Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I'm taking a sabbatical from this blog. I will return soon. In the meantime, please check out Tesa's Mystery Spot (www.tesasmysteryspot.blogspot.com) and The Pretty Princess (www.theprettyprincess-tesa.blogspot.com)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


I know it took a while to go over the different personalities you may encounter as a buyer or seller. You may have even seen yourself in one of those examples. The postings weren’t meant to be a deterrent to buying and/or selling, they were meant to help.

Please keep a few of these items in mind: People are different. Situations are different. Your transaction will be Taylor-made for you. Also, there is absolutely nothing wrong with negotiating the best terms for you. In fact, it is expected. However, the problems arise when one or both sides come to the table with unreasonable demands. Think of it this way, the sooner you all can come to an agreement, the sooner you’ll be able to move on. I can’t stress this point enough: Your Agent Is There to Help You! He/she is your personal agent. Seek his/her advice.


Log in on October 28, 2009 to learn a few qualities every good real estate agent should possess. See you soon!

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Sometimes You Just Gotta Laugh
As I look at this awful arrangement I just sent out, I wonder why I try to post anything. Each time, I think I have the pictures and the text exactly how and where I want them. Yet, time and time again, the joke has been on me. At times it may look disheveled, but I hope you're getting something out of this. As always, I'll sit in front of my screen and talk to (okay, yell) at my computer, willing it to do the right thing. Sometimes it does, most times it doesn't. At the end of the day, I have to adopt the motto: Sometimes You Just Gotta Laugh! ('Cause who knows how this will turn out!)

Greg & Gretchen Grudgeez

Their lovely home has been on the market for fifteen (15) days, and they’ve had over ten showings. After each showing, their real estate agent reviews the feedback with them. For the most part, the feedback has been positive. However, they receive a bit of feedback from one particular buyer that made an unflattering comment about the drapes in the formal living room.


My Advice: Greg and Gretchen, this happens more times than I care to remember. When you put your home on the market, you are opening it up to the public. Each person that comes through will have an opinion, and unfortunately, those opinions may differ from yours. So what if they don’t like your drapes? You’re not asking them to buy them. They’re yours, and you’re taking them with you! When that FOR SALE sign goes up in your front yard, you have to put on a full armor of feedback protection. If you choose to hold a grudge when that same buyer makes an offer, you may make negotiations difficult or nonexistent. Do the right thing…let it go.

Monday, October 12, 2009


Richie & Rhoda Ridiculouz

These wannabe buyers have listened to friends, and friends of friends about the bargains that can be found in the slow real estate market. By the time they’ve finished talking it up, the couple is under the impression that they will be able to find a mansion for less than $350 a month…because that’s the deal someone’s cousin got. They enlist the help of a real estate agent, and she shows them fixer uppers and short sale properties that fit within their budget. They find a turnkey home they fancy, and because of the ridiculous advice of non-professionals, demand that the sellers reduce the home another $25,000, provide a stainless steel appliance allowance, and pay all closing costs.

Couples like Richie and Rhonda make me want to scream, chuckle, then scream again!


My Advice: Richie and Rhonda, hear me, please! If your buddies aren’t trained, knowledgeable professionals, take their experiences with a grain of salt. It would be extremely rare if your experience was identical to theirs. Each real estate transaction is different because you are dealing with a different set of people with different wants, needs and financial standing. Now, in terms of your expectations for your future purchase, when is reality going to set in for the two of you? Listen to your agent. Look over the comparables that he or she is presenting to you, in addition to the condition of the desired home and that will give you a sense of what a fair offer is. If you still have your heels dug in, now is not the time for you to buy.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009






Dan & Deanna De’Sellerz
They have done all of the necessary repairs, updates and staging. The home is priced appropriately for the location and amenities. They’ve taken great measures to make sure the home shows well. The De’Sellerz want to sell their home so they can move to the next phase of their lives.










Simon & Sybil Seriouz
They’ve decided it’s time to purchase their first home, and began visiting Open Houses in the area. They meet a real estate agent that fit their needs, but they’re not sure what they can afford. Through the guidance of their new agent, Simon & Sybil meet with a reputable lender.







I have no doubt in my mind that if I were to poll 100 realtors, at least 98 would say that they pray for transactions between the DeSellerz and the Seriouz families. What the other two agents are hoping for, I don’t know.


