Down More Rabbit Holes than I Can Count

2954406781_0e4da055bfHas it really been nearly a month since I’ve written a post? And did I really write only four posts in February?

The thing none of all the wonderful social media guru types tells agents is that real estate blogging takes work. Not so much the effort of writing itself, though for many the idea of putting three words together in coherent form is a challenge, but in constantly coming up with ideas and then taking the time to write.

So last month there were the multiple closings all taking place ahead of a scheduled family vacation in Disneyland ahead of the beginning of spring training, during which I spend much of the daylight hours in Maryvale or Surprise writing games for the Associated Press bureaus in Milwaukee or Dallas. (Never fear, potential clients – my buyers agents are out showing homes while I take care of the back-office work from my laptop high above the playing field.)

When you’re writing two or more stories a day, though, real estate kinda falls by the wayside.

Add in moving your parents across town, out of the house they’ve owned for 37 years (and you sold in eight days) and into Sun City, then some fun medical adventures with them since … plus the same sinus infection that started on Valentine’s Day, disappeared and then reared its nasally little head …

Yeah, it’s been a while.

And that doesn’t really factor in the sheer level of stupidity out there in the greater online real estate world these days. I keep receiving e-mails telling me that there’s this surge of bank owned homes, yet we’re sitting at 10,200 detached homes in Maricopa County – a 10 percent drop from the start of the year. There STILL is no inventory worth talking about, much as there hasn’t been any inventory for the past 10 months.

(Thinking of selling? Then what the heck are you waiting for?)

Every couple of weeks I read again that my entire business needs to change because of Zillow and Trulia, yet those sites continue to be fountains of terrible listing data.

Back east, some agent was named in a Fair Housing lawsuit because a listing entered by another agent that didn’t comply with Fair Housing rules popped up on the original agents’ side via the IDX feed (the same technology that allows every home in the local MLS to appear on this site.) The agent was dropped from the suit, but for a while (meaning three or four days) there was much trembling over what to do with our own IDX feeds.

What also was interesting about that was Inman News only knowing half the details; advertising a condo complex as not allowing anyone under 16 does in fact violate Fair Housing standards; there is an exception, however, for active-adult communities where only 80 percent of the population has to be 55-plus and then they can exclude people under 19 years of age until their heart’s content.

Speaking of doing things to their heart’s content, in the 16 days my parents have lived in Sun City they’ve already watched first a falcon and now a coyote enjoy a bunny breakfast. Not sure what that has to do with anything, aside from the reality that watching coyotes eat probably is great for weight loss.

Stupidity isn’t limited to real estate. It seems we as a society spend a great deal of time worrying about things that just don’t matter. A pro golfer walks off the mound in the middle of a round, sequestrations, debt ceilings, whatever the Kardashians are doing … seriously, who gives a damn and why?

And now, after reading this post, maybe you can see why I’ve been gone a little bit. Sometimes, it’s better just to keep one’s head down and do what you do rather than poke up and try to make sense of anything other than the basic facts.

Which, here in Phoenix, remain that there’s just no inventory. Did I mention that?

Photo credit: bixentro via Flickr Creative Commons

Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at