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Housing Outlook for the Next 6 Months

Tuesday, June 25, 2013 posted by Tommi Crow

The real estate market was overheated during the first 6 months of 2013.  Low home inventory, record low interest rates and the lack of new construction were to blame for the unsustainable, rapid price increases and multiple bidding wars for properties. 

5 Reasons we do not feel the hyper-inflated housing market will, or should, continue. 

  1. Rising Interest Rates – Interest have risen sharply in the past few weeks and the trend continues up.  Current rates will slow the number of homebuyers and speculators that are coming into the market during the next 6 months.
  2. Marginal buyers have been priced out of the market due to bidding wars, rapid price increases and higher borrowing costs.
  3. Wall Street and large investment groups are curtailing their buying.  One-third of all homes purchased this year were Cash sales.  This translates to heavy investor buying, which will slow down going forward in 2013.
  4. Shocking run up in home prices are not sustainable.  In May, home prices were up 12.1% on average.  This brings home price levels to a 5 year high.  Pricing is now at a point that many of the short term gains have been realized, and the market will fall back to more normal levels.
  5. Realtors and builders report that inquiries and calls from new customers is down 11%, so far for June. 

Summary:  We feel that the housing market was under valued at the start of 2013, but a frenzied market chewed through much of the low hanging fruit.  With rising interest rates, and increasing inventory levels, we see a move to more sustainable and healthy growth moving forward.   It is still an excellent time to buy or sell.   Inventory levels will increase, but they will remain on the low side throughout the year.  Interest Rates are still at historic lows and price increases, although impressive, leave the average home price far below levels seen in 2006 and 2007.    

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  Home sellers and investors are a happy bunch this spring.  Homes are selling quickly and for very near their asking prices.  If your home is on the market and you haven’t had success…you should consider an MLS listing and here is why.

Washington Post writer and real estate expert, Iilyse Glink weigh about why the MLS is the key to home sales and why it works so well.

Studies indicate that most homes sell with the help of a real estate agent. The No. 1 tool to market those homes is probably the MLS. This listing service in most markets gives real estate agents the ability to see and review all listings in an area. If your home isn’t in the MLS, you’re missing the most effective tool to sell your home.

Twenty or so years ago, an FSBO seller would advertise his home in local newspapers and a lawn sign, with InfoTube or InfoBox, to market his home. Few if any of these FSBO sellers succeeded in selling their homes. More recently, the Internet has started to level the playing field, but many buyers still work with real estate agents to buy their home. Those agents rely on the MLS.

An FSBO service may offer various packages to sellers such as you. The more you want, the more you pay, with the top package giving you access to the MLS for six months. We guess you want to give your home the greatest exposure possible and that you wouldn’t want to exclude a major source of potential buyers.

As you decide whether you want an a FSBO package, you must understand what it will take to sell your home. If you overprice your home for sale, trying to sell it yourself isn’t likely to give you a good result.

You still will need to price your home right, make sure your home shows really well, both from the inside and the outside, take great photos for posting on Web sites, create a beautiful brochure for the home, and make sure the description of your home is succinct, emphasizes the good points of your home and accurately shows off its best qualities.

As the real estate market has improved in many areas, you likely have a better chance of selling your home today than you had a year or two ago. But home sellers can make the same mistakes in any market. Again, you need to decide whether you want to spend money upfront to sell the home yourself in a FSBO or try again with a real estate agent.

We think that listing your home on the MLS is a good step toward getting your home sold. Unless you find a buyer that is searching for a home on the many sites out there that carry listings, you might miss out of that one buyer truly looking for a home like yours. offers low cost MLS and listing packages that will get your home noticed by millions of homebuyers, who wouldn’t otherwise know your home is for sale.  Call 800-858-6000 for more information or visit our website.


We finally have an avalanche of positive news regarding on the real estate and housing market for 2012.   

