A Wildlife Trail

As I was driving to work this morning, my car was registering a mere four degrees outdoors, and certainly wasn’t very happy to find a snowplow having pushed more snow at the entrance to the rear parking lot of my office, so before I could even park, I had to grab my shovel and get it removed. What a frigid way to begin my day.

After getting myself settled in for another Friday, I made sure my closing file was ready for its late morning closing, and then moved on to responding to a number of emails that had come in overnight. I’m finding all the more people waiting until late hours when sending emails to my office.

Once the sun was shining brightly, I went back over to several properties to check on their walks and furnaces, and wouldn’t you know, there was more snow needing to be shoveled. Oh well, as long as I can stay ahead of it all, it’ll not be that much of a bother. It won’t be to my liking if this wind continues until our extended cold snap is supposed to let-up late next week, because it’ll be sure to create more drifting snow.

While out, I stopped by to see a client who’s getting his home readied for the market, and when he came to the door, he had a paint-roller in hand and drop clothes scattered about. He wanted my opinion on a color he’d picked and already had applied to a bedroom wall which I found very attractive. It was about as close to being the color of a grayish-brown mouse. There’s no question it gave that bedroom a soft “feel” which it needed due to the larger windows it contains. He’s now finding the house so much more appealing, I’m afraid he’ll end up wanting to stay put in his refreshed digs.

By the time I got back to my office, it was just about the hour I was to be at the closing company down the street, so I grabbed my file and headed out. The closing agent was already prepared and waiting for me, so it didn’t take us nearly as long as I’d expected. After getting everything signed, we sat and had a nice over-due chat about what our sales are possibly going to be like these coming months due to our exceptionally low inventory. We both decided, there’s nothing more we can do other than making the best.

It won’t surprise me if our rag newspaper stops publishing that Real Estate Extra since there’s not that many active listings for them to promote. All the other pages are filled with agents pumping themselves up like peacocks, which I’ve always found annoying because they should be promoting their listing more-so than themselves.

Oh if the general public only knew how many companies, including real estate agents, actually pay for high Google rankings, as well as personal promotions and buyer leads thru Zillow. I can’t imagine being on the hook for over $1,000 per month, and mind you, under, to have Zillow consider you one of their “premier” agents, while they’re placing for sale by owners on their site which are in direct competition. For me, it’s nothing less than financially funding one’s own competitor.

We’ll be hearing all the more horror stories in the months to come from buyers who’d purchased something they saw on Zillow without any sort of buyer representation. How scary is that? Buying FSBO is a great way to set oneself up for failure. Yes, there have always been those sellers who think they know more than Realtors, but now that they have online platforms on which they can easily post their homes, it gives them all the more incentive to hold all the cards, and especially in these impetuous buying times.  Just this past year, I’ve seen some real jaw-dropping prices those FSBO sellers ended up getting, and laughing all the way to their banks. Let’s hope our recent impulsive buyers stay in their new homes for a very long time, just so our market can catch up with them.

Another naughty little trick I’ve been noticing of late, are agents canceling their listings with their sellers, and then relisting them a week later, just so to make them appear to the “online” general public that they’re “hot” on the market. Oh the naughty ways of some. I’m now wondering where they’re getting all these buyer “duping” ideas.

If you’ve ever wondered what I consider perfect sales, I can freely say that such transactions exist when both buyers and sellers have come together and agreed upon fair and equitable prices, along with the sellers being fully truthful about the condition of their homes, but not forgetting the buyers following thru with their intentions of getting their financials arranged, which is why I always insist on bona-fide pre-approval letters from their lending institutions. Holding a seller “hostage” for weeks on-end, and then finding a buyer can’t perform, is for me, a nightmare in the making.

After my closing, I headed over to Clear Lake to take an exterior photo of the home I’d just closed, and deliver the final documentation and key to a relative of the buyers who’re unable to attend their closing. The roads were far more navigable than they were yesterday, which had me holding fast to my steering wheel during that drive over and back. Irregardless of what anyone should say differently, that home was a very good buy, and happy it went to those charming people. On my return, I took a back road in search of wintery photos to share. Tonight’s is of a wildlife trail I nearly missed seeing.

Just after returning to the City, I received a troubling phone call regarding a transaction I’d assisted a seller with, which had taken place over 13 years ago. I believe that call added a few more gray hairs in worry, as I instantly thought it was an error on my part, but after doing some fast research, I found it was an oversight at our Courthouse. I made a quick call, explained the situation, and got it all resolved. What a scare!

Tonight’s One-liner is: The more powerful and original a mind, the more it will incline towards the religion of solitude.

Joe Chodur

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