I had such a great time filming a segment on beekeeping school for Mass Appeal. Since I can't figure out how to embed the video here, I'll provide a link below if you'd like to watch my segment on their site. Bonus points to anyone who can figure out how to I can get the video to embed here or on my youtube. Thanks!
Click HERE to see Jessica on Mass Appeal
Here I go again, tooting my own horn! BEEP! BEEP! I seriously and sincerely cannot thank these people enough. Reviews are super helpful to growing my real estate business and every little one goes a long way. When a client takes the time to share their experience with others, they not only make me feel great, but they help me keep my own roof over my head! Thank you all!
Look at these happy homeowners! Meet Grace and Mark! I love this picture. What a great looking couple, right? When I first connected with Mark he was hoping that I was going to help him find a great rental for his family to lease. And that's exactly what we set out to do. So how did these two end up holding that "SOLD" sign? Because the universe works in strange and mysterious ways my friends! After touring just one rental property with this family, I had a good idea of what they were looking for in a home and a good understanding of why they wanted to rent instead of buy (they had a real estate horror story in their past). I'm always a cheerleader for buying over renting for anyone who is in the position to do so. Especially when the rent you would be paying would be higher than your mortgage payment. We talked it over and decided it would be OK if I emailed them a few listings of houses for sale that I thought had what they were looking for in a home... just to look. No pressure. I sent them a very short list of houses to review. They picked their favorite, we went for a tour, they liked it, we wrote an offer, it was accepted on New Year's Eve and they closed in 25 short days! One and done!
Working with this awesome family on a super smooth and super fast transaction was just what I needed to start my new year off right! The only downside being that I didn't get to spend MORE time with them looking for "the one". Welcome to Waterbury, Linhard Family! I'm looking forward to seeing you all again! Enjoy your new water view!
Shout out to The Black Market Kitchen for connecting me with awesome clients! (You can find my cards and magnets near the register the next time you're there grabbing something healthy and delicious to fuel your life!)
660 Lakeside Blvd W
Waterbury, CT 06708
4 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom
This was a tough one! I'm so glad for my seller that his home selling journey has finally come to an end! This house originally went on the market way back in early July of 2018. It was a good house in a market with low inventory, so why did it just close, you ask? I'm chalking it up to plain old bad luck. This house was under contract not once, not twice, but three times! Thankfully the third time was finally the charm. If it was such a good house, you ask, why did the first two contracts fall apart? First we had a case of plain old cold feet. The buyers backed out within days signing and we went right back on the market. The second contract went almost all the way to closing. The home inspections and appraisal were complete and we weren't too far away from closing when the buyer was denied financing by his lender. This was a very upsetting and unexpected turn of events for both buyer and seller. Thankfully the house was very popular and received multiple offers each time it went back on the market. The third and final contract did make it all the way to closing, but not before hitting every single possible bump in the road first. The original closing date for this sale was to be 11/30/18 and we just closed escrow on 1/22/19. Ladies and gentlemen, that is a total of 53 days late with 7 total extensions! Not good. Why am I telling you all of this? Because I think it's important to point out that even when you have a great house to sell in a busy market, Murphy's Law can still come into play. Anything that could go wrong on this one did. It was a frustrating process for everyone involved, I had to deliver bad news more often than I've ever had to before and the seemingly endless delays were devastating to my client who had already relocated for work. I'm very happy we've come to the end of the road here and although I learned a lot from this one, I wish the whole thing went so much easier for my client.
155 Paper Mill Rd.
Westfield, MA 01085
3 bedrooms, 1 bathroom
This was a great find! It needs some updating, but is in a great neighborhood and my clients got it for a steal! They went straight to work on the renovations and plan to have it ready for their daughter to move in by March. This house has such good bones it's going to be glorious with it's new open floor plan, new kitchen, siding and windows!
7 Mitchell Dr.
Enfield, CT 06082
3 bedroom, 1 bathroom
It was super cold outside but this was super fun to do. Initially I was VERY nervous about representing the Hampden County Beekeepers Association on the local news. Taylor Jacobs did a great job helping me feel comfortable on camera and the camera-man was on point with great questions to keep me going. Now that I've had my 15 minutes of fame, it's going to be awfully hard to go back to my "normal" life. With the support of my family and friends, I'm sure I'll manage.
You can view the original post on the Western Mass News HERE
We had to take this one from a distance so we could get the whole house and expansive lawn in the photo too! I'm so happy for these newlyweds! Meet Keren and Brendan! I first met them back in 2015 when I helped them find a condo to rent. Time passed and we kept in touch and I'm so glad that when the time came I was able to help them as they bought their first home! This house is amazing! A spacious and well maintained colonial, they have plenty of room for their family to grow here and plenty of yard to enjoy! They have some renovations planned and I can't wait to see what they do with the place! Congratulations to the Evans family!
5 Broadbrook Rd.
East Windsor, CT 06016
3 bedroom, 2 bathroom
Work in real estate long enough and you'll have some tales to tell. I think it's time I share some of mine. Names and addresses withheld to protect the innocent.
I was delighted to find this little gem on a recent home tour with clients. The house we were visiting was built in 1855 (over 160 years old!) and was quite big at over 4000 square feet of living space. Homes of that age typically come with lots of nooks, crannies, corners and staircases. So why not a nice cupboard under the stairs? The Harry Potter fan in me was thrilled to see Daniel Ratcliffe pinned to the cupboard door. Someone was being very funny! But the house is not currently occupied, is completely unfurnished and there wasn't anything else hanging on any of the walls. Shout out to whoever made my day with this. From one Potter fan to another, I salute you! Mischief, managed.
