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How can a buyer compete with others when they are short on closing cost cash? The most common response is to ask the seller for closing cost assistance. But how can one do this in a market like Melbourne, Florida where there are often multiple offers? This most often involves a higher than usual offer price. It would be unrealistic to expect a seller to "pay closing costs" if another offer is on the table at the same price. This is a strategy FSBO sellers will sometimes use when trying to sell to a buyer who has an agent. The "For Sale By Owner" seller will try to get a higher sale price to "offset" real estate agent fees.If this technique is employed the buyer should be advised up front. Some buyers will opt to pay their own real estate agent when buying from a FSBO.Of course bumping an offer price up involves potential pitfalls which all should be aware of from the start. The major pitfall? The appraisal comes in low.So what are the options of the appraisal is low? Here are the answers....Multiple Offers, Appraisals and Financing.The "Terms" Define the "Real" Price.The Appraisal Came in Low. What Can I Do?Sellers - Understand the Process From "Under Contract" to "Sold."Home Buyer Strategies in a Seller's Market.Is an Appraisal Really Necessary With a Cash Offer?Ready to buy a home in Viera (Melbourne), Florida? Call or text me at 321-693-3850.
As it is now hurricane season and the tropics are picking up the title could reference buying a loaf of bread or bag of ice in a storm. Anyone who has been through one of those pre-hurricane periods in Florida will understand the frantic last minute rush to buy.I have witnessed a simialr response buy prospective home buyers who waited until the storm (rising prices) was upon Florida before they sought to purchase!Many prospective home buyers in Florida are finding the market has changed significantly over the past year or two. People who were looking at homes for sale in Brevard County, Florida two years ago and wanted to wait for the prices to "bottom out" find themselves in a completely different market. Take a look at this comparison of average and median sales prices of single family homes in Brevard County Florida for the years 2014 and 2016. Current home-buyers who have been dragging their feet over the past six months are finding their choices limited and budgets strained by rising prices and dwindling inventory of move in ready (or new ) homes. If you are considering buying a home in Florida in the near future the time to act is now! While the interest rates are still low who knows the direction on the future. While there has been some hinting of an increase by the Fed of a rate increase before year end. we have no way of knowing. Still, while the interest rates are uncertain, prices will likely continue to rise in Brevard County, Florida.Demand is acting on the price of homes, like buying a boat in a storm, it is the environment that determines price. Image courtesy of graur codrin at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The gated subdivision of Sonoma at Viera located in the planned unit development of Viera in central Brevard County, Florida, was one of the first subdivisions constructed when expansion moved west of I-95. Sonoma at Viera is in a very convenient location close to several golf courses including Duran Golf Course, excellent schools nearby (Viera High School, Kennedy Middle School), shopping and restaurants at the Avenues at Viera (also Publix shopping center across from development, near medical resources including the new Viera Hospital and outpatient medical offices, close to multiple places of worship and much more. Also the location is ideal for commuters to Orlando (40 miles), Melbourne as well as the Kennedy Space Center. Click link to view the Sonoma at Viera home owner association web site. What is currently for sale in Sonoma at Viera?Currently there are six active listings in the Sonoma at Viera community. List prices range from $265,900 to $479,990 (why not $480K?) with a median list price around $360,000. All are standard sales which mirrors a trend in the Brevard County real estate market. Most homes currently for sale in Sonoma at Viera are larger with only one having less than 1,600 sq.ft. and the others between 2,000 and 2,900 sq.ft. under air. Most have four bedrooms and three bath with three having private pools as well.Like most homes in the development these were all built in the 2003 to 2025 time frame. There are another three under contract awaiting closing at this time. What has recently sold in Sonoma at Viera? Over the past six months there have been eighteen homes sold in Sonoma at Viera. Selling prices ranged from $232,000 to $487,000. Since August 1, 2016 there have been four homes sold in Sonoma at Viera with selling prices running from $232,000 to $385,000.The most recent sales included:4050 Chardonnay Drive - With 1,578 sq.ft. this 2006 built 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage home sold for $232,000.4370 Chardonnay Drive - A foreclosure with 2,488 sq.ft. under air offering 4 bedrooms 3 baths and a pool sold for $298,000.4190 Chardonnay Drive - With 1,813 sq.ft. under air this 4 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage pool home sold for $299,995.4731 Chardonnay Drive - 2,619 sq.ft. 3 bedroom 2 bath pool home sold for $385,000. For information on homes for sale in Viera (Melbourne), Florida call or text me 321-693-3850.
