Friday, December 28, 2007

New Years Eve Celebration in Raleigh NC

New York may have the "Ball" drop, Los Angeles may have the party at Les Deux, and South Miami Beach has the Skybar at the Shore Club.......in Raleigh we have First Night!

First Night Raleigh has grown immensely over the last few years and this year is sure to be the best yet! This year there will be live performances by Tiff Merritt, Jason The Juggler, and Killer Filler! just to name a few! In addition to the grown-up entertainment there is a ton of activities for the kids as well!

In addition to the "Acorn Drop" at midnight there will be an earlier celebration with the Acorn dropping at 7:00pm for the younger ones in the crowd that may not make it to the magical hour. The schedule of events is a comprehensive list of all of the activities for First Night 2008.....

If you purchase your tickets early you can get a $3 discount.....pleasse be sure to visit the site for participating ticket outlets......

Have fun, be sfae and DON'T drink and drive!!!! Designate a driver....

Resolution making shucking....

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Twelve Days of Christmas - Carolina Style! Day 8

Durant Trails - It was awesome! It had to be one of the most decorated areas that we have seen yet! There was one picture that I wanted really bad for on here and it just didn't turn out - Santa on a Harley! Pretty awesome!

Enjoy the pictures and be sure to catch the new ones tomorrow - Only 4 more days left!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Twelve Days of Christmas - Carolina Style! Day 7

Well, Santa didn't visit me with a new memory card but I NEEDED it.......Maybe Santa can hook me up with the new camera I want???

It was great last night - the closer Christmas is the more displays that go up.......These are from Tarlton and Prestwicke in Wake Forest.

I hope you enjoy what I got last night and on the way home I spied some more places to go tonight!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Come Explore my Wake Forest! An example of exemplary planning...

I remember when my husband and I were originally considering a move to Wake Forest......I said, "Huh? No way I am living that far out!!!" I could only envision long trips into Raleigh for groceries, a Lowe's or a Target.....

My, oh my, how things have changed in 6 short years. Wake Forest is growing leaps and bounds! We have the Target, Lowe's, Home Depot, Super Wal-Mart, large chain restaurants such as Chili's, Applebee's, Red Robin, etc, and some smaller private restaurants (outstanding food by the way!)....

One of the things I loved most about was Wake Forest was the quaint, historic downtown area. There are some great shops such as Old Magnolia Trading Company, Olde English Tea Room and N.C. Specialty Shops. Then there are the notable restaurants such as La Foresta, Shorty's and Over The Falls Deli. Great antique shops, hair salon, The Cotton Company and so much more!

With all of the new businesses, expanded roads (98 bypass), and new homes many Wake Forest residents have been (and are) concerned about the impact on the Historic Downtown area. I have to say that I am so impressed with the DRC (Downtown Revitalization Corporation) and their vision for the downtown Wake Forest area. The DRC has a major influence and advocates the Renaissance Plan that has already begun. With this roadmap Wake Forest will survive the pitfalls that have befallen so many other small towns. While revamping our current infrastructure, focusing on infill projects, and realigning specific districts (entertainment, government and business) Wake Forest will maintain its charm and remain a vibrant and popular destination! As with most projects of this magnitude and the length of time required to achieve the goal there will be bumps along the way. Roads may close while they are rerouted, construction signs will pop up and there may be a tendency to become frustrated.......stop, take a breath and think long term! The outcome will far surpass the minor inconvenience we all experience along the way.....

Come explore my Wake Forest....
Leesa

Monday, December 17, 2007

Twelve Days of Christmas - Carolina Style! Day 5

WOW - last night was a great night for seeing the lights all around town. I hit the "motherload" in this montage....trust me, you'll see it in here. Absolutely gorgeous home!

There were also quite a few other spectactors out there last night - IT WAS COLD! Great Peppermint Mocha and Hot Chocolate from Starbuck's and we were good to go....

On the way home we found a few other places that we might snap some shots of tonight........it was LATE!

As always, enjoy the lights......

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Twelve Days of Christmas - Carolina Style! Day 4

Wow - we received some MUCH NEEDED rain last night! Hopefully it will continue through today. While it won't make my Open House easier (later this afternoon) we desparately need the rain!

