The condo market is still experiencing low inventory levels even as spring arrives. While we are beginning to see more condos come on the market, it is still well below what we normally see in this time of the year. Part of the problem… negative equity is still a problem for many owners, even after the nice appreciation we had in 2013. Please click on the link below for more information!
If you are in the market to buy a condo, call Brad Golik, the Portland condominium specialist!
One of the things that I do appreciate when writing in a blog is the feedback that I get. Some of it good and sometimes bad. I don’t really mind when I get negative comments because it is expected whenever you are giving your opinion on something. I do realize my opinion will not always line up with others. Today was one of those days where I got, not really a negative comment, but one where they did not agree with me…and that is ok! Recently in my blog, I mentioned that agents that don’t use professional photos don’t deserve to list higher end listings. This is something I strongly believe. What I believe I said was that someone who was going to make $20,000 to $30,000 to “market” a Portland penthouse listing priced at $1,000,000+ and did not spend $200- $300 for professional photos, did not deserve to have that listing. I STILL think this is true!
The person who sent me the comment said he had just seen a condo priced at $970,000 that sold in a week and did not have professional photos… and yet it still sold quickly! Well, I believe I know what unit he was talking about, and yes the photos were terrible! Yes the unit did go pending in a short time even with bad photos. Sometimes that happens. Here is my point. Why would you not do everything possible to make your listing stunning and stand out from all of the others and try for a higher price. I also believe that someone that is so tight that they won’t spend money on photos will also cut back their marketing dollars in every area like staging, print ads, internet marketing, professional graphics etc. Even though this particular unit sold in a short time, how do we not know that if it could have gotten more people to look at it had it looked more attractive online? Could great photos have gotten 3 more buyers through the doors? Could it have gotten several offers that may have boosted the price some? Personally, I prefer to do professional photos for every listing whether it’s $400,000 or a $3,000,000 penthouse! ( a good example of this is a small studio listing I just brought on the market for $305,000… www.PacificaTowerCondo.com )
The point here that I want to make is if you have the ability (and small amount of money) to make a listing beautiful and stand out from all of the others on the market, why would you not do it? I will say it again, it is a huge disservice to the sellers when an agent does not give his/her very best for the client. There are good agents out there that are professionals and truly try to do a good job for there clients. If I do happen to not get a listing over another agent, I hope it is to an agent that puts his clients first and does everything possible in terms of marketing, not only because it’s the right thing to do… it is what we are being paid to do!
Show me an agent that is not spending money for professional photos and I will show you an agent that does not care!
Brad Golik is a condo specialist working in the Downtown, Pearl Distict and South Waterfront areas of Portland.
If you are looking to buy or sell a luxury Portland condominium, call Brad at 503-896-8856 or email him at email@example.com
Brad Golik of Windermere Northwest and LuxuryCondosofPortland.com has distinguished himself in the field of (luxury) condominiums and townhomes sales by earning the prestigious Certified Condominum Specialist® designation. This national designation is given to select real estate agents who have demonstrated the specialized education, market knowledge, competence and experience in successfully and effectively listing and selling condominiums, townhomes, and other forms of common interest developments (CID).
The certification and designation are offered by the Council of Condominium Specialists® which is the national, premier independent authority in assisting real estate professionals in providing high quality service and superior market expertise to the buyers and sellers of condominiums and townhomes (CIDs).
Brad Golik is the first real estate agent in Oregon to receive the Certified Condominum Specialist® designation!
The designation indicates the recipient real estate agent has worked diligently to complete essential real estate training and has met specific performance standards to demonstrate expertise in their local condominium/townhome (CID) market to provide the high quality real estate services his clients deserve. Real estate sales are a complex and challenging field to begin with,” said Candy Peak, Director of the Council of Condominium Specialists®, “but selling a property that is in a common interest development (CID), which involves both an individual and shared ownership in real estate, such as a condominium, townhome, planned development or any other property that is part of a homeowners association, requires an agent with the specialized real estate knowledge and expertise to professionally navigate a buyer or seller through the intricate path of common interest development ownership and sales.