My Advice: Dan & Deanna/Simon & Sybil, as much as we would love to pair the two of you together, it may never happen. Continue to do what you’re doing, with the knowledge and realization that you may encounter buyers/sellers that don’t share your sense of preparedness or the desire to handle the transaction in a manner that is beneficial to both sides. Don’t lose heart. Keep your eyes on the prize. One door closes, another one opens. (What other clich├ęs can I throw in?) I could go on, but you will find that there is some truth to those sayings, and depending on the progress of the transaction, you may find yourself constantly using them to keep you going. Remember: stay focused…keep your head up…there’s some good in everyone…every cloud has a silver lining. (I knew I could muster up a few more!)

Friday, October 2, 2009

Buddy & Bonita Badnewz

They really want to buy a house. It’s very important that buy before the end of the year because their lease is up. Their agent takes them to half a dozen homes and they fall in love with one. After a bit of negotiating, their offer is accepted. However, every phone call they put in to their agent thereafter always goes like this: “Hey, it’s Buddy & Bonita. We’ve got bad news.”


Have you ever given someone a special ringtone so you know it’s them calling? Well if Buddy & Bonita’s agent did that, I can assure you there is a great amount of stomach churning when their song chimes through.


My Advice: Hopefully your agent has given you a checklist of items you’ll need to produce and in what time frame they are needed. If you’re dragging your feet just because, maybe it’s not the proper time for the two of you to purchase a home. Buddy & Bonita, whatever it is, you owe it to yourselves, your agent, and the sellers, to have your ducks in a row. When an offer is accepted, time is of the essence. Lenders will require certain information…get it to them. The home inspection needs to be scheduled…clear a block of time for this. I can’t say it enough: excuses and bad news will likely result in slowing down the process, creating negative attitudes, or sabotaging the entire deal altogether. Buddy and Bonita, get it together!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009



Milton & Marcia Messier
They just don’t have a knack for keeping their home tidy. During the listing presentation, their agent explained to them the importance of preparing and maintaining the home during the listing period. The couple believes their home is fine just the way it is, that would-be buyers should appreciate the “lived-in” look and see its potential. If they want to buy a museum, they should go elsewhere. The Messier’s home has been on the market over 4 months, and they can’t quite figure out why they continue to receive negative feedback, and none of the prospects have hinted at presenting an offer.


The definition, according to Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, of tidy reads as follows: 1. Properly filled out: plump 2. Adequately satisfactory 3. Neat and orderly in appearance. So, if you’re a house hunter, tidy is what you’re expecting when your agent opens the door. But what if that’s not the case? What will your thoughts be?


My Advice: Milton and Marcia, you can’t be serious. Selling 101 tells you, along with the counsel of your agent, that when you put your house on the market, your way of living changes until the home is sold. Why? As a rule of thumb, unless your home is marketed as a distressed property, buyers are expecting to walk into a tidy environment. When personal belongings are put away and every space is clean, the home shows better and they are able to picture themselves living there. Your unwillingness to tidy up makes me question your motivation to sell. Feedback is requested for a reason, and if several agents are relaying the same message: dirty house, you should take heed. Get your head out of the sand and clean your house!

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Willie & Madi Moneyzworth
These sellers have lived in their home for 25 years. They’ve raised four awesome children and have truly loved every inch of the home. Willie, in particular, has spent tons of time and money making sure everything is up to date and custom-made for them. Madi kept each and every receipt in a large binder and presented it to their agent, just in case anyone needed proof. The Moneyzworth’s have made it clear that they want to recoup every dime they’ve put into the home over 25 years and not a cent less!


Willie & Madi are precious people. We all know at least one couple that is determined to get their money’s worth. It is understandable when you work hard every day and put a lot of time and energy into making your home the place you want to be at the end of each day.


My Advice: Willie & Madi, as adorable as you are, you have to be realistic. Keeping records of repairs and updates is the correct approach to take. However, expecting to get $10,000 back on a $12,000 kitchen remodel you had done in 1990, may not be the wisest thought. Do your research. There are several resources to let you know what remodeling projects will give you the best return. Keep in mind, your city and state may play a huge role in what you should expect to get back. www.Realtor.org, under Cost vs. Value Report has an excellent breakdown of various renovations to get you started.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Oscar & Olivia Obliviouz
They’ve just left their friends new home, and they want one too. Being able to decorate, and not to mention the huge tax break they’ll receive, is very appealing to them. They glance at their bills but don’t consider them a huge factor. Instead, they base everything on what they currently pay in rent and utilities.


