Sunday, April 8, 2007

What's Out with Home Buyers in 2007

I found this article by Mark Nash on Broker Agent News titled “What's In, What's Out with Homebuyers in 2007”.
I have included only his views on what’s out or on its way out for this article. You can find what's in on another blog titled "What's In With Home Buyers in 2007"

What’s Out
  • "As is" in home sale marketing. - Anything went in the boom market, but if you're planning to use "as is" in 2007, forget it! The phrase is the kiss of death and buyers see it as a red flag about the home and the seller. Sellers have too much competition to be chasing buyers away.
  • Endless Open Houses. - The open house pendulum has swung from " the house sold in the first day" to "we need to have our house open every Sunday". Desperation is when your home is open every Sunday. Buyers know and track it. Plan on every three weeks to have a public open house.
  • Over-full-price offers. - It was a strategy in the boom market to under-price a home and let the market set the selling price. Not today! One thing that won't change in 2007 is that every buyer will want a deal and will walk from one if they don't get one.
  • Bedrooms not large enough for a bed. - In the boom, rehabbers and developers learned the fastest way to profit was to increase the room count of a home of an existing home. Bedrooms shrunk to walk-in closet size when a four-room one-bedroom was gut-rehabbed into a four-room two-bedroom. Or, the doorways and windows eliminate required wall space. Savvy agents kept asking, can you fit a queen-size bed in either room? And the answer was usually, no.
  • Loads of glass upper kitchen cabinet doors. - Buyers say it looks great, but many who specified and experienced it firsthand, don't have the time to keep their kitchen cabinets organized. Plus if you hate washing the windows, having more glass in a greasy room, like a kitchen, is high-maintenance.
  • Bowl-shaped above-counter bathroom sinks. - The splashing and overall upkeep, have earned these sinks the reputation of nice to look at, but don't want one.
  • Any shiny metal finish. - Brushed nickels and pewter's are in. Antiqued and polished brass is out.
  • Stainless-steel refrigerators and dishwashers are a fading trend. - The cold look and higher maintenance of steel is shifting buyers to specify warmer colors in kitchen appliances.
  • Spiral staircases. - Once the rage for mid-seventies makeovers, now death to a home seller. The boomers have aged, their kids don't like them, unfriendly to pets and young children. Take yours out and put in a standard staircase (inside or out) before you sell.

On the way out.

  • Bamboo floors. - The first reviews are in on this popular eco-friendly flooring, and they're not pretty. Easily dented and scratched these floors are prone to warping from variations in our climate and humidity levels.
  • Hardwood laminate floors. - The word is out that these noisy poor relatives of solid hardwood, don't stand up to multiple sandings to change color or to remove stains.
  • Home sellers who smoke in their home while it is being marketed. - Buyers hate second-hand and stale smoke odors. Marketing your home is not the same as living in it. If you have to smoke, go outside.

Based on a survey of 923 real estate agents, managing brokers and association executives who responded to a survey request in Agent to Agent E-zine, published by Mark Nash. Agent to Agent is distributed monthly to real estate professionals in all fifty states and Canada. This article is a no-cost run-at-will with permission from the author.

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