Monday, October 15, 2007 ~ An Excellent Mortgage Website

Have you ever stopped by the site the worlds largest mortgage community? If you haven't, you really should as it is an excellent resource for those in need of anything related to mortgages. You can get countless questions answered on a variety of topics as they relate to mortgages and real estate.

You can get your questions answered by some of the brightest minds in the mortgage industry "who have been there and done that". The site also provides resources to numerous lenders so that you can shop and compare rates. Lastly, while visiting and shopping for rates you can use some of the fantastic mortgage calculators they offer.

Below is a sample of some of the most recent question and answers at mortgagefit on a variety of topics.

I conducted initial legal research while the client was in m by angiedeangelis5 (Updated 8 hours ago)
caran please answer im in fla by sara m (Updated 13 hours ago)
Multi property owner. by gloria.shelton (Updated 5 hours ago)
simple assumption by (Updated 1 hour ago)
Will a simple assumption loan relieve my husband of all fina by waitesusie (Updated 1 hour ago)
Verification Of Deposit by tatejrchaz (Updated 10 minuts ago)
Will by sjr (Updated 11 hours ago)
First time buyer penalty for buying parent home by Lee (Updated 7 minuts ago)
Should we get lower rates once FRM rates go down? by Rene (Updated 40 secons ago)
Credit Score by Jeff (Updated 2 hours ago)
quitclaim deed by robin collins (Updated 51 hours ago)
Are there legitimate sources for poor credit home loans? by schweds (Updated 5 hours ago)

Monday, September 17, 2007

RE/MAX Executive Realty Dominates Hopkinton MA Market Share through 8/31/07

Below are the top ten offices ranked by position in Hopkinton. RE/MAX Executive Realty continues to hold the #1 position by a substantial margin. The information below represents the sales data from January 1st 2007 through August 31st 2007. The statistic that jumps out above everything else is that RE/MAX Executive has 14 in-house sales....meaning they were the listing and selling agent for the property. The next closest company has 4 (c-21 Commonwealth) This is extremely impressive information.

The other statistic that immediately jumps out is the fact that RE/MAX Executive has a substantial lead in the amount of transaction sides which totals 76! The nearest competitor (C-21) has 31 and Coldwell Banker is next with 14. Clearly RE/MAX Executive Realty dominates in Hopkinton Real Estate Sales. RE/Max Executive is doing double the business that Century 21 Commonwealth is doing.

Click here to see many of the reasons why RE/MAX Executive Realty is a dominate player in Hopkinton MA and other Metrowest towns.

For more Hopkinton MA Real Estate articles click here.

REMAX Lists and sells more homes than any agency in the world.

Market Share - All Offices

Report Run: 9/17/2007 7:57:16 PM Property Type(s): SF, CC, MF, LD, CI Start Date: 1/1/2007 End Date: 8/31/2007 Towns: Hopkinton, MA

Listed & SoldUnits $ Vol
Listed/Not SoldUnits $ Vol
Sold/Not ListedUnits $ Vol
TotalUnits $ Vol
Sides%/$ Vol

RE/MAX Executive Realty Hopkinton, MA 01748

14 13,245,384
34 18,466,275
14 8,618,400
62 40,330,059
76 20.89

Century 21 Commonwealth Hopkinton, MA 01748
4 6,075,400
16 11,415,100
7 4,589,000
27 22,079,500
31 11.44

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Framingham Framingham, MA 01701
1 1,720,000
4 2,538,000
8 3,965,500
13 8,223,500
14 4.26

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Northborough Regional Office Northborough, MA 01532
6 3,205,905
6 4,502,000
12 7,707,905
12 3.99


STAR REALTY Hopkinton Hopkinton, MA 01748
2 2,247,000
6 3,456,500
3 1,641,500
11 7,345,000
13 3.81


Hallmark Realty Hopkinton, MA 01748
1 3,400,000
3 2,303,500
4 5,703,500
5 2.95


Berkshire Realty Group Southborough, MA 01772
3 3,136,000
3 2,219,440
6 5,355,440
9 2.77


RE/MAX First Choice R. E. Northborough, MA 01532
1 970,000
5 2,364,500
4 1,558,000
10 4,892,500
11 2.53


Carlson GMAC Real Estate Framingham, MA 01701
3 2,280,000
3 1,719,000
6 3,999,000
6 2.07


Prudential Town and Country Southborough, MA 01772
1 2,178,000
2 1,148,500
3 3,326,500
4 1.72

Total Listings Selected: 168 Unit Dollar Volume: $193,020,994.00 * Unit Dollar Volume calculated using double count method
©2007 MLS Property Information Network, Inc.