  1. Foreclosure activity in 2011 is down more than 50% lower in several states, including New Jersey, Maryland and Florida.  Realty Trac
  2. The much feared “shadow inventory” of foreclosures declined dramatically in 2011.  In December 2012, 2.2 million properties were in some stage of foreclosure.  In September 2011, that number dropped to 1.5 million units…or a whopping 32% in nine months.  Realtytrac
  3. Realtors in some hard hit area’s, such as Michigan and southern California, are reporting a shortage of housing inventory and a return to bidding wars in tight markets.  
  4. Wall Street thinks the worst is over.  Stocks of the nation’s five largest, publicly traded, home builders are at 52 week highs signaling an upswing in home construction in 2012.  In addition, the home builders have been snapping up deals on land and abandoned subdivisions in anticipation of increased buyer demand.  CNBC
  5. Realtors and home builders are getting a boost from rising rents, as Americans realize that owning a home is often less expensive than renting one.   And, while future rent increases have no ceiling on how high they can go, ownership locks in housing expenses and equity is created as the loan balance decreases each month.
  6. Legal issues, property maintenance and other issues complicating the foreclosure process will push banks and lenders to approve more short sales in 2012, further reducing housing inventory.
  7. Interest rates will remain at historical lows in 2012, which allows more people to qualify for a home and cheap money buys more house for the same monthly payment. 
  8. Foreclosure activity was down more than 30 percent in 2011.   Fewer than 2 million properties foreclosure notices were filed in 2011, down from 2.9 million property filings in 2010.  Realty Trac

InfoTube believes that this news spells OPPORTUNITY for home buyers, home builders, investors and real estate agents.  Home prices and affordability are excellent, yet buyers and investors can still find good bargains.   Today’s smart home buyers will feel like geniuses in ten years when the see what inflation has done to home prices. 

If you have a home to sell, we can help.  Visit to place a FREE home listing about your property or to buy an InfoTube or InfoBox to advertise your property to drive by customers.  Or, supersize your marketing efforts with an MLS listing.  The MLS and reaches millions home buyers each day that otherwise would not know your home is for sale!!!

7 Secrets to Selling Your Home Now

Thursday, April 21, 2011 posted by Tommi Crow

In today’s’ super-competitive housing market, it is essential that homebuyers picture themselves living inside the home you are trying to sell.    

7 Secrets to Selling Your Home Now

  • For starters, take down the Wallpaper – Trust me when I say, “Buyers just do not like wallpaper.”   If you doubt how personal wallpaper is…just walk into any wallpaper store and stare at the thousands of available patterns.  Chances of your tastes matching are at least a thousand to one.  Don’t risk it!  Pull that paper down!
  • The Clutter HAS to Go!  Living in a house is alot different than Selling a house.  It is easy to get blind to your own clutter.  Ask a friend, neighbor or neutral party to be honest with you.  Then, pack away every single thing you don’t use.  And, clear the kitchen counters completely.
  • Smelly Homes Will NOT Sell.  Agents have an old saying, “If I can smell it, I can’t sell it.”  Pet smells, musty odor’s, etc will kill a sale everytime.
  • White is not a Color.  But, paint is your friend.  Every room should have a fresh coat of paint in a warm, neutral color.
  • A Spot of Color.  Everyone loves flowers.  Place pots with colorful annual flowers by the front door or plant seasonal color in the beds to make your home inviting and memorable.
  • Househunting Begins on the Internet.  If your property is not exposed on the internet, your chances of a buyer finding you are very small.  Tip the odds in your favor by advertising your home on the MLS and all the major search engines for real estate.  InfoTube also offers FREE property listings on its website.   Also, make sure your listing includes at least 10 good photo’s of the interior and exterior of your home.  If possible, also include a video tour of the house and neighborhood.
  • Forget About Comp’s and Sold Properties.  Study your competition, which means homes currently For Sale.  If your home is priced too high when compared to your competition, it is going to sit for a long, long time.

Homeowners should please keep in mind that Buyers have a lot of choices.  The homeowner who can make their house stand out among the vast inventory of “For Sale” signs will the one who wins the selling game.

Thank you for visiting homes for sale and rent website.  For up to the minute real estate news and tips follow InfoTube for Real Estate on Facebook.

    While Wall Street wrings its hands and pulls its hair over the banking problems and foreclosure moratorium, home seller’s and home builder’s have a BIG reason to celebrate.  Their competition dropped the ball!!!

The moratorium on foreclosures effectively removes ONE THIRD of all the homes For Sale from the market!!   33 Percent of the competition is GONE!!!   For how long, we don’t know…but, we do know that this is a RARE opportunity and all property seller’s should take full advantage of it.

What can home seller’s and builder”s do to take advantage of the Bank Error?

  • Realize that Time is of the Essense!  The banks will work hard and fast to get their inventory back on the market.  And, when they do, they will no doubt offer special incentives that individual seller’s can not compete against.  The clock is ticking…….
  • Price Right and Show Well!   If your home is priced right against its remaining competition, and it is staged, depersonalized and shows well, Your House Will Sell.
  • Marketing to the Masses is Key!    The MLS sells over 90% of all the homes in the United States.   If your home is not on the MLS, your chances of selling are less than 10%.   If money is tight, know that you don’t have to pay 6% for an MLS listing.  You can purchase an MLS listing for your Home for only $399.

