Is White-Boxing Really the New Hot Market?

By
Real Estate Agent with DFW FINE PROPERTIES 0506509

by Patricia Feager, 7/3/2018

 

As written in realtor.com, "White-Boxing," is a new trend being promoted by a real estate agent at Coldwell Banker in Beverly Hills. I'm wondering if ActiveRain Member Endre Barath, Jr. knows anything about this concept for Luxury Home Buying? The premise is "White-Boxing," is the new alternative to staging and being marketed in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, and Brooklyn, NY as a blank canvas in "desirable locations." 

 

For years, staging a home has been an effective way to sell a home. However, I noticed the past several years while my area was in a Seller's Market, staging was rarely used because homes were going under contract so quickly, there wasn't a need to stage. Is it true? Is "White-Boxing," becoming a new trend for the luxury market? Perhaps, Ron and Alexandra Seigel could weigh in on this too. Also, has Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400 heard about this alternative in Long Island, NY? 

 

In my area, I can only see Investors buying "White-Boxing," in more prestigious areas where there is a home with a view. But those would be far and in between. Perhaps Lisa Von Domek would like to express her opinion, as well? I have had my share of luxury homes sold and even though none of the homes were dilapidated and run down, buyers did rip out and start over because money was no object. What are your thoughts? How would you market if "White-Boxing," took off in your area? I'd love to know!

 

Patricia Feager

 

 

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                                         Patricia Feager
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Rainmaker
3,013,643
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Good morning, Patricia... I see this as a very small "niche." And I don't see this taking off in my market any time soon... everyone wants a move-in ready, turn-key home... that's not quite what white-boxing seems to deliver.

Jul 13, 2018 04:57 AM #1
Rainmaker
3,200,399
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Patricia. Right outside my south balcony window is a 6 unit luxury condominium project using the "white-box" technique. Six months after completion these 4 bedroom, 4.5 bathroom luxury condominiums with 4,500 square feet of indoor space and a 1,500 square foot balcony priced in the 3 million plus range, five remain vacant and unsold. Working or not working, time is money!

Jul 13, 2018 05:01 AM #2
Rainmaker
1,978,836
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Wayne Martin - How interesting! Does the 6-unit luxury condominium have views of Lake Michigan? 

The home I lived in until I was 19 and parents owned until she passed was built in 1892. It had a view of the John Hancock Building. I was shocked to learn how much the investor bought it for several years ago and recently more than shocked when it recently sold a few months ago for more than double what the investor paid. As you say, "working or not, time is money!" 

Jul 13, 2018 05:16 AM #3
Rainmaker
1,978,836
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Nina Hollander - Outside of the luxury market, I'm finding buyers want turn-key, move in ready and if it doesn't have flooring, paint, or other features seen on reality TV, buyers are turning up the noses at it in regular neighborhoods. 

Jul 13, 2018 05:19 AM #4
Rainmaker
3,778,229
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning Patricia Feager,

I haven't had time to read this article..very interesting, thanks for bringing this up. I'm seeing buyers in Austin want turn key, move in ready. I have someone just make an offer on one of my listings and closing August 3rd. They need to get in asap and could never wait to have it customized. Even in the luxury market here.....not seeing white boxing......yet! LOL!!

Jul 13, 2018 05:28 AM #5
Rainmaker
1,978,836
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Dorie Dillard - I don't see it happening here in my neighborhood either. Move-in ready without any "honey-do's," seems to be the trend here too. I question how many first-time home buyers would know or want to know how to do cosmetic work. In my neighborhood, I'm one of the oldest ones here and one of the only ones who cuts her own grass. I see service people providing housekeeping duties and continuous home improvements for my neighbors daily. 

Jul 13, 2018 05:33 AM #6
Rainmaker
1,174,061
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

HI Patricia Feager - This is a great topic to get some diverse opinions. Nice job pointing it out.  I agree with Nina Hollander on this one. There is a very small market for the sophisticated buyer or investor. Most people want to see the staging to get ideas. Every home I have had staged that was sitting - sold within 2 weeks after it was staged.  