Bill Gassett is part of the #2 REMAX team in Massachusett's 2006. Click here to view Bill Gassett's Real Estate profile.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Metrowest MA Home Sales ~ Marketing effort pays off BIG!

In today's challenging real estate environment, the marketing effort provided in a home sale will make a big difference in the ultimate goal.....Getting the house SOLD! Selling your home in Metrowest MA is no longer a task that can be accomplished by throwing a sign out in the yard and putting it in MLS. Buyers are no longer lurking at every street corner waiting for the next house to come on the market. It takes a concentrated effort by the Realtor to get maximum exposure for your home.

The supply of homes in Metrowest MA has been growing along with the average days on the market. To see the statistics on some of the various Metrowest towns including Hopkinton, Ashland, Holliston, Milford, Upton, Southboro, Mendon and Hopedale click to look at the Metrowest MA market report.

There are a number of necessary things to do when selling a home in Metrowest MA. Selecting a good Realtor should be of the utmost importance. Here are some excellent questions you can ask that I outlined for someone selling their home in Hopkinton MA. Of course these questions would apply just about anywhere you are selling your home. These questions should go along way in at least helping you determine if you are hiring a pro or not.

One of the most important things to look for in the interview process is to see where the Realtor will be marketing your home on-line. You can no longer just rely on MLS,, and an agents website to be all that it necessary in the marketing effort to get your home sold.

I recently wrote an article called Metrowest MA Homes ~ How to effectively Market to the masses On-line. This article details a multitude of websites I am using when selling a home in Metrowest MA. This is the type of effort that will increase your chances of getting your home sold in a timely manner for top dollar.

The above information was provided by Bill Gassett, the team leader for the #2 RE/MAX Team in Massachusetts in 2006. Bill can be reached via email at or by phone at 508-435-5356.

Bill has helped people move in and out of many Metrowest towns for the last 21+ Years. Bill's office is conveniently located in the center of Hopkinton MA at 77 Main Street. RE/MAX Executive Realty also has an offices in Upton MA, Holliston MA, Grafton MA, Medfield MA, Franklin MA, and Natick MA.

For Massachusetts homes for sale and other Real Estate information see myhousepartners website or Sell my Home in Metrowest MA. Want to have MLS access to beat other buyers to your dream home? Sign up with no obligation at my MLS Property Finder Site. I have a passion for Real Estate and would love to help YOU accomplish your goals.

I service the following towns in Metrowest MA: Hopkinton, Milford, Upton, Southboro, Westboro, Ashland, Holliston, Mendon, Hopedale, Medway, Grafton, Northbridge, Uxbridge, and Framingham MA.

Click here to view Bill Gassett's Real Estate profile.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

The Boston Marathon and Hopkinton MA....It all starts here!

Hopkinton MA is a terrific place to live. I should know I have lived here for the last forty years. I have also been selling Real Estate in Hopkinton for the last twenty one years. What originally put Hopkinton on the map, so to speak is the fact that the Boston Marathon starts here in little ole Hopkinton MA.
The Boston Marathon is one of the most recognizable events. It has grown so large it is by and large the most covered marathon in the world. Last year there were over 20,000 runners! This day is very exciting here in Hopkinton MA. It is truly an experience with a circus like atmosphere. Helicopters, news trucks, reporters, vendors, and just tons of people, runners and spectators alike.Hopkinton, however, is more than just the starting point for the Boston Marathon. Hopkinton MA is a great place to raise a family. Hopkinton is located about 26 miles West of Boston which makes it an ideal location for people commuting to work everyday. Access to highways is great as the "Cross roads of New England", Route 495 and the MA Pike are right here.

Hopkinton has experienced tremendous growth over the last decade. Real Estate values in the town of Hopkinton have sky rocketed. It has become a "destination" town for people looking to settle down into a nice home.

There are many factors that contribute to Hopkinton being a great place to live besides the excellent commuting location. The schools in Hopkinton are very highly regarded. A new state of the art high school was just built a few years ago.
The athletic center know as the "Field House" in the new high school is close to what you would find at a small college. It is really impressive!