                                                              believes that “a bank moratorium on foreclosure competition” is a very unique opportunity and the window is open for a short period of time, only.   We are here to help you . “The clock is ticking”.  Don’t let this unbelievable opportunity pass you by!! 


How Much Does It Cost to Sell a Home?

Monday, June 14, 2010 posted by Tommi Crow

Whether or not you use a real estate agent, the process of selling a house will involve certain costs. 

Please note that some of the figures used in our examples will vary depending on the state or county a house is sold in, as well as the settlement company used and any other unique provisions that may be contained in a contract of sale. Additionally, the real estate broker commission is typically 6 percent of the sales price, but it is not a set amount.  It is a sales expense negotiated between individual sellers and brokers.   For the purposes of our example, a $250,000 sales price was used. 

Transfer taxes

As you might expect, most state and local governments make sure they profit when someone sells a house.  In most states, one-time transfer taxes will be due when a sale takes place.  It is customary for transfer taxes to be split 50/50 between the buyer and the seller, but there is no set requirement that they be divided in that manner.

Some states, like Alaska, Idaho, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, Texas, Utah and Wyoming, have no transfer taxes at all. In other states, Colorado for instance, the transfer tax is nominal – the state charges only one tenth of 1 percent ($40 on a $400,000 house) in transfer taxes. The so called “Free State” of Maryland falls on the other end of the spectrum with some of the highest transfer taxes in the nation.


As we stated earlier, real estate commissions are not a set amount. They are a point of negotiation between the seller and the broker. For illustration purposes here, we are using the industry standard of 6 percent, or $15,000 on a $250,000 sale.

Another seller expense you may run across in some area’s is a listing broker administrative brokerage commission.  It’s usually adds another $250-$500 expense on top of the 6 percent commission fee.  The seller will see it as a separate expense on their closing statement.  So, what is this fee for? By law, brokers must keep records of all their real estate transactions for a period of years. And they must produce those records if asked for them.  Although it’s a ridiculous added on fee, the listing broker administrative brokerage commission is an expense passed along by some brokers to help defray the cost of this requirement.

Settlement fees

The buyer is responsible for hiring the settlement or title company to perform closing, so the buyer will usually pay most of the fees associated with settlement. But, the seller does have some settlement expense.  If the seller has an outstanding loan on the property, the settlement company will take care of paying that loan off out of the sales proceeds. They’ll charge something for the service, plus the cost of overnight fees to quickly get the loan payoff to the mortgage holder. In our example here, we’ll use $250.   And, since interest in collected in arrears, the seller will be responsible for any interest charges that accrue after the last payment thru the day of closing.

The Bottom Line

If you sell your house for $250,000, you can probably expect to walk away with around $230,000 after taxes, real estate commissions and fees.  If no real estate commissions have to be paid out, the seller could expect to walk away with approximately $245,000.  The real number will depend on exactly what it says in the sales contract and where the property is located.

Thank you for visiting homes for sale and rent website.  We have over 20,000 active home listings on our website.  Please take a moment to search for great deals, often seen no where else on the web.

Purchasing a For Sale by Owner property has a number of unique benefits that all buyers should be aware of.    Too often, buyers don’t consider fsbo listings because they are working with a real estate agent.  They are unaware that most builders and owners are willing to work with buyer’s agents and many advertise their homes on the local MLS.  If you are in the market for a home and you are not considering “by owner” listings…you could be missing out on some great deals.   Here are a few of the Advantages of buying a For Sale by Owner home.

Save Thousands on Commissions and Fee’s

When purchasing a home listed by a traditional listing broker, a 6 percent commission is factored into the seller’s asking price.  Buyers often think they aren’t paying the listing commission…but in fact…the agents $6000 cut is included in every $100,000 of the asking price.   When a homeowner or builder sells their own property, they pay no commission or a much smaller 3 percent to the buyers agent.  This substantial savings can be passed onto the buyer, who can now afford more home or get the same home for less money.

