Did they mean “hassle” rather than “haggle” for SW FL houses?

Posted on 09/10/2009. Filed under: Getting Ready to Buy?, SW Florida Investments | Tags: , , , , , , |

pulling-out-hairI also thought this was important enough to post on my ActiveRain blog also!

In a recently released article, CNNMoney.com used research supplied from Zillow.com saying the best place to “haggle for home prices” was Florida.  While this is true in a few markets (they named four areas), us in SW Florida aren’t seeing it this way.  The areas where this is working have an abundance of luxury homes that are still over-priced, even in this market.

I have spent countless hours educating customers that this is definitely a buyers’ market, but an “intelligent” buyer’s market.  Why would a buyer think they are the only ones looking for a great deal.  If their agent is really watching the market for them, they are aware of a new listing that is a good deal.  But are they naive enough to believe they are the only ones spotting that house today?  Some don’t even believe it when we are sitting in the van, in line, waiting for our turn to look at the house.

In my experience, these deals only last a few days and due to current practices by some banks and listing agents, the agent will take offers for several days to find the “highest and best price” for this listing.  If I got paid every time I had a listing agent tell me there were multiple offers, I could have retired this year a wealthy man.

In the Fort Myers/Cape Coral market, our customers need to be aggressive with offers.  “Low balling” to start a conversation is a waste of time here.  Many of the listings in the botton half of the listing prices are selling for listing price or even higher than listing price.  Giving a low offer just frustrates the customer and the agents.  Even if it is against our advice, customers still hear about all the “great deals” the media throws out there.  Yes, as the media reported, we did have a three bedroom, 2 bathroom house sell for $25,000.  What they forgot to tell you,  it was a marijuana grow house that was completely gutted inside and is in a very unsafe neighborhood.  More importantly, it was the ONLY one and it’s GONE!  All of the houses in SW Florida are not priced this way.

Buyers need to be realistic.  Haggling gets you no where in the mid to low price range houses.  Come in strong, with financing in place or cash in hand.  You are not the only “smart” investor to be working this market!  Remember, the media makes money selling news, not selling houses.

Mike Cathell         Florida Future Realty, Inc          Email:  MikeCathell@FloridaFutureAgents.com

Cell:  (239) 770-6250                                                    Web site:  FLCoastRealtor.homestaed.com

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