Hopkinton has many great neighborhoods. In fact, in relation to other neighboring towns there is much more variety and number of "subdivision" type neighborhoods. There is a variety of Real Estate choices in Hopkinton MA. Homes for sale in Hopkinton are priced from the mid 200's for a small starter home which most likely needs work to beautiful Multi Million dollar homes.

Some of the top high end subdivisions in Hopkinton include Highpark, Springwood, Forestside Estates, Ravenwood, The Highlands, and Circa 1700 Country Village. Homes is these Hopkinton neighborhoods start in the 600's and go up to a million plus.

The town does not have a big commercial base. Hopkinton has a very rural feel to it. You will not find establishments such as McDonald's and Burger King in Hopkinton. The residents of Hopkinton have wanted it this way, in keeping with the master plan. The town center has a very quaint feel to it. Large scale shopping for groceries and clothing is done in the neighboring towns of Milford and Westboro. There is a large scale mall located about 20 minutes away in Natick MA. There is a small super market in town center called Collela's Market for things needed in a pinch. For a better understanding of the demographics in Hopkinton MA Citi-data is an excellent resource.

One of the most visible companies that employs a number of people living in Hopkinton as well as other surrounding Metrowest towns is EMC Corporation. Emc is a computer data storage company with its main offices located on South Street in Hopkinton.

Hopkinton is going to under go some substantial future growth as one of the largest Nurseries in the united States known as Weston Nurseries, has sold off a large chunk of their land for future development. There will be an additional 940 units built at the Weston Nurseries site. You can read about the future development of Weston Nurseries here. It will be a mix of residential homes, condos, affordable housing, as well as commercial and retail space. The subdivision and the homes there will be be part of what's called Legacy Farms.

As a Realtor that has grown up here and gone through the Hopkinton schools myself, I can be an invaluable resource to my clients and customers. If you are thinking of moving to Hopkinton, MA, I would love to work with you and share my pride in this fantastic town.

If you do decide to move to Hopkinton MA or other Metrowest town, please feel free to visit my Metrowest MA MLS Property Finder website. You can also sign up to get MLS Access here.

Hopkinton MA Real Estate.....something I am passionate about.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Selling your home in Metrowest MA? It Pays to interview a Top Realtor!

There are thousands of Real Estate agents that service the Metrowest Boston area. There are, however, vast differences in the skill level, services offered, and marketing efforts of the Realtors that cover towns in Metrowest MA.

Lets start by analyzing the many things a Metrowest MA Realtor can do for you to market your home besides putting it in MLS. The local newspaper used to be a good source for marketing homes. The Metrowest Daily News and Boston Globe were the dominant sources for for marketing homes in Metrowest MA over the last decade. Buyers however, don't frequent these sources like they used to when looking for a home in Metrowest MA. All the newspaper resources that used to be so successful in the past for advertising and marketing your Metrowest MA home, just don't work anymore. The volume of calls received from these sources has dwindled severely. The Boston Globe has seen the trend progress and because of this has started to put a lot of their resources into making the real estate section of a better place for Metrowest MA Realtors to market their homes. The website is owned by the Boston Globe.

It is clear that the Internet is where any good Realtor marketing homes in Metrowest MA should be putting their efforts. A year ago 70% of all buyers were beginning their search on the Internet. Now more than 85% are looking and finding their homes on the Internet. Hiring a Metrowest MA Realtor who is Internet savvy, has the technology in place, and can provide you with an abundance of Internet exposure has become an absolute necessity in todays market. Internet marketing has become one of the most effective means to sell your Metrowest MA home.

Some of the the sites to market a home on the Internet include is a consumer friendly website that allows buyers to see homes that are on MLS throughout the country. has the largest volume of traffic for real estate related websites. While viewing homes in, you will notice big differences in how Realtors market their homes there. A good Realtor will take the time to "enhance" the listing. As a Realtor, you are allowed to add up to twenty photos of the property you are marketing. Survey after survey says that the photos are the most important tool to market a home. The phrase "A picture is worth a thousand words" is never more evident than in Real Estate. Realtors are also able to write their own custom text to help buyers understand what the best features are about the property. Many of the Realtors in Metrowest MA do nothing to "enhance" their properties. This is a big mistake!

The most heavily traveled real estate company website happens to be the company I work for RE/ RE/ is similar to in that you are able to see all the properties on the market from one website. When going to competing companies websites such as and you are only able to view their respective company listings.