Easy Appointments to View

If you want to look a home listed with a full service broker, you have to schedule all appointments through the listing broker.  The listing broker then has to contact the owner and the buyer agent to schedule a time to look inside the home.  This process can often be inconvenient or sometimes aggravating depending on the time lapse in getting everyone on board.   When dealing directly with the seller, there is no need to go through other people to schedule a tour.  The seller will look at his schedule and immediately give you the date and time, making the entire buying process much simplier.

Negotiating the Offer

When purchasing directly from the property owner, negotiating the offer can be much easier, too.  Typically, the buyers agent first presents the offer to the listing agent…then, the listing agent makes an appointment to relay the offer to the seller.   If the seller makes a counteroffer, the whole procedure is reversed back through both agents making the whole process take a lot longer than it should.   When making an offer directly with the seller, the middle men are eliminated, which increases the odds of putting together a deal that works for both parties….and does so in record time. has over 20,000 properties listed directly by owner or by builder.  We encourage buyers to seriously consider these properties, whether you are working with an agent or not.  Working directly with the owner has many distinct advantages and benefits….no drawbacks. 

Cut Real Estate Fee’s and Foreclosures

Tuesday, February 9, 2010 posted by Tommi Crow

Cut foreclosures by slicing real estate fees

Al Lewis

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

President Obama has often said that it would be a shame to waste this economic crisis. Nowhere is that more true than in residential real estate. Federal home-buyer tax credits up to $8,000 designed to increase home sales and reduce foreclosures are having little impact. Sales of existing homes fell a record 17 percent in December, while foreclosure petitions are rising. Instead, let’s use this crisis to try a new approach: permanently slashing the 6 percent real estate brokerage commissions prevalent in most markets.

Unlike commissions paid for buying cars, stocks or insurance, these hidden commissions include two payouts – about 3 percent each to the seller’s broker and the buyer’s broker. But there’s no need for two brokers in real estate transactions. These hidden fees survive only because real estate brokerage is a cartel. Forty years ago, you needed one broker to buy a house – today you need two. In law and medicine, fee splitting is illegal. In real estate, it is required.

Most people would not hire commissioned brokers if they had to pay for them directly – that’s why the brokerage industry wants them hidden. So let’s eliminate hidden fees for the buyer’s broker. We could then drop the homeowner tax credit, since the buyer is saving three grand, and replace it with a $1,000 incentive credit. This cash bonus would go only to home buyers whose purchase prices include a total commission of 3 percent or less (or none at all).

The selling brokers will naturally complain: “We can’t afford to split a 3 percent commission with the buyer’s broker. That’s how much we need to make ourselves. So buyers will have to make their own arrangements if they want assistance.”

And that is exactly the point: Instead of allowing the 3 percent commission to be hidden in the sales price, this tax incentive would encourage home buyers to pay openly for whatever level of assistance they want, if any. Given those other options and the chance to collect $1,000, few buyers would opt to pay a 3 percent out-of-pocket commission – about $15,000 on a median-priced Bay Area home. Faced with the prospect of paying that bill explicitly, most Internet-savvy buyers would probably opt for personal advice just a few times during the home-buying process, and pay by the hour or by the showing.

Even with only $1,000 of tax credit, these buyers will be better off financially than first-time buyers who collect a hefty home buyer credit, but who still pay hidden commissions. And taxpayers are better off, too. Any buyer could still opt to pay the traditional commission at closing – but would have to forgo the incentive credit.

This temporary incentive credit could permanently alter the structure of real estate brokerage, because there would be no going back once the credit expires. As happened when stock commissions were allowed to decline, much lower transaction costs would create more transactions and hence more liquidity. Liquid markets will allow people to sell houses more easily before they go “underwater,” thus reducing foreclosures.

Of course the real estate brokerage industry, which has strongly endorsed home buyer tax credits, will oppose this incentive credit. Fortunately, an equally powerful coalition of builders, bankers, mortgage brokers and consumer advocates will be lined up supporting it.

Much lower transaction costs would not just reduce foreclosures by facilitating transactions, but would also increase people’s net equity in their existing homes. Homeowners would be better off and, at least in real estate, this economic crisis would not be wasted.

Al Lewis is author of “OOBonomics: 12 ‘Outside Of the box’ Ideas to Improve the Economy.”

This article appeared on page A – 10 of the San Francisco Chronicle

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Fed Snapshot on Real Estate in 2010

Thursday, January 14, 2010 posted by Tommi Crow

An exerpt from the NASDAQ report states:

In all seven of its districts, though, sales of lower-priced homes outpaced those of higher-priced homes by a wide margin, the Fed reported. It credited the government homebuyer tax credit for boosting interest in less-expensive properties.