Chelsea Park subdivision in Rockledge Florida offers homeowners deed restricted living in a centrally located development near everything. Chelsea Park's relatively low association fees, amenities, proximity to several golf courses and shopping keep the homes in demand. Typical Look Chelsea ParkLocated very close to I-95 and US1, commuting from Chelsea Park to anywhere in Brevard County is very easy. Orlando and the attractions are also less than an hour away.Children living in Chelsea Park attend Manatee Elementary in Viera, McNair Middle School and Rockledge High School (verify school boundaries here). Homes for sale in Chelsea ParkCurrently there are seven active listings in the Chelsea Park community. List prices range from $220,000 to $425,000 with a median list price around $370,000. All of the homes for sale in Chelsea Park are standard sales which mirrors a trend in the Brevard County real estate market where very few distressed sales exist.Most homes for sale in Chelsea Park are larger with only one having less than 1,600 sq.ft. under air conditioning and the remaining homes at 2,300 - 3,400 sq.ft. Most offer five or six bedrooms and three or four bathrooms.Five of the seven listings have private pools. The large presence of private pools is likely because Chelsea Park does not offer a community pool (has park,playground, tennis). This also contributes to the lower HOA fees in Chelsea Park.Most of the current homes for sale in the development were built in the early 2000s with one constructed in 2015. There are another seven under contract awaiting closing at this time (all standard sales as well).What has recently sold in Chelsea Park?Over the past six months there have been ten homes sold in Chelsea Park. Selling prices ranged from $229,000 to $368,000. Since August 1, 2016 there have been four homes sold in Chelsea Park. Selling prices ranged from $259,000 to $368,000.These most recent sales included:398 Brookcrest Circle - 2,108 sq.ft. 4 bedroom 2 bath pool home built in 2002 sold for $259,000.567 Glenbrook Circle - 2,740 sq.ft. under air offering 4 bedrooms 3 baths 3 car garage two story sold for $305,000.564 Glenbrook Circle - With 2,229 sq.ft. under air this 2016 built 4 bedroom 3 bath 3 car garage home sold for $352,000.322 Castlewood Lane - 2,800 sq.ft. 4 bedroom 3 bath 3 car garage pool home sold for $368,000.For information on homes for sale in Chelsea Park in Rockledge, Florida, call or text me at 321-693-3850.
Not too many years ago the term "move in ready" was defined as no leaks, all appliances present and capable of being financed!Maybe that is a bit of a superficial definition. My point is people were not as picky back in the 2004-2006 time-frame when there were way more buyers than sellers.During the big run up of a decade ago, buyers would often acquiesce and buy before the prices went even higher.Times have changed.This is a seller's market and move in ready homes are commanding top dollar here in Florida.But buyers (and appraisers) are no longer lax in their definition of move in ready or finance-able.If you are considering selling your Viera, Florida home consider the competition. Sellers logically want to get top dollar. And with a shortage of inventory of homes buyers are willing to compete for "the house."Move in ready is defined by the buyer however common expectations among buyers include things like:Roof - End of life or in need of replacement roof is a turn off. Who wants to pay top dollar and put a roof on in a few years? Besides, buyers may have issues with obtaining homeowner insurance. Air Conditioning - This is Florida. It is AC weather about ten months out of the year. Energy efficiency is an issue for many buyers. Do not be surprised if the buyers want to see the utility bills for the past year or two. And don't forget that "original equipment" water heater. Sure it may last twenty years but should it? Kitchen - Old appliances and "vintage" kitchen cabinetry are not positives. Flooring - Worn carpet, old vinyl is more than a cosmetic turn off. Again, buyers want to move in and rarely buy flooring or even paint right away. Bathrooms - Like the kitchen, old, vintage and classic are not descriptions buyers are seeking when reviewing your agent's marketing materials!If a seller is intent on receiving top dollar for their move in ready home, then it is critical they see their home through the eyes of the buyer!
One of the keys to selling your Melbourne, Florida home is to hire a real estate agent who is not only local but also knowledgeable. I always recommend sellers interview at least three agents before deciding who to hire. [For more, read the related article links at bottom of post.]But these real estate agent interviews are like a boy picking up your daughter for a first date. They know they are going to be quizzed and better be on their best behavior with the right answers!Sellers are at a disadvantage because these these agents will likely all appear to be knowledgeable. All will probably be dressed to impress, responsive to questions and saying what you want to hear!My suggestion is don't do the initial interview in your home but at this really really secret location....At a nearby open house.I call this the "just browsing" screening process. Choose homes for sale ideally in your neighborhood or another nearby neighborhood. Stop by and take a look. Be a browser.Observe how the agent presents them-self to all visitors. You know what you like and don't like in sale people. And real estate agents are primarily sales people. Are they employing pressure and arm twisting? Are they knowledgeable about the product (listing)? Do they make you feel comfortable? Ask them about the neighborhood. Ask them about home prices and seller attitudes. Don't ask the easy questions. Ask about homeowner associations. Ask them about criminal activity. What about school quality and school assignment areas. See how far out on a limb they will go with answers. A good local real estate agent will also know the limitations of their knowledge as well as potential liability. Do not be surprised if you get advised to call the schools or local law enforcement folks for answers. This is not the final selection process. You may not find the agent you are going to hire but you may just find some to skip when the interviews start for real! I like to tell new agents to always expect any contact at an open house to be an interview.By the way, this "just browsing" interview technique works well for prospective buyers who can have a relaxed, no pressure consultation! Twelve Rules for Buying or selling a Home in FloridaTwelve Articles to Help You Be Better Seller.Understand the Process From "For Sale" to "Sold"Thinking about selling your Rockledge, Florida home? Call or text me at 321-693-3850.