Jul 13, 2018 08:57 AM #7
Rainmaker
5,307,555
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

This concept is all new for me.

Maybe someone will share some success stories. 

Jul 13, 2018 09:02 AM #8
Rainmaker
5,307,555
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Will this image be appealing to home buyers?

white-boxing

Jul 13, 2018 09:05 AM #9
Rainmaker
2,478,872
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Hmm, this is the first that I have heard of it, but perhaps it is like buying a brand new home, as one would get to choose their own features and such.

Jul 13, 2018 10:27 AM #10
Rainmaker
3,140,727
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Home and Condo Specialists

Thanks for the mention. While it may might sense to some, I'm not seeing it here on Long Island Patricia. The buyers we have been working with want to see luxury Real Estate at it's best. Move in ready and updated is what they want...

Jul 13, 2018 01:14 PM #11
Ambassador
3,760,784
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Patricia this is the first time I am hearing about "White Boxing" and my initial impression is that I am not a fan of it.

Jul 13, 2018 01:40 PM #12
Rainmaker
4,354,775
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Patricia,

I have not read that article nor do I know what the heck that means.  Could you please add a link.  We happen to be aware of the top agents int the luxury end at Coldwell Banker in Beverly Hills...and I have a top agent that sold our home and became great friends.  I can always ask her.  

A

Jul 13, 2018 08:09 PM #13
Rainmaker
4,354,775
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Patricia,

On second thought, this sound like some PR story that was planted to aggrandize this agent...It is done quite often in many arenas.  A

Jul 13, 2018 08:11 PM #14
Rainmaker
1,978,836
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Ron and Alexandra Seigel - I included the link in the first sentence under "White-Boxing." I just checked again, and the link works for me. If you don't get it, let me know.

Jul 13, 2018 08:12 PM #15
Rainmaker
1,518,392
Amanda S. Davidson
Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty - Ashburn, VA
Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale

Patricia, I am not seeing it in Kingstowne but, have heard from agents that work in the luxury segment of the Great Falls/Mclean area (about 25 minutes from where I am) that it's been popular. I think that unless buyers have the time and the money to wait it's not going to be the first choice. So far here it's all about turn key and how fast can I get in!

Jul 14, 2018 05:22 AM #16
Rainmaker
1,978,836
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Amanda S. Davidson - thanks for your input! Perhaps you hit the nail on the head, "unless buyers have the time and the money to wait." I have had buyers wanting to buy new construction and for what it costs, unexpected expenses, the time it takes to build, and not getting the size lot, a view, or something great with the new construction, I can understand why it may be a great alternative to buy a home with good bones, and start from scratch to design everything you want, and to have those extras that may not be available with new construction.

Again, another point, well taken, "it's all about turn key and how fast can I get in!"

Thanks, Amanda, that helps a lot!!!

Jul 14, 2018 05:38 AM #17
Rainmaker
4,354,775
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Patricia,

Now that I see the article, it definitely is a PR piece.  The agent is a top agent and has an incredibly impressive record...and a PR agent as well she should...and I would not be surprised if the other agents mentioned have the same PR agent.

As for the theory, it is how we bought our home in Los Angeles.  We have always looked past the staging, and I have seen some pretty elaborate staging in sub standard homes...we looked for the bones.  We also have always factored replacement cost vs asking price...I am not sure there are that many wanting to do that these days, but I will ask our biggest producing client.  A

Jul 14, 2018 02:27 PM #18
Ambassador
3,229,867
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

No, I've never heard of it but, have had some high-end buyers who walk into a home and begin talking, 'ripping out' the minute they walk in! As you mentioned, money is no object to them and they don't have to move right in so, there is no sense of urgency on their part. 

That is a small segment in our market though and not one that I would ever want to call a niche - I would have little to no business if I did! LOL

Thanks for sharing, Patricia!

Jul 14, 2018 02:54 PM #19
Rainmaker
2,494,851
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I have not heard of the term, "White Boxing."  I've been sitting here reading what others have said, to become more enlightened.

Jul 16, 2018 01:58 AM #20
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