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TransUnion is estimating that millions of “boomerang buyers” will hit the real estate market in the next several years, providing good news for home sellers sitting on the sidelines.

TransUnion defines a boomerang buyer is a homeowner that experienced a financial crunch and may have lost a home to foreclosure or short sale, had serious late payments on their mortgage, or went through a loan modification. These homeowners have not been in a position to buy a home because of their credit.   As in many cases, time will heal credit as long as their are no re-occurring credit problems.

I know our office is seeing owners that have experienced such trouble in the past are now able to  purchase a home again.  This is good news for home sellers as an increase in home buyer activity will also increase prices and shorten market times.

While home buyers don’t want to see home prices appreciating, it is not a bad thing.  Lets face it long term appreciation is one of the biggest reason home buyers buy.  Many baby boomers who have bought and held on to their home are now sitting on homes that have appreciated 10 fold or more.  With mortgages close to being payed off or paid off they are taking the advantage of the equity in their home to help fund their retirement.

A Million+ Boomerang Buyers about to Enter Market

TransUnion recently released the results of a new study titled “The Bubble, the Burst and Now – What Happened to the Consumer?” The study revealed that 1.5 million homeowners that were negatively impacted by the housing crisis could re-enter the housing market in the next three years. TransUn

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So I just arrived back at the office from a showing where I heard, I have a “family member who is a real estate agent” they will be handling the transactions.  This article discusses 5 reasons why you should not hire a family member as your real estate agent.

This woman spent a half an hour on the phone with me saying her and her husband are downsizing and they don’t know where to start.    I layed out the steps for her that made sense for their individual circumstances.  She was so thankful that I was able to set her down a path to success.  There was one condominium she really wanted to see so I scheduled it…. short notice to boot.

We get there and she informs me that she has a family member, a nephew that is a part time real estate agent and he would be handling everything.  She started asking me all these questions about buying and selling and she had specific questions about the unit she was looking at.  This was going to be a complex set of transactions and would require a seasoned real estate agent.  I said listen you dragged me out here I might as well show you the unit but let your nephew earn his keep, you should have called him to show you the unit and he will be able to answer all your questions.

What was her response?

“Well he doesn’t really seem to know what he is doing, he doesn’t do a lot of real estate and he has a really busy job so he couldn’t show me the condo in the next few days.”

Ok, family member or not there is several red flags in that statement.  A good real estate agent should be able to fully educate you about the transaction ahead as well as be able to find time to show you a property.

If you are going to hire and inexperienced family member or friend as a real estate agent, let me ask you this one question….

If this family member came to you and asked your for $10,000 or $20,000 would you give it to them?

Most of you will probably say no.  Well that is basically what you are doing.  They are going to potentially cost you thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars in the sale and purchase of a new home.

5 Reasons not to Hire a Family Member as Your Real Estate Agent

  1.  Does that family member have the necessary experience?  Experience matters…. big time.  I took me many real estate transactions and 3-5 years of working full time before I felt fully confident in counseling home sellers and home buyers.  Having a real estate license does not automatically qualify you to be the right real estate agent for a particular transaction.
  2. Are they actually familiar with the area you want to do business?  Bringing in a family member who is a real estate agent from out of the area is just a bad idea.  They are not familiar with the local markets or even some of the specific neighborhoods.  Real estate is very regional.
  3. Are they actually full time agents?  This one is two fold.  One I already mentioned… experience.  Two, do they have the time to properly service your selling or buying a home?  The market right now is fast.  If you are not in a good home in a day or two of it being listed, you will lose it.  Can that family member drop what they are doing to get you into a home?
  4. Do you really want them knowing your business?  There is a lot to a real estate transaction and many time real estate agents are involved in some of your close, personal information.  Should you hire a family member as your real estate agent, do you really want them all up in your business?
  5. Are you willing to ruin a relationship or relationships?  I had a real good friend always tell me… everybody gets funny about money.  As I get older I realize how true that is.  I have watched friends and family members get crazy about money, whether it is an inheritance or business matters or borrowed money.  There is a lot at stake for you and your family member real estate agent could have thousand or tens of thousands of commissions at stake.  What if it goes wrong?  Not only could you damage a relationship with that family member it could damage relationships with extended family members.

