How would making $100,000 in 7 weeks make your life different?

I know.  I know.  Sounds to good to be true, right?  Well that’s the beauty of selling real estate in S. California.  It only takes a handful of transactions to make great money.  You probably think real estate agents make money hand over fist.  Some do.  But the average agent in California, regardless of experience, sells about 4 homes per year.  Think about that.  How would you feel if you only got paid 4 times each year?  Frustrated, anxious, nervous?  I’ve always said, “If you are only going to sell 4 homes per year, do it as fast as possible and take the rest of the year off”.

So back to my question.  If there was a way you could make $100,000 in 7 weeks, would that interest you?  I sure hope so!  Here’s the answer, it’s called BOLD.  What is BOLD?  Well it’s an intense 7 week course conducted by MAPS Coaching, the coaching company for Keller Williams.  BOLD delivers accountability, and mindset strategies that top agents use to close more transactions.

Here’s what the Maps BOLD website says, “Written by Dianna Kokoszka, BOLD teaches techniques that propelled Kokoszka’s million-dollar real estate career and secured her place as the industry’s “queen of systems and scripts.  BOLD conditions agents with powerful mindset exercises, language techniques, and lead generation activities. This trans-formative program increases sales through the relentless pursuit of leads and business-building activities. Discover the results BOLD will have on your life and career. Choose abundance for your life. Last year, BOLD graduates INCREASED their CLOSED TRANSACTIONS by 50% and INCREASED their INCOME by 114%.”

Let’s have some fun.  The average sales price in my office is right around $450,000.  Using a 3% commission rate that is $13,500 gross commission per closing.  On average agents write 14 contracts during BOLD.  That comes to $189,000 in written business during the 7 weeks of BOLD.  What if you did half that?  Would that be OK?  If so, and you are an agent in San Diego that would like to attend the FREE First Step to BOLD, please register here.  This is open to agents from any office without obligation.

What if my appraisal comes in low?

appraisal2It has been known to happen.  A seller puts their house on the market.  A prospective buyer makes an offer.  The seller accepts it.  Now the real work begins.  Next come the inspections, physical, pest, HVAC, roof, pool, etc.  And if the buyer is getting a loan, the most important one of all…the appraisal!

What is an appraisal?  Well it is basically how the lender determines if the home is worth what they are being asked to loan.  But it’s more than that.  The appraisal is an opinion of value at the given moment.  Huh?  You see, appraisals can change on the fly based on what the market is doing.  As an example, let’s say your appraisal came it at a value of $480,000, and that is what the accepted offer was.  Great we have a deal.  Now let’s say the next day the exact same floor plan closes at  $500,000.  There is a new baseline established and the buyers just benefited by having the equity rise by $20,000.

But what happens if the appraisal on that $480,000 offer came in at $460,000?  The lender is not going to loan on a property that they feel is not valued at the agreed upon sales price.  In essence the seller has to sell the home twice, once to a buyer and then to the lender.  So now a renegotiation between the buyer and seller takes place and typically there are a few outcomes that happen.

  1. The seller can lower the price to the appraised value.
  2. The buyer can agree to pay the difference and bring in more cash.
  3. The buyer and seller can split the difference.
  4. The deal can be cancelled and everyone goes their separate ways.

If an agreement cannot be reached, and the contract included an appraisal contingency, meaning the home had to appraise at the agreed upon price or higher, the buyer can cancel and get their deposit, if any, returned in full without penalty.  It’s also important to remember that an appraisal is an opinion of value in a given moment.  So if a seller had an appraisal done say 3 months ago, the lender will not accept that and will still have an independent appraiser go out.

The last thing to consider is that depending on the type of financing the buyer is getting, the appraisal could be more detailed.  As an example, if the  buyer is getting an FHA or VA loan, the appraiser may “call out” things like chipped paint, structural issues, mold and the systems in the home.  If you are thinking about selling, you need to understand how the financing terms you will consider could affect the appraisal and ultimately the sale.  So it’s not just about price, consider what types of terms will be acceptable to you.

 

Proud to serve

The Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS (PSAR) recently announced the 2018 Board of Directors.  I was honored to be nominated and elected to serve our members for 2018.  PSAR is an organization that is dedicated to serving our REALTOR and affiliate members and provides a much needed voice to local and statewide matters affecting real estate and home ownership.

According the the PSAR website, “The Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® exists to enhance the real estate profession, to protect private property rights and improve the regulatory environment. The Association maintains a leadership role today assuring each REALTOR® member the opportunity to seek new heights in their professional lives. Being a REALTOR® is a source of pride and prestige.

Congrats to all the incoming Board.  For more information please visit PSAR here.

