Blog Topic #2 “Going Through Changes”

Real Estate Technology with ActiveRain

Being part of such a  great network we have a wonderful opportunity to learn from each other’s experiences.  Today with the market in a unique transition we are facing many  changes and challenges.

I’d like to hear what is changing in your neck of the woods.  What are the new challenges you’ve been facing over the last few months?  What’s better now and why?  What do you see going forward?

I’m looking forward to your posts.

Thank you,

-Caleb Mardini 

Please use the following tags on your blog post as it will allow us easily categorize the blog posts on this Blog Topic:

Blog Topic #2, Changes, Local Market 

Please comment on this post if you have any feedback on this idea, or have a suggestion for a future blog topic.

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Melissa Stewart
Coldwell Banker Elite - King George, VA
Your King George Realtor!

I'm in VA, 45 minutes south of DC and we are close to dead. I have 17 listings, 6 have been listed for 90 days, usually sold within a week to 30 days max, one house was bought for investment purposes only, new construction, and my client is about to loose $100K, and that is only if I can sell it, we are still not getting any bites at the reduced price!!!!  I'm miserable.  On the otherhand, $250K and below here is rocking, I have 4 closings and all 4 are buyers $250 and under!

 Have a good weekend!



Jul 21, 2006 01:57 PM #3
Kris Ontiveros
Team Ontiveros - Phoenix, AZ
The Phoenix has slowed in pockets. Under 200K is still selling in 45 days or less. Homes in newer subdivisions are just sitting. Some neighborhoods have homes sitting for 4+ months. The market isn't as bad as the newspapers are saying though. Even if our homes go down 10%, we will still be up 35% over 2 years on average. Not bad. 
Jul 28, 2006 06:54 AM #4
Dawn Shaffer Life is good!
Battle Ground, WA

Last year's pace has slowed, and we are experiencing a buyer's market here in Vancouver, WA. Agents need better marketing tools to reach greater markets and assure their clients they're doing everything to reach potential buyers.

*Bows* .. at your service, we provide the only complete walk-through virtual tour in Clark County.

Aug 19, 2006 06:33 AM #6
Brian Brady
San Diego VA Home Loans/858-777-9751 - San Diego, CA

San Diego has benn in a 9 month correection; sales have slowed down tremendously while homes sit on the market for close to 90 days or more.

There were 13,000 listings in July with 2500 transactions...WOW!   That means that homes could sit on the market for six months or more...unprecedented in the 2000s.  

There is a bright beacon of light shining as rates fall; affoedabilty should get better.  San diego is still one of the most desired places to live in the country so we should weatherthis thing okay if our unemployment stays at 3% 


Aug 26, 2006 05:31 PM #7
Michael Thompson
CENTURY 21 Anderson Properties, Inc. - Anderson, SC

Blog Topic #2, Changes, Local Market 

The market in Anderson, SC is great! We are two hours north of Atlanta, GA on I-85 and about 2 hours south of Charlotte, NC on I-85.

Anderson has something for everyone. If you are into investment property, there are plenty of mill houses and older homes to buy and to renovate. If you are looking for a starter home, plenty of homes in the $85K to $250. If you want waterfront property, you can get it for $500K and up. There are lots of Floridians and northerners looking to re-locate to this area. Lots of new construction also.

The job market is looking great too. Wal-Greens will be opening a new distribution center next year. It will begin with about 800 new jobs in the area. Several companies are re-locating here also.



Aug 28, 2006 04:07 AM #8
Jim Graham - REALTOR - Sumter and Shaw AFB real estate
Prudential John M. Brabham Real Estate - Sumter, SC

The market here in Sumter SC is still going strong!! Plenty of folks from Florida and the North East are making contact and searching for thier next home here.

We are centrally located from just about anything you would want to do, Beach, mountains, Charlotte NC are with in 2 hours of us. Golf galore!! wonderful weather. Check us out!!