Here are some pics from last night. I am surprised that they turned out at all given the rain, darkness (lot's of subdivision without street lights) and general operator shakiness trying to take pics, keep my assistant (8 yr old) involved, shift gears and avoid accidents because I am sitting awkwardly in the middle of an intersection! HAHA

Enjoy the pictures and I will try and get to Brier Creek Country Club area tonight. If not, it will be another area along the I-540 corridor as I make my way back from the airport to Wake Forest!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Twelve Days of Christmas - Carolina Style! Day 3

Wow - it was very hard deciding which pictures to use today! All of the homes were stunning! Tonight I will TRY to get some commercials displays that are around.....TRY! If not, you will definately get more homes tomorrow!

ENJOY!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Twelve Days of Christmas - Carolina Style! Day 1

While riding around last night and walking downtown I was snapping some pictures. So, one of my brilliant ideas popped into my head (they are SO random!)......I will post picture each night (hence, the 12 days) of different area Holiday light displays around Wake Forest and Raleigh.....

I hope you enjoy!




Holiday shucking....

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

So many events, so little time!!!!!

Happy Holidays, everyone!!!

The season is definately upon us - that is blatantly clear as I see the shoppers in the stores (ya'll need to be a little nicer to your fellow shopper!), the jammed parking lots (ya'll need to have a little more patience!), the houses trimmed with lights (yes, there is a Griswald in my neighborhood!) and the reindeer antlers on the cars (okay - that one is kinda cute!).

There are so many events happening in Wake Forest and Raleigh that I thought I would be sure to list a few for you in case you don't have the time to research them yourself! Yes, I know that baking cookies, stringing lights, buying presents and singing Carols (yes, the city is rampant with "Carols" singing....watch for them!) takes time!!

Well, those are just a few! Please be sure to click on the links above for more information and ticket information. I hope that you take the time to explore a little more of what Raleigh and the surrounding area has to offer - we are so lucky!!!

Back to baking cookies....

Flour covered shucking......

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Wake Forest Christmas Parade, Dec. 8th!

Don't forget - The Wake Forest Christmas Parade is this Saturday (Dec 8th) starting at 1:00pm!!! Get there early and scope out your prime seat for what I am sure will be the best Christmas Parade yet! My family never misses this. Load up the thermos' with hot chocolate and enjoy the festivites.

While downtown don't forget to explore all the shops in the downtown area. Great gift shops and delicious restaurants abound - have fun!

I hope to see you there this year - just remember, bundle up and take blankets or chairs to sit on.

Festive shucking....

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Happy Holidays from My Family To Yours....

Sorry - I just couldn't resist! I found this from some of my other Realtor friend out there and had to work some magic!

The Finley Elves

Magical, holiday shucking.....

Monday, November 26, 2007

Light Rail...Are You In or Are You Out?

If you haven't heard about it or read about it yet here is an article from WRAL regarding Charlotte and their new light rail system.....

From the article...
System officials expect North Carolina's first light-rail line will handle
9,100 passenger trips on an average weekday in its first year. On Saturday, it
handled 34,000 trips in the first four hours, exceeding capacity of 25,000 trips
in that period. there were some 60,000 trips by evening.

So, what about Raleigh? Are we next on the list for light rail transit between Raleigh and Durham? Here is the latest proposed map for the route between Raleigh and Durham.

Would you take light rail if it were available in Raleigh? What are your thoughts?

Mass transit shucking...

Monday, November 19, 2007

Ah, The Holidays...A Good Time To Sell Your Home?

I received my first phone call today from a seller that is contemplating taking their home off the market over the Holidays and re-listing after the New Year. She asked me what I thought......In addition to what I told her I also have some thought from other agents and thought I would share all of them with you.
  • Homes are at their cleanest at this time of year. With all of the families visiting and festivities around us the homes are decorated beautifully! Every sense a buyer has is touched in some way from the sights of homes lit up with lights, to the sounds of Holiday music, to the smells of baking cookies and fresh cut pine trees, to the tastes of warm cider and the feel of crisp, clean air.
  • Buyers that are intending to relocate to the area are most likely to use this time of year to visit the area and research schools, homes for sale, the city, the amenities and the overall atmosphere. Why miss that opportunity?
  • If other sellers are taking their homes off the market because "it's the thing to do" than that certainly gives you LESS competition! Take advantage of the situation.
  • The holidays are the biggest spending time of the year. Why miss out on buyers ready to make that purchase? If you home is previewed during December (early) there is a good chance that you can close by the end of the year. If closer to Christmas you can look forward to a sale shortly after the New Year.

