Listing Courtesy of OCEAN ATLANTIC SOTHEBY'S INTL REALTY
In a perfect world, before you set about selling your Rehoboth Beach property you would have emptied it of all evidence of human habitation, called in the best staging pros on the planet, and set off to vacation in a Caribbean island spa-hotel so you could sift through the dozens of offers in comfort.
“Let’s see,” you would soon be musing to no one in particular, sipping your first mimosa of the afternoon as you thumbed through the sheaf of faxes from your Rehoboth Beach agent; “should I accept this all-cash offer for 150% of comparable value—or hold out for this one for 200% of comp that came in with only 50% earnest money…?”
It is here where we might best depart from this reverie to point out that in this less than perfect world—the one that we actually live in—the more probable situation is one where your Rehoboth Beach property is fully occupied, either by your own family or a tenant.
How do you make the most of that mimosaless situation? If you and your family are the occupants, your Rehoboth Beach property fits the most common profile, so the standard to-do’s apply: you will want to clear the clutter and store any non-essential furnishings; de-personalize as much as practical; deep clean; and work with your agent to make showings as routine as possible.
But what if you have a tenant? It’s going to be a true balancing act that affects four parties: seller, listing agent, tenant, and buyer. Of these, the one with the least to gain is the tenant, who is paying for the privilege of tenancy while being asked to keep the property clean and showable on the others’ schedules.
Let’s face it: this could be a minefield. Almost any tenant’s interests lie elsewhere. In fact, they may very well like your Rehoboth Beach property so much they would just as soon discourage prospective buyers—and there are subtle (and less-subtle) ways to go about that!
One solution that is sometimes offered involves this creative procedure:
Compensate the tenant for their cooperation by offering a significant bounty (say, 20% of the monthly rent) to be placed in an escrow account. It’s a meaningful award for the tenant’s full cooperation—one that will grow with the payment of each month’s rent. It will be turned over upon the completion of the sale. This ingenious plan has the effect of reversing the natural order of things. Since the amount in escrow grows with each passing month, rather than becoming increasingly annoyed with each ensuing showing, the tenant is increasingly incentivized to make the property ever more appealing. There’s cash on the line! In fact, as the escrow account builds, who’s to say the tenant won’t start doing some arithmetic…and start considering becoming the buyer himself…???
In any case, the best results for selling your Rehoboth Beach property happen when there is rock-solid communication between the listing agent and owner—and when a tenant is involved, that’s another party who should be included as well. It’s the best way to insure that everyone can go about their business with a minimum of disruption and inconvenience.
If you are sizing up the coming fall market, whether your Rehoboth Beach property is occupied by a tenant or your own tribe, I hope you will give me a call to discuss how I can get the results you’re after! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
Built into the way an Rehoboth Beach home changes ownership is the institution of the appraisal report—the document which attempts to place a dollar value on the property in question. That word “attempts” is the key when it comes to appraisals. Although it would make life easier if Rehoboth Beach appraisals consisted of completely objective, scientifically verifiable calculations, in the real world, they can’t be.
Rehoboth Beach appraisals are created by locating comparable properties that have sold recently on the open market, then adjusting that dollar amount to reflect the differences between them. That’s where perfect objectivity becomes…um…subject to interpretation.
If only any two homes were exactly the same in every detail, the latest price paid for one would be the best appraised value for the other. But even in the best case—say, two tract homes built at the same time with exactly the same features—their appraised values probably wouldn’t be exactly the same. After all, they can’t occupy the same plots, and one location might be preferable. They might not have the same maintenance history, so one might be in better condition than the other. The landscaping could differ greatly…and so on.
This is the reason why adjustments need to be made—and why the skill of the appraiser is so important. (I’m tempted to say that’s why appraisers get the big bucks; but in fact, our Rehoboth Beach appraisers’ fees are actually quite reasonable). Details on how they go about finding fair value for those adjustments is the subject of a recently revived investigation done by CoreLogic’s Jon Wierks. For anyone who finds themselves relying on local appraisals to validate an asking price (or the home loan that will allow a sale to close), the report makes for interesting reading.
The focus of the piece was to elaborate on which adjustments are most influential in creating appraisals. By analyzing more than a million sample appraisals made between 2012 and 2015, the study determined which features had the greatest impact on the resulting evaluations. They disregarded any feature that didn’t appear on at least 10% of the reports—and came up with the most important features. If this were the Oscars, we’d now say, “the envelope, please”:
Most frequently adjusted: LIVING AREA (no surprise here; square footage almost always differs).
Runner-up: ROOMS (that is, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms).
Greatest value adjustment: QUALITY RATING (the average adjustment came in at a not inconsiderable $15,000!).
Runner-up: OVERALL CONDITION.
These findings underline truly how important the skill and experience of the appraiser turns out to be, since the greatest dollar amount impact depends on the more subjective criteria. That’s even before taking into account that three free-form factors appeared in more than 10% of the appraisals. These miscellaneous factors, given the mysterious names “Other1, Other2, and Other3,” reinforce how unclassifiable are the differences between most properties and their closest comparable neighbors.
When it comes to Rehoboth Beach real estate, I aid in every aspect of the process. I hope you’ll think of me (and definitely give me a call!) when the time to buy or sell approaches. Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.