Aug 28, 2006 06:38 AM #9
Michael Trust
Michael Trust Realty - Encino, CA

Blog Topic #2, Changes. Local Market 

In my market,  in the greater Los Angeles area, we're facing a number of challenges. One challenge is that in most areas, prices are continuing to increase, albeit at a much, much slower pace than in the recent past.

The result is that our home affordability index is still dropping such that very few people can afford to purchase a median priced home. Couple that with our large geographic area and out of control gas prices (we have a "special" gas in CA) and many people are not willing to pay a high price and commute. We have seen foreclosure activity start to increase a bit, and of course, there are always those out there who think they are going to find a "bargain" with a foreclosure... isn't going to happen. Not now. Maybe in the future.

We also have the challenge of a good number of unlicensed people attempting to portray themselves as real estate agents or loan agents. This creates real problems because no one wants a deal to fall through, but no one wants to go to jail, either. So, the licensed agent ends up doing a lot of the work. Invariably, a licensed agent will "sign" the deal "officially", but the person doing the actual work isn't licensed. This creates all sorts of problems and takes a lot of time. I know I'm not going to sit and argue with someone who doesn't even have a license.

The good news is that a good number of "wanna be" and "part-time" agents will probably start to leave our market shortly. It's already happening. Can't happen fast enough. That will allow the rest of us to focus on providing great service to our clients and to work with other agents who generally care about doing a good job (not implying that all part-time agents don't do a good job... just a lot of them).

I also wonder what will happen to the so-called "discount brokers" now that it really does take marketing to sell homes. The business model can't survive in a profitable way by lowballing charges. Certainly, any homeowner or buyer has the ability and the right to negotiate any fee, but at some point, a broker has to say what their floor price is. It will be interesting.

Our inventory is up in my main area by about 300%. Many sellers still don't "get it" about how the market has changed (mine do because I educate them). It will be an interesting few more months. A lot of what happens will also depend on what happens with gas prices and with interest rates.

Aug 28, 2006 01:35 PM #10
Michaela Chincisan
EnjoyDecor, Professional Home Staging&Interior Design - Richmond Hill, ON

After reading the comments above, as a Professional Home Stager & Interior Decorator I have a question to address to all Real Esate Agents:is Home Staging REALY a tool that's needed in a competitve market place? Wiil you consider it as a realistic help in your business?

Will you hire a professional to do the job for you or you consider it's  good enough if the property owner will do some fix-up for presentation ?In otherword, do you believe in Professional Home Staging?

Oct 14, 2006 12:48 PM #11
Allison Stewart
St.Cloud Homes - Saint Cloud, FL
St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904

Central Florida  reporting in....

There is activity in the 200K and down market, previously starved of listings. Less activity in the 250K+ range however.

It is not uncommon to see homes on themarket in excess of 100-200 days now. In 2005 there were 1200 avialble homes in Osceola County. The number today is close to 6000.

Conversely, Sales declined due to finanacing restrictions, and loans becoming harder to obtain.

Seller mentality:  I am not going to give it away.

Buyers mentality: Let's wait and see if the price goes lower.

Appears to be a stand off.  Few have lived in their homes long enough to realize a 20% gain per year is a good return.

House Flipping has come to a grinding stop- which is good for first time home buyers who are finally back in the market.

Apprehension abounds and uncertainy clouds more closings than listings.

What's your opinion?



Oct 16, 2006 03:55 AM #12
Dawn Shaffer Life is good!
Battle Ground, WA

I had to sign in and say a huge WELCOME to Allison. Your post was crystal clear...I hope you love us as much as we already do you!

I then went to your page and read "all about YOU." :)) Your reasons for getting into real estate are our exact reasons for getting into the virtual tour industry .. we couldn't get a "good one."

