The Anna Maria Island Sun Newspaper

Vol. 9 No. 25 - March 18, 2009


A plan for homeowner affordability and stability

If you’re a homeowner who has been unsuccessfully trying to sell your property, maybe you’re thinking the words successful and seller shouldn’t even be in the same sentence together. However, properties are selling out there, and if you’re an owner who so far hasn’t been successful, here are a few tips that could change your luck if not your perspective.

How many times have you heard one of your friends or neighbors say "I’ll sell if I get my price," or "I’m in no hurry, I can wait for my price." Without offending you or anyone you know, these sellers should not be in the market. Especially this market with inflated inventories, short sales, bank owned properties and financing challenges. They are wasting their time, their agent’s time and adding unrealistically priced inventories to the market.

Speaking about pricing, trying to figure out what is the correct price in this market could drive a Harvard economist off a cliff. The only way to even try and set the correct price is to get as much information as you can from a variety of different sources – real estate professionals, including brokers and appraisers; county tax rolls showing recent sales; Web sites that track sales; and field trips to open houses to check out the competition.

Put your best face on, that is your house’s best face. Hire a professional to help you stage the property or get help from a real estate agent or your decorator. It can never be said enough – get rid of clutter and too many personal items and collectibles.

Make the property accessible. Try not to turn away potential buyers by not being available. Give a key to your agent and/or allow a lock box for the key.

Network the property among everyone you know, advertise and put up a for sale sign. You never know when the person sweating next to you in the gym has a brother ready to retire.

Listen to what people are telling you about the property, put your ego in storage along with you’re mother’s crystal, and learn to take constructive criticism.

Being flexible in this market is essential especially when it comes to pricing. If you’re not getting showings or if you are getting showings and none result in offers, readjust your price and your strategy.

There is a lot of truth in the old adage that your first offer may turn out to be your best offer. Buyers are sitting in their easy chairs in this market waiting for the perfect property with the perfect price in the perfect condition to come along. If they see it, they will want to be the first buyer in. Take them seriously.

Try and stay positive and be friendly and willing to work with buyers without appearing desperate. If you have hired a real estate agent that you trust, take his/her advice, ask questions and participate in the process.

Lastly, when it comes to selling real estate in 2009, patience is more than a virtue. It’s a virtual necessity. If you don’t have it, this is the year you better develop it. I guarantee you it will be a slow slog to 2010.

Most of the time in life, we make our own luck or at least find paths of enhancing our chances of being lucky. We may not be able to change the world, the country or the state, but we do have a decent chance of controlling the little bit of sand we live on. Your success after all is reflected in the eye of the buyer.

Real Estate Transactions
Closed sales between Jan. 5 and 31, 2009

Anna Maria

425 Pine Ave.         Cmm’l          $615,000
154 Crescent          SF          380,000
267 Gladiolus          SF          350,000

Bradenton Beach

2307 Ave. C         Duplex          $505,000
2412 Ave. A          SF          350,000
1103 Gulf Dr. S.         SF         302,500
1801 Gulf Dr. N. #137          Condo         225,000
2601 Gulf Dr. N. #226         Mobile          83,300


4126 Osprey Harbour Loop         SF         $250,000

Holmes Beach

101 47th St.         SF          $1,500,000
106 36th St.         Condo          1,137,500
105 81st St.         Duplex         615,000
6826 Gulf Dr.         Condo         480,000
6301 Holmes Blvd. #A          Condo         410,000
5608 Gulf         Dr. #102          Condo 289,000
3016 Ave. E         Duplex         300,000
6300 Flotilla Dr. #73         Condo         159,000


Source: Manatee County Property Appraiser’s Office

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