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Real Estate Musings as October Comes to a Close

Let’s start with the numbers … As of the moment, there are 10,611 detached homes for sale in Maricopa County. We’ll see where sales wrap up – we’re at 4,600 and change heading into the final day of the month. … The generally misguided Rob Hahn is at it again, explaining the limited value buyers agents have in the real estate transaction. Because, as we all know, it’s far better to depend on someone who’s representing the best interests of the seller when you’re trying to purchase a home. … Rob’s latest screed is based in part on a forum in […]

Real Estate is an Illogical Profession

Commence minor venting/ There are some things in real estate that make little sense, the kind of things that bode well for inexperienced agents and make more experienced agents shake their head in complete wonderment. Back when I first started, I was hoping like hell no one would ask me how many homes I had sold because, frankly, the number was embarrassing. I was brand new, mind you, so without a ton of low-hanging fruit there was no way to have a high number, but still … I was inexperienced and I couldn’t escape that fact except through pure hustle […]

Raising the Bar, Video Fun and Other Tuesday Thoughts …

There’s a group on Facebook theoretically dedicated to “Raise the Bar in Real Estate.” Being a rather self-loathing lot, we tend to spend a lot of time worrying about all that is wrong with the real estate industry, most of which miraculously boils down to the “idiot” agent on the other side of the transaction or the remoras like Zillow and Trulia, who attract lots of eyeballs of people who prefer slick to design to verifiable data. Today, the RTB crowd is frothing at the mouth over this video which shows a would-be buyer at the beginning of his home […]

Watching Phoenix Real Estate on a 7-Second Delay

A couple of years back, my dad had a procedure where they tried to shock his abnormally beating heart into some sort of normal rhythm. One of the side effects of this, as it turned out, was he suddenly was on a 7-second delay. Ask him question, tell him something, you name it … seven seconds later, he’d finally respond as if you had just spoken. This was especially enjoyable at Arizona State football games, where I sit next to both my parents. As I told my mom, who still doesn’t quite grasp how I know that the penalty flag […]

National View – Resales Drop as Inventory Falls

Came across this bit this morning off the NBC News Wires … Home resales fell in September as the stock of properties on the market fell, a reminder that America’s housing sector is a long way from a full recovery despite recent signs of improvement. The National Association of Realtors said on Friday that existing home sales dropped 1.7 percent last month to an seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.75 million units. That matched the median forecast made by analysts in a Reuters poll. Nationwide, the median price for a home resale was $183,900 in September, up 11.3 percent from a year earlier […]

How to Describe the Phoenix Real Estate Market in One Word

Unstable. That’s about it, at least until the market has processed fully the continuing changes wrought by the bubble, the collapse and the nascent recovery. And that’s not going to happen for a while yet, judging by news from other quarters. Word out of Northern California, courtesy of Reuters with a hat tip to the incomparable Katie Cosner, is a large hedge fund is looking to sell off its portfolio of foreclosed homes … values are up and the fund managers see a profitable exit. Over the past week I’ve been working on mailing lists of out-of-town investors who own […]

Phoenix Real Estate Inventory Soars Past 10,000

As predicted here two weeks ago, inventory of single family detached homes here in the Phoenix real estate market has moved past the 10,000 mark. As of this morning, there are 10,031 detached homes for sale in Maricopa County. Of these, only 657 are priced at $100,000 or less. Needless to say, it’s a different market than what we saw a year ago at this time. Looking for a home? Our Phoenix real estate property search will show you everything that’s in the MLS (except for those handful of properties agents have elected not to market electronically for whatever reason.) […]

B of A Loan Forgiveness And You

Word started filtering down on Friday that some homeowners who have second mortgages with Bank of America are receiving letters telling them that they’re second loan balance has been forgiven. What does this mean for you if you have a second mortgage with B of A? A lot, if you receive one of the letters. And if you don’t … not so much. B of A already has selected the 150,000 homeowners who will receive the loan forgiveness; this isn’t a program for which you can apply, and if you didn’t receive a letter you’re not going to be part […]

If You Really Want to Buy a House …

If you really want to buy a house here in the Phoenix real estate market, here are a few helpful things to keep in mind: 1) There is no prize for the person who looks at the most homes. If you’re looking at upwards of two dozen homes and haven’t written an offer either your sense of market value is off, you’re not quite sure what it is that you want or you’re working with an idiot of an agent who can’t translate your wants and needs into a concrete home. 2) Online searches should serve as your first, rough […]

So is the Phoenix Real Estate Market Cooling or Not?

The answer, of course, is yes … and no. Helpful, that. But in all honesty, it’s just this simple … If you’re a buyer and you’re looking at homes under $125,000, you’re still going to be involved in multiple offer situations – after all, there only are 9,800 detached homes for sale across the entire Phoenix real estate market. If you’re a buyer and you’re price point is between $125,000 and $175,000, you’d best decide somewhat quickly when you see a home that’s well priced and in good condition because, while you may not be facing multiple offers, those homes […]