I don't know about you but I think the Holidays are a great time of the year to try and sell your home. Sure, there might be slightly less buyers out there but the chances of the ones that ARE out there are serious and have the money is higher.

For those of you sellers out there that are thinking of taking your home off of the market - Talk with your agent first. If they don't mention the above I hope that you at least think about them.

Festive shucking.....

Friday, November 9, 2007

Just the Facts, Ma'am......

A thought-provoking article just came across the wire on WRAL which I am sure will raise temperatures of buyers, seller, and Realtors.....

Basically, the article is relating to a proposal that would limit what Home Inspectors are allowed to put on their reports. I have a few inspectors that read this blog and I would welcome their perspective!

Currently, from what I have experienced and from what I understand, a home inspector can inlude on his report for a home his "opinion". An example would be: The 10 year old air conditioning system in a home. If the inspector inspects the system and it is "performing to the standards for which it was intended" they will put that on the report. They will also note the age of the system. However, they may also include in that report, in their opinion, that the system may need to be replaced due to age.

I have issue with that. I feel that the report should be based on fact and fact only. If the fact is stated that they system works and the fact is stated that the unit is 10 years old then it is up to the buyer/seller to then determine whether they feel the unit needs to be replaced.

I know that my home, personally, is a great example. I have a 5 year old system. Should an inspector have inspected it 4 months ago it would have been noted that "it was performing to standards for which it was intended" and that "the system is 5 years old". They, more than likely, would not have noted that the system would need to be replaced. Well, guess what? Who would have thought that my system now doesn't work! Had I bought this home 4 months ago would I have been able to go back to that inspector and blame him for not forseeing the future? No! And that is the way it should be. I just feel that reports should be based on facts and not assumptions or opinions. It either is or it isn't. It either works or it doesn't. It is either damaged or it isn't.

Board Delays Decision on Facts-Only Home Inspection Reports

What do you think?

Shucking by the facts....

2007 Raleigh Christmas Parade



Wow - where has this year gone????

The 63rd Annual Raleigh Christmas Parade is happening next weekend! Can you believe it? Unfortunately, my family and I have missed it the last few years but NOT THIS TIME! We can't wait.

The parade starts at 9:30am and lasts about 2.5 fun-filled hours! Check out the link for the parade route......there are still some sponsorship opportunities available! WRAL also has some additional information available!

Holiday shucking.....

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wow - Talk About Creativity.....

Below is a link from an article I read this morning....It seems a couple in PA has become very creative is selling their home. The home, located north of Pittsburgh, has been on the market over a year and the sellers have decided to get creative to get it sold. Essentially, they are offering the buyers that bring them a full cash price offer a complete refund upon their death (the seller's death). In addition, should the buyers be willing to take care of the sellers when they get old the buyers would not only get the refund but an inheritance which would include the couples current second home in Arizona......WOW

Couple Offers Refund, Inheritance For Whoever Buys Home

My questions are......Can the seller provide a complete medical history on themselves along with the property disclosure? Can the buyer see the home in Arizona prior to making the offer at the sellers expense?

Very imaginative shucking.....

Monday, October 29, 2007

Wakefield Plantation - Do You Know What Goes On There?

I had the opportunity this past weekend to work with a wonderful couple moving from the New York area. They are very concerned about social activites and do not want to be in a neighborhood where there is nothing to do. We explored the different clubhouses at Wakefield Plantation and gathered much information on membership levels and activities.

I thought I would share some of the information for those of you that already live there and those of you that are contemplating a move there. I will not quote prices (as they are always subject to change) but will detail what each membership level entitles you to:

Charter Resident:
Membership Deposit Refundable Monthly Dues
Membership Deposit Non-refundable Monthly Dues
~ Clubhouse privileges for Member and family, including social, swim, tennis and full golf.
~ Access to TPC network of Clubs around the US.
~ Guest privileges include bringing or sending up to one foursome to the TPC at Wakefield Plantation per day.
~ Guest privileges include bringing or sending up to one foursome to any Club within the TPC Network.
~ Thirty day advance starting time reservation.
~ Special "extended family" guest fees.
~ Unlimited practice facility privileges and one locker in either the gentlemen's or ladies' locker rooms.
~ Payment option available.


