This article was written in two fold, both for Arizona Realtors and for the buyer.
Many buyers out there want and need our help, buyers of all price points.
REALTORS: From a buyers perspective, I know if an agent picks up the phone and we are willing to give a few minutes of our time, it is greatly appreciated. In a very competitive market right now, it is simple…communicate. Not rocket science…answer your phone, spend a few minutes with a potential buyer and next thing you know, you have a buyer that values your time and wants to partner together to find a home.
The Internet can only get buyers so far…it does not allow them access to our homes for sale. I think buyers realize after calling agent after agent after agent from the sign or Internet, they will see that it is easier to just work with one agent to answer all their questions.
I only have seven listings (availble) and get at least 5-7 buyer leads per week. So if agents out there are not busy, I am not really sure why. All my buyers may not be purchasing half a million dollar homes, but they are live buyers with a pulse, waiting to take advantage of low home prices!!
Here is a snapshot of sales from 2009 in Maricopa County, separating short sales, foreclosures and “regular” sales. Sales have increased by approximately 30% from 2008 to 2009. In 2010, short sales and foreclosures will continue to dominate the number of sales. In looking at the graph below, short sales picked up dramatically and were almost 1/4 of our sales in December. I expect the number of short sales to rise even more this year and make up perhaps half of all sales! Pricing has been flat the last several months but if the foreclosures and short sales continue to dominate the market, some areas have not seen the worst of it (whereas areas like Old Town Scottsale may continue to remain flat). I like to be positive and think 2008 was the worst of it!!
Many homeowners think if they go to foreclosure they “wipe their hands” from their lien and will never hear from their old lender again. Often, homeowners will avoid a short sale because they think they will have to re-pay part of their mortgage yet think if they go to foreclosure, they are “free and clear.” Contrary to this belief, in many states the lien holder has 5-6 years to contact the homeowner for deficiency judgment. With a short sale, a good listing Realtor will ask the bank upfront if the seller will be held liable for a future deficiency payment. Banks are sending these unpaid liens to credit agencies, so it is not rare, both with short sale and foreclosure, that a creditor will be calling a seller that went to foreclosure.
For more info, visit this article from CNNMoney.com.