Archive for January, 2012

What Sets Me Apart From Other Southeast Michigan Listing Agents?

I’ve been showing houses quite a bit lately and have noticed some disturbing trends. Many of these trends are confined to foreclosure listings; or at least I thought the incomplete listings with no yard sign out front and no electricity on in the house was a foreclosure issue. Many of these foreclosure agents never even see the house, so I guess that can be their excuse. But other agents have been following suit. I guess in their minds good service is graded on a curve and as long as foreclosure agents behave like secretaries for the bank, most of the rest seem to feel the need to imitate.

I showed a house last night, after dark, and was surprised to find no electricity on in the house. I called the listing office and set the appointment with a member of the listing agent’s team. You would think she could have told me we would be looking with flash lights, and I would have thanked her and rescheduled for the weekend during the day.

I’m showing a house tomorrow to the same couple. When I pulled the aerial today I was pleasantly surprised to find it’s a lakefront home. The listing never mentioned that it’s on the water. Good for us on the buyer side, but not so good for the seller.

Non foreclosure agents are starting to fill both the agent remarks and buyer remarks on the MLS sheet with showing instructions and ass covering statements such as “buyer or buyer’s agent to verify taxes, sq. footage, etc.” Or BATVI – buyer agent to verify information. DUH! The MLS is supposed to “sell” the house- to entice buyer’s agents to show the listing.

Sometimes the agent remarks are left blank and even on occasion the public remarks are blank. I showed a house with central air that was not included in the MLS. I showed a house today with lake privileges and a subdivision beach and the water name search field was left blank. 20% of the lake front listings in this North Oakland County area also leave the water name search field blank so their listings won’t come up if I am searching for houses on a specific lake.

A while back I was showing houses on acreage and over a third of the listings left the acre search field blank. I’ve shown 2 houses in the past week or so where the listing agent missed a bathroom. And it goes on and on.

I don’t know what has happened to customer service. If a listing agent can’t/won’t fill out a listing completely, how are they going to handle the rest of the transaction? If the incomplete listing is a short sale will the listing agent be able to, or willing to, send everything the lien holders ask for in a timely fashion? I highly doubt it if they can’t even fill in a lake name or check the central air box.

As real estate agents we are dealing with hundreds of thousands of other people’s dollars and we should take that commitment seriously.

One thing I can promise is if you list your Southeast Michigan home with me, your listing will be completely and accurately filled out. You will have the maximum number of photos allowed and a virtual tour (unless your house is a pig sty- no need of scaring off buyers!). You will have a sign in your yard unless otherwise requested and if you don’t have the electricity turned on in the house you can find another agent. I list homes to sell and I sell them at the highest price possible. I will communicate with you throughout- from the time you sign the listing agreement until the sale closes.

I take my job seriously. We like to call ourselves professionals and should behave in a professional manner. Our listings are our face to the public and those listings should represent the home better than those on for sale by owner web sites.

Why You Should Choose Jackie Hawley To Sell You Home

Marketing Your Southeast Michigan Home

Preparing Your Southeast Michigan Home For Sale

Home Evaluation (CMA)

Jackie Hawley, Realtor
ReMax Encore
Cell: (248) 736-6407



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Rolling Meadows, Lake Orion MI Market Conditions– Good News If You’re Selling

Rolling Meadows Lake Orion MI real estateGreat news for homeowners in Rolling Meadows in Lake Orion Michigan. The median sales price is up for the 2nd year in a row! We’re still a long ways from the peak times, but better than 2009 or 2010.

Median Sales Price:

2011- 13 units at $228,000 2010- 14 units at $213,500 2009- 16 units at $210,000

There were no bank owned sales in 2011 and only 2 short sales.

The lowest sales price was higher each year than the previous year as well as the top end price was higher each year than the previous year.

2011 sale prices ranged from $194,000 – $265,000 2010 sale prices ranged from $164,505 – $237,000 2009 sale prices ranged from $153,000 – $247,000

12 of the homes sold within 26 days on the market and 1 house took 71 days to sell. I define days on the market as timeRolling Meadows Lake Orion MI real estate from the last price change (if any) until pending. Overpriced houses aren’t really on the market. Properly priced homes sell since the time frames to sell in Rolling Meadows are about the same as the rest of the areas.

There were 4 homes financed through FHA and 9 utilized conventional mortgage financing. Most of the homes that sold in Rolling Meadows sold within about 5% of asking price. 1 house sold for 2 1/2% over asking price and 1 home sold at asking price.

2 houses in Rolling Meadows leased in 2011 at $1950/month and $2000/month (reported by Realcomp II MLS).

If you are considering selling your Rolling Meadows home, you may have more equity than you expected. Or getting closer to having equity again!