We’ve all been where Oscar and Olivia are. I mean, the thought of owning something, especially property, gets the heart pumping. To be able to have full creative control of color schemes and landscaping without the watchful eye of the landlord is definitely exhilarating. You are the boss; the head haunch; queen of your domicile; king of your jungle. Who wouldn’t want that? Not to mention the prospect of getting money back at when tax time rolls around. Wow! There isn’t a downside to homeownership! Let’s go for it!


My Advice: There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting the American dream, and on the surface, there seems to be no reason why that can’t happen for the two of you. However, by omitting current bills because you don’t see them as being important, you are possibly setting yourself up for disappointment. Add everything you can possibly think of. This helps your lender give a more accurate reading on what price range you fall into. Remember, just because you fail to mention the bill, doesn’t mean it goes away. You still have to pay it, along with a mortgage. It all adds up, and the last thing you want is to overextend yourself before you move the furniture in.

Saturday, September 19, 2009



Dustin & Denise DeLusionalz
These buyers stumble upon an Open House sign one bright and sunny Sunday afternoon. The home looks lovely, and they can’t resist. They tell the agent they’ve always wanted to buy a home in the area, and this particular home met every need including price. The only thing standing in their way is selling their current home. They write an offer, with a contingency that they must sale their current home first. What they’ve failed to mention are the stack of Past Due mortgage statements sitting on their kitchen table.


Dustin & Denise aren’t as uncommon as you may think. First, I’d like to defend them. Not a full-fledged throaty defense…more like a little above a whisper. Okay, here it goes: Its human nature to want more. Having said that, human nature also has a way of being unrealistic. When the DeLusionalz made the offer, they were working more on emotion than reality. Sometimes a wing and a prayer or wishful thinking doesn’t work. The stack of past due mortgage statements are just the tip of the iceberg. By erroneously submitting an offer, the DeLusionalz have possibly tied up two to three other buyers and sellers in the transaction loop.


My Advice: Dustin & Denise, please stop. If you can’t make your current payments, why would a bank loan you more money for a more expensive home? Rescind the offer, forfeit any earnest money without a fight, and throw in a heartfelt apology (via your agent). Spend the next six months to a year making your mortgage payments on time to keep you current. Paying down and/or off other bills isn’t a bad idea either. One year may seem like a lifetime, but it’s a good route to take. The silver lining is the two of you will be in a much better position when you are actually able to purchase another home.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Simon & Sybil Seriouz
They’ve decided it’s time to purchase their first home, and began visiting Open Houses in the area. They meet a real estate agent that fit their needs, but they’re not sure what they can afford. Through the guidance of their new agent, Simon & Sybil meet with a reputable lender.



Simon & Sybil are an agent’s dream come true. Meeting with a reputable lender is the most important aspect of the home buying process. Why? It’s simple. Every buyer should know if and what they can afford before running around aimlessly from house to house. One of the worst things that can happen is finding the home of your dreams, only to find out that you’ve been pre-approved for $50,000-$75,000 less. Or much worse, you’ve been declined for a loan.


My Advice: Simon & Sybil, you are on the right track. Most of us don’t go grocery shopping without knowing how much we can spend, so why should the purchase of your first home be any different? Also, when the two of you find your future home, attaching a pre-approval letter with the offer can go a long way. If you aren’t the only offer on the table and the seller’s are on the fence, your pre-approval letter (along with an offer they can accept), may shift the balance to you. Being pre-approved also lets the sellers know of your commitment to the home buying process. Best wishes!

Monday, September 14, 2009

*Disclaimer: The characters are fictitious and bear no resemblance to anyone living or dead. They are make-believe and are used solely for learning purposes. I know, it’s sad, but I have to add it.

I’ve spun the wheel, and the lucky couple for our first dissection are the Privatey’s. Let’s recap:

Percy & Penelope Privatey
These sellers want complete discretion while their home is on the market. They were very clear about their wishes with their agent. There is to be no yard sign and no lockbox on the front door. They also want to be present at every single showing so they can see who is coming in and out of their home.

