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What's wrong with the market?

Nat Ferguson

I am a fourth generation resident of Seal Beach who enjoys writing about local activities, business and real estate...

I am a fourth generation resident of Seal Beach who enjoys writing about local activities, business and real estate...

Jan 29 4 minutes read

On a picturesque May morning while sipping her coffee, Becky caught herself refreshing the Zillow app on her phone again only to be greeted with the same homes that she'd been looking at for the past 60+ days.

A sinking feeling in Becky's stomach signaled something wasn't right with the market. According to everything she'd read online, we were experiencing a sellers market. So why did some of the homes she'd seen for sale sell within a week of being listed while others sat for months?

As she stared blankly at the same revolving carousel of homes on her screen, it occurred to her... she needed a better way to determine if the home she was ready to buy was actually a good deal. She needed to understand the correlation between the days on market and the list price.

To solve this challenge Becky started analyzing the details to find similarities; was there a particular price range or Realtor that seemed to sell quicker? She immediately found what she was looking for. 

The same three or four agents had the stale home listings that keep showing up month over month, all listed well beyond the average 66 days on market (the average days on market as reported by PWR). She had now established a baseline for which agents tended to list homes well above market value and how quickly well priced homes tend to sell.

Peeling back each layer of information, the true picture of the real estate market began to come into focus for Becky. She'd seen home listings by a local real estate company that seemed to pop up on her phone only to have an accepted offer after the first open house. 

Month in a month out she watched as their beautiful home listings came and went, she just needed to find out how to gain access so she could see them before they went in the MLS.
Sold in 1 day - 101% of list price - 1740 Harbor Way

After some diligent Google searching, Becky found it. The real estate company not only specialized in the area she was interested in, but they gave early access to their new listings via a VIP Buyer Program

When asked if she felt the VIP Buyer Program was beneficial to her home search, Becky summed it up in once sentence, "it was a game changer getting early access to home listings that were fairly priced." The good news came with a caveat, the real estate company only works with a small number of buyers at any time so as not to create competition with their own clients.

At the end of our meeting, Becky revealed her number one takeaway from the entire experience. She had discovered that while she was intent to do all of her own research, after meeting with her Realtor she learned that she didn't even have to pay for her services (her agent's commission is paid for by the seller).

Her advice to you, "whether you're in the market to buy or sell, do take the time to check your Realtor's online reviews and sales experience. Find someone you connect with and commit, you'll be glad you did."

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