian Brady Good to see you are back in the 'Rain - your post is a great example of agents needing to stick to their specialties!

Nov 05, 2015 05:25 AM
Colleen Fischesser Northwest Property Shop
NextHome Experience - Chelan, WA
A Tradition of Trust in the Pacific NW since 1990!

Hmmm, ok, why have I never thought of this? I do my homework and always get as much info as I can upfront from the HOA manager before listing a condo, but from a buyer's agent's perspective, it can be a nightmare when working w/ agents like "Mike". Good stuff. Learned something today, thanks Brian.

Nov 05, 2015 08:11 AM
Ralph Gorgoglione
Maui Life Homes / Metro Life Homes - Kihei, HI
Hawaii and California Real Estate (310) 497-9407

You SEE!!  Dealing with experienced professionals gets the job done, and gets you a premium!

Nov 05, 2015 08:12 AM
Mitchell J Hall
Manhattan, NY
Lic Associate RE Broker - Manhattan & Brooklyn

Yup! There's a lot more to selling a condo (and coops too - even more difficult) than just pricing it and entering the data into MLS. As soon as I get the listing I get a trusted loan officer on board and get them all the docs needed to get the building approved.

Nov 06, 2015 12:39 AM