Monday, July 21, 2008

Who Can Escape this Foreclosure Nightmare?

I read a ton, my car is littered with books and papers, my desktop is a cornucopia of saved online articles and my phone is a constant feed of RSS alerts. I don’t think you can tell everything about the market but you can get a good sense of trends by the stories that are being put out there.

I ran across a story the other day about stars who can’t afford their homes anymore. Ed McMahon is a prime example of some of the stranger stories I run across. Apparently the 85 year old star is close to a million dollars delinquent on a home he owns in Beverly Hills.

Originally listed at 7.6 million, the property is now on the market for 6.5 million, and isn’t moving. Does this mean that the economy has crashed or that that the world is about to end? No, it just means that everybody gets bad advice every now and then.

At the height of building boom everyone said the same thing, “buy today, sell tomorrow, HUGE profits!” Who wouldn’t want to do that, the rich are no exception. Who wouldn’t take the advice from a realtor that said you could flip a house in two months and make a nice pocket of change?

What is the real issue here? It isn’t that homes are overpriced or that the market has completely collapsed, it is that people haven’t managed their expectations when it comes to property sales. The responsibility lays in the agent to work with the client, not tell the client what they want to hear.

The agent should be your trusted advisor when it comes to purchasing. An agent should provide you with all relevant information and give you the best council possible. If your agent is telling you something you don’t like, simply don’t dismiss there council, listen to what they say and trust them as the expert. If your agent is telling you something that sounds too good to be true, chances are it is.

Have you worked with an agent that sold you milk and honey, who told you what you wanted to hear? Have you worked with an agent who told you the facts even though it might lose him or her a sale? What do you look for in an agent?

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