Tag Archives: real estate market

Realtors, Nextdoor is a great source for seller leads

Last week I was woken up at 2am by a volley of popping firecrackers followed by a 2:15am encore performance of several bottle rockets.  The pyrotechnic hooligans did not have the courtesy to hang around for a round of applause from the neighborhood they just startled.

Later that morning I logged on to our neighborhood group on Nextdoor, that neighborhood social network, to see what the chatter was on the late night festivities.  Wow…the chatter was popping.  I learned that my street was center stage for the performance (or ground zero) and police were called.  Several neighbors reported seeing kids racing through the streets and someone got a pic of a license plate.  Cool.

Wow, isn’t Nextdoor a cool site for neighborhood watchdogs to keep our community safe? I have to admit I only go to Nextdoor when something happens and I need some scoop.  I also used Nextdoor to sell a bike and to get rid of some furniture to someone a few blocks over. I prefer selling to neighbors instead of to people I do not know on Craigslist…or as my mother calls it, “Gregslist.”

NDRealtorRecommendations

The biggest value of Nextdoor, however, didn’t hit me until recently. Someone posted “I’m looking for recommendations for a realtor to sell my house.” As a realtor, I was so excited that I froze.  My jaw dropped.  Asking that question is like throwing red meat to a bunch of dogs.

I quickly responded and recommended ME  as I live literally a block away from the neighbor who made the post.  Of course, I was not the only realtor to be recommended or to recommend him/herself!!!  Realtors dream of hearing someone ask that question and spend big money to ensure they are the person neighbors recommend.  Remember all those “Just Listed!” or “your neighbor just sold his house for $200k over asking!” cards you get in the mail? That’s NOT done because realtors like you…it’s done so you REMEMBER them when it comes time to sell your home.

What’s most interesting about posting a “who do you recommend” question is who is doing the posting.  The person posting lives in the neighborhood and is asking for a realtor because he/she is most likely looking to SELL. That lead doesn’t get more “lower funnel” than that!  In this tight real estate market, realtors fight hard to sell someone’s home. The implications of an agent receiving seller leads on Nextdoor are HUGE. Realtors pay BIG money to purchase leads for clients looking to buy…and  most of those leads don’t end up buying a house.

The key for finding these seller leads is in HOW realtors use Nextdoor to build relationships so they can be the realtor neighbors recommend.  More to come once I’ve tinkered with the platform a bit.

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Tips for First Time Millennial Home Buyers

ChelseaKrost08-12-16

Last month I was invited by Millennial thought leader, television and radio talk-show host, Chelsea Krost to participate in her weekly Twitter Chat, #MillennialTalk. She invited me to share my thoughts on what Millennials need to consider as they work towards buying their first home. What a fun event. We had a very active and engaged audience who asked several great questions. Buying the first home is overwhelming.  I hope my responses helped alleviate some anxiety and support the confidence of first time home buyers.

I’ve included the scripted Q&A transcript below from the chat session that took place on July 12, 2016 on Tweet Chat. I blew up my Facebook page that afternoon not realizing I had connected my Twitter feed. I got several texts from friends saying “Do you realize you made 1M + posts on Facebook?!” He he…sorry guys! I will be sure to disconnect Twitter from Facebook for the next #MillennialTalk event.

Enjoy and I hope you find the questions and responses informative! Please tweet me additional questions @ericdunstan. Tweet questions to Chelsea as well @ChelseaKrost if you’d like. She’s just great.

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Transcript from #MillennialTalk with Eric Dunstan on July 12, 2016

Q1 @EricDunstan I don’t want to settle down…why would I buy a home? #MillennialTalk

A1a. There are many benefits to owning a home vs #renting. #MillennialTalk

A1b. Sometimes owning a home can be cheaper and more beneficial than renting. #MillennialTalk

A1c. Having your own house means you can do what you want #MillennialTalk

A1d. Loan programs make it easier to buy a home #MillennialTalk

A1e. Depending on home, monthly maintenance can be limited…giving you free time #MillennialTalk

A1f. Each month your payment builds #equity in the home…giving you power to sell and buy a bigger home #MillennialTalk

A1g It also allows you to borrow against the equity to remodel (called a home equity line of credit) #MillennialTalk

A1h. There are many tax benefits in owning your own on. Talk to a financial advisor or CPA #MillennialTalk

