Category Archives: marketplace

Secrets to Winning the Offer War (Part 3 of 4)

home sales

Here is Part Three of the four part series on winning the offer war. If you missed the first two,  here are the links to Part One about “PRICE” and Part Two about “TERMS.”  Today we’ll be looking at the third factor:

CONTINGENCIES

Once signed by buyer and seller, an offer becomes a contract.  Both sides are legally committed to its terms, which include advance agreement on how the contract can be cancelled.  These provisions are called contingencies; usually the main ones are for uncertainties buyers have about their financing, and about the property’s condition.

  •  Sellers tend to favor the highest offer, as we’ve noted before, but the best-informed sellers also pay close attention to an offer’s chances of leading to a successful sale.
  •  Strong pre-approval limits financing uncertainties.  In the present market, many sellers provide pre-sale disclosures and professional inspection reports.
  •  When advance information is extensive, sellers and their agents might read contingencies as unwarranted uncertainties.  Many offers are being presented just now, with neither financing nor inspection contingencies.
  •  The best-prepared buyer will have made a careful assessment of any risk in entering a purchase contract without contingencies.  A seasoned agent (like myself) can be a big help here.  If you MUST include contingencies, try to make them as short as possible.

Next week I will discuss the last, and very important forth factor, PERSONAL TOUCH, which I will cover in Part Four posting August 3rd.

If you’re pursuing your dream of home ownership, or if you want to sell an East Bay home, I can help.  Summer is a great time to buy or sell a home.

Also, if you’re moving to another area, I can refer you to a trustworthy Coldwell Banker agent wherever you want or need to go in the US or the world. Coldwell Banker is an international real estate company.

Just call me.  I’m easy to get a hold of.  As so many of us do, I carry my office with me wherever I go, so phone or text 510-418-1306  and you’ll probably reach me. I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make sure you’re glad you called. 

 Get to know me! Check me out on facebook or linkedIn.

If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market check out my My Web Site to discover homes on the market–neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Chris Neddersen
Broker Associate
CalBRE #01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

“Let’s Get Moving!”

Buyer Strategies in a Sellers Market

  • Be on call. If you’re only looking now and then when it’s convenient, you’re compromising your chances. The most successful Buyers give house hunting priority in their daily schedules.  Sign up for a real-time listing monitor with automatic notifications, and check its updates as soon as you can.  If a lead seems interesting at first glance, look again: read everything in the listing data available on line and, if you’re not familiar with the block, look it over with street view software.
  • When you have a contender, call your agent for the vital information not available on public-access websites, like a deadline for offers. Be quick about this: many listings are shown only for a short time, with offers expected within a week of appearance.  There may also be details available about the house’s condition.  The sooner you have all the facts, the more wisely you can manage your time to compose a winning offer.
  • Have your ducks lined up. Unless an offer is for all cash, it must be accompanied by a mortgage pre-approval letter.  The letter, specific to the house of interest, confirms your application has been completed and fully underwritten, with your new loan approved subject only to a ratified contract and the property’s qualifying as security.  Not every lender will play this way; you agent can give you a list of some who will.  Without pre-approval, you can be a diligent researcher. . .but not a serious Buyer
  • Top dollar may not win out. Sellers like certainty and prefer the fewest number of hurdles to closing as possible.  Buyers’ contingencies in an offer look like hurdles to Sellers, who may accept a lower price than the top offer if it comes with less chance of your changing your mind.  Your agent can help you analyze how much risk you are willing and able to take on, in presenting an offer with the fewest contingencies.
  • Cast a wide net. Search for homes outside the locations you want most, if faced with limited or high-priced choices. As a Buyer you need to carefully consider what you’re willing to compromise on.
  • Take the long view. Some properties don’t sell right away, even in a Seller’s market, because of issues that turn other Buyers away.  If you can imagine how things might work for you, even if fixing might take a while, you could land a prize.

If you’re looking to buy or sell an East Bay home, I can help.  My local knowledge and market experience are vital in helping you buy or sell an East Bay home.

If you’re moving to another area, I can refer you to a trustworthy Coldwell Banker agent wherever you want or need to go in the US or the world. Coldwell Banker is an international real estate company.

So call me.  I’m easy to get a hold of.  As so many of us do, I carry my office with me wherever I go, so phone or text 510-418-1306  and you’ll probably reach me. I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make sure you’re glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook or linkedIn.

If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market check out my My Web Site to discover homes on the market–neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Chris Neddersen
“Let’s Get Moving!”

Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

Only YOU can balance the housing market.

uncle-sam-6002

This is an open letter to homeowners in the East Bay,

Dear Sir or Madam,

Have you, or a loved one, owned a home a long, long time? Is it too big ? Too inconvenient? Too hard to clean? Is the yard getting to be too much for you to handle? Have you retired and want to move to a smaller home or apartment near things you love? Or have you welcomed a little newcomer that needs their own room/yard/good school district, and your current home just doesn’t fill the bill?

In short, do you want to sell? If not, why not? Perhaps the long and short answer is you don’t want to turn into one more hopeless buyer.

There was a time, not too long ago, when the ratio of buyers to sellers was a lot closer. What happened, I wonder, to the fluidity that once defined the housing market? Time was when buying up or down was always an option. Now, each home for sale seems to create crazy bidding  wars and inflated pricing.

Buyers are discouraged and homeowners feel trapped. What’s the answer?

Sell. The more of you that put your homes on the market, the more fluid the market will become which helps us all. Be a part of the solution! Call me and let’s get moving!

Join my team if you’re looking to buy or sell an East Bay home! I can help you on both sides of the table: sell your home and buy the next. If you’re wanting to ove to another area, I can refer you to a trustworthy Coldwell Banker agent wherever you go. Coldwell Banker is an international real estate company.

So call me.  I’m easy to get a hold of.  As so many of us do, I carry my office with me wherever I go, so phone 510-527-0174.  and you’ll probably reach me. I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your rmeferrals–and I’ll make sure you’re glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook or linkedIn.

If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market check out my My Web Site to discover homes on the market–neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Chris Neddersen
“Let’s Get Moving!”

Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

How “Sentimental” are YOU about the Housing Market?

business sentiment

Today I read an article about Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI), expecting to see an emoji with some kind of home and heart combo, but when I searched the very closest I came was the image you see above.

So what, I asked myself, is the definition of “Market Sentiment”?  It’s pretty much what I thought it would be:  how people feel about the market in question. For example, people feel good about a thriving “bull” market, and bad about a diving “bear” market.

Like you’d expect, right? So Fannie Mae’s HPSI tracks how people feel about the housing market, and here’s a taste of the results:

  • The HPSI Good Time to Sell component increased 13 points due to strong housing prices
  • the Good Time to Buy component increased 3 points due to high rental costs.
  • Consumers’ confidence in their employment and financial situations climbed 2 and 3 points, respectively, further suggesting a possible firmer footing for housing.

In short, if you’re thinking of selling,  I suggest you make your decision quickly to catch those more confident consumers.  If you’re interested in buying, it looks like more people are more likely to put their homes on the market based on Fannie Mae’s HPSI.

In any case, a call to Your’s Truly is in order! My sentiments are quite positive regarding all my clients, and I’m pretty sure you’ll feel the same towards me at the conclusion of our successful real estate deal.

I’m easy to contact.  As so many of us do, I carry my office with me wherever I go, so phone 510-527-0174.  and you’ll probably reach me. I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make sure you’re glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market check out my My New Site to discover homes on the market–neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen
Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

Do You Know Your Buying Power?

CreditKnowledgeandConfidence

In this credit card economy, it’s hard to keep track of our real buying power. It starts with knowing your credit score. If you don’t, and cringe a little at finding out, this could be what’s holding you and other potential home buyers back from getting into the housing market.

I understand. I’ve been known to put my head in the sand when uncomfortable situations that involve mass quantities of money rear their heads.  What I’ve learned is that this obviously does not solve the problem. In fact, in many cases, ducking and covering can make the problem worse.

If your credit score is a problem, it’s not one without a potential solution.

  • Step one: Find out your score. There are places online that will help you do that. I don’t have one I feel comfortable recommending, so the alternate approach would be. . .
  • Step two: Find a reputable local mortgage lender. I have a list of several I recommend, one of whom is Kenny Leather* of Princeton Capital, skilled at assessing your home buying power.  If it’s not quite up to snuff, they might suggest that you. . .
  • Step three: Find a professional organization, like Continental Credit, employing helpful and friendly people like Alexandra Erlich* who know all the ins and outs of helping you raise your credit score.

If you’re planning on buying a home, imminent changes in federal lending regulations make it even more important to get your financial ducks lined up in advance, but whether or not you decide to purchase a home, getting your credit sorted out will be a big relief. You’ll feel a whole lot better when you’re on speaking terms with your income ebb and flow.

But if you do decide that you want to buy a home be sure to . . .

  • Step four: Call me at 510-418-1306. I’ll be happy to help you through this major financial decision in your life.  I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make sure you’re glad you called.

*Call me for contact information

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market

Check out my My New Site to discover homes on the market–neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen
Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

Is the Real Estate Pendulum on the Move?