“My commitment is to provide outstanding service to my clients,” said Golik, and “the Certified Condominium Specialist® designation ads additional benefits for my ability to meet the needs of condominium and townhouse buyers and sellers in my area. My membership in the Council of Condominum Specialists® Network also provides me with the marketing tools and networking capabilities that bring added benefits to my clients.”
For current information on condominium and townhome sales in your neighborhood and to receive a market evaluation on your property, contact Brad Golik at 503-896-8856 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org . You can also visit http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com
Today I saw a listing come on the market that prompted me to write in my blog on the topic of working with a specialist. The listing was a condo in the Pearl District that came on the market priced at $1,699,901. (901?) Well the 901 is not the issue…interesting, but not the issue. The issue is the crazy price! This is a floor plan I know very well. It is also a floor plan that has MANY comps to support the pricing and where it should be. The o2 stack in this particular building has had 2 sales in the last year and 3 recent pendings. I currently have some buyer’s coming into town that will be looking in the $1,000,000 price range and this could be a perfect unit for them… except for one thing, the price! I called and spoke with the listing agent to see if there was a typo on the pricing ( yes, I really did!) He said to me that the pricing is correct. I asked him how he came up with the pricing on this unit. He told me that a unit (#1002) just went pending at $1,999,000 (and finally sold for $1,837,000) Well this is an 02 stack but it is also over 500 sq. ft. larger with many additional amenities to it. The agent had 5 very good comps to use and selected the one that doesn’t make any sense! The 02 units with the exact same floor plan as this particular unit sold for: #202…6 floors lower…$825,000, #602…2 floors lower…$899,000. 2 of the same units also just went pending (perfect comps!!!) #302 went pending priced at $925,000 and unit #502 went pending priced at $975,000. Now something can be said that the high priced unit is on a higher floor and looks over the apartment building next door, certainly worth an extra $100,000 over unit #502. I did question the agents reasoning on his pricing and mentioned that I would probably not show it to my out of town clients because it was so overpriced. His comment to me “That’s fine”. Really? When a property is so overpriced, reasonable negotiations are often very hard to come by, either the seller is not realistic or the seller’s agent has given the seller unreasonable expectations and then the seller won’t move off of their price. Well the topic of this blog post was “Working with a specialist”. The agent in this case is not a condo specialist and is in fact an agent from Hillsboro. In his defense of pricing, he told me that he has priced plenty of properties! This may be the case but he has NOT priced many downtown condos. What is the problem that seller might have by not working with a specialist? Well in this case. This unit runs the risk that it will not get shown because of my reasoning above. When it doesn’t get shown over time, the price must come down. What will probably happen here is the agent will drop it $100,000, and it still won’t get shown so he will drop it another $100,000 and it still won’t get shown. At this point the listing starts to become stale and it loses all of it’s WOW factor. Eventually. The price will get down to where it should have been to start. At this time you will start to get the lowball offers because it has been on the market for so long and it ends up selling for well below where it should have sold if it where priced right from the beginning. This agent clearly does not understand pricing in the downtown condo market… much as I would not be an expert in pricing Hillsboro properties! In addition, because this agent doesn’t normally work with condo buyers, he doesn’t have the marketing in place that has been targeting condo buyers for any length of time. To me, this is a BIG reason to select a condo specialist to represent you in the sale of your condo or loft! If you are a buyer and would like to see this beautiful unit, my advice to you, be patient! The price will come down. Call me and I will fight for a price that is realistic and makes sense for both you and the seller. http://www.LuxuryCondosofPortland.com http://www.BradGolik.com
As the buyer of a condo, you want your purchase to be the very best possible deal that you can get. More often than not, going in with a super low ball offer is not the best suggestion. In a recent transaction I had, in which I was the listing agent, the condo sat on the market for some time as the seller just did not want to drop their price. After awhile, the rising market did catch up with our price and not only did we finally get an offer, we got 3 in the same weekend. For an example, we will use fictitious numbers.
The condo was listed for $575,000. The first offer came in at $510,000. This was a ridicules number based on recent comps available to us. We sat on the offer with no real intention of giving a counter offer as it was just not a serious offer. We told this to the other agent and just as we did, we got another offer that came in at $550,000. We told the first agent that his buyer needed to step up with a serious offer if interested. He came back with an offer also at $550,000. In these situations, we often go back to the buyers and let them know we had identical offers and if they wanted the home then they needed to put their best foot forward. As this was taking place, a third offer came in. As it played out, the second offer that came in at $550,000 came back with an offer of $557,000. This was very close to the number where the sellers were willing to sell at. The final offer that came in made their offer at $559,000. The first offer that came in…the one that was originally the $510,000 offer came in at $560,000, the highest of the three.