One of the latest sites to effectively market a Metrowest MA home is Zillow initially was more of a site to get a quick evaluation of your homes value but is now being used as a site to market homes. As a Realtor, you are able to enhance listings with multiple photos and descriptions. A valuable tool in marketing your Metrowest MA home, as this is a heavily traveled site. Another site that is also starting to make some headway is and yet another good site is

Along with these sites you would think that all Metrowest MA Realtors would have search engine optimized, lead generating websites. Many Metrowest MA agents do not and rely on company websites. My personal website, allows buyers to sign up to receive MLS access as well as to get emailed daily when a new property comes on the market that matches their search criteria.

One of the newest and most important ways to market a home in Metrowest MA is through blogging. Blogs are an excellent means to get noticed by the search engines. Some of the best agents from around the country have figured this out and are now blogging like crazy. One of the best Real Estate platforms to blog on is Active Rain and Both of these sites are very well recognized by the search engines such as Google and draw traffic to the Realtors who use them. Blogs are personal. Blogs provide buyers and sellers with great information, tips, advice, news, market reports, and promotion of properties. Here are examples of some of my recent blog posts:
Preparing your Massachusetts home for the Spring selling season
Attention Home Sellers - don't get sued because of bedroom misrepresentation.
Get your Title V done early
Metrowest MA Real Estate - why most companies don't offer Sub-agency
Top ten mistakes to avoid when selling your Massachusetts home
Why Your Massachusetts Home Expired
Selling your Massachusetts home is a buyers market

Social networking sites are also raising the bar on how a property can be marketed. For example see my Metrowest MA Real Estate site on This is an example of a site I created to draw additional traffic to my listings as well as myself. Some other important social networking sites are stumbleupon, digg, and These sites allows users to post their favorite Internet sites for others to see under different topics. Real Estate is always a popular topic. These sites allow your website to become more visible. As a top Metrowest MA Realtor, I like to take advantage of these sites. It does not pay to be a "secret agent" in Real Estate. Flickr is also a site where you can post photos. I use this site to market homes I am selling in and around Metrowest MA.

Thinking of selling your home in Metrowest MA? Want a top RE/MAX agent that knows how to market homes - Contact Bill Gassett, RE/MAX Executive Realty via email at or by phone at 508-435-5356.

I am the team leader of the #2 RE/MAX Team in Massachusetts. I service the following towns in Metrowest MA: Hopkinton, Milford, Upton, Southboro, Westboro, Ashland, Holliston, Mendon, Hopedale, Medway, Grafton, Northbridge, Uxbridge, and Framingham MA.

Want to sign up to access MLS and beat other buyers to new listings? Use my MLS property finder site with no obligation.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

RE/MAX Executive Realty continues to dominate Hopkinton MA Market share!

Market share for Hopkinton MA from July of 2006 - July of 2007.

Below are the top ten offices ranked by position in Hopkinton. RE/MAX Executive Realty continues to hold the #1 position by a substantial margin. The statistic that jumps out above everything else is that RE/MAX Executive has 23 in-house sales....meaning they were the listing and selling agent for the property. The next closest company has 7 and that is combining both the century 21 companies together. This is extremely impressive information.

The other stat that immediately jumps out is the fact that RE/MAX Executive has a substantial lead in the amount of transaction sides which totals 119! The nearest competitor has 49 and that again is combining both C-21 offices. Coldwell Banker is next with 25. Clearly RE/MAX Executive Realty dominates in Hopkinton Real Estate Sales.

RE/MAX lists and sells more property than any other agency in the world!

Market Share - All Offices
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Report Run: 7/18/2007 2:36:30 PM Property Type(s): SF, CC, MF, LD, CI Start Date: 7/18/2006 End Date: 7/18/2007 Towns: Hopkinton, MA