Is attempting to save the cost of commission really worth it?
Online real estate search tools have come so far, all you have to do is point and click. Agents aren’t lawyers or appraisers, they’re middlemen; we can do what they do ourselves and save 6 percent.
We can market our home ourselves — I mean, how much can there be after nailing that for-sale sign into the ground and posting pics online?
We’ve all heard the mythical reasons FSBOs think they can sell their house without a real estate agent. But few can, and many fail because trying to sell a home without a real estate agent can be a lot tougher than they realize.
A 2017 Zillow study showed that about 36 percent of FSBOs try to sell their homes sans agent, but many hit roadblocks and eventually hire an agent. Only about 11 percent of sellers successfully complete the deal.
Going in, Zillow research shows that sellers think they:
For-sale-by-owners have good intentions, but their knowledge is weak. They simply don’t know what they don’t know. Here are seven reasons FSBOs tend to be unsuccessful — and eventually hire a real estate agent.
1. FSBOs struggle to price their home correctly:
FSBOs tend to rely on a home evaluation based on the sale price of a neighbor’s home or the amount of money they put into renovations.
As professionals who are well-versed in the market, we know that just because you spend $10,000 updating something does not mean you will get $10,000 more for the home when it sells.
Do-it-yourself homesellers also fail to recognize that an updated home is worth more than a home with no updates.
I have lost count of how many times I’ve encountered homeowners with 10-year-old carpet and Formica countertops who think their home is worth the same as the neighbor who has hardwood and granite.
Pricing a home right is an art form that many real estate agents spend years mastering, and even then it’s something that many will hone their entire career. The odds of a FSBO hitting it right on the money the first time are slim, which means there are likely price reductions in his or her future.
2. Emotional attachment is a barrier:
Selling a home is an emotional transaction for the owner. Most FSBOs have a hard time separating their personal feelings from the business transaction.
Think about it. How do your clients react when you bring them a low offer. They’re insulted, right? Now imagine FSBOs who just received an offer wayunder asking price. Or someone tells them their house smells musty or like pets.
As agents, we can be a buffer and use the situation constructively. A FSBO cannot because they are in the line of fire.
3. Marketing is a huge undertaking:
FSBOs are usually given a packet with guidelines for marketing. However, if you don’t have experience marketing, efforts often end in an epic fail.
Agents hone their marketing efforts as time evolves, and they tailor make marketing campaigns to appeal to the right buyer for a home. It’s not a skill learned overnight.
Yard signs, friends, family and social media will only go so far. Also, if a FSBO is not offering a fee for a buyer’s agent, marketing attempts are even more moot.
In the end, most DIY sellers hit obstacles along the way that are out of their comfort zone, or they eventually realize they don’t know what they don’t know.
There’s a lot more to selling a home than meets the eye, and most listing agents earn their keep by dodging bullets and avoiding common obstacles that a novice homeseller would not be able to avoid.
4. They have to show their own home:
Most of my buyer clients feel restricted when a homeowner is lurking during a showing.
For-sale-by-owners have no other way to show the home other than to be present unless they allow buyer’s agents to show their home through a non-MLS lockbox.
This makes potential buyers uneasy. They often feel like they cannot ask real questions for fear of insulting the owner.
5. They set themselves up for legal liability:
I have had FSBOs ask me how to write clauses in a contract. I have had others ask me how to fill out a property disclosure or if they needed one at all.
I always refer them to an attorney. I explain that if they become my client, I will handle the items on their behalf. But for me to answer their questions without a formal agreement, I would be practicing law without a license.
As Chris Rediger points out in his Inman article about why FSBOs are a bad idea:
Everyone makes mistakes. A seller (or buyer) who doesn’t have the representation of a licensed agent pays for those mistakes. Attorneys can close a real estate transaction, but they don’t carry errors and omissions (E&O) insurance.
So if homeowner Sandy lists “hardwood floors” as a feature and the buyer discovers it’s just a wood veneer, chances are Sandy is going to pay for that mistake.
An agent would have either caught the mistake or covered it with E&O insurance. Let’s face it: this is a litigious society, so what homeowner wants to be a target for lawsuits?
6. Scams are real:
As Rediger also points out, scams are a real concern for FSBOs, or at least, they should be. With headlines about Zillow scams and even Realtors falling prey to wire fraud schemes, how can an untrained homeowner be sure?
Common scams include fraudulent appraisal and loan documentation papers, overseas buyer deposits, fake third-party purchases and phishing for personal information. There’s little recourse for FSBOs aside from hiring an attorney.
7. FSBOs sell for less:
As a result of all of these issues FSBOs are unequipped to face, their homes tend to sell for less.
According to the 2017 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, FSBOs accounted for 8 percent of 2016 home sales, and the typical home sold for $190,000 compared to the $249,000 and agent-assisted home sale drew.
And as for FSBOs thinking it’s all worth it in the end because they saved that 6 percent commission, research says otherwise.
A 2017 analysis released by automated valuation model (AVM) provider Collateral Analytics found that homeowners will net about the same proceeds whether they sell on their own or through a real estate agent.
The study attributed this to the fact that agents often fetch higher sales prices for homes than comparable FSBO listings, which are enough to offset the commission fee agents charge for their services. So in the end, homeowners who sell with an agent net about the same proceeds, if not more, and have far fewer headaches than those who try to do it themselves.
Original post by Missy Yost for inman.com