After reviewing the offers, my sellers choose to go with the offer of $559,000. Mostly, they did not want to deal with the person that gave them such a low offer originally, even though they came in at the highest price. In the end, my buyers choose the middle offer because they thought the buyers were nice people, they were expecting a new child and they had fantastic credit!…and the guy that offered them $510,000 originally, made them mad!
A lesson to learn: If you are going to give somebody a lowball offer, make sure you understand the possible consequences. Also, know your numbers! If you are going to make any low offers, make sure you have comps in your hand that justify a low offer! The comps can at times provide an upside potential for you the buyer if you can buy it right! That happens when a buyer is prepared by knowing the comps or if there is a situation involved that forces a sale at a low price.
When looking to buy a new condo, it pays to work with a specialist that knows the market! In my next blog posting we will discuss if there still any deals in the Portland condo market. Hint: Yes!
When it comes to listing properties, one of the most important things to look at is how good the agent is at marketing because, that is really what selling a home is all about. Sure, when it comes time to negotiate, you better have someone who is a fierce negotiator! One thing to look at is how good is that agent at marketing himself. This should be top on the agents list and if they can’t do a good job of marketing themselves, what makes you believe they would or could do a better job in marketing your home? Does this agent show up anywhere on searches? ( and I don’t mean when you search that agents name… of course they will show up!)
Listing a home is about SALES & MARKETING! Yet, over 95% of real estate agents don’t have a sales and marketing background. Don’t you think this is important to consider when you are about ready to pick up the phone and call the agent that helped you purchase your unit? Chances are pretty strong that they might NOT be the right agent to get the job done!
As we wind down the year and look back at the condo sales for November, one thing is for sure… it was a pretty good year in the condominium and loft markets! Sales for the month of November, however, were down 25% from the previous month were we had 63 sales in the area we cover, which includes the Pearl District, South Waterfront, Uptown and Downtown. These numbers are based on condo prices above $200,000.
Leading the way in November was the Waterfront Pearl which recorded 5 sales from $362,500 for a 1 bed/1 bath 1080 sq. ft unit to a 2 bed/2 bath unit with 1735 sq. ft that sold for $835,000. We had 2 condos that sold in the +$1,000,000 price range this month. The first was a penthouse condo at McKenzie Lofts which sold for $1,025,000. The second, a beautiful penthouse loft at Marshall Wells Lofts that sold for $1,515,000.
A question I get asked all the time is “Are there any deals out there?” The answer is YES! For the patient buyer, there are always condos that will get put on the market that are under priced. How is this possible you might ask. The condo market is very different the suburban residential markets. Many agents that are usually out in the suburbs don’t always have the best grasp of pricing for downtown condos. A good example of deals in the market can be seen by one of my clients recent purchase. My buyers made on offer on a loft in The Elizabeth, a building that has current litigation issues. With this problem comes the problem of financing, most banks will not finance these building so it becomes a cash only situation. Naturally, this takes many buyers out of the market and some listing agents will drop the price because of this. In my situation, my clients made an offer on a unit at the Elizabeth for $635,000. The appraisal on this unit came in at $690,000! A similar unit in the building on a lower floor is for sale at $678,000, and it only has 1 parking space.. Another was sold last month on a much lower floor. Unit #604 had less desirable views than my buyers Mt Hood view, only had 1 parking space and was virtually the same floor plan and it sold for $745,000. So, for my buyers, they were able to make a purchase at $635,000 on a unit that had 2 parking spaces, fantastic NE views, on a high floor and they paid well below the appraisal and the unit that sold this month! Yes, there are still deals in the market!
One thing to keep in mind is that while something may seem difficult, that is not always the case. There are actually a lot of all cash buyers in the market right now. In fact, 4 out of my last 5 closing have been cash buyers and they were all above $500,000.
