Is It Really That Bad??????

I wrote this blog a few years ago when real estate got bad. It’s not completely back to normal, whatever that is by the way, but I believe we still don’t have much to complain about overall! So for your enjoyment, here is a re-print of my blog.

REPRINT

You hear it everyday from people in the industry, “Boy, I haven’t closed anything in months,” “Yes, I think I’m leaving real estate.”  And a few other comments out there from consumers as well, “I really want to wait,” “I don’t think it’s a good time to buy right now.”
I’m sure you have all heard this from someone you know.
Well, is it really that bad in San Antonio?
My personal opinion is, NOT! If you take a look at the overall picture, it’s not as bad as the media wants you to believe it is.  I don’t really blame the media for everyone being so gloom,  but can we once in a while hear how great we have it in San Antonio?
My personal belief is that if you keep saying it over and over to yourself,
 you are going to get so depressed that it really is going to be bad………for YOU!
Maybe I’m just too optimistic or naive, but my attitude is:  it’s only as bad as you want it to be for you.  Sure, some business is down for some people,  and I’m not just speaking about real estate, but is it as bad as it was 10 years ago? 20 years ago?   No, not even close!
Sure we are living in the now, but I always ask myself, how on  earth did our parents do it? My parents gave  me and my brother  and sister  a private education all through our grade school and high school years, and we never applied for a student loan or  grant for college, although we should have! Plus on top of this, my mother was a stay at home mom. We owned our own home, my parents had new cars every few years, and we would even take family vacations! Now tell me, how on earth is it that they could do it, but we can’t? And they were not even in debt! No credit cards!By now you’re saying, “yeah, but things were not as expensive as they are now Liza.”.
Sure, I understand that, but they were not getting paid what we can get paid today!  I guess it’s all relative, but we really have become a society of shoppers and wanting everything the advertisers tell us we so desperately NEED, not want, NEED! Who really needs a $80,000 car? 
 Sure, it would be nice, but for what? I’m not saying that if you can afford it and not be strapped and complaining about the economy to not buy it! I’m talking to those of us who just have to have it or we’ll die without it, but boy, do we sure complain every time we have to pay for it, or we can’t go on vacation because we “cant’ afford it.   I say we because I too am guilty of it, sometimes! Although, I have to confess, I don’t own any credit cards!
I have come to learn that if you can’t pay cash for it, you probably shouldn’t buy it. Sure, a home is a little different, it’s the largest investment you will ever make,
beside paying for the wedding, of course! (SMILE) But everyday items, if we really think about it, do you really need to get into debt for that sofa that you will probably get rid of in a few years but you haven’t finished paying for it? Or how about that coffee table that you just will die if you don’t get it before the holidays, just to find out  days after the  holidays that you could have  purchased it at a bargain and paid cash for it?
All I’m saying is we really need to analyze each situation a little closer. BAD?  Maybe not as bad as we think! Real estate will still sell, homes will still be built, people will still get married and need somewhere to live!!! And I am here to help you because after all,
I’m not going anywhere! I have to pay for that coffee table!               (just kidding)
As always, call if you need to talk and always Keep The Faith!
Liza
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As always, Keep the Faith!

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Forclosures: Deals or Steals?

I want a Deal! REALLY?

With foreclosures being the topic of almost every conversation I encounter these days, I had to voice my opinion. Some people may like what I have to say, some people may not. But after all, it is my opinion, so it counts, to me!

Being in Real Estate for the past 8.5 years now has awarded me the opportunity to meet with many types of people: sellers that are wanting a bigger house, smaller house, change neighborhoods, move into a condo community; buyers that want to buy another home, their first home, want a vacation home, etc. And then there are the people who want to get a “good deal”. What, you say, is a good deal?

For many, it’s a house that has been on the market too long and the sellers are just not going to get what they are asking. Or it might be a house that the sellers need to sell because they just cannot afford it for different reasons: a person lost their job, illness in the family and they can no longer work, they have someone in college and prefer to sell and maybe rent down the road, or maybe it’s more serious: the people are about to lose their home to foreclosure.