First, it is solely up to the sellers how they would like their agent to market their home. Having said that, there could be several reasons why they don’t want a sign or lockbox on the front door, and why they insist on being present at each and every showing: The Privatey’s may be going through a foreclosure, which may be extremely embarrassing. A divorce may be in the works. They may have nosy neighbors. Or they could just be control freaks.

If The Privatey’s really want to sell their home, this may pose problems when the agent tries to market the home. Yard signs & fliers are awesome marketing tools. A would-be buyer could drive by the home a million times, wishing to buy it, but because they didn’t know it was for sale, an opportunity is lost. Same applies to mailers. As for the absence of the lockbox and the seller’s insistence on being home… In my opinion, this is not a good idea. The goal is to sell the home to a qualified buyer. In my experience, when the seller is present, the buyer doesn’t preview the home the way they would if they were alone with their agent.

My Advice: Percy & Penelope, if you truly want to sell your home, please take the advice of your agent. Marketing goes a long way in the selling process. If you’re worried about safety, electronic lockboxes are the way to go. They track which agents have come through, so if someone didn’t have an appointment, they have no business in your house and should be reported. The lockboxes also deactivate from 9pm-9am, so you’ll have that extra peace of mind. Also, think about why you have to see who is previewing your home. Hopefully it’s not because of race, politics or religion. Who cares? You’re starting on a different journey. Let another family make memories in their new home.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Okay, we’ve had a chance to look at a few possibilities. On Monday, I’ll point out some of the possible problems that may arise by having certain buyer or seller personalities. As I said before, you may see yourself in some of these characters. The goal is not to completely change you or your personality. This is simply a guide that may allow you to modify some of your thinking so your transactions will have fewer bumps.



HAVE AN AWESOME WEEKEND!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Richie & Rhoda Ridiculouz
These wannabe buyers have listened to friends, and friends of friends about the bargains that can be found in the slow real estate market. By the time they’ve finished talking it up, the couple is under the impression that they will be able to find a mansion for less than $350 a month…because that’s the deal someone’s cousin got. They enlist the help of a real estate agent, and she shows them fixer uppers and short sale properties that fit within their budget. They find a turnkey home they fancy, and because of the ridiculous advice of non-professionals, demand that the sellers reduce the home another $25,000, provide a stainless steel appliance allowance, and pay all closing costs.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

GROUCHY MAMA ALERT

ONE GROUCHY MAMA
UGHH!!! Technical difficulties are the pits! For some unknown reason, I am unable to add pictures to my posts. As soon as I figure out what's going on, I'll introduce you to our final couple.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Willie & Madi Moneyzworth
These sellers have lived in their home for 25 years. They’ve raised four awesome children and have truly loved every inch of the home. Willie, in particular, has spent tons of time and money making sure everything is up to date and custom-made for them. Madi kept each and every receipt in a large binder and presented it to their agent, just in case anyone needed proof. The Moneyzworth’s have made it clear that they want to recoup every dime they’ve put into the home over 25 years and not a cent less!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Milton & Marcia Messier
They just don’t have a knack for keeping their home tidy. During the listing presentation, their agent explained to them the importance of preparing and maintaining the home during the listing period. The couple believes their home is fine just the way it is, that would-be buyers should appreciate the “lived-in” look and see its potential. If they want to buy a museum, they should go elsewhere. The Messier’s home has been on the market over 4 months, and they can’t quite figure out why they continue to receive negative feedback, and none of the prospects have hinted at presenting an offer.




Dustin & Denise DeLusionalz
These buyers stumble upon an Open House sign one bright and sunny Sunday afternoon. The home looks lovely, and they can’t resist. They tell the agent they’ve always wanted to buy a home in the area, and this particular home met every need including price. The only thing standing in their way is selling their current home. They write an offer, with a contingency that they must sale their current home first. What they’ve failed to mention are the stack of Past Due mortgage statements sitting on their kitchen table.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Buddy & Bonita Badnewz

They really want to buy a house. It’s very important that buy before the end of the year because their lease is up. Their agent takes them to half a dozen homes and they fall in love with one. After a bit of negotiating, their offer is accepted. However, every phone call they put in to their agent thereafter always goes like this: “Hey, it’s Buddy & Bonita. We’ve got bad news.”













