Ramblings of a Real Estate Agent
I don't know about other agents, but I'm exhausted just trying to keep my sellers informed and on track. The reality checks have been grueling. There was a ray of sunlight last week when one of my sellers accepted an offer that was about $50,000 below initial asking price. They sat back and looked at the bigger picture and determined that for every month they had been in their home, they had experienced a $1,000 appreciation! Wow, I'm determined to use that in my business when I need to from now on. Now, they're the happiest clients that I have and they'll get to go on knowing that their home will be appreciated by the new owners. The fact that they were at home when it was shown and they felt comfortable with them (buyers) didn't hurt either.
Note to Sellers: During the past few years when values were increasing rapidly, it's important to keep in mind that most of that appreciation was artificial - on paper only. You purchase a home for shelter and for long term investment. If you have been in your home more than 6 years, please sit down and note your purchase price and then your current estimated value. Unless you used your equity for other reasons with an equity line of credit or a 2nd mortgage or refinanced and took money out, you should see that you have experienced a perfectly acceptable rate of appreciation. You can't lose what you never had! So get real with your pricing and let your Realtor do the job they were hired to do.
You may have been one of the lucky homeowners who did sell when the market values were high - but you also paid more for your replacement home than you would today.
There are, regrettably, those of you who got caught up in the whirlwind of home values and now you owe more for your home than you can sell it for today. You used your "artificial" equity and now you're stuck. Perhaps you just purchased within the past 3 years and now you need to sell but can't get what you owe because your loan was close to or even 100% of the appraised value. You have the option of asking for a "short sale" from your lender if your situation poses a hardship. This would be preferable to foreclosure. I feel sorry for you, but your choices are limited.
Hey, I can't retire next year as expected and I'm certainly not alone there. I feel a little better now.