A Day in the Life of a Hard-Working Realtor
Some of you have been reading my blog for years. Something I’ve never done is share my typical day, so let’s get right to it. Here’s a snapshot of the tasks, behind-the-scenes activities, dialogue, problem-solving, and other myriad duties and opportunities as they presented themselves on a recent day.
Morning Joe, Realtor-Style
First off, I got a call from an old client of mine in New Jersey who is also a mortgage broker. He says he is the busiest he’s been in 20 years – with almost 30 loan applications on his desk. “Great!” I respond. In my experience, every veteran of real estate is busy, which we are all grateful for. COVID could have had a detrimental impact on the Tampa real estate market, but so far we haven’t experienced that – mostly due to interest rates being at or below 3% and more buyer activity than homes available.
Then came the real work of contracts and negotiations. Emails flew back and forth between buyers and attorneys on an encroachment issue. An “encroachment” exists when a property owner violates the rights of his or her neighbor by building on (or extending a structure onto) the neighbor’s land or property. The current owners had purchased the home with the encroachment issues – but because they paid cash, they didn’t get a survey, as it wasn’t required by a lender.
My role was to step in and identify the issues. The problem is resale. Trying to resell a home with these types of issues creates challenges and complicates the work of title companies. Sometimes it’s doubtful whether a clear title policy can be issued – a requirement of lenders. Bottom line, even if you are paying cash, you still need an experienced Realtor and possibly an attorney to protect your assets and look out for potential future pitfalls. When you’re buying a home, think ahead to the day when you will be selling.
Relocation, Relocation, Relocation
Next came the need for some research. I contacted my mover, only to confirm that my suspicions were right about relocations. Corporate relocation moves to and from Tampa are down 80%. Turns out the military suspended all relocations from March 12 to June 15. Now, all of his company’s moving trucks are dedicated to moving military families, and he’s been forced to take a temporary job with another moving company to support his family.
We should see our relocation business pick up now that the suspension has been lifted. At the same time, however, big companies are still not expected to arrange and pay for relocations, as many of their employees are working from home.
Good Deeds and a Consultation
Then it was off to the post office to mail a bottle of key lime juice to someone I’ve never met in Rome, Italy. She is a food blogger I follow, and we exchanged several emails re: the coronavirus and how it has affected our lives. It ended with me wanting a Cornetto, the eating of which constitutes a ritual in Italy (Nutella-filled croissant) and her wanting to make a key lime pie. We always crave and desire what we can’t have! She can’t find real Florida key lime juice, and I can’t have an Italian Cornetto! Thus I popped the bottle in the mail.
Soon after, I received a call from someone who read my blog – he wanted to know the value of his house. This inquiry came not because he was planning to move. He was just curious, he said – these days you don’t know which media source to believe, and everything is based on fear (False Evidence Appearing Real). I assured him prices aren’t falling and that he could reach out to me any time for advice or to check market conditions.
A Word About Social Distancing
People are still afraid! We are still social distancing and avoiding large gatherings. It’s definitely not business as usual in our personal lives, and sellers are holding off selling their homes until some sort of normalcy returns.
If you’re in the midst of a search or a transaction, understand that things are taking a bit more time, especially if you are financing, because some loan processing centers are not operating at full capacity. So patience is key. And always have a backup plan if your closing is delayed. Everyone in the business is doing the best they can given the circumstances.
And Here Are the Stats, Because I Know You Want Them!
Elliot Eisenberg’s latest housing market forecast for the Greater Tampa Bay area can be found on YouTube: https://youtu.be/_1DDPtaa2fs. Eisenberg is a consulting economist for the Greater Tampa Realtors.
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