Q2. @EricDunstan OK…what do I need to do to even consider buying a home? #MillennialTalk
A2a. Meet w/advisor & build #financial plan – there are several online services that help w/ this including LearnVest.com #Millennialtalk

A2b. Very important to understand money needed 2 buy a home & how long it will take 2 save enough money to make #downpayment #MillennialTalk

A2c. Think about your 5 yr plan for career, savings etc. If you plan to live in the area for 5+ years it makes sense to buy. #MillennialTalk

A2d #Realestate follows a 5-7 year cycle.  If not, consider renting to avoid being caught in a downturn. #MillennialTalk

A2e. Think through life style…what area to live fits your style?  Can you afford that area? #MillennialTalk

A2f  Sometimes 1st time homebuyers need to break into market in area that may not be perfect fit, #MillennialTalk

A2g They can eventually upgrade to target neighborhood once their current home #equity increases. #realestate #MillennialTalk

A2h. If buying home is a big stretch, consider renting a room to someone as a revenue source. #homebuyer #MillennialTalk

Q3. @EricDunstan I want to buy a home…now what? #MillennialTalk
A3a Get prequalified for a loan, understand how much of a house you can afford. #homebuyer #MillennialTalk

A3b Look at all the loan options; conventional/gov insured, fixed rate, adj rate, 30 yr or 15 yr. There are a ton of options. #MillennialTalk

A3c Sometimes seller financing is an option. The seller acts like the bank u make mo payments to them.#MillenialTalk

A3d. Interview at least 3 real estate agents and talk to 3 lenders #MillennialTalk

A3e. Start touring around neighborhoods, going to open houses, use online search tools- @Zillow #MillennialTalk

A3f Get to know your #neighborhoods..and the kind of house that fits you. #MillennialTalk

A3g Determine what kind of house you want. Single family?  Townhouse or condo? #MillennialTalk

A3h When you think through what you want up front…finding the right home is easier! #MillennialTalk

Q4. @EricDunstan How much do I need to put down as a downpayment for my home purchase and how do I calculate closing costs? #MillennialTalk

A4a   It all depends on your financial situation, income level and credit score. #MillennialTalk

A4b To get the best rate possible plan on putting down roughly 20% of the home purchase price. #MillennialTalk

A4c Putting 20% down can be a lot of $$. There are other options but you may pay a hire loan rate #MillennialTalk

A4d. For example, some government secured loan programs require just a 5% down payment #MillennialTalk

A4e Talk to a mortgage officer at a bank or a mortgage broker to understand what is best for u #MillennialTalk

A4e. Closing costs are tricky and vary by state/county. Plan on paying around 2-5% of home purchase price #MillennialTalk

A4f. Mortgage providers and title companies will provide estimated closing costs on home u buy #MillennialTalk

A4g. Don’t worry! You won’t be surprised with BIG costs in the end. #MillennialTalk

Q5 @EricDunstan Do banks have flexibility with interest rates and do you recommend any online mortgage services? #MillennialTalk

A5a Yes! Banks offer different interest rates based on type of loan…#MillennialTalk

A5b. …and on credit score, down payment and savings of applicant #MillennialTalk

A5c As far as online lenders, I’ve been hearing great things about #QuickenLoans and #LendingTree. #MillennialTalk

A5d #BankRate is another great source to compare mortgage rates #MillennialTalk

Q6 @EricDunstan How do I determine if I’m getting a good deal when purchasing my home? #MillennialTalk

A6a He he. That can be tricky. Work closely with a listing agent who knows the area you are buying in #MillennialTalk

A6b Agent should run analysis of sales price of homes sold over past 3 months #MillennialTalk

A6c Analysis reveals average sales price for home of similar square feet and lot size in local area #MillennialTalk

A6d Agent needs to bring local market knowledge and recommend offer price range…#MillennialTalk

A6e based on condition/location of property you want to buy compared to average price in area #MillennialTalk

A6f The best way to lock in a great deal is to buy the worst looking house in the best neighborhood #MillennialTalk

A6g The more opportunity for u to make your own repairs and add $$ value the better #MillennialTalk

A6h You want to avoid paying the highest price for a home in the area #MillennialTalk

Q7. @EricDunstan What suggestions do you have for negotiating the sale price when purchasing a home? #MillennialTalk