The first hurdle prospective home sellers, especially longtime owner-sellers, must clear before putting their home on the market is they are selling a house and not a home.While it may be perfectly natural for a person to become sentimental when selling a home the nostalgia must be tempered. The nice thing about memories is they are easily transported to the next home. Although not the only factor in selling a house pricing is the key factor. Pricing a house unrealistically is akin to fishing with no bait. Anyone who has done much fishing understands their target and the best bait for the environment.Similarly, when selling a home, it is key a seller (through their real estate agent) understand the environment of the sale.The environment encompasses factors likeseller reason, motivation and circumstances (timeline, existing mortgage, property condition, competition).With an understanding of the environment the bait (price) is chosen.Pricing too high is like fishing with no bait whatsoever. Sometimes, a less than ideal bait will get some nibbles and, even a catch occasionally. A Cheat Sheet For Home Sellers.Selling an Imperfect Home.Great Staging Will Not Overcome Deficiencies.Twelve Articles to Help You Be a Successful Home Seller.Ready to sell your Melbourne, Florida home? Give me a call or text at 321-693-3850 so we can talk bait... Image courtesy of meepoohfoto at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
You want to not sell your house? Well here is a short primer on how not to sell your home. Smell. Odors, whether from smoking, last night's fish or whatever will turn a prospect as quickly as anything.Inaccessible. Rarely will a house sell if a buyer has to jump through hurdles to get inside. Having an "agent must accompany all showings" or "24 hour notice required" will not promote viewings.Competition/price. There is a reasonable price range based on your competition. If too much above it, then buyers may skip your house.Location. This goes right along with the pricing and competition. Your neighborhood or location will command only a certain range of prices.Neighbors. Although its only the house for sale it is also your neighborhood and neighbors. Loud music, cars parked on the lawn, overgrown, and neglected lawns all tell a story. Photos and clutter. The home is for sale. Too many photos or personal items (actually anything whatsoever) that distracts from your house is not a good thing. If it has a handle buyers will open it! Dated. I had someone stop by an open house on Saturday. They have their home for sale. They proudly stated they were the second owners since it was built in 1957. They also indicated it needed updating as it still had the original pink stove, etc. Most buyers do not want original equipment in a 1960s or 1970s house. Shag carpet was nice back then!Want to know how to sell your home? Consider doing the opposite of the above items...CleanDe-clutter De-personalizeBe flexible with scheduling showingsEnlist your neighbors helpDo some basic updating (within reason and budget)Price it right for your location, motivation and circumstances (choose the right real estate agent!)
I remember a few years back when I advised a Viera, Florida home buyer that there were multiple offers and the seller wanted his best offer. He responded with a simple question,"Is this a scam?"In the real estate world I must assume the existence of other offers to be real. Realtors operate under a code of conduct. Still, I have no concrete evidence of other offers. Multiple offers happen frequently when it is a seller's market AND a property is priced right. [Read Signs Your Home is Not Priced Right.]Sellers who receive multiple offers are in the catbird seat - maybe. Offers are more than price only. Each offer must be evaluated independently. Still, regardless of "winning" price, if a mortgage is involved then the property has to appraise.Those are words every seller and buyer should understand.Just this week I had buyers get into a situation that involved multiple offers. In this case my buyers understood the situation and knew what they were willing to spend. That is the key point.These buyers were not emotional. They had not formed an attachment to the property. As much as sellers would like buyers to view the process as a competition, not all buyers fall into an emotional trap.They did not. If you plan to buy a home in the Viera, Florida area I want to help. I will make sure you understand the market, your budget and the home buying process.
Fresh paint sounds like an automatic positive selling point. In many cases it certainly would be. But, as a buyer, there is one time when new paint may not be your friend.Flips...you know, investor quick sales. No, this is not an accusatory post. Rather, consider it as a cautionary post.As a general rule sellers disclose and buyers verify. But very often investors are quick to point out they have "no disclosure because seller never lived in house."Still investors should know if they previously repaired a leak in the roof, had an AC issue or whatever if there were tenants in place for any given time. And with a foreclosure sellers may have idea of previous issues based on the condition when purchased.So when buyers walk into a new foreclosure flip, the new paint will look clean, the plumbing fixtures and the like will be new but what about any underlying issues.That is the reason I always urge buyers to have a property inspection performed.While a property inspector may not be able to tell a prospective buyer what is behind the paint they may be able to tell if moisture is present. And they do a lot more!Here are a few more articles on buying a home.Cheat Sheet for Home BuyersBuying a foreclosure - Due Diligence is Required.If its a defect, its a defect!Contract to Closing in 20 Steps.Keys to a Successful Closing When Buying a Home in FloridaReady to buy a house in Viera, Florida? call or text me at 321-693-3850 if I can help in any way. If you prefer, send me an email.
Florida Realtors and National Assoc Realtors News
Agents: What's Hampering Sales the Most August 30 2016
Meet the 2016 Good Neighbor Finalists August 30 2016
Buyers Will Pay More for Smart Tech Features August 30 2016
Home Owners Using Airbnb Face Refi Snags August 30 2016
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