After reading this and you still want to hire a family member as your real estate agent, at least have them compete for your business.  Interview at least two other agents and compare services, experience and track record.  In no way am I inferring your family member is not a good agent and as a matter of fact they could be a great agent.    You should do your homework and hire the best agent for the your real estate circumstances.

Bottom line is you have too much at stake.  An inexperienced agent can cost you 10s of thousand of dollars on the sale of your home and/or a purchase of a new home. Remember, emotions run high during a real estate transaction a misunderstanding or expectations not met could but a damper on one or more family relationships.  Boy, won’t Christmas at Aunt Mary’s be fun this year!!

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New Seniors Real Estate Specialist Designation (SRES)

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I an your new SRES®.  I just completed training to become a Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES). By partnering with an SRES® (Seniors Real Estate Specialist) like me during your new home search, you’ll gain the help and expertise of a REALTOR® specialized in meeting the needs of home buyers and sellers aged 50 plus. Not only do I have the experience of 13+ years in real estate, I have now have the education to […]

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Keep the Walks and Drives Shoveled

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If you are listing your home in the winter, remember to keep those walks and drives shoveled and clear of ice and snow.  You never know when you will have a showing.  Yes, too many of you this may seem silly but invariably, every winter I am showing homes where the walkways and drives have been untouched or been very poorly kept. Buyers can be out at anytime looking at houses and if they feel […]

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Pay Now or Pay Later- Building Permits and Selling your Home

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As a real estate agents that has been in thousands and thousands of home and been involved in hundreds and hundreds of real estate transactions, I see many levels of home renovations that may or may not require a building permit.  Now, more than ever, between the high cost of homes, home inspections and buyers working with buyers agents, home buyers want to know the work was done properly and will quite often check on […]

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Buying a New Construction

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Buying a brand new home certainly has it’s appeal for many home buyers…. everything brand spanking new and having things just the way you like. But buying a new construction is very different than buying an existing home, especially if the house is not anywhere near its completion.  The difficulty in purchasing a new construction is understanding what you are actually getting and pre-visualizing the finished space. The following are some tips if you are […]

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What are the 50 Safest Towns in Massachusetts

Safewise an authority on home security news has listed the top 50 Safest Towns in Massachusetts.   Note that towns with a population of less than 8,000 were not used in this list, but you can read about the criteria Safewise used to pick the towns to hit there 50 safest towns list. Remember, when buying real estate, location is everything!  Obviously safe is one of the top criteria for may home buyers when choosing a […]

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Selling Your Home with Solar Panels

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This past year I have run into solar panels both as a buyers agent and a listing agent.  It is important to understand what impact solar panels will have on selling your home.   So far solar panels have not been completely embraced by home buyers.  The thought of being green and saving money can actually create headaches and cost you money. If you are currently a home owner that is contemplating the installation of solar […]

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Tips for Seasonal and Holiday Decorating for During Home Showings

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Any time of year can be a good time of year to sell your home even during the holiday.  With the some major holidays coming up around the corner here are a few seasonal and holiday decorating tips to remember while showing your home during the holidays. Remember when it comes to holiday decorating and as much as you love a particular holiday, some of you home buyers may not participate in that holiday and […]

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Dracut MA Home for Sale- 28 Old Road

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28 Old Road, Dracut MA 01826 MLS# 71921197 Status:  Active Price:  $185,000 Living Area:  1176 Rooms:  6 Bedrooms:  3 Baths: 1 28 Old Road is located in Dracut Massachusetts just off Lakeview Ave.  28 Old Road is in need of moderate TLC.  Recent updates include the roof and blown in insulation.  This home is affordabley priced at $185,000 and will allow you to put in sweat equity and your own touches to create a home.  […]

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