SOLD

In the San Francisco Business Times I read that there was a slowdown in the August housing market.  The details reveal that prices leveled off and home inventory grew.  It may also be that buyers are tired of making offer after offer without success–unless they make a wallet flattening overbid.

Sure, home prices are still higher than August 2014, but more sellers are finally realizing that NOW is a good time to sell –and maybe a little too late to catch the high price housing wave before it reaches the shore of sanity. As a result, I’ve noticed more homes than usual are hitting the local market.

Another hopeful sign for both buyers and sellers is that the federal government did not raise interest rates as they threatened to do.

It’s time for both buyers and sellers to get into the market. 

You might think: “Of course he’d say that. It’s his business to encourage home sales on both sides of the table”.

I would respond this way: “I build my business on sound advice.” And my advice is this:

  • BUYERS: Home prices are becoming more manageable, loans are still cheap, and there are now more properties on the market. Time to start shopping!
  • SELLERS: Stop dragging your feet. You could be looking at a potentially closing window of opportunity for getting the price you want on the sale of your home.
  • BOTH OF YOU: Give me a call at 510-527-0174 and let’s talk about your real estate needs.

I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make sure you’re glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market

Check out my My New Site to discover homes on the market–neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen
Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

Avoiding Buyer’s Remorse

BuyersRemorse

First time buyers, downsizers, workers transferring from location to location, anyone and everyone who wants to buy a house goes through some anxiety.  After all, a home purchase is a huge commitment. You plunk a bunch of money down, agree to pay a monthly mortgage payment (if you’re not an all-cash buyer) and you’re stuck with your choice to stay in one place for years to come.

Naturally, there might be some nervousness and fear of buyers remorse.

First time buyers have experienced the relative freedom of apartment living. They pay rent, but don’t have to worry about home and yard maintenance and the other costs of owning a property.

Downsizers lose a big part of their past lives defined by rooms their kids lived in, yards where they played, and weighed down by stored, multi-generational but non-essential, objects from their family life.

Transfers lose the familiarity of their original city and hope to land in a place where the same or similar amenities and pleasures that they left behind will be replaced in their new home.

The answer to avoiding buyers remorse is a good realtor, someone who listens to your needs and desires, as well as your fears, and helps solve the problems that might come up in advance of the new purchase.

First-timers need the wisdom and experience of a seasoned agent to help them understand the advantages and disadvantages of any potential purchase–someone who will tell them the truth about affordability, neighborhoods, and home value. A good agent is a pro at blending your needs with your budget and helping any first time buyer feel that they’ve made the responsible move.

Downsizers will get the benefit of an agent’s bevy of moving professionals, from cleaners who can help clear the clutter, home stagers who can weed out the gold from the straw regarding what to keep and what to get rid of, professional yard sellers who can help you sell the rest. and storage professionals who can help store anything that you can’t let go of.  A good agent will help downsizers discover that moving to the new house with a lighter load is a much happier journey.

Transfers will benefit from an agent who has listened well to the buyer and knows the local neighborhoods well enough to suggest which will be the best fit. 

I’ve had a lot of experience with all of these types of buyers, and hope, when you need an agent, that you will choose me.

Want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market? Check out my Super Site and discover properties on the market neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Give me a call if you’re thinking of  buying or selling a home, and for all your other real estate needs.  Just phone 510-527-0174 .  I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make you glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen,

Chris_sig

Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

Now HERE are some interesting Real Estate facts:

SOLD

Did you know that:

  1. Home is where the heart (and equity) is: 61.4% of the average American family’s net worth is in home equity.
  2. A homeowner’s net worth is over thirty times greater than that of a renter.
  3. TGIF! The best day of the week to list your home is Friday.
  4. Historically, the best month of the year to sell is April. Although we would dispute that –maybe it’s the most common month, but often sellers fare better in the ‘off months’ of summer and winter.
  5. Odds are you’re going to need some help selling: Homeowners have a 120% better chance of selling their home when using REALTOR®.
  6. In 2013, NAR reports that the median age of first-time buyers was 31. On average these buyers purchased a 1,670 square-foot home costing $170,000 (guess they don’t live around here!).
  7. The typical repeat buyer was 52 years old. On average these buyers purchased a 2,060-square foot home costing $240,000.
  8. According to a NAR Community Preference Survey, 78% of respondents said that the neighborhood is more important to them than the size of the home.
  9. 57% said they’d give up a home with a larger yard if they could have a shorter commute. (Commuting is one of Arlington’s most attractive features to buyers)
  10. NAR reports that 80% of home buyers believe their home is a good investment, 44 percent saying it’s better than stocks.
  11. Buyers searched a median of 12 weeks and visited 10 homes. If you live in Greater Boston, you know this is a much lower number on both fronts.
  12. 90% of home buyers who used the Internet to search for a home purchased through a real estate agent.
  13. 90% of buyers financed their purchase.

