Archive for the ‘Sellers’ Category

How to Spot a Bad Business Broker

February 16, 2015

detectiveWhen selecting a business broker to help sell your business, make sure to watch for the red flags in their business plan. These few tips can help you save time and money during the selling process.

The broker wants a significant or total fee paid up front:

Many brokers have begun taking upfront fees, but generally the total fee is a combination of an upfront fee and commission paid upon sale of the business. An unreliable broker meets with you, runs some quick numbers, tells you that you can get your price or even more for your business, and then asks for a check to get started. In many cases, business owners are so relieved that they’ve found a broker and elated that they’ll write a check on the spot, without checking any references. “They get to ‘take away’ your check when they leave and you may not see them again, if they can help it. (more…)

Determining Premiums for Home and Auto Policies

February 9, 2015

iStock_000011471283XSmallThe age old saying “things just aren’t the way they used to be” still holds true when it comes to how insurance companies price insurance these days. The way it “used to be” was that a company would look at more risk based information when it came to pricing.

For instance, on home insurance policies, the age, location, and features of the home, along with whether or not the prospective insured had suffered any claims over the past 3-5 years, were the sole determining factors when it came to pricing. After determining the rebuild cost of the home to set the amount of insurance, the price for the coverage would be consistent from person to person using this method of pricing. However, this is not so in today’s insurance marketplace.

About 15 years ago, insurance companies began looking at the client more personally, focusing on their credit score, along with other personal information to assign them an Insurance Bureau Score. This score is now used as a determining factor for the price and is more heavily weighted in the pricing system than the risk characteristics mentioned above. The result is the higher a person’s credit score the lower the premium stands to be. Statistics have shown that people with higher credit scores typically are more reliable and responsible when it comes to day to day life. Insurance statistics also show these people are less likely to suffer a loss or file a claim when it comes to non-weather related incidents. Of course no one can predict the weather. However, most all other claims are preventable. (more…)

Working with a Relocation Management Company

February 2, 2015

blog 2At some point in your career, you’ll probably be requested by a corporate transferee to assist them either in a home purchase or home sale transaction. You might be wondering what that means to you. Corporate transferees are customers who have been directed by their employers to make a job transfer. For the most part, they wait until their human resources director tells them what steps they need to make and when, but sometimes the transferees jump the gun and makes decisions on their own that can affect how their employer helps them financially. What does this mean to you and to the customer?

You as the associate and service provider always want to protect the transferee’s benefits, so here are some rules and strategies to make sure you don’t make mistakes that jeopardize their benefits and your commission. (more…)

FHA Mortgage News for the New Year

January 12, 2015

fha_loan_limitsGreat news! FHA loan limits for the major counties in Georgia increased from $320,850 to $342,700 for all new FHA sales contracts written on or after Jan. 1, 2015. This gives homebuyers the opportunity to buy a home with a 3.5% down payment (all from a gift) and FHA has relaxed qualifying guidelines on homes $21,850 more expensive than last year.

The bad news is that the FHA Anti-Flipping Waiver expired on Dec. 31, 2014. Some folks might say, “What Anti-Flipping Waiver?” Many thought a seller had to have owned the home for 90+ days before selling it to a new buyer using FHA financing.

Well, you’re not totally right or wrong. Even though HUD introduced the Anti Flipping Waiver in February 2010 and extended it to December 2014, many FHA lenders and banks ignored the waiver guidelines and continued to require that the seller hold title to the home a minimum of 90 days before re-selling it to a buyer using FHA financing. Since HUD (FHA) only insures loans and FHA approved Lenders actually lend the money, FHA Lenders often have different guidelines than HUD’s guidelines for FHA Insurance purposes. (more…)

Contract in Review: Top 10 Contract Issues

January 5, 2015

contract_reviewIn addition to ready, willing and able buyers and sellers, the real estate professionals’ ability to collect a commission is dependent on how solidly the agreement is written. Whether you are the listing agent receiving the offer on behalf of a seller or the selling agent preparing the offer on behalf of an interested buyer, every agent involved in the transaction has an obligation to ensure the contract is well written. Many contracts are filled with loopholes and scenarios that could render the deal void if challenged. Below are the top ten issues that we see in Broker Support that could cause contract nightmares and possibly cause the contract to be voided by one party or the other. (more…)

What’s Ahead for Real Estate in 2015?

December 29, 2014

2015_real_estate_marketThis has been a great year for the Georgia real estate industry. Prices throughout metro Atlanta are up and Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Metro Brokers has more top producers than ever before. In some areas, the median sales price has met and exceeded pre-recession levels. This was another rebuilding year, but there’s still a lot farther our market has to go to truly recover. (more…)

What’s a Solid Insurance Portfolio and Why Do I Need to Have One?

December 1, 2014

solid_insurance_portfolioMany people have no idea what their insurance limits are. More times than not, they just purchase the least expensive they can legally get by with, as it is considered a “necessary evil”. However, talk to anyone who has experienced a large loss in their lifetime, and they’ll tell you either they’re sorry they did not have enough, or are glad they listened to their insurance agent and went with the recommendations.