Percy & Penelope Privatey

These sellers want complete discretion while their home is on the market. They were very clear about their wishes with their agent. There is to be no yard sign and no lockbox on the front door. They also want to be present at every single showing so they can see who is coming in and out of their home.

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Dan & Deanna
DeSellerz
They have done all of the necessary repairs, updates and staging. The home is priced appropriately for the location and amenities. They’ve taken great measures to make sure the home shows well. The De’Sellerz want to sell their home so they can move to the next phase of their lives.









Oscar & Olivia
Obliviouz
They’ve just left their friends new home, and they want one too. Being able to decorate, and not to mention the huge tax break they’ll receive, is very appealing to them. They glance at their bills but don’t consider them a huge factor. Instead, they base everything on what they currently pay in rent and utilities.

ONE GROUCHY MAMA
I woke up ready to get the day started. For some reason, I was optimistic about the day. You know, I felt as though I was going to be extremely productive. I had my trusty planner, ready to check off everything on my To-Do List. But that proved to be easier said than done.
On my way to the doctor’s office, a couple of red lights started flashing on my dashboard. Glitch number one. No harm, no foul. While I’m waiting for repairs to be completed, I’ll post my blogs and check some other things off the list. Unfortunately, my DSL didn’t want to cooperate. I did the usual…unplug, reset. Glitch number two. So, I wrote a little and tried to connect again. Nothing. Nada. Zip. By now, I’m more than a little miffed. I can’t concentrate long enough to do anything. Then I decided to play a mindless game, you know, kill some time and clear my mind. Well, someone forgot to tell me that I needed the dang blasted internet to do that! Ugh!!!
So here’s the good part. My husband comes home and does all of the things I’d done to the DSL cord, and bingo, it works!
And so, a new category is born. I’m sure, with my track record, this will become a staple in every blog I create.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Ahh…to finally be labeled a Buyer or Seller. This means you’ve made the decision to hop in the seat, strap yourself in, and wait for the roller coaster to inch its way in an unknown direction. In the next installments, I will introduce you to buyers and sellers. They won’t be in any particular order or grouping. Once the final intros have been made, I will randomly pick a buyer & a seller and match them up to see if we can bring them to the closing table and actually complete the transaction. I welcome comments, questions, & suggestions.


Greg & Gretchen Grudgeez

Their lovely home has been on the market for fifteen (15) days, and they’ve had over ten showings. After each showing, their real estate agent reviews the feedback with them. For the most part, the feedback has been positive. However, they receive a bit of feedback from one particular buyer that made an unflattering comment about the drapes in the formal living room.



Simon & Sybil Seriouz
They’ve decided it’s time to purchase their first home, and began visiting Open Houses in the area. They meet a real estate agent that fit their needs, but they’re not sure what they can afford. Through the guidance of their new agent, Simon & Sybil meet with a reputable lender for preapproval.

Monday, August 17, 2009

I wasn’t sure how I was going to structure the tips. I didn’t want to give the typical, generic list of tips and suggestions that are forgotten as soon as we get to the last one.
Sooo, I decided to create a few personality types that you may encounter as a buyer and/or seller. You will find that some are pleasing, whereas others may be a little less desirable. If you see yourself…great! Hopefully by seeing some of these personalities, it will help you overcome any differences that may come your way to buying/selling your home.



Are you in this crowd? (Figuratively speaking, of course)

As always, these are simply examples. The names and situations used as examples are just that, examples. I'll stress this again tomorrow.

Saturday, August 15, 2009


I’m so happy you decided to stop by! I love real estate. And I love that it allows me to still be that clean the house-cook the meals-do the laundry-drive the carpool-cook & serve the team meal-never miss a game-while still working on her first mystery novel Mama.
Whew! I know. Now multiply that by about 10, and that’s the emotional roller coaster you’ll be on when you enter the world of real estate as a buyer or seller.


The goal of The Real Estate Mama is to pass along relevant tips on buying & selling your home, but also give you insight into how emotions come into play, and believe me, they will. But how you handle them can make a huge difference in the outcome. Now I don’t know about you, but if I’m going to learn something, it can’t be boring. I love to write, so when I give examples, they will more often than not, be in story form.
I really hope you enjoy your visits. I welcome & encourage questions, comments, and suggestions.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

COMING SOON!

It's coming soon, I promise!