Listed & SoldUnits $ Vol
Listed/Not SoldUnits $ Vol
Sold/Not ListedUnits $ Vol
TotalUnits $ Vol
Sides%/$ Vol
RE/MAX Executive Realty Hopkinton, MA 01748
23 20,687,084
44 23,857,910
29 19,013,293
96 63,558,287
119 23.64
Century 21 Commonwealth Hopkinton, MA 01748
4 6,075,400
14 9,774,450
8 5,636,500
26 21,486,350
30 7.99
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Framingham Framingham, MA 01701
3 4,365,850
10 6,775,600
9 5,810,341
22 16,951,791
25 6.31
Century 21 Westward Homes Hopkinton, MA 01748
3 4,058,000
13 11,395,484
16 15,453,484
19 5.75
STAR REALTY Hopkinton Hopkinton, MA 01748
2 2,102,000
8 5,016,500
4 3,045,935
14 10,164,435
16 3.78
Berkshire Realty Group Southborough, MA 01772
7 8,111,600
3 1,901,340
10 10,012,940
17 3.72
Hallmark Realty Hopkinton, MA 01748
2 3,976,600
5 3,133,500
7 7,110,100
9 2.64
RE/MAX First Choice R. E. Northborough, MA 01532
2 1,606,000
6 2,966,900
5 2,293,000
13 6,865,900
15 2.55
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Northborough Regional Office Northborough, MA 01532
4 2,532,405
4 3,692,000
8 6,224,405
8 2.32
Non Member Office Shrewsbury, MA 01545
6 3,336,275
6 3,336,275
6 1.24

Total Listings Selected: 232 Unit Dollar Volume: $268,858,878.00 * Unit Dollar Volume calculated using double count method

©2007 MLS Property Information Network, Inc.

Interested in working with a top RE/MAX agent.....Sign up to have MLS Access through my personal property search site.

Bill Gassett is the top agent at RE/MAX Executive Realty, a seven office company with locations in Hopkinton, Holliston, Franklin, Medfield, Natick, Grafton, and Upton.

Bill Gassett specializes in marketing homes in the following towns: Hopkinton, Southboro, Milford, Upton, Ashland, Holliston, Upton, Westboro, Mendon, Hopedale, Medway, Northbridge, Grafton, and Framingham.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Selling your home in Metrowest MA...don't waste your time with contingent sales and 1st right of refusal

The thought of ever recommending a seller client accept an offer contingent upon the sale of another property is just down right foolish. I don't care what kind of market it is either...seller's, buyer's, or neutral - it makes no difference. It doesn't matter if the offer is full price either. An offer contingent on another property selling means one thing - YOU LOSE CONTROL OF THE PROCESS!! With no guarantees of anything.

How do you know that the contingent home is priced properly? What if it isn't and the seller does not reduce the price? Are you beginning to see the picture clearly here? When you accept a home sale contingency you have taken your home off the market and are at the mercy of the contingent home selling.

What is even more amusing is when an agent presents an offer with a home sale contingency that is rejected and proceeds to ask if my seller client would accept a right of 1st refusal instead?
I find that many agents don't even truly understand what a right of 1st refusal is? When you allow a buyer that can't purchase a home without selling theirs(contingent sale) to have a right of 1st refusal you are doing the seller a tremendous disservice.

If I am marketing a home and a legitimate buyer comes along that wants to purchase this home I don't want to cloud the negotiations by telling them we must wait 24-48 hours(the typical time allowed) to give another buyer their "1st right of refusal". Why on earth would I want to have to call another buyer who doesn't qualify to purchase the house to ask them if they would like to exercise their "right of 1st refusal"? This is pointless waste of time. I have found that there are agents that will allow this because it gives them a small sense of accomplishment.....even though they have accomplished nothing. Giving a buyer who doesn't qualify a "right of 1st refusal" could cause the seller to end up with nothing if the ready, willing, and able buyer walks away out of frustration. To go one step further...what if the buyer exercises the "right of 1st refusal"? Sure you could add language that says they would forfeit their deposit if they did not close as stipulated but is that worth losing the buyer that could have purchased the home without any of this mess?? Is their deposit enough to mitigate a lost buyer? In a buyer's/weak market where prices are falling, it would never be worth the risk.

The only time it would make any sense to accept a right of 1st refusal is if the buyer did not have anything to sell and could step forward to purchase right away if the seller required them to do so.

So If you don't want to lose control of your sale and be stuck with one of these in your front yard.... Stay away from home sale contingencies and right of 1st refusals.

If your home is not selling you can always reduce the price to attract more buyers. I emphasize YOU because the control of the process remains in your hands.

For more opinions, tips, and advice check out Metrowest MA Real Estate . Thinking of buying or selling a home? Sign up to get MLS access to look for homes and track the market.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate Website

Do you live in Metrowest MA? Are you thinking about selling your home? Want to work

with a top RE/MAX agent who has been in the business for 22+ years? An agent who

believes that marketing heavily over the internet is crucial in your selling success?

