You’ve probably heard of those instant offers programs whereby a company offers to buy your home instantly for cash.  Closing takes place in a short period of time.  No getting the house ready to show, no hassles with showings, no hassles period.  Sounds great, doesn’t it? What do these instant offers programs cost sellers?

Instant Offers Programs Cost Sellers 15% Equity or More

Except there’s one catch. They don’t offer you full market value.  Not even close.  A recent study showed that the typical instant offers programs cost sellers around 15% equity.  That’s a big price to pay, and costs much more than selling your home even after paying a real estate agent commission.

Going For Top Dollar

Most sellers are afraid they may have to drop their price if their home doesn’t sell.  Homes in SW Florida typically sell for around 95% of list price.  Some much more than that depending on the price range.  What this is telling us is those sellers were about 5% over the market, and when they came down to where the market was, their home sold.

Imagine selling 15% below that number.  You don’t have to imagine because it’s reality.  These instant offers companies don’t tell you that.  They also don’t tell you the final price when they make their original offer.

To date these national companies haven’t come to SW Florida.  We have spoken with people who have used them in other markets, and they’re not happy.  First, it starts with an offer, typically 7-10% below fair market value.  Seller accepts the offer, and inspections are setup.  Then the instant offers company amends the offer to account for major renovations needed.  That could total $30,000 or more depending on inspection results.

If the seller’s biggest fear was having to reduce asking price, it was just realized by accepting an instant offer.  The only difference is the process sped up, and the reduction was severe.  Had the seller priced their home upfront to meet today’s market, they could have sold quickly and put much more money in their pocket.

These sellers’ biggest regret was using an instant offers company.  Sometimes the fear of the process overrides the financial loss, until the financial loss becomes real.  We can help with this.

Choices

In the near future we’ll bring an iBuyer program to SW Florida.  You’ll be given the choice.  Take the instant offer or go for top dollar with us.  Logically most will choose the top dollar, but we’ll have the choice for those looking for the instant sale.

If you’re in a situation where you need to sell fast and you’re fearful of the process, a simple sit-down meeting can answer many of your questions.  We can look at what fair market would look like and discuss insightful ways to get your home sold fast, and not for bottom dollar.

Anyone can give away a home.  That’s easy, and costly.  We can help you sell fast and put more money in your pocket.  We’ve been working on a few solutions to help sellers that are exciting.

We have an instant repair bid program.  Basically, we take the home inspection and upload into our system.  Within 48 hours we have bids to repair anything on the report.  This makes it easy for buyers and sellers because almost instantly they know the price of the repairs.

Many times, deals are lost because a buyer believes the repair cost is just too expensive.  By having instant bids, they know the cost upfront.  Often, the repair cost isn’t as bad as they think.  Sometimes sellers blow up because they believe the repairs the buyer is asking for will add up too.  Having an instant repair bid shows the seller the true cost of the repair.  Perhaps buyer is asking too much, and now the seller will know.

The instant repair bid is a nice tool which can give both buyer and seller peace of mind.  It’s also much less expensive than giving your house away to a greedy iBuyer program.

Thinking of Selling?

If you’re looking to sell, talk to Brett or Sande at the Ellis Team at Keller Williams Realty.  239-489-4042 Ext 4  We can show you how to net more at closing and make the process easier for you.  Don’t let fear of the process let these companies take advantage of you.  A solution is often just a face to face conversation away.  Or visit www.SWFLhomevalues.com for a quick idea of your home’s value.  If you like that price, we can talk further.  If you think it’s off, we can sit down and discuss that too, because it could be.

See last week’s article “Wall Street Fear May Spark Main Street Opportunity

Good luck and Happy Selling!

This past week we’ve experienced large fluctuations on Wall Street. Wall Street fear may spark Main Street opportunity.  Financial markets are fearful trade wars may carry over and harm earnings, which would put a damper on company valuations.  Everyone agrees the United States must confront China, as most agree the best time to do it is when we’re at our strongest economically.  Just the same, it does create worry amongst our farmers, companies, and investors as they need a road map of where it’s safe to invest.

Main Street Opportunity

Enter Main Street.  In financial turmoil’s past, there’s always been a flight to quality.  Right now, it’s U.S. treasuries, pushing the yield on the 10-year note down to 1.62%.  It simply can’t go much lower.  Europe has negative interest rates, which means people trying to protect their money choose to lose money invested in government bonds, because they feel that’s their safest bet.

Main Street Opportunity

Money always moves.  We saw money this past week move into Gold and oil, and then it moved back out.  Investors are seeking safety and return if they can get it.

Real estate may become the preferred investment once again.  Wall Street fear may become Main Street Opportunity. Money is practically free.  The Federal Reserve has been forced to cut interest rates to protect against the dollar becoming too strong.  A strong dollar means foreign countries will buy less of our stuff because it’s too expensive.  In this case, the trade imbalance widens, so we weaken the dollar by lowering interest rates to remain competitive.  There is no inflation right now, so it’s safe.

