Monday, August 18, 2008

Keep Looking For Positives !!

Still looking for more positives about the market while others, including those in the industry itself, continue to spread the word about doom and gloom.

Now, an article in the Nashville Tennesseean caught my attention, about how appraisers are coming under fire:

An article in the Kane Country Chronicle (suburban Chicago) over the weekend further illustrates my point. First, it shows declining home sales figures again. Released by the local realty association.

Then, it quotes, among others, Linda Ayukawa, who is managing broker at a local Coldwell Banker office as saying “People for whatever reason just haven’t been that motivated to buy,”.
Let me get this straight. Another local realty association continues to make lagging home sales figures available on a regular basis. A managing broker in the same area gets quoted as not knowing why consumers aren't motivated. Thousands of consumers saw that article.

If I was a real estate professional or a lender in the Kane County area, I'd run ads with Linda's quote, identify her CB office, and in big letters, state that "We work with the motivated buyers and sellers in (name of community)." There is a saying among marketing experts that "Sometimes any publicity is good publicity". Someone should tell Linda that this is the furthest from "any time" I have personally seen in years. But she is probably busy bragging about how she was an expert quoted in the local paper.

Perhaps the rise in some of the homebuilder stocks last week will make some investors and potential buyers take notice. D. R. Horton, Pulte, Red Bank, and Centex, all showed increases in share prices at some point last week. A bit of consumer confidence could go a long way.

Nice reporting by, with a recently completed study showing that lower home prices are "more than offset" by higher mortgage rates, even to the tune of 10 - 20% more. This came out the same week as a report showing state-by-state which areas have the highest closing costs.

I take that as a message for investors to explore joint venture possibilities with other investors to grab some of the good deals out there. It's not easy, but nothing successful ever is. Get together a group of 6 investors with $50,000 each. A barrel filled with $300,000 CASH up front just might get you a property listed in the $500,000 range since the seller receives all cash immediately. No waiting and waiting and waiting for a qualified buyer to come along. The buyer group can then re-list for a $450,000 - $500,000 sale price without having its own mortgage payments to worry about. Some will call it "group flipping", but it is a way to do some power buying.

Finally some positive sales statistics from a big city. The Detroit Free Press reports that home sales in metro Detroit rose 15%. Before I could join you and say "that is because of foreclosures", that same article added that during the month of July foreclosure activity fell by percentage points. While the article contained many more positive and negative statistics, its most important points were positive toward the industry.

An Aspen CO real estate firm came up with a way to keep the local market going. Chaffin Light Real Estsate purchased a $7.65 million office building to house its operation. How does this impact the local market? I'd say with the right advertising campaign. I am not their marketing consultant, and normally don't give valuable free advice, but in this market I need to get industry professionals thinking and acting positively. Chaffin Light should point out that "We invested over $7 million into this community, and we'll get you the best local investment for your money". And show off their newest listings.

No matter what you read, think positive. Create opportunity.

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