Please check out this terrific site that offers some great information relating to Metrowest

MA Real Estate. I am a dedicated individual that has a passion for my business. I will invest
the time and energy necessary for you to have a great experience selling your home.
At my Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate website you will see all the tools I am using to market my clients homes in and around Metrowest Massachusetts.
The towns that I cover for home sales include Hopkinton, Westboro, Southboro, Milford, Holliston, Ashland, Upton, Medway, Mendon, Hopedale, Grafton, Northbridge, Douglas, Uxbridge, and Framingham.

Thursday, June 28, 2007


These questions will go along way in determining if you are going to hire a PRO or not!

1. How long have you been selling real estate?

2. How many homes did you sell last year as seller's agent?

3. Of the homes you sold last year, again as a seller's agent, what was the average number of days from the original list price to the accepted offer?

4. What was the average ratio between the listing price and the selling price?

5. What kind of market share do you and your company have?

6. Do you have a personal assistant?

7. What is your experience selling homes in my town?

8. Can you provide me with at least 3 recent references?

9. I have read the Internet is an extremely valuable tool. How will you market my home online?

10. Do you have your own personal website for marketing homes and is it on the 1st or 2nd page of Google?

11. Do you have a Real Estate blog that will promote my home online and if so is it optimized in the search engines for local Real Estate?

12. When a buyer calls on my home will you ALWAYS be the one they speak with?

13. How will you communicate with me regarding your efforts?

14. How readily accessible will you be?

15. Once the offer is accepted will you be attending all the inspections?

16. How will you verify that the buyer is qualified to buy my home?

17. What are your fee structures and why?


For more great Real Estate information, marketing tips, and advice check out my Real Estate website at Metrowest Massachusetts Homes.

Making Smarter Choices in picking your Real Estate Agent

Choosing your agent for the wrong reasons. Many homeowners are tempted to list with the real estate agent who suggests the highest listing price. Selecting an agent and pricing your home properly should be two mutually exclusive decisions. One of the oldest Realtor tricks in the book, and known in real estate circles as "buying a listing", is a strategy designed to have you sign a contract and then a short time later, ask for reductions until your home is priced properly.

This is not to say that a home should never be reduced, markets do change. Look at the data presented to you carefully through the eyes of a buyer. Market data never lies. * Homeowners should choose an agent with the best marketing plan to sell their home. In the real estate business, an agent with many successful closed transactions usually costs the same as someone who is inexperienced or doesn't do much business. Past success is a great indicator of future success. This point can not be stressed enough...Do you want to be stuck with an unqualified agent who has overpriced your home? A sure recipe for disaster.

Hiring a friend....More often than not when you hear this, you later find out that they are no longer a friend or that their relationship has become strained. Is your friend a Top Producing agent? Helping a friend is great but not at your expense.

Hiring a part time agent....Don't you want an agent that support their family by selling your home? Lets face it; there are a lot of people in real estate who are part time, semi-retired, or have a spouse that supports them. It's not their career.

Shocking statistic....According to the National Association of Realtors 93% of all real estate transactions are done by 7% of the agents that are licensed Realtors. What this statistic says loud and clear is that there are a lot of part time Real Estate agents that don't do much business.The take home message is that selecting a top agent to work with is paramount if you want to increase your chances of being satisfied with the home selling process.

For more great real estate information check out Metro West MA Real Estate

Monday, June 25, 2007

Waste of a Sunday....The public open house.

Yes... I am talking about the waste of time that thousands of agents continue to participate in week after week on Sundays....THE PUBLIC OPEN HOUSE.

Nationally less the 1% of homes sell from a public open house. Serious buyers are most often looking at homes with Realtors. So who goes to open houses and why do agents continue to do them? There are a few reasons for both of these questions. 1st lets address who you can expect to show up.

1. Your neighbors - curiosity gets the best of most people. Expect your nosy neighbor to
be there to compare your place to theirs.

2. The "professional" Sunday open home looker - these are the folks that just like looking at
homes. Homes after all are interesting...they all have there own unique features.

3. The Unqualified - If you are selling a home for $600,000 you expect the potential buyers
walking through to be qualified to spend $600,000 right? WRONG...more often than not the
people walking through will be unable to spend the asking price.