Lower rates have helped propel the Southwest Florida real estate market.  Going into 2019 we were experiencing a shift.  The feds had just raised rates about 1%, and the market responded.  Buyers couldn’t afford as much as in the past and the market cooled.  Inventory built up.

Fast forward to today.  The feds are fixing their mistake.  It’s not the feds job to prop up the stock market or housing market.  It is their job to manage our monetary policy to keep us competitive, and they are responding.

The advantage real estate brings is it’s tangible.  If the stock market collapses, investors lose money.  If the real estate market falls, homeowners can still live in the property and investors can still rent out a property.  Real estate can still provide income.  Buying gold or silver provides no income, just a tangible asset. Real estate is both.

Most Americans believe the best long-term investment is real estate by far.  It might surprise you to know that millennials prefer real estate as an investment more than any other generation.  This is surprising because many millennials put off home buying compared to predecessor generations.

Right now, home sellers have an interesting opportunity in front of them.  They already own a home, and perhaps they’ve considered a move.   They’re not sold on the idea though, but they are considering it.  These lower rates help sellers in two ways.  The most obvious is, when they pay off their mortgage and buy another home, they’ll save big-time when they purchase their next home.

Secondly, lower rates help more buyers qualify for homes today than last Fall.  More buyers create more competition for the listings.  Listing inventory begins to fall, and this helps raise home prices.  Or, at the very least, it stalls out price declines.  June inventory numbers were lower than April.  We’ll be pulling August numbers soon to compare.

The fact that sellers win in two ways creates an opportunity for home sellers.  Usually home sellers have questions, because there are many pieces to the puzzle that must be answered before deciding.  The most obvious would be, where do we move to?  How do we accomplish this logistically?

A seasoned real estate professional can help answer these questions.  Call Sande or Brett Ellis at 239-489-4042 Ext 4.  We’ll guide you through the maze and help you decide if a move is right for you.  Or visit www.SWFLhomevalues.com

Thank you, News Press readers, for voting the Ellis Team at Keller Williams Realty the Best in Real Estate for the 4th straight year.

Good luck, and happy house hunting.

See last week’s article Total Volume Down 7.15% Year to Date in Lee County

One of the ways to measure the health of the local real estate market is to look at total dollar volume.  Because total dollar volume consists of the total number of sales multiplied by the cumulative sales prices, it’s a good indicator of the overall strength of the market.  Sometimes sales prices are up but home sales are softer, and other time home sales are strong and prices are down.  Each component affects the total volume of closed sales. Total dollar volume down 7.15% year to date in Lee County.

Obviously if prices are up and sales are up, total dollar volume will be up.  And vice versa if both are down.  Because it’s not always both up or down, this measure is a great tool to quickly identify what’s going on.

Total Dollar Volume Down 7.15% Year to Date in Lee County

Upon further inspection, total dollar volume in Lee County Florida is down 7.15% year to date.  Perhaps this is why inventory has grown just a bit and agents are feeling the pinch.  Combine this with a lot going on in the industry right now, and it’s no wonder agents are jumping around switching companies.  When business is down for an agent, they begin to look at why, and whether another company might be the answer.

Monthly dollar volume Lee County Florida real estate

If you look at the monthly trend, you’ll see it was worse January through April.  The last two months have reduced the imbalance, but agents are still jumpy.  There are two truths consumers and agents may want to consider.

Interest rates have really helped spark the market.  Buyers are seeing some of the lowest rates we’ve seen in decades and they don’t want to miss this opportunity.  If rates stay low, this could help wipe out losses compared to last year.

Disruption Coming to Industry

Even with sales coming back agents are jumpy.  There is an uneasy feeling amongst agents, because things are changing, and they don’t know what to do about it.  The balance of power is shifting.  In a few months, agents will be hit with more disruptions they don’t even see coming in the industry.  When you’re an agent and bogged down in your own business, sometimes you don’t pay attention to external forces that will influence your industry.

You’ve heard the “too close to the forest to see the trees” saying.  I think agents think things have always been a certain way, so they believe these changes they’ve heard about for so long won’t affect them.

We hosted a seminar this past week and agents from other companies came and listened.  When they saw some of the changes coming, most of them immediately went back and acted.  Change is coming whether we’re ready for it or not.  Most were just blind to what is coming until their eyes were opened.

Questions Consumers Should Ask

Consumers should really ask their agent how business has been for them in 2019 versus 2018.  Is that agent thinking of making a move?  A consumer would want to know that before listing.  If their business is down, they may need to make a move and not even realize why.  If the agent does need to make a move, let them do it first before listing with them.  There is nothing more frustrating than listing with an agent and finding out they just moved.  The broker may or may not release the listing, and you could be stuck with an agent you didn’t choose, and you don’t know.

