Private Listing Clubs

The largest agent club in Southern California is growing its membership quickly, as the erosion of the cooperation between brokers continues.

We’ll hear more about the disrupters, discounters, and consolidation, but the underlying theme is that agents are only going to be sharing their listings with one another as the last resort if they can’t sell them off-market.

The realtor groups on Facebook are bursting with off-market talk, though we don’t know how many deals are actually being done.  But with so much focus on the off-market space, it is inevitable that more transactions will result.

The PLS only has five listings in San Diego, but it’s just getting started here.  One of the five is an active listing on our MLS, but the rest look like they expect some off-market action as a result of being listed here:

With no one in the industry objecting, expect more of this in the future.

Bonsall Horse Ranch

Check out my listing of a complete 5.5-acre horse ranch with two huge riding arenas, equicisor, 2 tack rooms, fenced pasture areas and stalls for 17 with plans/materials for 12 more!

Two detached cottages, each with their own kitchens, updated bathrooms, and individual septic systems make an ideal set-up for the owner-user.

Three electric gates for easy access to the whole property, 10,000-gallon water tank with a working well that pumps 70 GPM, plus access to riding trails too! Zoning allows ten horses per acre.

LP = $995,000.

Realtor Sales History

When evaluating which agent to hire, the best thing a consumer can do is check their sales history to help determine the agent’s level of experience.

We’ve known that Zillow has the 12-month sales history of each agent, but those sales are inputted manually by the agents, and can be manipulated.

https://www.zillow.com/agent-finder/real-estate-agent-reviews/

Homesnap provides the MLS mobile app to agents, and, as a result, has the direct connection to the sales history.  They publish the data on each agent from the last 24 months, which provides a more extensive track record, and:

  • Helps to iron out any hot and cold streaks
  • Shows the average days-on-market and sales-price-to-list-price ratio
  • Shows listings that didn’t sell (labeled ‘off-market’)

The average days-on-market and sales-price-to-list-price ratio gives you a good sense of the agent’s pricing accuracy.  If listings languish too long on the market, there is an increased likelihood that buyers will offer less.

We know that 40% of all listings don’t sell, so failure can happen. Select an agent who has done better – in my case, one seller decided not to move, two decided to rent instead of sell, and the fourth was when I was mentioned as Richard’s co-agent on a listing.

If they have a huge number of off-market listings, they are probably a serial refresher, which means they like to manipulate the market time – which aggravates other agents and buyers.

Bottom line: An agent’s sales history verifies how successful they are at getting clients to the finish line.  With the market changing, buyers are putting up a fight now, and you want an experienced agent on your side to ensure success.

Here’s the link to Homesnap (their mobile app is better):

https://www.homesnap.com/

Get Good Help!

Street-Level Impact

Let’s examine what happens when a hot new listing gets taken by one of the big real estate teams in 2019.

What qualifies as a hot listing?

I think we can say that 70% to 80% of listings are priced at full retail or higher, so the rest are either priced attractively or have unique features that propel them into the ‘hot’ category – great location, newer, remodeled, one-story, etc.

First, let’s note that the leaders of the big real estate teams have hired several newby agents to carry the load.  The leaders do their best to train and supervise, but once the system is up and running, everyone gets too busy to pay much attention to how the sausage is made.

The lead agent takes the hot new listing, and hands it off to the assistants.

  1. They start the selling process with the Coming Soon round, which lasts for days or weeks.  While the bosses intend this to be a pre-marketing campaign, if a buyer contacts the assistant-squad during the Coming Soon period and wants to buy it….well, then, heck – let’s make a deal.  If an outside agent wants to show or sell it, they are told to wait until it’s on the open market.
  2. If the Coming Soon round is unsuccessful, then the listing goes into the MLS and onto the open market.  The quality of the remarks and photos can tell you a lot.  If they are brief, it’s another sign that the squad is trying to couch the listing so outsiders might miss it.
  3. Now the games begin. This happened to me this week. Following the showing instructions, I call and text the agent, but no response.  I persist, and finally catch a squad member answering the phone. He says “the occupant needs more notice to show”, even though I had begun my inquiry six hours prior, to which there was no response.  He says he’ll get back to me once he can schedule something with the occupant. This goes on for two days, until he finally answers his phone again…..and you know what’s coming. “Oh, we just accepted an offer on that one!”

The team leader insulates himself from the gritty details by not publishing his phone number.  For showings, they list a separate phone number in the MLS so they know it’s an agent calling.  Then the squad gets just a little too busy to call back those inquiries.

The seller has no clue how the squad’s actions denied him the chance to get more offers – heck, he’s just glad it sold quick.  The broker doesn’t supervise that closely and really doesn’t want to know, and the team leader looks the other way, because this was part of the recruiting process to build the squad, and take more vacation.

More Clearview

Our listing on Clearview is a photographer’s dream with such a wide and unobstructed expanse – white-water surf, whales and dolphins, Navy maneuvers, and the eventual tearing down of the smokestack (shortly).

I won’t do it justice, but I’ll post a few shots as we go.

It’s one of the few places where the ocean view dwarfs the plant:

This photo below is about half of the ocean view you see in person, but without the zoom.  The ocean view looks bigger in person:

Wide lot = max view & privacy

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