Looking for a buy side agent who is passionate about finding value!.

Asked by Powell Molleti, Mountain View, CA Sat Mar 16, 2013

I am looking for an agent who knows how to inject objectivity into the process of buying. He/She should not be afraid of telling me how much I might be over paying in his/her opinion due to current market conditions!.

As buyer it seems odd for me to just look at recent sales around the area and then agree to pay as much as the agent suggests or just bid up because there are many offers for the property!.

I am looking for an agent who has sold homes in the past in Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Saratoga, Los Gatos, Willow Glen, Cambrian and Portola Valley.

I will do all the leg work of searching for properties and taking a look at them, you should be willing to see the place with me before making an offer though!.

You should know about past trends, have a keen insight into current trends and know which neighborhoods are trending up/down!.

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Marcy Moyer, Agent, Palo Alto, CA
Sun Mar 17, 2013
Prices have risen 10-20% in 2013. Homes are getting multiple offers all the time. Buyers are having to make non contingent offers to win a bid. The concept of value is in flux right now. All neighborhoods are trending up not down. The buyers who are winning offers have agents who write the best offers, are very clear about what they want, and are making offers on homes that are below their upper limit. They are not contingent on appraisal and the buyer has the funds to make up the difference between the offer price and the appraised value.

These are the facts. If you still want to buy in this environment then I would respectfully suggest that you find a real estate agent to work as a partner. Searches should be done by both parties, so you do not miss off/pre market opportunities, homes that are listed by out of area agents on out of area mls, and homes where someone knows someone. Not only are trends important, but also the habits of individual agents can make a difference. Your agent should know which agent has a history of listing a home low and who has a history of listing a home high.

Does your agent have a good reputation with other agents? Part of getting an offer accepted is making the listing agent feel as if the buyer's agent will be easy to work with. When I list a property I know who is going to be difficult and who is respectful and pass that information on to the seller to put in the equation of which offer is chosen.

Most important, you should trust your agent. This is a big decision, and you should be able to rely on your agent's advice. If you do not trust what your agent says, get another agent.

Marcy Moyer
Keller Williams Realty Palo Alto
DRE 01191194
Web Reference:  http://www.marcymoyer.com
0 votes
Juliana Lee, Agent, Palo Alto, CA
Mon Apr 1, 2013
Top agents don't change what they try to accomplish just because the market favors buyers or sellers. They always strive to achieve great results for their client. There is always a learning phase where the agent learns your needs, abilities, and preferences. Similarly you need to be brought up to speed understanding the market for what you want, and to develop sufficient trust in your agent's advice. You will not have the expertise a top agent has for evaluating a property.

"Be willing to see the place ..." hmmm, yes there are neighborhoods and houses (some houses which I've sold more than once in my 30 years) that I could evaluate because I've recently seen them but making an good offer isn't just running recent a recent sold history and sending an offer to the listing agent.

There is more to buying a house than just finding one and making an offer on it. Everyone can play baseball but professionals win the competition.

It is easy to see trends:

The key to understanding is making and listening to hundreds of purchase offers each year, talking with buyers at open houses, working with people who really want to buy the best house they can get, ....

Give me a call or send me an email. Let's talk.

Juliana Lee, MBA LLB
cell: 650-857-1000, email: homes@JulianaLee.com
Top 2 agent nationwide at Keller Williams Realty

Over 30 years experience
Over 1,000 homes sold in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties
Web Reference:  http://julianalee.com
0 votes
Norman Aless…, Agent, San Jose, CA
Sun Mar 17, 2013
Well Powell it looks like what you need to do is check the profile of a few of us agents who work your area of interest and who answered your questions. As far as the market goes it's been reported that the bay area home prices are up over 24% in the past year on average. If you are worryed about over paying then I am sorry to say that you really don't understand the market. If it seems odd to you that there are sometimes 20 buyers for 1 property and that it sells for much more than the asking price that is because of the law of supply and demand, low supply and high demand = higher prices it is not odd it is just the way it works. As I work as a buyers agent I understand the frustrations of my clients who are purchasing in this market, you just have to persist and when you bid on homes you need to compete with the other buyers without making outrageous offers. If you do that, along with working with an agent who knows how to write an offer that makes your bid possibly more attractive than the other offers, you can be successful in making a purchase that you are comfortable with.
As always please feel free to contact me with any questions.
At your service,
Certified Distressed Property Expert
0 votes
allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Sun Mar 17, 2013
Good Agents will also do a CMA or at least provide you with comps from recent similar sales
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Ray Douglas, Agent, Los Altos, CA
Sun Mar 17, 2013
Hi Powell, I understand your frustration as a buyer in today's market. As you are aware at present they are more buyers than sellers these days, but the hard facts are that the highest offer with the best terms wins out most of the time. Sounds like you have had a bad experience with a sellers agent before. I would say talk to as many agents as you can at open houses or if you spot an agent that has a lot of signs in a specific area you like give him/her a call and talk to them. I think once there is a trust established than you will be more comfortable working with a Realtor. I know you may not like this mantra but unfortunately in this market at present if you do not have the cash and courage it is going to be difficult to get what you want. If you want to talk let me, I work with a team that has over 20 years in the business and has worked in all the areas you suggested and has been successful in winning out in multiple offer situations in today's market. I wish you well in your house hunting.
0 votes
Elena Talis, Broker, Palo Alto, CA
Sat Mar 16, 2013
Well, then get away from your computer and start interviewing agents. Start with going to open houses in the area you are targeting and see if you like anyone. Set couple meetings so you can learn more about the agents and explain your needs. At the end it is about finding an agent who you can trust.

In terms of overpaying - there is no such thing. As soon as your offer is accepted it sets the new market price. The definition of the market price is what a willing buyer offers and a willing seller accepts.
Web Reference:  http://talisrealestate.com
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Aileen La Bo…, Agent, Los Altos, CA
Sat Mar 16, 2013
Hi Powell,
I've been in the real estate industry for over 25 years. I live in Mountain View, and work constantly in each of the areas you've mentioned. My knowledge of the market, and of past and current trends is second to none.

The choice of price to offer for a property is always yours, and your agent can only provide you the information necessary for you to make that decision - they cannot choose an offer price for you.
Your agent should be able to provide you with clear market history, and data that explains current trends.
Unfortunately, however, in a situation where there are multiple offers, it is almost guaranteed that the property will be 'bid up'. That's not the buyers' agent's choice, that's the result of choices made by the other buyers in the market right now. And there are a LOT of other buyers.
Buyers with all cash...buyers who are prepared to take a property As-Is, with no contingencies...and buyers who are prepared to pay a little more than seems reasonable.

You should consider the listing price for the home - it is listed intentionally lower than it should be? Does it seem too good to be true? If so, then it probably is... It is a very, very common strategy to list a home a little under what the expected sales price is, and then watch the buyers compete against each other. This is just how property marketing works in this market.

As a buyer, you need to be as informed as possible - knowledge is power - but be prepared to work within the bounds of current market conditions, or there isn't an agent in existence that can make you successful.

Sorry it isn't better news. Let me know if you'd like to talk more about it.
0 votes
Tina Lam, Agent, San Jose, CA
Sat Mar 16, 2013
I've sold plenty of homes in the areas you've mentioned. I'm also working with many buyers who are competing to win a home.

I can certainly tell you when you are overpaying when the bids aren't supported by current demand. However, if you're concerned about overpaying just because prices are going up, then you shouldn't be buying in this market.

If you aren't looking to compete purely on price, then there are other ways to go about it. But the approach is not for everyone.
Web Reference:  http://www.archershomes.com
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