Sport's Club Resident:
Initiation Fee: Monthly Dues:
~ Club privileges for member and family, including social, dining, swim and tennis.
~ Access to swim, tennis programs, including swim teams, tennis leagues and access to 9 hole golf course and fitness center.
~ Access to Clubhouse social events, such as Grill Nights, Holiday Brunches, Wine Tastings, Etc.

Social:
Initiation Fee: Monthly Dues:
~ Club privileges for member and family, including dining and social activites.
~ Access to clubhouse social events, such as Grill Nights, Holiday Brunches, Wine Tastings, etc.

I hope this helps in making your decision as to which membership is right for you! With each level there is plenty to explore in Wakefield Plantation! Let me know if I can answer any questions.

Shucking at the TPC.....

Friday, October 26, 2007

Welcome back! Where ya been?????

Hi everyone! It has been quite a while since I have "pinged" you all in an old-fashioned way letting you know that The Pink Oyster has been updated. There are several reasons for that!
  • I felt that you all might be getting a little tired of the emails so I was givin' you a break! Dontcha just love me?
  • I have been very busy myself! I am, of course, still bloggin' away at The Pink Oyster but I have also been bloggin' away at several other blogs.

Here are some of my other blogs, each with their own distinct flavors and seasonings, that you might want to check out!

  • Carolina Dreamin'...Hip City - No Hassles - This blog is geared a little more towards the downtown Raleigh life, things to do in the area and large events happening.
  • Luxury Raleigh Homes - Blog with news articles regarding the luxury market, high-end listings, and occassional Open Houses.
  • Leesa's Blog / Active Rain - My blog that is geared to basically all things Raleigh. A little heavier on the listings, still fun, and there might be a little double posting between there and here. It's all good.

So, although I may wear many different hats lately and walk in many different shoes I still come home to The Pink Oyster and always will! Hey, isn't there medication or something for the whole different hats and different shoes thing?

I have also been cautiously revamping my website and I have added a website: Luxury Raleigh Homes.

I truely hope that you will take the time to look over the other blogs - hopefully you will find one that feels just right for you! And, as always, please pass me along!

Anyhow, glad your back and don't be a stranger - here for you any time! (As you have always been for me!)

Gratefully shucking.....

World Beer Festival Coming To Raleigh.......


Well, I would know! :)

The World Beer Festival was just recently in Durham, NC and is now scheduled for April, 2008 in RALEIGH! If you missed Durham (I did) DON'T miss Raleigh! Brewmeisters from all over the country and world will be showcasing some of the finest and unique brews available. Check out the link for ticket information (sold out VERY quickly for Durham), list of suds purveyors, and tentative schedule of events! Hope to see you there!

Hops and Barley shucking.....

Monday, October 15, 2007

Very Successfull 2007 Parade of Homes

Did you make it out? Better yet, did you make it out alive?

Linville was swarming with people this past weekend! I felt somewhat sorry for the actual residents there. I arrived early both days and you could just see the full-time residents filter out of the neighborhood for the day to avoid the mass of people driving through and the tour buses on route. There was one bus with 43 people that showed up in Linville.

From my perspective it was a huge success! I had many people tour 11229 Conley Cove Court and they were in awe of the incredible craftsmanship, lavish pool and attention to detail that Pinnacle Construction Group is known for. Several had also visited Hasentree and said that it, too, was a zoo!

If you were one of my visitors this past weekend - THANKS for stopping by! It was great seeing you. If you missed it you can always give me a call and I can arrange a private tour of any of the homes that were on Parade.

Whew.....very sluggish shucking today.....

Sunday, October 7, 2007

OPEN HOUSE! Last weekend of the 2007 Parade of Homes!

Linville, Raleigh - I cordially invite everyone to visit my open house at 11229 Conley Cove Court on October 13 and October 14 from 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM.

I will be holding this exquisite home open both Saturday the 13th and Sunday the 14th. Come tour one of the most luxurious homes currently on the market! Hope to see you then! Please mention that you saw my OPEN HOUSE mentioned here on The Pink Oyster to be registered to win a free gas card!

Property information

Friday, October 5, 2007

PODCASTS! PODCASTS! GET YOUR PODCASTS HERE!!!!!

