Monday, November 9, 2015

Things that Bug Real Estate Agents

I saw a posting on another broker's web site over the weekend from one of their agents who apparently needed to vent about something that really bothers her under the caption "A Realtor's biggest frustration".

What is the BIGGEST frustration faced by this agent?  Booties!  That's right -- those little slip on booties provided at some homes for sale to protect floors and carpeting from whatever nastiness might be clinging to the bottom of the shoes of agents and prospective buyers. The alternative of removing your shoes is also deemed "offensive, undignified, inconvenient, ungracious, unnecessary and unsightly".

Her solution is for the listing agent to better educate their sellers (often referred to as "control your client").

Now I'm all for educating clients (sellers and buyers).  That's largely why they hire us to guide them through the process of selling or buying a home in all its aspects.  But any agent who pretends they can control their client is overreaching their responsibilities and doing that client a disservice.  It's always the client's decision -- it's their money.  Some clients may give you more latitude than others but that is also their decision.

I’d say the bigger frustration is agents who visit our listing and give gratuitous advice on how we should work with our seller who they’ve never met.  Now that’s a frustration!

New Listing Watch - Fewer New Listings

The number of new listings in the last two weeks (245) has dropped significantly from the previous two-week period (343) and also from a year ago (347).

The percentage of new condo listings to go into contract has also dropped compared to the previous period as well as compared to a year ago.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

New Listing Watch - Fewer Properties in Contract; More Price Reductions

Today's latest "hot sheet" activity for the previous two weeks appears to be almost exactly what it was last year at this time.  Inventory begins to rise after the Labor Day holiday and for the next ten weeks inventory grows by about 400 homes each month.

For 2015 during the past eight weeks as measured in our survey the number of new listings (single family homes and condos/TICs) is 1493.  For the same period in 2014 there were 1486 new listings.  In 2015 the number of price reductions were 98 single family homes and 129 condos for a total of 227.  For the same period in 2014 there were 118 price reductions for single family homes and 112 reductions for condos for a total of 230.

It's interesting to note that the number of properties going into contract for the last two weeks were 130 compared to 181 last year, a reduction of almost 30%.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Where are all the cash buyers?

With all the talk about how cash buyers are king/queen in the San Francisco real estate market and how ordinary buyers who need a mortgage are being beat out at every turn it's a little surprising to see this report from Zillow that shows San Francisco is one of the lowest markets in terms of percentage of cash buyers.

Of the 47 metropolitan areas listed, San Francisco is 39th (and San Jose is 42nd).  The highest percentage of cash buyers appears concentrated in Florida.  The top four area are Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Sarasota, Ft. Myers and Tampa -- all with more than 50% cash buyers.

The explanation may be as simple as homes in the Bay area are generally more expensive than in many eastern cities.  According to Zillow's numbers, the "median home value in Miami is $289,200" compared to San Francisco's median home value of $1,094,500.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

New Listing Watch - Two Weeks Ending 10/12/2015

The total number of new listings continues to keep pace with a year ago but the split between single family homes and condos has changed.  This year there are more condos (213) than single family homes (152) that came on the market in the last two weeks.  Last year the numbers were reversed with more single family homes than condos.

New listings going into contract is up for both single family homes (8.6%) and condos (15.0%) after being in single digit percentages for the previous two reports.

Another change from the previous two reporting periods to note is the uptick in price reductions.  The number of condo price reductions was 41 -- the highest we've seen in a long time.  There are obviously some motivated sellers out there who, apparently want to sell before the end of year holiday doldrums kick in.