I have met many people who might see a pre-foreclosure and say, ” when is it being foreclosed on?” “I will wait until the bank takes it”.

Why, I ask, do they want to wait? Well, it’s been my experience that most people think they will get a “better” deal from the bank than from the owners. After all, the sellers are trying to get all they can from its sale. Is this really trying to get a deal or is the buyer trying to “take advantage” of someone else’s misfortune?

It truly is sad the situation that many homeowners are faced with at the moment across our nation. I have interviewed many buyers, sellers, and other agents too, just for my own information, so I can understand where people are coming from. This is what I found out.

The truth is that many people who are in a situation where they are about to lose their homes, didn’t plan on it to happen. I mean, really, who plans on losing their home? Well, some buyers and other agents and many people in general that are not in this sticky situation think that the homeowners “asked” for it. How? These people think that many of them might have inflated incomes, produced false letters from employers, and that of course, the many now defunct predator mortgage lenders took advantage of this to put people into their dream home, into something that they really could not afford. Yes, this did happen, I know, but how about the thousands of homeowners who did all the right things, that saved for years to put a down payment on their home, who saved and sacrificed in order to give their families a place to live, and now, by no fault of their own, have lost their jobs, like so many other Americans and have not been able to find other employment or have found one, but are getting paid a lot less and this makes it difficult to keep up with payments. We may wonder, how did they let it get so far that now they are being foreclosed on? Well, you might think that they thought, at one time, they might be able to catch up, but so many other things might pop up. What if along with their employment, they lost medical benefits. So now someone in the family gets sick and they have to pay out of pocket to go see the doctor. They also have credit cards, groceries to buy, electric bills to pay, and so on and so on.

The way I see it is, not everyone who is losing their home “deserves” it, like many people say. I don’t really think anyone deserves to lose their home, regardless of why they are losing it. It is a terrible thing to go through. I have seen the devastation for families that are losing their homes. One might think, OK, the parents knew they were getting themselves into this mess. But I ask you, what about the children? What about those innocent little ones that didn’t ask for this, that have grown up in this home, that this is the only safe place they have come to know and love and play in with their friends in the neighborhood? What about them?

Many people say “I want a good deal”. Have those people looked into the eyes of those innocent ones that have to leave their home, that no one will help them by giving them the money they are asking for, not as a handout, but as a legitimate sale for the home, what the market is actually asking and what the market thinks it’s worth? NO! People want to take advantage and do what we call in real estate, “low ball” offers.

“I know they have to sell, so let’s make them a low ball offer”, is what many buyers will say and think and actually want to do. This, in my opinion, is wrong. Yes, there are many deals out there, but at what cost, at whose expense? I know many buyers or investors will not really care about this answer, but as human beings, as people who have the right to help each other and as decent people, we need to analyze this and really search deep down and ask ourselves, “What if I and my family were in this situation”? Of course, that will never be me, you say. Never say never…..we never know what the future holds. I hope you are NEVER in that situation, but if you were, how would you like to be treated?

What to do? You ask. I’m not saying that buying foreclosures is a wrong thing. All I am trying to point out is what we, as humans, have become in the search for more money, more success, more ambition, more greediness is what I call it, and simply sometimes, keeping up with the Jones’s. To actually wish that a home gets foreclosed on soon so we can make a bid on it is just wrong. How can you wish bad on anyone, especially someone or a family that you do not even know. Will this stop?

I believe foreclosures will always be part of the real estate business and that I will continue to sell them, to help list them and help those who are in need of selling them in order not to lose them. But I will also continue to feel sadness when I hear, “I want a good deal” from someone who can’t wait until a family loses their beloved home. I hope this will never happen to you, but if for some reason beyond your control, life gives you this difficult situation to deal with, know that I, for one, will be rooting for you to overcome it and I will help you stay in your home, if I can. And some day you can look back and you too, will have compassion for those going through it.

Keep the Faith!