Just a reminder! Please visit my podcast page

Raleigh Homes For Sale

for all of the latest podcasts on some of the greatest homes available in the Raleigh area! I will be continuosly adding homes as they are listed and updated as they go under contract. I hope you like the podcasts and if you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to pass them on.

Honestly, who thunk up the whole "podcast" name?

Just some old-fashioned shout-out shucking going on.................

Updates and Information on New Falls of Neuse Projects

I have many clients and friends in Wakefield Plantation that are curious as to the projects surrounding New Falls of Neuse Road. Progress has escalated dramatically over the road extension and that raises a few questions thoughout the neighborhood. I thought I would find as many links as I could to help answer some concerns and curiousity.

Falls of Neuse Corridor Plan

Neuse Detour is Topic of Hearing Today

Residents, Firefighters Worry over Proposed Bridge Detour

Bond Referendums

If you come across any interesting articles or news related to the project please feel free to share!

Just doing a little research shucking......

Thursday, September 27, 2007

New Raleigh Link to Share

One of my blog readers was kind enough to share a link with us. Unfortunately, when you click the link it doesn't work. With a little research I was able to find the correct link and I wanted to pass it along. Some great stuff!

Share Your Raleigh

Informative shucking.....

Thanks to Jim Tobin for the link!!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

2007 Parade of Homes right around the corner.....


The 42nd Annual Parade of Homes is about to begin! What an extraordinarily exciting time! Builders will showcase the best of the best! Homes all over Wake County will be on Parade this year and I have been fortunate to preview some of the finest while under construction - simply breathtaking! The builders have pulled out all of the stops this year and the 2007 Parade will prove to be the best so far.

The following link is available to the public for previewing Homes that will be on Parade. Also, be sure to check out the News & Observer for the special Parade of Homes Preview that will be published September 29, 2007.

As always, should you have any questions regarding any of the homes that you see please feel free to contact me. I can help you with directions, builder backgrounds and prior accomplishments, private tours and detailed information!

Have a GREAT time at the Parade!
Awestruck shucking.......

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

And The Drought Goes On.....



The picture says it all.....the drought continues to worsen. Raleigh City leaders have met and the outcome is grim unless the rain starts to fall. It was announced that Raleigh has only a 4 month supply of water left. One statistic from the article below indicates that "Raleigh's water supply at Falls Lake was at about 42 percent of its capacity......."

Restrictions that have been imposed are helping but without substantial and sustained rainfall to help bring lake levels back up the restrictions could get even tighter.....

Raleigh Water Customers Have 4-Month Supply Left......

Conservatively shucking......

Friday, September 14, 2007

Out with the old, in with the new....

Hhmmm, just a few short weeks ago I had a fantastic couple out with me looking at properties. They were from the Chicago area. At one point, the wife spoke up and asked if Raleigh was following the current trend of tearing down old homes to build new which was the case in her father's neighborhood in Illinois area. I answered no and that I was very proud of how Raleigh is big into protecting and preserving older neighborhoods and that it wasn't very common here. Shortly after that there was an article in the News and Observer to quite the contrary. I was quick to email that link to them and let them know that I mis-spoke. Well, several weeks later there is yet another article regarding "infill". Apparently it wasn't enough for me to say I was srong - now I have to admit that I was REALLY wrong.....hey, I can do that!

588 New Homes Replace Teardowns...

Humble shucking.........




Workers intentionally drop three trees on top of a house being demolished to make way for a larger house.
Staff photo by Chris Seward

ANNOUNCEMENT!

Hello all of my faithful readers!

As of late I have received many queries for Luxury Homes in the Raleigh area. Due to the requests I have decided to revamp a portion of my website to accomodate this most exciting niche. In addition, I have added another blog to my arsenal of marketing which will target the high-end homes in the area. I sincerely hope that you will take the time to visit these new ventures of mine and contribute to their success as you have with The Pink Oyster!

The Luxury Raleigh Homes portion of my website will hopefully be completed by mid-week. I invite you to take a peek and I would love any and all feedback!

Thanks again - you are all very valued friends and I would not have been able to do it without you!

A very grateful shucker.....

Thursday, September 13, 2007

In line at 2am? This isn't for the latest book release!!!

