Three Agents in One

In these uncertain times for the nation’s real estate markets, there are encouraging new certainties about ours.  First, with a growing number of properties being sold from Bradenton to Boca Grande—Southwest Florida is showing definite signs of a sustained recovery.

Second, the recovery is occurring faster in many popular neighborhoods and price segments; less so in others.   Third, in something of a blast from the not-too-distant past, a significant number of sellers are working with our agents to field multiple offers—thanks mainly to aggressive pricing.

To guarantee a successful transaction these days, your agent must not only possess competent real estate skills but also be equal parts knowledge broker and problem solver.  Foreclosures, short-sales, fluctuating inventories and falling values—it can be very difficult for buyers and sellers to keep ahead of the market when the playing field changes constantly. To maximize your understanding of today’s market, be sure to contact an agent from Michael Saunders & Company.   No one is more fully equipped, better trained or capable at dealing with each new twist and turn this market sends our way.

To immediately capitalize on developing opportunities and trends within specific communities, neighborhoods, zip codes and price ranges we continuously provide our agents with updated market reports from such trusted sources as Trendgraphix—the industry’s gold standard for unbiased local market profiles based on actual sales.  Your agent as knowledge broker will walk you through these revealing monthly trend reports and explain your best options as a buyer or seller.

Last week, front pages across the nation announced in bold headlines that February’s existing-home sales dropped 9.6% nationally compared with January.  They were also down by 2.8% compared with last February.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune dutifully reported these less than stellar results as well—but with one key difference.  It noted early-on in the story that for the third straight month homes sales in Southwest Florida defied the national trend.  In fact, 17 of Florida’s 19 metro areas bucked February’s downward trend in national home sales.   18 of them also enjoyed higher condo sales.

According to the Sarasota Association of Realtors, February sales in the Sarasota MLS were up 24.2% over January, up 27% over February 2010; and the inventory of unsold homes hit a six-year low.  Plus, for the first time since April 2010—when the first time home buyer tax credit was still artificially stoking sales—pending sales exceeded 1,000.   This proves yet again the adage that all real estate is local, thus making it unwise to form local housing decisions based solely on national trends.

Foreclosures continued to place a drag on February prices in 14 of Florida’s metro areas.   Sarasota’s median price receded as well.   Still, as the quickening pace of unit sales indicates, prices now occupy a comfortable range for many buyers who believe that any additional price declines are not worth the wait if it means missing out on a specific property, passing up a low interest rate; or having fewer first-rate properties to choose from.  Instead, they’ve been known to formulate offers based on their best judgments of how area home prices may yet fall marginally before bouncing back.  Moreover, our market has been repeatedly declared undervalued by numerous real estate experts.  Theirs is also the expectation that prices will recover rather quickly once the backlog of distress sales is dealt with.

With too many present-day transactions succumbing to preventable lending or title issues, your agent must also function as a trouble-shooter as the sale progresses from contract to closing.  Working in tandem with the teams from MSC Mortgage and MSC Title our agents offer their customers the added benefit of one-stop shopping; where the expertise and problem-solving skills of everyone involved remains unified, purposeful and communicative.

When you choose a real estate company, be sure to get the personal representation you need in today’s hyper-challenging market.  Choose an agent from Michael Saunders & Company and you’ll get three professionals in one.  The licensed agent, the knowledge broker and the problem solver.

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