If you are thinking about buying in Rolling Meadows you need to call or email me so I can get listings to you the day they hit the market. Prices are up 6 1/2% from 2010 and up 8% from 2009. You still get a lot of house for the money and with interest rates so low buying in Rolling Meadows is still a bargain.

Rolling Meadows is a 265 home subdivision located just north of the I-75 and Baldwin Rd exit in Lake Orion MI. Homes were built in the mid 90’s and range from approximately 2000 sq. ft. to approximately 2800 sq. ft. Rolling Meadows boasts city water and sewer, sidewalks, subdivision tennis courts and swimming pool as well as a community club house.

For More About Rolling Meadows

Search The MLS

Homes For Sale In Lake Orion MI

Lakefront Homes For Sale In Lake Orion MI

Jackie Hawley
ReMax Encore
Cell: (248) 736-6407


Why List With Me

Preparing The Home For Sale

Seller’s Toolkit

Seller Report

Home Evaluation

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Why I don’t List Short Sale Listings

The title is off a little- if you are a past client or a friend I will consider taking your short sale listing, but you have to play by my rules- no exception. And those rules will be the topic of another post. For the most part I will turn away a listing if it needs to get short sale approval in order to close.

My reasons have nothing to do with morals or any personal feelings I may have toward someone who has to go through a short sale. I will be the last person you find who will pass judgment on your decision to short sell. I just plain HATE dealing with short sales. I’m good at it (I have listed a few- that’s how I know I hate them). I understand the process and am good at negotiating away your deficiency. I just don’t like them.

I don’t like the high failure rate. I would say at least 1/3 of short sale listings that go pending die. They may sell with the second or third buyer. They may go into foreclosure. But MY  business plan doesn’t call for that high of a failure rate.

I don’t like all the hoops the lenders make us jump through. I don’t like re-sending the same paper work over and over. I don’t like the like waiting for months until I get to actually talk to a human being.

I don’t like the fact that the lenders think they have the right to interfere with  my contract with the seller and dictate a change in commission. Why should a short sale seller pay a lower commission than my regular sellers?

I don’t like dealing with uneducated buyer’s agents who think their buyers can walk before the short sale has been approved or denied. They sometimes forget their buyer signed a contract and are committed to this sale like any other- read the contracts and addenda!

When I’ve listed short sales in the past I felt more like an admin person for the bank– not a real estate sales professional. The time invested in properly servicing a short sale listing is too intensive for the failure rate and pay and that is time taken away from servicing my buyers and normal listings.

If you are considering selling your North Oakland County or Lapeer County home and you won’t have to go the short sale route, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Marketing Your Non Distressed Home

Why You Should List With Me

Preparing Your Home For Sale

Jackie Hawley
ReMax Encore
Cell: (248) 736-6407

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Clarkston MI Home Sales Are Up- AGAIN!!

2011 home sales in Clarkston MI were up in units, average sales price and total dollar volume from 2010. And 2010 was better than 2009. Is this a trend? Will 2012 be a better year than 2011? If you were waiting until the market hit rock bottom to buy, you may want to consider hopping off that fence. Inventory is low and you need to be ready when “that” house hits the market. Interest rates are also low. The annual average interest rate on a 30 year fixed mortgage was 4.45% paying .7 of a point. Almost a percent and a half lower than the hey days of 2003-2004-2005.

Some interesting facts:

  • 419 closed sales in 2011
  • 416 closed sales in 2010
  • 353 closed sales in 2009

That’s 16% increase in unit sales from 2009.

Average Sales Price:

  • 2011- $193,935
  • 2010- $188,712
  • 2009- $176,611

The average sales price in 2011 was 2.7% higher than in 2010 and 8.9% from 2009.

Part of this is due to the decline in distressed sales. In 2011 foreclosure sales made up 32% of the total sales. In 2010 they made up 37% of the total sales. Short sales made up a total of 18% of the total sales in 2011 and 22% of the total sales in 2010. In short- distressed sales were just under 60% in 2010 and just under 50% in 2011.

Total Dollar Volume:

  • 2011- $81,258,650
  • 2010- $78,504,030
  • 2009- $62,343,820

That’s a 3.4% increase in total dollars from 2010 and a 23% increase from 2009.

Cash sales made up 19% of all total sales in 2011, 32% of bank owned sales, 18% of short sales, 11% of regular or non-distressed sales.

Houses in general sold within 4% of asking price on average. Bank owned homes sold within 1% of asking price and short sales sold within 3 1/2% of asking price.

Search the MLS

Clarkston MI Homes For Sale

Writing The Offer


Choosing a Buyer’s Agent

Jackie Hawley
Keller Williams Realty, Clarkston MI


Cell: (248) 736-6407

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