Real Estate Minute #….

Read the transcript below.

Location, location, location. It’s cliche, but it can’t be understated. You can have that perfect dream home everyone wants but if it’s situated “perfectly” where no one wants it, that makes things difficult. Obviously, location is important and aside from the outside factors like “walkability,” crime rate, and school districts, an even more obvious and important reason is because it’s immobile. It is where it is and it’s limited.

When you are ready to sell and you are looking at what you think you can get there are many tools and resources that you can consult. Online automated evaluation systems are great tools. They are everywhere and can give you a great idea of what taxes were paid on the property in the past and what the purchase price was the last time it was on the market. The automated systems, however, can’t decipher the market like a professional.

Whether you hire an appraiser or a real estate agent, hiring a professional is the best way to determine the TRUE value of your property. An appraiser will take in all the facts and measurements, the value of the area or street the home is on and then give you the value of your property based on comparable homes that have sold in the past six months. The real estate agent will take all of the same information into account and compare it to what is currently active, under contract, and what has recently sold versus the amount of buyers and ready home inventory to assess what you could possibly receive for your home.

Hiring a professional isn’t just to find a price, it’s to set a price. If you have an odd floor plan or have already moved your belongings out and even you can’t imagine how to furnish it, then it will definitely be harder for the buyer to imagine it. Leaving some furniture in strategic areas or hiring a staging or design team can make the difference between a house sitting on the market for days or weeks. If the home looks like a million bucks then maybe you set the price just a tad higher. Professionally staged homes tend to sell 17% quicker, according to the National Realtor Association. The buyer of course is going to have the numbers in their head, “how many bedrooms, bathrooms, etc.” but the majority of the time when it comes down to the final decision, it’s all emotions. You and your professional team need to grab hold of the buyer’s emotions and help them imagine living the next stage of their life in your home.


Tiny Houses

One of the biggest growing trends in the past decade  is the tiny house trend that is that has caught hold across the U.S. today, but has it caught in Utah? You can see it in nearly every home-related television show now-a-days, but what exactly is a “tiny home” and the lifestyle that comes with it? A Tiny home is defined as 100 to 400 square feet. Downsizing and living sparsely obviously come with the smaller space, but nicely enough it comes with a smaller price tag. One of the greatest appeals to tiny living is the lure of living debt free and still owning a place to call home.

“Debt free” has more than a nice ring to it; it’s got a near mesmerizing chime. But living tiny is just as it sounds, hard. Know the challenges that come with tiny. It’s not just the fact that you have to try and fit your entire life into 400 or fewer square feet. Its where do you plant your tiny roots? Many land parcels and subdivisions won’t allow for homes to be built less than 1000 square feet or park RVs fulltime (which the mobile tiny homes usually get referred to as). Do you have a foundation or wheels, or even how do the utilities work? These and many other things can be eccentric or just downright tricky, but the benefits are definitely there. According to 68% of tiny homeowners don’t have a mortgage to pay every month, while 55% have more savings in the bank than the average American, and 89% of the tiny life community has less credit card debt than the average American. Tiny house living isn’t for everyone though.

Being sold direct from the builder and riding the gray area of zoning laws leaves tiny home finding their plots in more rural communities instead of the urban scene. In general, tiny housing is a lifestyle born out of necessity; a necessity that Utah doesn’t have. We are very much still growing. In 2016 Wasatch Front was recognized, by the National Association of Realtors, as home to more mansions than any other U.S. city. In 2017 Utah has been repeatedly been chosen among the top markets in the U.S. in Forbes, Realtor,  Tiny housing may catch along the Front soon, so don’t fret, but for now the tradition of larger families and backyard basketball courts keeps Utah housing on the larger end of the scale.

If you would like to learn more about tiny living in your community or just want to explore your options reach out to us here.


First time in 15 years

For the first time in 15 years we had a buyer change their mind at the closing table.  Our client, the seller, had already closed on his new home and the sale of his current home.  We have been in the business long enough to see a lot of crazy things, but this perhaps is the strangest.  The property passed inspection, appraisal, and financing, yet the buyer got cold feet on the day of closing and didn’t sign the paperwork waiting for her at the title company.  As much as we all tried to persuade her to changing her mind, she was out.

This leaves us with a couple of interesting problems that we now have to deal with.  First our client will not be able to buy his new home.  This is a devastating blow for many reasons. Not only does he lose the home he fell in love with, but he is also out the money he spent for the inspection and appraisal.  We made our offer subject to the sale of his home, so at least the earnest money he put down is safe.  The biggest problem that we are going to have is finding him a new home in this crazy market.