You holding out may spur your agent to act now versus waiting too long.  If you’re an agent and you’re curious as to what the big changes are, send me an email at Brett@topagent.com  Big change is coming whether you face it or not.

If you’re looking to sell your home, always call the Ellis Team at Keller Williams Realty. 239-489-4042 Ext 4  Ask for Brett or Sande.  Or visit www.swflhomevalues.com to find out what your home is worth online, instantly. Our sales are up, and we’re on top of the changes, so you will be too.  This can be a fun market if you’re prepared.  Let us show you how to take advantage of the opportunities.

See Last Week’s Article: 2019 SW Florida Real Estate Market Officially Balanced

Good luck and Happy Selling!

Ellis Team Weekend Open Houses

Open House Sat 12-4 PM

Riverfront Home- Priced to Sell This Weekend

8471 Casa Del Rio

Riverfront Home Open House Sat 12-4 PM

Open House Sat 12-3 PM

Eagle Ridge Home-Spacious and Gorgeous

7904 Eagles Flight Ln

Eagle Ridge Open House Sat 12-3 PM

Open House Sat 12-3 PM

Cape Coral Waterfront Home

2653 SW 29th Ave

Cape Coral Waterfront Open House Sat 12-3 PM

Open House Sunday 12-3 PM

4 Bedroom Golf Course Home

21529 Windham Run

4 Bedroom Golf Course Home

Open House Sunday 12-3 PM

Sailboat Access Home Cape Coral

914 El Dorado Pkwy E

Sailboat Access Pool Home Total Dollar Volume Down

 

Open House App

We have an app that will show you all the open houses nationwide.  Check it out at www.SWfloridaopenhouse.com and download for Free

Ellis Team Open House App

All indications show the 2019 SW Florida real estate market officially balanced.  Homes closed is mirroring 2018 levels.  We started out a little slow but picked it up in May and returned to just above 2018 levels in June.  Interest rates have certainly help spark the SW Florida real estate market.

2019 Real Estate Market Officially Balanced

Closed sales were up 1.0% in June from last year.  Median sales price was up 2.0% over last year and the average sale price was up 2.7%.  New pending sales were up 9.3% this year compared to last.

Agents we talk to are busy.  Title companies are having a big July, so we expect July numbers to be good as well when they are released next month.  We are seeing first time home buyers in this market as well as move-up buyers.  For nearly a decade we didn’t see much move-up buyers, so this is an encouraging sign.

The Ellis Team will be hosting home buyer seminars soon, so stay tuned or call us to find out when the next one will be.  We partner with a local lender and together we bring you the steps you’ll follow to purchase a home.  Our lender is a credit repair specialist as well.  Many people think if they just pay off a debt it helps their credit, but this isn’t always true.  At the seminar, we’ll help you improve your credit score, and explain all the steps on how to purchase a new home.

We also compare renting versus buying.  Many don’t realize they could own their own home for less money that they’re paying in rent.  We have low to no down payment options as well, so that takes away that worry for some home buyers.

Move up buyers have different needs.  First, they need to know how much their home would sell for, and how much money they’d end up with in their pocket.  Secondly, they need to know how much they’d qualify for in the new home, and what’s available in that price range.  What repairs need to be done to make current home sell-able?  Lastly, it becomes a logistics exercise.  How do they time the sale with a new purchase?

The Ellis Team can answer those questions. The Ellis Team has vendors that can help with repairs to get your home sellable and maximize value.  We have the best technology to alert you to new listings in your current neighborhood as well as pendings and solds.  We can also alert you to new opportunities where you’re moving to as well.

The neatest thing is we can now do this nationwide.  If you’re thinking of selling here in SW Florida and moving out of state, we have the data to show you right here, right now what your options are out of state.  This new data essentially turns the Ellis Team into nationwide agents.  We’re not going to show you a home in Maryland or Iowa, but we can sure give you the information at your fingertips on the spot.

Whether you’re a first-time home buyer, a move-up buyer, or moving out of state, we can help.  If you live somewhere else and love SW Florida, call us and we can help you too.  Not only can we get you neighborhood and home data where you live, we can find the top agent in your neighborhood at the click of a button.  It’s pretty neat, and it will change the way people buy and sell real estate.

If you have a home to sell, contact Sande or Brett Ellis 239-489-4042 Ext 4.  Or email us at sande@topagent.com or Brett@topagent.com We also have a team of buyer specialists ready to help you.  And don’t forget, we have upcoming seminars on the home buying process.  We’re also available to meet one on one.  That’s what we enjoy most.  Always call the Ellis Team at Keller Williams Realty.

Find Out What Your Home is Worth Online for Free

Good luck and Happy House Hunting!

See last week’s article: Should I Refinance My Mortgage at Today’s Rates?