November 28, 2011 6:04 AM
Working with homebuyers and sellers isn’t like making widgets in a factory, and that’s one of the reasons Tony Rose likes real estate.
Rose, 42, broker/owner of Rose Real Estate in Colorado Springs, recently became the new board chairman of the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors.
“I enjoy negotiating and the flexible schedule, and really, the varying tasks that you have an opportunity to do throughout your day,” he said, whether it’s doing research, showing properties or meeting with housing officials. “It’s definitely not redundant by any means. You’re not locked to the desk all day long.”
Negotiating a deal means bringing together people who have competing interests: sellers who want to get the most for their home and buyers who want to pay as little as they can, Rose said. But a true negotiation, he said, means finding the middle ground, not determining a winner and loser.
The profession also has offered him the opportunity to pursue other real estate-related interests, Rose said. He’s helped a few clients lease commercial properties and he’s also a licensed homebuilder — although Rose said he’s more apt to farm out the work to subcontractors than to pick up a hammer himself.
Rose, who has lived in the Springs area since the early 1970s, graduated with a bachelor’s degree in finance and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. He and his wife, Jodie, have two children.
Question: We’re four years into an economic downturn. What’s the state of the single-family housing market today in the Pikes Peak region?
Answer: It’s not great, but it’s not bad. We’re still experiencing a healthy number of transactions, prices are relatively stable and average days on market are reasonably low. The affordability of homes is the best it’s been in about 50 years.
Q: Mortgage rates remain at rock-bottom levels. Are they helping the market?
A: It’s certainly not hurting the market; however, we’ve had very low interest rates for quite some time now. Further cuts don’t seem to have as much of a stimulative effect as they could if the overall economic confidence levels were higher. I expect if there were a rapid increase in rates, it would negatively affect pricing and volume.
Q: Year-over-year home prices in the Pikes Peak region have dropped each of the past eight months, based on Pikes Peak Association of Realtors’ figures. What advice do you give to sellers when it comes to their asking price?
A: Sometimes the statistics don’t provide a clear picture of what’s happening on the street. There is a trend of a higher amount of market activity level at lower price points. That will naturally pull the average and the mean lower. As far as pricing goes, each home and each neighborhood are different. Applying broad-based conclusions can be counterproductive. Always use comparable properties that have sold in the same or a similar neighborhood. One point to make in this market is to make sure there is no deferred maintenance and the home is move-in ready.
Q: How about buyers; what do you tell them about the price they should offer?
A: Don’t negotiate from the list price. Always negotiate off our own analysis. The property could already be listed for much less than the expected value. If you try to offer significantly less, you’ll most likely lose to another purchaser in those cases. Also, if you just offer a certain percentage below the list price, that might not be low enough to end up at a reasonable market price.
Q: The foreclosure picture has improved slightly this year in the Colorado Springs area, but there are still thousands of foreclosures and short sales in the local market. How do they affect the buying and selling of nondistressed properties?
A: It’s almost like there are two different markets. The buyers who are in a position and/or want to purchase distressed properties have different motivations and needs than those who don’t. They aren’t always in direct competition because their condition and barriers to entry tend to be significantly different.
Q: Given the market slowness, and the competition posed by distressed properties, are there any new strategies you can give sellers?
A: First, I’d have to disagree with the reference to “market slowness.” With average marketing times still averaging around 90 days and in a market of our size supporting approximately 8,000 sales per year, it’s not that bad. Sure, it could be better, but compared with other areas, we have it pretty good. As far as there being any new strategies, not really. As in any market, price accordingly and have the home ready to move into.
Q: Do you use social media as a Realtor?
A: I’m not as proficient or consistent with it as many others, but I do have a social media presence. It’s a great addition to marketing efforts by providing another means to the public to learn more about you and engage in dialogue on the professional and personal levels.
Q: Are there any new industry trends that buyers and sellers should know about as they hit the market?
A: For sellers, keep in mind that you might not want your property presented on every website. There are some that don’t update in a timely manner and some not at all, resulting in inaccurate information. If you’re not sure which are consistently updated, your Realtor has some tools to help find out.
For buyers, there are some great websites to help narrow your search and focus. Additionally, there are mobile applications to help while you’re on the road.
Contact Rich Laden: 636-0228