They are super-contagious. You know the shows—The ones where potential homebuyers find their dream home in just a few short days or the flippers manage to turn a hefty profit after testosterone targeted smashes to the old kitchen cabinets.
In “Reality TV” Real Estate everyone wins. She makes cat videos for a living, he builds model trains and their budget is 450k. They see three houses. House number one doesn’t have the bonus room she needs for her video equipment. House number two is 50 shades of beige and house number three has a cat room like she wants, but not the expansive garage for his train set. How will they ever choose? Fast forward two weeks later and the loving couple has closed on the property, is all settled in and by all accounts living happily ever after with their cats and trains.
Real, real estate agents find humor in the home finding shows. Besides the fact it is extremely rare that a dream home could be discovered in just three showings (although we cross our fingers and toes it will), the comments made by buyers are unbelievable. Buyers ruling out homes because of bad carpeting and color schemes, outdated countertops or cabinets etc., leave us in disbelief as the TV agent just moves on to the next showing with barely a word.
The flipping and decorating shows aren’t much better. All seems to go rather smoothly when you view life on a flat screen. Entire home projects; the removal of walls, the replacing of electrical wiring, roof lines and more can be accomplished in just a few weeks. A contract over asking price at your first open house! Little is mentioned about bids, contractors, engineering, permitting, home inspections, county codes, financing, and legal problems and more. Will they love it? Will they list it? The house just needs a little shiplap you say? Oh brother! The drama sure is hypnotizing and Pinterest inspiring!
In real-life realty, our agents meet weekly to discuss the latest in sales contracts, market conditions, new properties and much more. Let’s face it, the legalese of contracts and market trends is not always “edge of your seat” conversation. As real, real estate agents we get to see half completed projects, unpermitted projects and disillusioned buyers and sellers. Occasionally, we’re even the ones who do the clean-up work! We want your home to show like a TV house and can appreciate your work and expense; but those upgrades must be done in accordance to regulations and properly permitted. Some projects must be done by licensed individuals. Don’t be fooled by those quick TV fixes.
Buyers, please don’t be put off by homes with cosmetic issues. New flooring and paint can be cheap fixes. And, don’t discount older homes that have been well maintained but may be dated with old appliances or popcorn ceilings!
Flip homes are not for everyone. If those wall could talk, you might want to run. There are many dollar signs lurking behind the unseen. Hope for the best and be prepared for the worst.
As mom always says, don’t judge a book by its cover (or a house by the expensively staged TV furniture). Happy Mother’s Day to the moms, grandmothers, great-grandmothers, sisters and aunts. We honor the Veterans this Memorial Day 2017!