A7a This is all market specific. A great real estate agent can guide you based on location and market conditions #MillennialTalk

A7b Your real estate agent needs to learn motivations for why the home is sold by talking to seller agent #MillennialTalk

A7c Maybe home needs to be sold quickly because seller has a job transfer. If so, offer a quick escrow close #MillennialTalk

A7d Or maybe offer to buy home “as is” without asking seller to make repairs. This is risky so ask your agent for guidance #MillennialTalk

A7e Another option is to offer seller a free rent back which means seller has more time to move out once home sold #MillennialTalk

A7f The more you learn about what helps the seller the more impact on sale price. It also shows you want to create deal that works for everyone #MillennialTalk

A7g Of course cash is king. If u offer to buy home all cash with no loan the seller will be VERY interested in working with u on price J #MillennialTalk

A7h I see a lot of all cash offers in the San Francisco Bay Area #MillennialTalk

Q8@EricDunstan Is it better to buy a new or existing home? Which is normally the better deal? #MillennialTalk

A8a Great question. I just made an offer on a new home for a buyer and there are benefits and risks #MillennialTalk

A8b Again, it all depends on the market conditions, location of home and needs of the buyer #MillennialTalk

A8c Some people prefer buying a new home for everything is..well…new! Nothing needs to be repaired. #MillennialTalk

A8d Amenities tend to be the latest standards and technology #MillennialTalk

A8e. New home developments also have units reserved for gov sponsored affordable housing programs if buyer is qualified #MillennialTalk

A8f Typically new homes tend to be in planned communities with home owner associations which define what can/can’t be done to home. #MillennialTalk

A8g Understand these requirements. #MillennialTalk

A8h Be sure to understand any additional fees associated with these associations as well. #MillennialTalk

A8i One potential downside is on sales price. Developers have a price needed to recoup costs in building new development. #MillennialTalk

A8j This price may not reflect market conditions. #MillennialTalk

A8k Existing homes have been on the market a while and may be more influenced by market conditions and seller motivation. #MillennialTalk

Q9. @EricDunstan What kind of expenses can I expect with #homeownership? #MillennialTalk

A9a Build a home ownership budget #MillennialTalk

A9b. Understand fixed expenses of owning home – #mortgage, insurance, taxes, water, electricity, taxes, etc #MillennialTalk

A9c. Understand tax rate for your state; safe for your #taxes each month #homebuyer #MillennialTalk

Q10 @EricDunstan What do I need to keep in mind after buying my home? #Millennialtalk

A10a Don’t buy your home and forget!! #MillennialTalk

A10c. Keep an eye on monthly expenses…track over 6 months are adjust spending #MillennialTalk

A10d.  Look at #interestrates…if a rate is .5 less than your rate, consider #refinancing #MillennialTalk

A10e. Why should you #refinance?  The difference in rates can mean saving $200+ a month #MillennialTalk

A10f  Homes require regular upkeep – create a maintenance schedule #MillennialTalk

A10g.  Create a plan and #budget to make home improvements. #MillennialTalk

A10h The money to #remodel the home may be in the house…consider a home equity line of credit. #MillennialTalk

Q11. @EricDunstan What parts of the home to #remodel to gain the most equity? #MillennialTalk

A11a. Generally speaking, a remodeled #kitchen and #bathrooms always generate greater value in a home #MillennialTalk

A11b. Expanding a master bedroom/bathroom also increases value #MillennialTalk

A11c. If you are up to the challenge, adding a bedroom and/or bath adds value…but there are implications to consider. #MillennialTalk

A11d Taxes tend to increase when the home size is increased. #MillennialTalk

A11e. As you #remodel, consider how appealing the rooms, amenities, etc will be to a potential buyer. #MillennialTalk

A11f This is a hard one for many people who want to create a home the way they want. #MillennialTalk

A11g  However, in the event the home must be sold, it’s important to have a house buyers want to receive the highest purchase price. #MillennialTalk

Q12 @EricDunstan Where can we find more of your great info on #realestate and #homeownership? #MillennialTalk

A12a Thank you. I love sharing what I’ve learned. Please send me further questions through Twitter @ericdunstan or visit my blog at http://ericdunstan.com #MillennialTalk

A12b. Of course I will continue to post regular updates to your Twitter feed and blog #MillennialTalk


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