Summertime…and the livings easy…

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I have always thought of San Diego as, “That sleepy little beach town just south of S. California.”  Let’s face it, we are NOT Los Angeles or Orange County.  San Diego has it’s own vibe and pace.  We are laid back and buzzed on craft beer.  We surf, skate, hike, wander, and do “Local” better than most.  With that said I offer up some of the best things to do this summer in San Diego courtesy of SanDiego.org.

FREE things to do:  Beaches.  It’s no secret San Diego is home to some of the best beaches in the world.  We offer everything from surf beaches to walking beaches.  Kids beaches to adult beaches.  A few of my favs include Law St. in Pacific Beach, Coronado, San Elijo, Ocean Beach, and of course Mission Beach.

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Balboa Park after Dark.  Consistently rated as one of the best urban parks in the country, Balboa Park comes alive at night!  Check it out!

Attractions:  Where to start?  The Zoo and Wild Animal Park?  Sea World?  Del Mar Races?  LegoLand?  Belmont Park?  Birch Aquarium?  Cabrillo National Monument?  OK take your pick!

4th of July:  San Diego has deep military roots and no one does Independence Day like San Diego!  From the parade on Coronado to the massive and synced up fireworks displays, San Diego does the 4th of July right!

Del Mar Horse Racing:  There is literally no better place on Earth then opening day at Del Mar.  Where the turf meets the surf!  Racing starts on July 19th, and in addition to racing be sure to enjoy the several concerts happening as well.

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Hell…Just sell!


Sorry to use profanity in the title. However with the news that the median home price in San Diego county has gone over $600,000 for the first time ever, it might make sense to just put that damn place on the market and roll the dice. What we have here is what’s known as an extreme sellers market. Of course the flipside is, “What will you buy”. For the right price maybe it doesn’t make any difference!

In all seriousness, if you have been thinking about maybe downsizing or moving to a different area in San Diego, you should take a serious look at what homes are selling for in your neighborhood. If you can maximize your net income at close of escrow, downsize, and buy something smaller that suits your current lifestyle, that could be a really good decision. Heck who wouldn’t want to live in a nice little condo in Little Italy?

There are also several areas in San Diego where listings are more abundant. Maybe considering a small coastal community, someplace like Imperial Beach, where values are still good relative to their location to the water. The other option might be looking toward East County, where the day begins and the sun rises. Often you can find postwar, suburban homes in neighborhoods that are easily walkable, kid and pet friendly, and close to all the amenities you need. You might want to check out neighborhoods like North La Mesa, San Carlos, the College Area, or even Del Cerro and Allied Gardens.

If you’d like more information on any of these neighborhoods or others, or if you’re looking to get the value of your home in today’s market, please contact me today and I’d be happy to send you a free and detailed analysis so you know exactly what is going on in your neighborhood.

Real Estate War Stories…Part 1

What if you knew the answer to the most often asked questions when it comes to buying or selling real estate?  Would that give you an advantage and help you make better decisions?  Of course it would!  Well that’s exactly what I want to do for you…share all the best questions and answers.  Along the way I will also provide insight on the top pitfalls and how to avoid them.

Look, real estate is a tricky proposition and no two transactions are alike.  Even seasoned agents come up against things they have never experienced from time to time.  I’ll get it started and I’ll ask you to contribute by asking me anything about real estate you’d like.  I’ll share those in future posts.

Question #1:  What is the first step I should take when buying a home?  

Surprisingly, I get this from both buyers and sellers who have to sell before they buy.  And depending on where you are, the answer can be different.  The simple answer is to contact a Realtor who can help you get started, however it goes deeper than that.  If you are a buyer I would suggest you contact a mortgage lender who can start the pre-approval process and help you understand how much you can afford, what down payment options exist, and what your monthly mortgage will be.

Now here’s the catch, avoid the one-size fits all or loan of the month pitch.  Every borrower is unique and a good lender will ask about your goals, personal financials, discuss options, and tailor a program that meets your specific needs.  This is probably the largest financial transaction you will ever make and you need to work with reputable professionals who really have your best interest at heart.

Now, about that “contact a Realtor first” option.  It’s not a bad idea to reach out and ask a Realtor for a referral.  Contrary to popular belief, Realtors do not get anything for referring a lender, in fact it’s illegal to do so with the anticipation of something of value in return.  We do it because we know everything hinges on the financing and when we can tap into professional relationships with people who have a proven track record of getting the tough deals done, well it just improves the odds of a smooth transaction.

If you need to sell before you buy I would suggest contacting that Realtor, or, if you have been happy with your current lender, contact them directly.  Keep in mind the market and rates may have changed since you got your current mortgage, but be sure to ask about any current client loyalty programs, rate breaks or discounts on loan fees, etc.  At the end of the day your current lender wants to keep your business and may offer you incentives.

Now it’s your turn!  What questions do you have?  Send me an e-mail to smartREsolutions@gmail.com and I will post and answer in a future post.  Thanks!