Your Listing Agent Won’t Buy Your Home!

If you’re considering selling your home, choosing the right listing agent is the most important decision you will make.

Listing with the wrong agent can be a very costly mistake when you’re selling your most valuable asset.

Over the years, I’ve seen many sellers list with a family member, part-time agent, brand-new agent, or an agent offering the lowest commission.

All of those choices can be costly for a seller.

But, the most serious mistake a seller can make is to list with the agent who promises the highest price.

In real estate, we call that “buying the listing” and it’s the oldest trick in the book.

Your listing agent isn’t going to buy your home and pay the high price they’re suggesting in order to get your listing!

Sellers who are eager to list their home above market value are easy prey for a listing agent who’s willing to tell a seller what they want to hear.

If you’re considering selling, we should talk before you list your home.

My past clients will confirm that working with me is like working with your own personal real estate consultant.

I’m plainspoken, highly-organized, and experienced.

No sales persuasion, no “closing the deal”, and no “overcoming objections”.

I simply provide honest advice and allow my clients to make their own informed decisions.

My 43 years’ real estate experience and thousands of delighted past clients are your assurance of good results.

I have avoided the team concept because I prefer to personally work with a few clients at a time and provide a very high level of responsive, competent service.

If you work with me, you will not be handed off to a junior team member who’s undergoing on-the-job training.

I answer my own phone (usually within a couple of rings), and I will work personally with you.

I have often joked that my business model allows me to conduct a staff meeting by talking to myself while driving on Eagle Road!

References are available upon request.

Sound interesting?

Give me a call at (208)938-5533 or e-mail me and let’s talk!

 

Choosing Your Agent: Friends & Family

When it comes to choosing your agent, it’s easy to feel obligated to use the services of an agent who’s a friend or family member.

Loyalty is important, but it’s usually not a good idea to let loyalty override choosing an experienced, competent, skilled agent to buy or sell a home.

That’s especially true if the friend or family member is new in real estate or a part-time agent with minimal experience.

There are multiple conflicts of interest that can arise when you entrust the success of the largest financial transaction of your life to a friend or family member.

When you work with a friend or family member, it’s very difficult for the agent to provide guidance for personal, confidential, financial decisions.

Conversely, it’s also challenging for the client to hold a friend or family member accountable for the level of service expected.

If you’re considering buying or selling a home and using the services of a friend or family member, your best response may be “I don’t think we should mix friendship (or family) with business because I want us to remain friends”.

 

When Your Home Floods

Home Flooding

Home Flooding

This has been an eventful week for me.

Over the past few days, I’ve learned more about what happens when a home floods than I ever wanted to know.  :-(

Monday morning, while eating breakfast, Jan started a load of laundry, then went out to do some yard work.

A few minutes later, she (fortunately) came back into the house from the garage and yelled “we have a problem!”

When I walked into the laundry room, I was standing in an inch of water in my stocking feet with water pouring out of our washing machine that wouldn’t shut off.

Then, I almost did something very stupid as I reached for the electrical plug to stop the overflowing washer that wouldn’t shut off.

Fortunately, for some unknown reason, I shut off the water flow valve instead.

That may be why I’m still around to write this.

I probably should’ve gone into the garage and shut off the main breaker for the entire house, but the thought didn’t occur to me at the moment.

My first call was to my State Farm agent, who then called CleanPro, his recommended emergency services contractor.

We quickly moved everything off the floors in the adjoining rooms and placed towels in a futile attempt to stop the water from flowing into adjoining areas.

CleanPro showed up within two hours, pumped the water out, removed the washer and dryer, removed water-soaked flooring, pulled back carpets, and installed high-capacity fans to begin the drying process.

It has taken five days, but the house is now dry and the carpets were reinstalled this morning.

The insurance adjustor was here for three hours yesterday and we’re now awaiting State Farm’s settlement offer.

It’s possible that we will differ on the approach to the needed repairs, which has created considerable anxiety.

The damages are likely to exceed $10,000 despite reacting to the problem within a matter of minutes.

Next comes selecting the contractor(s) to do the repair work, selecting new flooring materials, and enduring more disruption in our lives as those repairs are completed.

This will be very challenging with my busy real estate practice that’s mostly conducted from my home office.

The damaged hardwood floors will have to be replaced because I can’t move out of the house for several days during refinishing; not to mention the dust and inability to mix new replacement hardwood with existing aged hardwood.

We’ve already cancelled a planned first outing with our RV next week so we can focus on getting our home put back together.

While it wasn’t a factor in our flooding incident, we will never again start our washer or dishwasher and leave either of them unattended as we’ve done in the past.

 

Should You Replace Your Smoke Detectors?

Kidde Smoke Detector

I’ve seen a lot of confusing information about replacing smoke detectors over the past year or so.

Specifically, I’ve seen many articles stating that smoke detectors more than 10 years old could become unreliable and should be replaced.

Color me skeptical, but I wondered if this information was nothing more than clever marketing by the companies that sell smoke detectors.

So, I asked one of my home inspectors about it and he sent me an article with details about replacing smoke detectors.

That article said there was no conclusive proof that smoke detectors fail after 10 years, but it also stated that no one really knows how long the typical smoke detector will last.

To my amazement, the article also mentioned that the #1 reason for home fire deaths was disabled smoke detectors.

It seems that people apparently disable them to avoid listening to the dead battery warnings!  😯

Then, I went shopping at The Home Depot and Lowe’s and discovered that most newer smoke detectors have sealed lithium batteries that are guaranteed to last for 10 years.

That means (if they really do last for 10 years) that I should never again have to deal with a smoke detector screeching at 2:30 a.m. because the 9V battery has failed.

That did it for me.

I bought new smoke detectors and will have them installed this week.

I bought Kidde® hard-wired detectors with battery backup for $27.97 each.

You can also buy combination smoke detector/carbon monoxide detectors that cost a little more, but I already have a carbon monoxide detector and didn’t need that feature.

I’m looking forward to not having to change any more of those 9V batteries; especially the one that’s 16’ high at the top of my vaulted Great Room ceiling!

 

Canyon County Homes: What’s Selling

Here’s a breakdown of the 763 total year-to-date closed Canyon County Homes, broken out by price range.

  • Under $100,000: 152
    19.9% of all closed sales
  • $100,000 to $149,999: 340
    44.6% of all closed sales
  • $150,000 to $199,999: 137
    18.0% of all closed sales.
  • $200,000 to $249,999: 62
    8.1% of all closed sales
  • $250,000 to $299,999: 34
    4.5% of all closed sales
  • $400,000 to $499,999: 6
    .79% of all closed sales
  • $500,000 and above: 3
    .39% of all closed sales

Takeaways

  • 82.4% of all sales were under $200,000
  • Only 5.0% of all sales were above $300,000.
  • Only 1.2% of all sales were above $400,000.

Data pertains to Canyon County single-family homes on lot or acreage.

Data does not include condo or townhome properties.

Date range is 1/1/15 thru 3/31/15.