And the extension of the tax credit could act as a shot in the arm for purchase activity later in the year, the Fed suggested. “The extension of the credit into 2010,” the Fed noted, “could give an added impetus to the expected seasonal sales upturn this spring.” 

Concerns about the continued housing recovery abound among policymakers and the chattering class, however. Both the tax credit and the Fed’s purchase of mortgage-backed securities are slated to end in the coming months, and it’s unclear whether there will be sufficient demand for home purchases without those stimuli.

This week, the Mortgage Bankers Association released a forecast for mortgage activity; it anticipates that mortgage issuance will fall 40 percent from 2009. The decline will be led by a plummeting rate of home refinancing, the MBA said. reads between the lines:  The market is being driven on the low end by Federal stimulus and the housing market will drop off after the April deadline for qualification passes.   If you have a home to sell, you will see more buying momentum earlier in the year than later.  To maximize your investment, clean, repair, stage and advertise your property on the internet during the first quarter of 2010.   January – April will be the period we will see the more homes go under contract for the year.








The housing market has been sending some serious mixed signals for months now.  The one certainty is that the real estate market is in flux, and will likely be for months to come. 


  • Although interest rates have been increasing, they remain at historical lows.  This is good news for buyers who act quickly, as none of the experts expect rates to remain this low later in 2010.
  • The $8000 tax credit for first time buyers was expanded to include existing home owners, as well.  The timing of this offer is crucial.  Buyers must close on or before June of 2010 to collect their free cash.
  • Home prices and demand have steadily increased month over month throughout October of 2009. 
  • Although some markets may slide a bit further, we are definitely in the last innings of the crash.  Even if we have a bit more downward pressure, 2010 will be the bottom of the housing crash.
  • Home seller’s who use the power of the MLS and the Internet to realistically market their properties, will see more buyers and will have much more pricing power than they’ve experienced in years.
  • In markets, such as Phoenix, you can buy a new home for $800 a month, making it cheaper to own a home than rent it.


  • According to Bob Curran, director at Fitch Ratings, a mountain of foreclosures will hit the market in 2010.  And, a 10.5 percent unemployment rate will cause a surge in new homeowners that will fall into default.
  • Per Lawrence Yun, chief economists with the National Association of Realtors (NAR) expects a record 3 million foreclosures in 2010, up from 2.1 million in 2009.
  • John Burns, president of John Burns Real Estate Consulting, is even more bearish.  He thinks 50 percent more people will lose their homes to the bank than they did last year.  Why?  Lenders were under pressure to postpone foreclosures in favor of loan modifications.  And, the banks weren’t staffed to handle all the defaulted loans, as they now are.
  • The Office of Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervison released  a report that said the results of the loan modification program was disappointing.  61 percent of the loans that were modified are now in default again.  The offices predict another wave of foreclosures in 2010, which could cause prices to fall another 5 – 10 percent before the market stablilizes.
  • The Federal Reserve plans to end the program that has kept mortgage rates so low for so long.  Rates have already passed the 5 percent mark in anticipation.
  • The first time buyer and existing home buyer tax credit program expires in early 2010.  To qualify for the stimulus, buyers must purchase by April and close no later than June of 2010.  This program has certainly lured buyers into the market place and its expiration will take a toll on demand in the 3rd and 4th quarters.

InfoTube Prediction:  Since the housing market peak in the summer of 2006, home prices have dropped over 30 percent on average.  Prices in some markets such as Las Vegas, Phoenix and parts of Florida and California have fallen more than 60 percent.   Some markets have further to go, but we are in the final innings of the crash.  Even if we go lower, we will see the bottom in 2010.  But, don’t look for a rebound off the bottom.  The damage was too deep and too systemic for a “V” shape recovery.  The housing market will skate along the bottom for quite a while and it will probably be 2013 before most people notice any rebound.

Thank you for visiting  There hasn’t been a better time to buy or sell a home in 4 years.   Check out our website for over 20,000 fresh home listings and feel free to place your property on our site for FREE.  We’ve been helping buyers and sellers connect since 1988.  We can help you, too!!

I’m thinking Turkey.  The leaves have fallen, lawn mowers are stored and furnaces are in use.   It’s at this time of year that many of our customer’s ask…  “Should We Take Our Home Off the Market During the Holidays?”

The answer is definitely “NO”.  There are a lot of reasons to keep your home listed right through the New Year.  And, there’s a special timely reason this holiday season!!