4. The "idea" person - this is the person that will walk through the open house to get "ideas" for
their home...could be decorating, furniture, whatever. This person will most often show up at
the more expensive homes where there are things on a grander scale.

5. The "Robber" - although far less common than the above four, an open house is an open
invitation for a potential robber to case your place prior to coming back to get what they

So why do agents do public open house's....there are a few simple reasons.

1. As an agent chances are pretty strong you will meet a neighbor(see above). This is a great
place to establish re pore for future business. Who knows maybe the neighbor is thinking of
selling their home in the near future. If the neighbor and the agent "connect" it could lead to
future business.

2. An agent could meet a legitimate buyer that can't afford the home they are holding public(see
the "unqualified" above) but may be a buyer at a lower price point.

3. Open houses benefit agents seeking potential additional clients/customers.

4. The seller wants them. A seller will only want an open house if they have not been educated
by a good Realtor on why they are a waste of time. An agent that doesn't do much business
will often "sell" this as part of their presentation to the seller, to get the listing. They tell the
seller how wonderful they are and how much "traffic" will be coming through.

5. An open house is a quantifiable action that shows that the Realtor is making an effort to sell
their home. There are lots of things that agents do behind the scenes to sell homes but this is
the one that is physically aparent.

Is it possible that you may get lucky and sell your home through a public open house?....Sure it is but don't expect it. Again nationally, less than 1% of all homes are sold through a public open house. I have been a Realtor for the last 21+ that time I have sold 2 homes through a public open house. I have been involved in over a thousand real estate transactions during that time. Is it any wonder that you see way more of the Sunday open house signs in a down market than you do when things are selling briskly....think about it.

For more great real estate information check out Metro West Ma Real Estate

Sunday, June 24, 2007

ATTENTION HOME SELLERS - Don't get sued because of bedroom misrepresentation!

According to errors and ommission insurance for Massachusetts Realtors, one of the areas that has drawn the most recent litigation is the misrepresentation of bedrooms when the home is serviced by a septic system.

Septic systems are rated according their bedroom capacity. When someone says the septic system is "rated" for four bedrooms it means that the system will handle the waste generated by four bedrooms.

Where sellers and Realtors get into to trouble is when there are rooms in a home that are counted and marketed as bedrooms when in fact they are not. As an example, you could have a home that has three bedrooms on the 2nd floor and another room on the 1st floor that is called a "bedroom". It may have a closet and a window large enough for a person to fit through - both requirements of being a bedroom.

The problem, however, is that if this home has a septic system that is rated for only three bedrooms, it is not a four bedroom home and should not be marketed as such.

The misrepresentation occurs when the seller or realtor represents this room to be a bedroom through various marketing channels such as the multiple listing service(MLS). The buyer then relies on this information, only to later find out through town hall or other means that in fact it is not a four bedroom home. There are certainly differences in market value between three and four bedroom homes regardless of the overall size of the house.

Another example would be a home that has had an addition and the room added is called a bedroom but there has been no corresponding "upgrade" to the septic system.

As a realtor, whenever there is any doubt about the bedroom count, records should be verified to determine the correct information. This information can be found at the local board of health. You can also view my in depth article about Massachusetts Title V and home selling by clicking the link.

For more great local real estate information check out my Real Estate website that details how to effectively market your home to the masses online at Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Get your Title V done early

As a Realtor who is involved in quite a few home sales it continues to amaze me that many sellers are not getting their title v out of the way prior to putting their home on the market or at least within the 1st few weeks that it gets posted for sale.

The financial burden that a failed septic system creates is fairly substantial for most. Aside from the unexpected financial headache, it also involves digging up your yard to install a new system.
There is testing involved and then sending the system out for bid. I would recommend at least three bids, as in my experience they can vary greatly.

The worst part of this nightmare is if you already have your home under contact and then find out your system has failed. There are times when your new system has to be "raised" due to new title v regs. Most buyers don't want to find a large mound in their yard that they were not expecting.

Here is a neat little video that explains how a septic system works.

Septic System Anatomy

Sound Advice - get your title V done early!

Other related Real Estate articles:
Massachusetts septic bedroom count misrepresentation
Massachusetts Title V

Thinking of selling your Metrowest Massachusetts home and want to work with a top notch Realtor? Check out Metro West MA Real Estate