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VOL. 37 | NO. 6 | Friday, February 08, 2013

Don’t hold out for the bargain of the century

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Houses in Nashville and, generally, everywhere sell for what they are worth. That statement sounds rational enough and, some would think, unworthy of mention. Of course, houses sell for what they are worth. Their value is determined by the amount a buyer will pay for those properties.

Whether the home is a foreclosure, short sale, distressed, feeling good about life, new or old, they sell for what the market at that time considers to be fair. Everyone has a friend or has heard of friend of a friend who bought a home for $800,000 that was listed for $2.8 million. “I want one of those.”

Here’s the deal. For one thing, that buyer is Manti Te’o and that house is his girlfriend. Secondly, if that buyer tried to sell that $800,000 the next day, he would be lucky to get $800,000 because on that house, that buyer was the only person that wanted the house on Lennay Kekua Blvd.

Buyers should concentrate on finding homes that meet their needs, financially and domestically, and negotiate for the proper price. The contract should be laced with protective stipulations regarding appraisals, inspections, and financing.

We are in a “Let the Seller Beware” era. With interest rates so low, free money and prices rebounding to where they were seven years ago, the situation is ripe for a real girlfriend. Had Manti not wasted so much time on this mythical, mystical creature, he could have fostered a genuine relationship with a physical human.

Find a winner, court it, date it, learn all about it and buy it. Don’t worry about its past, i.e, that at some point an unsavvy buyer paid too much, and an unregulated lender loaned too much. There is no need to chase someone else’s mistake.

Another ‘super’ run?

The American Football Conference is once again a Super Bowl winner with the Baltimore Ravens bringing home the trophy.

The AFC won all the games from 2001 through 2007, which also was the best run in residential real estate in the country’s history. Locally, a Titan Super Bowl championship would keep the title with the AFC and do even more wonders for the local economy. Perhaps someone should alert the front office.

Continuing on the sports front and its effect on the economy, the Predators recently surfaced. A Nashville couple was touring New York’s Central Park in a bike drawn carriage when the Russian immigrant driver inquired as to their hometown. When they informed that they were from Nashville, he commented on the success of the Predators and how he and his comrades had followed the Preds last year as their countrymen performed here.

Marketing success can be measured by awareness and market penetration, and these professional sports teams are spreading the word and helping increase the values of the city and the properties that go along with it.

If the Titans could only find a way to snag Te’o…

Sales of the Week

For those interested in testing the waters of real estate investment, opportunities remain as the market is flooded with properties that could provide attractive returns on the investment.

This week, 1716 County Hospital Road sold for $25,000 after having been listed by Bill Dorris. The previous owner had paid $13,555 for this property in 2008 and realized a handsome profit.

Currently, the property rents for $6,000 annually and, with the $25,000 acquisition cost and only $548 in taxes, perhaps $1,000 in insurance and $1,200 in maintenance, the return is in double digits without considering the tax benefits of depreciation and interest expense. For an ante of $25,000, a person can get into the game.

This home has 731 square feet with one bedroom, one bathroom, kitchen and living room. Mr. Dorris delivered the buyer, who will no doubt follow the tradition of one of Bill Decker’s clients and have a bust of Mr. Dorris resting on his mantle.

Stephanie Lowe of the Wilson Group sold 313 Clofton Lane in Bellevue. This is a one-level home on a dead end street with a new roof, new gutter and windows. Its 979 square feet include two bedrooms and two and one-half baths. It sold for $117,500 after Lowe listed the home for $125,000.

Gretchen Jolly with Benchmark Realty represented the buyer who, no doubt, was impressed with the listing Realtor’s description: “NO FLOODING!” That’s the battle cry for the homes in Bellevue that were unaffected by the 2010 flood.

Richard Courtney is a partner with Christianson, Patterson, Courtney, and Associates and can be reached at richard@richardcourtney.com.