  1. The First Time Buyers Tax Credit has been extended until April 30, 2010 AND it’s been expanded.  Step Up Home Buyers, who make a lot of money, can also receive $6500 in Tax Credits until April.   Big tax incentives mean that smart buyers will be house shopping vs mall shopping this holiday season.  
  2. Interest Rates are at Record Lows.  30 year fixed rate mortgages are below 5 percent.  But, with the dollar weak and falling, low rates may not be around for long.   Serious home buyers are aware of the difference that even a small interest rate increase would make in their house payment.  The combo of Tax Credits and Low Interest Rates create strong urgency among buyer’s.  Smart seller’s spruce up their homes and play into the pressure.
  3. Holiday Shoppers are Serious Buyers.  Trust me.  Everyone of us loves the holidays.  So, the people who are out looking for homes in November, December and January are SERIOUS Buyers.  Do you really want to pull your house off the market when the most serious people are shopping??  Think about it and gear up!!
  4. Less Competition.  Many sellers don’t read our blog.  They foolishly pull their homes from the market during the holidays, and this year will be no exception.  Less competition and MLS exposure could make the difference between For Sale and Sold, this Christmas. 
  5. Houses are Pretty during the Holidays.  Staging your home is easy during the holidays.  The mood is festive.  Holiday colors are warm and inviting.  Candles, centerpieces and decorations touch the heart and convey a peaceful lifestyle.  Light the candles, make a roaring fire, bake some goodies and turn on some relaxing holiday music.  Buyer’s love to see a home decorated and looking special.  Don’t let this once a year opportunity pass you by.
  6. Curb Appeal.  If your landscape and lawn isn’t that great, breathe a sigh of relief that no one else’s is this time of year, either.   Add seasonal color, a wreath, perhaps some decorations.  Just keep it subtle and classy.  No mowing, no weeding and trimming, and best of all snow covers all…

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The real estate market is currently in a downward state of flux.   In 2007, the bottom dropped out, the free fall began and we started rethinking everything we thought we knew about real estate.

Home prices are 40 percent or more off peak in some area’s of the country, so “Real Estate doesn’t always go up.”  Selling by Agent or Owner??  Actually, the Banks sold more property last year than either.   Dinner conversations now focus on “How can we get rid of this house??” Instead of “Flip this House”.  Our worries aren’t about capital gains.  Now, we worry that we owe so much, that we can’t afford to sell the house or live in it.

In today’s market, one thing is certain.   There is little money to make and every dollar counts.   So, if you need to sell, you have 3 options.  By Agent; By Owner; By Auction.  Should you Pick Door 1, 2, or 3????  

By Agent Pro’s and Con’s


  • Real estate agents provide a comparative market analysis to justify price strategies and make recommendations about staging, showing and the condition of the property.
  • Agents develop a comprehensive marketing program for your property that includes the MLS, photographs, virtual tours, internet website distribution and Open Houses.
  • Agents handle the showings, contract negotiations, they offer legal-type advise and they are objective about the property and its condition.
  • In a slow market with a lot of inventory, agents may possibly do a better job than a do-it-yourselfer.  Many seller’s feel that penny pinching in this market may not be a smart move.


  •  Costs for brokerage services are extremely high.  The typical fee is 6 percent of the sales price of the property.   Many seller’s find that after they pay 6 percent of the gross price to the agent, then pay off the mortgage, they have no money left from their sale or worst case, they actually lose money on the home.
  •  The agent may have little experience.  They may be difficult to reach or contact.  They may not market your home as you want.  
  • Agent’s work for their own benefit and may have a conflict of interest with their seller’s.  They may advise the seller to price their home for a quick sale, not the best price they can get.  And, agents make double the money if they sell their own listing.  This means if they have a buyer that is interested in their own listing, they work for the buyer, too, not just the seller paying their fee.
  • Agents often give short notice or no notice of showings, which is a problem for busy seller’s.   In addition, your listing agent is not the person who will typically show your home.  This means that the best features and benefits of your property may not be pointed out.