I found these facts on the website of some Arlington Massachusetts realtors and thought they were interesting enough to share with those of you involved in the California (specifically the SF East Bay) market. Since many of the facts are gathered by the National Association of Realtors, you gotta figure that they apply to homeowners, sellers and buyers nationwide.  

Shout out to my colleagues Back East!

If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market, check out my Super Site and discover properties on the market neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Give me a call if you’re thinking of  buying or selling a home, and for all your other real estate needs.  Just phone 510-527-0174 .  I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make you glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.
If you’re interested in HIGH WALK SCORE HOMES click HERE.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen,

Chris_sig

Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

Home Sweet HomeSuite.com

homeaway3

But FIRST, a bit about STAGING:

Even in a hot real estate market, staging is important.  Of course, with all the demand, homes in the Berkeley area and beyond will sell, but if you want overbids and competitive offers, staging makes a difference.

Why? Because many of us don’t have the imagination to see beyond a seller’s personal decorating.  If they can’t find a place for their stuff, they can’t imagine themselves living there.

Staging also presents the dream life that we all want to live, with that clutter-free everything-in-its-place beauty staged homes exemplify. It looks turn-key and trouble free, all problems solved.

So, my advice to my sellers is “Move OUT and let the stagers move the dream in!”

“Where will we go?”, they ask me, if they haven’t found a home to move into yet. I’ve found the answer in a new website. HomeSuite finds short term, furnished rentals and pairs them with renters.  This is site whose time has come, and it just might be the answer to a listing agent’s prayer.

If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market, check out my Super Site and discover properties on the market neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Give me a call if you’re thinking of  buying or selling a home, and for all your other real estate needs.  Just phone 510-527-0174 .  I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make you glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.
If you’re interested in HIGH WALK SCORE HOMES click HERE.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen,

Chris_sig

Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

 

Closing In Berkeley: Oscar’s & The Sellers Market?

Oscars.-Photo-Tracey-Taylor-720x484

Those of you who are long time Bear Backers will understand the pain I felt when I found out that Oscars–the funky hamburger place on Shattuck that was a hungry young (and older) person’s port in the storm–is to be closed in a couple of months. Never a gourmet dining experience, yet on the fringes of Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto, Oscar’s was a burger and hot dog lover’s dream. For 65 years it served as after or pre game hangout, a cheap place to take a date, and a Berkeley tradition. I’m surprised, with it’s history and 50’s styling, it hasn’t been designated a historical attraction.

It’s being replaced by an outfit called “Sweetgreen”, which is more in alignment with current Berkeley dining: local fresh produce and a strong vegan, vegetarian menu. Still, I’ll miss the Oscars, an oasis in the politically correct dining that is the Gourmet Ghetto standard.

Now you might ask, “is it true that the Seller’s Market is closing as well?”

Well, if you’re looking to sell, my SENSE is that you may already have missed the crest. You’d have had a better chance a week ago at transacting at the peak.  Why? Well, I’ve observed and many of my colleagues are telling me that:

  • There’s more inventory on the market, thus more competition for fewer buyers
  • There are lots of inspection packets going out, but fewer actual offers coming in
  • More properties are lowering their price after spending a longer time on the market without a sale
  • Many buyers are giving up due to inflated prices and the (formerly) low inventory
  • If the Federal Reserve decides it needs to check inflation with a rate increase, the end-of-the-summer bump won’t be happening.

I should be very clear, if I haven’t already been: if you want to sell this year or even next, you’re unlikely to improve your results by waiting.  Now is the time, and the window is showing signs of closing.

If you want to get a feel for what’s going on in the East Bay Real Estate market, check out my Super Site and discover properties on the market neighborhood by neighborhood–almost as soon as they’re posted on the MLS!

Give me a call if you’re thinking of  buying or selling a home, and for all your other real estate needs.  Just phone 510-527-0174 .  I’m never too busy to take care of you– or your referrals–and I’ll make you glad you called.

Get to know me! Check me out on facebook, linkedIn or see my other online presences. I have two sites made just for you.

If you’re a BUYER go to That House Detective
If you’re a SELLER go to What’s Next Homes.
If you’re interested in HIGH WALK SCORE HOMES click HERE.

Whatever your real estate need,  I’m happy to help!

Chris Neddersen,

Chris_sig

Broker Associate
CalBRE R01143189
Coldwell Banker in Berkeley

 

Berkeley Area Fun & Features with a Focus on Real Estate