The Anna Maria Island Sun Newspaper

Vol. 9 No. 2 - October 1, 2008


Do you have to sell your house now?

It’s finally October, and even though the mercury in the thermometer may not show any signs of being on the decline, it is the beginning of the end of the slow, slow, slow real estate season.

Pretty soon we’ll start seeing license plates from Ohio, Michigan, Illinois and New Jersey. This year they will all be more than welcomed. But what if you must sell your home now, as in before traffic starts to build on I-75? What if for job or life circumstances you have no alternative other than to sell now, how do you manage that in what is being said is the worst home-selling market since Herbert Hoover was president?

How many times have you heard, selling your home is a business transaction, and the sooner you treat your family’s biggest asset that way, the better off you will be. Well, I’m here to tell you it’s true. If you want to sell your property, pack away your emotions along with you’re mother’s antique crystal collection and get down to business.

Don’t try and time the market. If you want it sold the best way is to get it on the market as soon as possible. It’s OK to take advantage of historic local market cycles, like the one we have coming up, but beyond that you’re just gambling.

Without doing big-ticket renovations, you can still get your home in good condition. Make sure everything is working properly. A fresh paint job is always a good idea and, of course, de-clutter. This may not get you money, but it will keep buyers from running out the front door and on to the next house.

And speaking about money, pricing correctly in a slow market is not just one more thing you can do. It’s the most important thing you can do. Don’t even consider trying to factor in the improvements you’ve made or what the house was worth three years ago. Your price should be below comparable nearby properties, period.

Get professional help in the form of a top real estate agent. Interview top producers, and choose one that you’re comfortable with who has some creative marketing ideas, not one who is telling you what you want to hear. Make sure your property is listed in all the top real estate Web sites, as well as classified and display advertising. You can’t have enough exposure. And it doesn’t hurt to help your real estate agent through you’re network of work and personal relationships by spreading the word.

Providing financing for a potential buyer has always given home sellers a leg up in the real estate market. Now more than ever, with financing tight, if you are in a financial position to hold a mortgage for your buyer, it could be the tipping point in selling your property.

Finally, your home is worth only as much as someone is willing to pay for it. It’s a good thing to negotiate, as long as you know that buyers in this market are holding all the cards. If you have a reasonable offer from a qualified buyer, be prepared to accept it even if you have to hold your nose while signing the papers.

If this is the time that you must sell, pull out all the stops. Feng shui the living room and paint the front door red, bury a statue of St. Joseph and learn to bake brownies for the open house. Have no shame, shed no tears, take control and sell your biggest commodity now. Tell Herbert Hoover, "Forget about it!"

Real Estate Transactions
Closed sales between June 16 to July 11, 2008

Anna Maria

217 Pine Ave.     Mixed use      $750,000
413 Poinsettia Rd.      Single family      550,000
308 Pine Ave.      Single family      525,000
161 Crescent Dr.      Single family      390,000
215 Palm Ave.      Single family      380,000
407 S. Bay Blvd.     Single family      359,500

Bradenton Beach

200 Gulf Dr. S. #3      Condo     $750,000
205 Church Ave.      Single family      539,000
1105 Gulf Dr. S. #3      Condo      350,000
1801 Gulf Dr. N. #104     Condo      186,500
117 Seventh St. N. #20     Condo      150,000
2601 Gulf Dr. N. #303     Mobile      83,400
117 7th St. N. #16     Condo      60,000


4003 129th St. W. #102      Condo     $495,000
4104 128th St. W. #702      Condo      345,000

Holmes Beach

524 67th St.      Single family     $700,000
623 Foxworth Ln.      Single family      632,000
222 82nd St.      Condo      575,000
213 67th St. #B      Condo      510,000
229 South Harbor Dr.      Single family      485,000
668 Key Royale Dr.      Single family      475,000
203 71st St.      Duplex      475,000
204 71st St.      Single family      442,000
3400 Sixth Ave. #5      Condo      305,000
3701 Fifth Ave. #1      Condo      299,900
3601 East Bay Dr. #10     Condo      245,000

Source: Manatee County Property Appraiser’s Office.

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