For Sale By Owner Pro’s and Con’s


  • The biggest reason to sell your own home is the money.  Agent’s fee’s are steep (6-7 percent off the top of the sale) wiping out thousands of dollars in profit from the bottom line.   For the average homeowner, real estate commissions erase a huge chunk, if not all, of their entire equity in the home.
  • By Owners control their sale.  Many seller’s have bought and sold a lot of property in their lives.  They know how to price their home, show their home and negotiate the sale better than a stranger could.  
  • Today, ‘For Sale by Owners’ have the marketing power that agent’s do.  Gone are the days that “By Owner” marketing options were limited to throwing up a yard sign, hoping that a buyer stumbles upon it.  Sellers now have access to all the tools that agents use to buy and sell property.  Homeowners can purchase access to the MLS,, and other major real estate portals for a few hundred dollars, they can have an attorney draft the contract, leaving many to ask “Why pay 6 percent?”.
  • FSBO’s have a Price Advantage.  They don’t have a 6 percent tarriff to pay on their sale, which gives them an advantage when working with buyer’s or pricing their home below their “listed” competition.
  • Many seller’s don’t trust real estate agents.  They don’t want to place  their most valuable asset in the hands of a commission sales person, who may or may not, be operating in their best interests. 


  • The biggest problem for ‘by owner’ seller’s is that people love their homes and it is hard to be objective.   Emotional attachments make pricing, negotiating and showing the home difficult for a lot of people.
  • Seller’s aren’t realistic about the need for a marketing program that will attract enough attention to draw buyers.  Agent’s don’t spend money placing property on the MLS, and major websites because they enjoy it.  They do it because those are the only methods that work to efficiently reach buyers and sell property.   Throwing a sign in the yard or running a classified ad won’t work in this market.  If you aren’t willing to use all the marketing tools that the agent’s use, your chances of succeeding are small.
  • Showing the Property.   If you live out of town, travel for your job or are unable to show the property with little notice, then selling by owner is not a viable option.  
  • The Work and the Time.   When you list with an agent, all the work is done.  The marketing, advertising, showing, negotiating, inspections and closing are handled by the agent.  When you sell property yourself, you have to be prepared for the work and the time it takes.

For Sale at Auction Pro’s and Con’s


  • It’s Fast and Easy.  Property auctions are quick and simple.  The entire process only takes about 28-30 days from start to finish.
  • Avoid Random Buyer Tours of your Property.  When you sell by auction, there are usually one or two days for all buyer’s to tour the property at a set time and date.  Seller’s do not have to endure months of random strangers calling to walk thru their home with little to no notice.  Other than the posted showing times, seller’s can live normally in their home without having buyers constantly disrupt their lives.
  • No Negotiations.  Once the gavel falls, the price is set and the deal is over.  The frustration of and time wasted on lowball offers, counter offers, repair negotiations are eliminated.
  • More Money.  The true definition of market value is defined by what a buyer is willing to pay and a seller is willing to sell for.   This is the beauty of the auction process.  In good markets and good locations, buyer compete for their dream home in real time.  Sometimes, the nature and urgency that is created in an auction environment will yield a higher sales price than a listing agent would recommended.


  • The biggest con is that your home might not sell.   Although we picture auctions as busy places, with huge crowds frantically bidding and waving their paddles in the air, that isn’t always the case.  In slow markets with a lot of inventory, there are times when few people show up and the auction day is a bust.
  • The Final Sales Price:   If your opening bid is low and only a few buyer’s show up, you might sell the home for a lot less than you hoped or thought.   If you are considering an auction, you may want to set a Reserve Price, which dictates that no sale will occur below X amount of dollars.
  • The Buyer may not Meet the Terms.   Although auction buyers should be pre-approved, and will forfeit their deposit if they don’t close the deal, deals do fall through, just like in conventional sales.   For people who chose auctions for a quick sale, it could be a big issue, if the buyer is unable to meet their closing date.
  • The Cost:  The cost of an auction is often as expensive as listing with an agent.  Sometimes, the seller will owe fee’s to the auctioneer, even if the sale fails to happen or the reserve is not met.

Thank you for visiting and for looking with us behind doors one, two and three.   If you need to sell, the method is your choice.  Just consider the pro’s and con’s of all three, considering your lifestyle, budget, time and expertise before you make a final decision.  

4 Mistakes Home Seller’s Make

Thursday, April 2, 2009 posted by Tommi Crow

As the spring home selling season approaches, many homeowner’s rush to put their houses on the market.   Interest rates are low, tax rebates and sales incentives abound, and home prices are more affordable than they have been in a decade. 

But, before you throw the ‘for sale’ sign in the yard, please educate yourself about the common mistakes you should avoid, if you want to sell your home.  Decades of real estate experience have proven again and again, that making these mistakes, even once, will stop any sale in its tracks.