We're on the same page, m'girl. Keep on bloggin' :))

Oct 16, 2006 10:26 AM #13
Michael Trust

Here in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, we have about 6,700 homes for sale (SFR/Condo/TH); last year at this time we had as I recall about 400 or so. Pretty scary. Sellers here, for the most part, still think it's 2005. Our price appreciation in our local MLS is about .8% to about 1.6% - still going up, albeit at a much slower rate (last year would be in the high teens probably). Buyers seem to be a bit more interested, which is nice. :-)

Michael Trust

Encino, CA

Oct 16, 2006 12:50 PM #14
Mitch Young
Chartwell Realty - Lee's Summit, MO
In the Kansas City market we are seeing homes on the market longer and buyers are in demand. The offers we see coming in are low and financing seems like a problem. I think that it is a great market for buyers. Listings are easier to get as FSBO's can't get the job done at all. They really are in need of professional marketing. Good chance to show our value!
Oct 21, 2006 10:59 AM #15
Liz Lytle
Prudential FL WCI Realty - Coral Springs, FL

There have been definite changes to the southeast Florida coast market. In Ft. Lauderdale and the surrounding suburbs there are thousands of homes for sale. We now see homes on the market for 6 months or longer and very few sales. We have a combination of higher priced homes, property taxes that are out of sight and insurace premiums that have risen to the outer limits (due to all the hurricanes hitting Florida in 2004 and 2005). It's a tough market needless to say, but this too shall pass.

If you stay positive and stay focused and be willing to market your properties with new and different strategies you will be successful. Think outside the box!


Nov 29, 2006 10:51 AM #16
Michael Trust

What different strategies are you using?


Michael Trust

Nov 29, 2006 11:10 AM #17
Mitch Young
In Kansas City, we have been offering incentives such as the seller offering gift certificates to furniture stores, down payment and closing costs, even cars. We also have been doing buydowns on interest rates. Listings have gone months without showings if not priced right. The main problem is sellers are convinced that it's 2005 marketwise. We have been telling them the brutal truth...
Nov 29, 2006 11:16 PM #18
Michael Trust
Michael Trust Realty - Encino, CA

We're having the same issue here in Los Angeles with sellers who just don't get it - that the market has drastically changed. The days of unbridled greed are over. :-) We are seeing buyers emerge, albiet very slowly, now, and hopefully, that trend will continue into the new year. But, overpriced listings will just sit. And sit. Many sellers here, too, are offering buy downs, closing costs, etc. I don't know of anyone offering cars yet on a "regular" listing (e.g.: not a very high end listing)...

Michael Trust

Nov 30, 2006 12:38 AM #19
Liz Lytle

In South Florida sellers are beginning to face the reality of the market. Last week a seller advertised his property in one of the newspapers. He was offering a Corvette as an incentive if the buyer paid the seller's asking price. The house is still for sale.

My opinion is that price is the ultimate key to success and that's what I constantly tell my clients. If they want to sell their house they need to be realistic.

One of my sellers is offering $10,000 concessions towards closing costs just to sell the property. It's priced right. I hope we have success soon.

Nov 30, 2006 12:56 AM #20
Katrina M. Carter
RE/MAX Accord - San Ramon, CA

Here in the SF/East Bay Area, the market definitely began a major correction beginning late June.  However, it seems as though people sat around the dinner table on Thanksgiving and said "We better buy property before the year ends".  When talking with other associates in my office, we have all seen a dramatic rise in activity in our listings and properties that have had no activity for 60-90 days all of the sudden are receiving multiple offers.

Interesting isn't it!

Katrina M. Carter,

Oakland, CA

Dec 11, 2006 04:04 AM #21
Caleb Mardini
Bellevue, WA
Katrina,  That is interesting!  Thanks for the update.
Dec 11, 2006 04:19 AM #22
Michael Trust

Down here in the San Fernando Valley part of Los Angeles, we're seeing some slight uptick in buyers and listings moving - but certainly far more listings are coming on the market and are sitting. Price is one factor, but not the only factor. I think the media down here is still hyping a "bubble" and that's scaring people.

 Michael Trust

Dec 11, 2006 05:11 AM #23
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