In this market buyers are being faced with competing with multiple offers on the same property.  It can be very exciting as a seller to see all the demand for your home, but in reality, it doesn’t always work out to their advantage.

Let me explain how things are going down:

  1. A seller receives multiple offers – They look them over and pick the best one.  Most of these buyers have unsuccessfully written offers on other homes and have lost out.  These buyers end up offering the asking price or above.  The idea of getting a, “deal” isn’t a possibility in todays market.
  2. Second best gets a chance – The buyer that had the 2nd best offer gets their offer placed in a backup position. If the first buyer backs out, they are automatically given the option to become the primary offer.
  3. Everybody starts the search again – All the other buyers including the backup move on to find another home.  Keep in mind, they are all looking for the same thing, so it isn’t unreasonable to assume that they will be competing on their next house with many of the same people.
  4. Here comes buyers remorse –  Buyers are all feeling like they might have over paid for their home.  They had to offer thousands over the asking price to, “win” the home and the excitement of their home begins to sour.
  5. The domino effect – The primary buyer backs out and the backup offer is notified.  What could be simple isn’t.  The backup offer has moved on and found another home.  So the listing agent moves down the list notifying all the offers the deal has failed.
  6. Bad or worse choice – The only buyers that are left that haven’t found a house are the ones who aren’t making the over asking offers or that have less desirable financing.  The seller now has to work with these buyers or put the home back on the market.
  7. Sell, buy, repeat – All is not lost, eventually everything works out.  Sometimes, it even works on the first try. If you understand the game in the beginning, you can survive the craziness.

Buying or selling a home in this market can be a serious challenge.  We have been doing this for a long time and know that what we are seeing now is a condition of inventory and not the housing market in general.  The solution to the problem will be more sellers deciding to sell their home.  As we alway say, “when the spring flowers come out, so do the listings”.  Time will tell when this market will go back to a normal state.  In the meantime, we are going to keep writing offers!

Want to know how our clients win more offers?  I made a quick 1 minute video a while back explaining how.  Check it out below.  The home that fell out, here it is again… Luxury-Location-Affordablilty


Which Neighborhood Fits Your Lifestyle?

Sugar House? 9th & 9th? University? Downtown? The Avenues?  Aaahhh!

Which of these 5 Salt Lake City neighborhoods best fits your lifestyle?                                                     

Moving to a new area – whether it be a new city or even a new part of the city – can be very intimidating.  It takes living somewhere and truly experiencing it within your own lifestyle to fully understand the area around you and what makes it so great.  We always think our own neighborhoods are the best!  So what in the world do you do when everyone is telling you that you should move to their neck of the woods?                            

Take our quiz and remember the answers you selected for each question – mostly a’s, mostly b’s, etc.  After the quiz, you can find your results and learn more about the neighborhood that picked you!

What do you want to do when you wake up on a sunny Saturday morning?

  1. Head to the park with my dog and coffee
  2.  Play frisbee in a field with my friends
  3.  Hop on the train and hit the stores
  4.  Do some yoga and grab a coffee
  5.  Eat a local brunch and do some window shopping


What types of restaurants do you eat in the most?

  1.  Local restaurants where I can meet the owner
  2.  I enjoy the eclectic menus of other countries
  3. I like famous steakhouses and unique menus
  4.  I  love farm – to – table eateries
  5.  Smaller bistros really set the mood


What is your ideal mode of transportation?

  1.  Carpooling with my friends to save the earth
  2.  I have a bicycle and/or a longboard
  3.  UTA – Trax System
  4.  I have two legs that work great
  5.  My sturdy vehicle!


Where do you like to spend your evenings?

  1.  At the Art Walk
  2.  Attending cultural events
  3.  At bars
  4.  Hanging outside with other locals at festivals
  5.  In a candlelit eaterie with tapas style dining


Which activity do you do on a regular basis?

  1.  Going to the park
  2.  I love sporting events!
  3.  Mall. Movies. Meals.
  4.  Local boutique shopping
  5.  Museums and Gallery openings


If you answered mostly A’s … then Sugarhouse is where you should be!

If you answered mostly B’s … then you should move to the University Area!

If you answered mostly C’s … then you would love living Downtown!

If you answered mostly D’s … then 9th & 9th is your best bet!

If you answered mostly E’s … then the Avenues is waiting for you!


It can be scary moving to a new city with new people and new places.  After the fear goes away, the excitement settles in and that’s when you make your move!  Selecting the right neighborhood will make all the difference in the world in your new life.  To get a better feel for each of these neighborhoods, take a look at our Pinterest page and see what tickles your fancy!