  1. Pricing:  Setting an unrealistic price is the biggest mistake home seller’s make.  The home MUST be initially priced at or under its competition, or you are simply wasting time and money.  Some seller’s toy with the notion of “low balling” their asking price, hoping for bidding wars and a quick sale.  While this strategy sometimes works on lower priced property, it doesn’t work in higher price ranges.   Buyer’s in a higher price range simply think that the seller is desperate, which always results in even lower offers, not bidding wars.   We won’t address overpricing, because there is nothing to say.  The truth is no one will overpay for your home, it won’t appraise anyway, so please keep it off the market, until you are ready to be realistic. 
  2. Property Condition:  Know as much as you can about the condition of your property, fix everything that will stop a sale, and disclose everything you know about the property condition to the buyer.   If you don’t, when the problematic inspection report is revealed, the buyer will cancel the contract and walk.   Afterward, the seller will find themselves in a much worse position because they lost momentum, valuable time on the market, and the cancelation signals that something was wrong with the house.  The seller will also be required by law to disclose everything found on the prior inspection report, so there is nothing to gain and a lot to lose by hiding the facts.  
  3. Working with Today’s Buyer’s:  It is a mistake to not entertain any offer, no matter how low the inital offer is.  Buyer’s in this market make low ball offer’s first, to test the desperation of the seller.  You will never know what price a buyer may be willing to pay for your home, if you don’t negotiate with them.
  4. Potentially Unqualified Buyer’s:  NEVER get into a contract with a buyer who isn’t financially qualified for a loan.  A letter of prequalification is not enough to take a home off the market.  First, know who the lender is and require full underwriting approval within days of the acceptance of the offer.  Be sure to write this loan approval (not prequalification) provision into your contract.  Maintain your Active Listing Status and DO NOT indicate that your home is Contract Pending until the buyer has verifiable loan approval.

Thank you for visiting homes for sale or rent website.  Feel free to post a Free Listing.  Or, Upgrade to a Featured Home Ad which provides buyer’s all the information, video’s and pictures they are looking for.  A Featured Home listing costs only $19.95 and the listing stays active until you sell or cancel.

According to a report by the National Association of Realtors, 32 percent (1/3 of all buyers) of home buyers first saw the home they purchased on the internet.   Buyer’s who found their home through a real estate agent dropped 14 percentage points to 34 percent, during the same time period.

Despite the slowdown in the housing market, buyers and sellers have increased their use of the internet when buying or selling a home.  “The internet is a very important tool in today’s real estate market”, said Tommi Crow, CEO of Crow Erickson, Inc., the company that manufactures the InfoTubes and InfoBoxes found on real estate signs from coast-to-coast.  “Home sellers know that they can use the power of the internet to reach millions of home shoppers as effectively as a real estate agent would”, said Crow, and, they can save themselves thousands of dollars in the process”, said Ms Crow.  “Americans are successfully buying and selling real estate without using agents, and that trend continues to grow”.

Home seller’s who want to maximize their online exposure use, combined with the services of Why 6 Percent.  The combination of the two marketing programs provide home seller’s with a home listing on their local MLS,, Google, Yahoo, MSN, Craigslist, Zillow, Trulia, Infotube, Homes for Sale Live and other major web portals, which attract millions of home buyers each month.

Where a Home Buyer Found the Home Purchased*

2001 vs. 2008



  2001    2008
Real Estate Agent   48%    34%
Internet     8%    32%
Yard Sign    15%    15%
Friend, Relative or Neighbor     8%     7%
Home Builder or their Agent     3%     7%
Print Newspaper Ad     7%     3%
Directly from Sellers / Knew the Sellers     4%     2%
Home Book or Magazine     2%     1%
Other     3%    N/A

* Source: National Association of Realtors

Thank you for visiting   Sellers can place a Free Home Listing on, which advertises their property listings to tens of thousands of home buyers each month.

Sales of existing homes rose to their highest levels since 2003.   Watch the short video from CNBC for a synopsis of the latest housing numbers from across the nation.

More good news on the housing front.  Infotube is seeing a pick up in activity across the board.   Product sales of InfoTubes and InfoBoxes are picking up at major retailers such as Lowes and Home Depot.  Internet traffic and the number of house ad views on are growing daily.
The spring selling season is on its way and timing is everything.  If you have a property to sell, make sure you are taking advantage of all the effective advertising channels available to you.
Thank you for visiting  Thousands of buyers search our website daily for new listings.  If you haven’t taken advantage of our Free Property Listing, please do so today.