If you are in the market to buy a condo or loft in the downtown area, please feel free to give me a call and we can get you started with a tour of the many available buildings such as The Meriwether in South Waterfront, Eliot Tower in downtown Portland or perhaps The Metropolitan or The Henry in The Pearl District. There are many great options and we would be thrilled to get you started in the search for your new home.
Also, if you have heard about the Pearl District’s newest high rise condominium project Park Central, feel free to give us a call to learn more about this fantastic new project!
Today I went to a luncheon put on by Hoyt Street Properties that was an introduction to their newest proposed project, Park Central in the Pearl District. The Park Central high rise building will not only be the newest condominium building to come to market, it will also be the tallest. Park Central, as it is in the works now, will rise to 28 stories with the top 3 levels being the penthouse levels. At 350 feet tall, it will easily be the Pearl Districts tallest condo building to date. Plans for this new Portland high rise are lofty as it will be the most expensive condominium in the Pearl District with prices rising to over 700 per sq. ft.
Over and over again, buyers talk about the importance of outdoor living space. Park Central will not disappoint! With many homes featuring an atrium like deck space for maximizing the natural daylight. Also, your outdoor living space will be incomparable with the podium level rooftop garden area. With outdoor fireplaces and sitting areas to expand your outdoor living space from the confines of your own condo. BBQ with friends on the pleasant summer evenings 4 floors up from the hustle and bustle on the streets below. The outdoor living space on the rooftop of podium level offers a secure and comfortable space for residents to enjoy.
Today’s meeting was in part, a time for the developers to learn from agents what it is that their buyer’s want the most. With a building in the price point where it is expected to be, Park Central will have to have it all! Harwood floors throughout, high quality appliances, quality fixtures, cabinetry that is of the best quality, fireplaces and unique floor plans that will have some “Wow” factor when you walk in the door!
If you currently live in the Pearl District and think that this could be a building for you, don’t hesitate to give me a call. I can give you a good market analysis of your current condo or loft. In terms of buying a unit at Park Central, let me work to negotiate the best deal for you. Remember. The on-site agents with the developer are there to sell you a condo but they are working for the best interest of the developer. I am there for YOU! If you are currently living in a house and thinking about downsizing, I would be happy to sit down with you and discuss all of the positives and negatives of condo living! Don’t think of it as downsizing so much… how about funsizing!
Keep in mind, we are still very early in the starting phase of this project. Move in dates are still most likely two years out. The developers are still trying to gage the market on what it can afford and for what buyers want in a new luxury condominium. As a condo specialist with a focus in the Portland luxury condominium market, I would be happy to assist you along the way from when the developer begins taking pre-sale orders all the way through until move in!
As we begin to head into the holidays, real estate sales typically begin to drop off. Does this mean it’s a bad time to try and sell a home or a condominium. Absolutely not! While the traffic numbers will drop off substantially, the quality of the buyers that are out looking is generally much better. In other words, the buyers that are out looking during the holidays tend to be more serious. If you are currently thinking about putting your home on the market, here are a few important things to think about. First, always, always, always make sure that your agent will make your place shine! In other words, that agent will make it stand out over the other hundreds of homes or condos in the market. How do you do that? First, and we have talked about this MANY times, get great photos. Don’t go out and hire an agent that will use a point and shoot camera. The agent is getting paid good money to “Market” the home. They need to spend the money to do it right!
Next, make sure that the agent you hire has a proactive marketing plan! In other words, skip the “Put it in the MLS and wait” agent and hire someone that will be proactive in their marketing. I believe when you market a home, you need to sell it twice. Once to the general public and second, to the agents that will help you get it sold. Here is an example of what not to do. Awhile back a penthouse came on the market and was listed by an agent that, in my opinion, does not know how to market a listing. In a years time I have never received a postcard or an email about this listing… and I SPECIALIZE with Portland condos and condo buyers. You would think I would be one of the agents she sends out info to on a monthly basis… but not one thing so far?
When times get slow, agents need to step up the marketing even more. You cannot just sit and wait for a buyer to come along. You need to have a proactive agent that is aggressive in getting your home in front of the right buyers and that in turn will increase your odds of selling your condo during the slow times.
Please visit our newest listing at www.PacificaTowerCondo.com