The purpose of insurance is to protect your assets, and to put you back in the same place you were before a loss. The homeowner policy pays to rebuild the house, replace the personal property, and pay for a temporary place for you to live while the repairs or rebuild is taking place. It also gives you liability protection in case you’re negligent in causing bodily injury or property damage to a third party. The auto policy provides liability coverage if you’re found to be at fault in operating a car, in addition to repairing your car if you purchase comprehensive and collision coverage.

So what happens if the insurance you carry is not enough to cover the loss that has been sustained?  The answer is simple: You have to come out of pocket for the difference.

What, then, is considered a solid insurance portfolio? Here are my recommendations: (more…)

3 Reasons the Holiday Season Is A Great Time To Sell!

November 24, 2014

home_selling_holidaysAs the holiday season nears, many homeowners who are contemplating selling think the holiday season isn’t a good time to sell their house. Because of that misconception, many will wait until after the start of the New Year, or even until spring to put their house on the market.

Contrary to what many think, the holiday season is a great time to sell a house! Putting a house on the market over the holidays can result in a seller getting a higher price and a quicker sale.

How can that be you ask? Here are three great reasons:

  • Buyers will have fewer homes to consider because competing inventory will be at its lowest level over the holidays.
  • Although there are fewer buyers looking at homes over the holidays, those that do are serious and highly motivated.
  • Homes that are tastefully decorated for the holidays show well.

So if you’re thinking about selling and planned to wait until after the holidays, you should consider going ahead now. The first step is to consult a real estate professional who is a local expert in your area.

Happy Holidays… and Happy Selling!

Rent It or Sell It?

October 27, 2014

rent_or_sellWhat should I do with this property? This is a pressing issue in today’s real estate environment in many circumstances. Owners and agents alike are posing this question every day.

The market has begun its journey toward recovery and home prices are rebounding. The recovery has made it possible for an increasing number of previously underwater sellers to become equity sellers again. While the recovery is in PROCESS, there are many agents and sellers that remain frustrated with the rate of PROGRESS. (more…)

Dangers of Dual Agency: Walking the Tight Rope

July 14, 2014

dual_agencyWhen a Broker represents both the buyer and seller in the same transaction, there is the potential for Dual Agency to exist. More specifically, dual agency is created based on the involvement of the affiliated licensees of the broker.

When the buyer and seller are represented by the same broker, but different licensees respectively, the relationship is known as a Designated Agency Relationship. In the event there’s only one sales associate involved in the transaction and the brokerage only represents one party, there’s no risk of dual or designated agency.

There’s a common misperception that exists in the industry: If I sell my own listing, it’s always dual agency. This is simply not always the case. You can sell your own listings and not be in a dual agency situation. When selling your own listing, a dual agency scenario is based on there being a BBA with the buyer (with you as the agent) in addition to the Sellers Listing agreement signed (with you as the agent). (more…)

Adding Color to Small Spaces

June 23, 2014

color_in_small_spacesI recently helped a friend move into their new condo downtown, and one of the first things that I mentioned is that now would be the best time to start painting! When it comes to room design, a little color can go a long way, but many people hesitate when it comes to smaller spaces. They’re afraid that by adding color, they might make a room feel claustrophobic.

Color is one of the best ways to define a room, and a carefully chosen color can double a room’s apparent size! Here some of my tips for using color to create depth in small spaces. (more…)

Real Estate’s Most Valuable Asset

May 12, 2014

real_estate_agentThe perception that the public often has of Realtors® is not a good one. Consumer advocates, the media and self help authors will offer the public reasons why real estate agents are not working in the best interest of consumers. I believe many of these specialists do not understand what Realtors really do. They think all the agent does is unlock a door.

First of all, I still think that agents showing properties is very important. Agents have knowledge about houses themselves, which is an entire subject itself. Just for starters, most buyers don’t understand construction, floor plans or local design all of which can affect the re-sale value, not to mention community information, school information and commutes to and from various locations, which is why an agent is critical even in the beginning.  (more…)

Home Trends from the 80’s Are Making a Comeback

May 5, 2014

80s_interior_designRev up the DeLorean and get set to go back to the future! The same decade that spawned countless classics like Top Gun, Miami Vice and Charlie’s Angels is now back in style when it comes to home interior design.

While some ’80s trends — like pastel colors and neon socks — might make us shudder, others — like funky patterns and kitchen tables — deserve a second chance. Here’s a look at some ’80s trends designers have embraced and freshened up for today. (more…)

Changes in Flood Insurance Requirements That Could Affect You

April 28, 2014

NationalFloodInsuranceProgrA new law intended to strengthen the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) makes several changes to the way flood insurance premiums are calculated. These changes may increase your monthly mortgage payment. Contact your lender to find out if these changes will affect you.

Here are the most important things you need to know: (more…)

URGENT: Heartbleed Bug Poses Security Risk

April 14, 2014

eddie_blog_4.14.14As you may have heard, there is a new widespread security vulnerability affecting millions of secure websites called the “Heartbleed Bug.” It’s a very serious problem and requires action on your part to ensure your continued data safety.

Heartbleed Description

The issue is related to secure websites. When you visit a website that begins with https, such as https://metronet.metrobrokers.com, all data sent between your browser and the web server is encrypted. This prevents other people from snooping on your session and looking at the data being sent and received. (more…)