Everyone has been so concerned with how growth has affected the school system (and, rightfully so) that we seemed to have overlooked another group. Those that aren't quite in school yet. Daycares and pre-schools are overflowing and more are needed - NOW! Remember when you use to sleep out in front of a concert venue to get in first or stand in line at the bookstore in the wee hours of the morning to get the latest Harry Potter? Well, join the long list of parents that are going to drastic measure to be sure that their children get into a daycare/preschool.

Growth Puts Squeeze on Wake County Preschools......

If you would like more information on Wake County Public Schools please let me know and I will be happy to provide internet links and/or phone numbers for local resources.

Raleigh's "Green" efforts pay-off!!!!


"Raleigh has the potential with some of the initiatives it has undertaken and some it's developing to become the most green community in the Southeast," said Tom Jensen, who oversees the Cool Cities program for the N.C. Sierra Club, on Wednesday.

Fabulous quote from a great article highlighting Raleigh's efforts to combat global-warming.......Click on the link for the full article. Also, take a look at the articles sidebar - among the other cities is Wake Forest and Hillsborough for 2007!
Eco-friendly shucking....

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Don't Stand So Close To Me....


It's a tight fit! Here is an article out just today regarding the enrollment numbers for Wake County Public Schools. Wow - according to the article we have moved into the 19th spot for the Biggest U.S. district....More students just keep on coming.

One thing that I have noticed that "new-comers" are not aware of is that Wake County Public Schools encompass ALL schools. Wake County is not broken up into districts. If the school is in Apex - it is Wake County, Raleigh - Wake County, Wake Forest - Wake County. It can be a bit confusing for people looking to potentially move to the area. If you have questions regarding the school district and how it is made up I can certainly help you with links and useful information - just let me know!

Ever-expanding shucking.....

Friday, September 7, 2007

Please file this under "You Gotta Be Kiddin' Me!"


Honestly, I have read some really stupid items in the papers and I have heard some really bad stories (and good, to be fair) about Homeowners Associations but this pretty much tops them all! I have read the story 4 times now to be sure that I read it correctly. Again, for those of you that are not local - we are in a SERIOUS DROUGHT! It is just PITIFUL to drive by the lake and see the level. The City of Raleigh and surrounding towns (including Wake Forest) are doing their best to place restrictions on homeowners and businesses to help preserve the little water that we do have left. Then, some arrogant, self-indulgent, affected, and imperious HOA Board from left field, decides on this. If said HOA Board reads my blog, feel free to contact me.....how pompous can you be? Seriously? You are going to use "my" water to serve your selfish needs? Exactly what purpose are you trying to serve? Should I live in your community I would welcome your directives and then turn around and sue you for MY fines from the city and sue you to have MY water turned back on. With this being published in the paper and your names out there I would be very worried about the little white trucks with the City emblem on them driving by your house. Puhleeze.....

Pink Oyster faithfuls.......read on and you decide! I, obviously, have made my decision.

Grass Must Be Green, HOA Decrees....

Uugghh.......incredulous shucking.....

Monday, August 27, 2007

Wake Forest goes for the 'Cool Green'.....


Excellent! Wake Forest has just joined the growing list of cities that are considered "Cool Cities". Check out the article hot off the presses from The Daily Tarheel. As a resident of Wake Forest I can certainly say that the Urban Foresty Advisory Board and the Greenway Advisory Board are donig a fantastic job! Kudos to Wake Forest!


Environmentally green shucking.....


Saturday, August 25, 2007

History Prevails.....


For those of you not familiar with Wake Forest let me give you my view point. It is a wonderful "small" town that is quickly being consumed from the ever-expanding Raleigh. There is a wonderful historic downtown area and the birthplace of Wake Forest University is here. I can't tell you the number of times that I have run into people (out-of-towners) looking for directions to get to the University. The reply is always an abridged version of how Wake Forest University was originally Wake Forest college and was founded in 1834. In 1956 the college was relocated to Winston-Salem and thus became Wake Forest University. Anyhow, Wake Forest retains much of it's charm and has many historic residences and buildings. Sadly, as with any small town progression, little by little the historic charm is fading away. Committees, such as the DRC (Downtown Revitalization Corporation) are moving swiftly to put into place a plan that will preserve, maintain and foster many of the historic attractions in the area and I must say, they are doing a great job! Following is an article that came from WRAL.com regarding one of the historic homes that is being saved.........HOW WONDERFUL!

If you are interested in preserving historic homes and sites please let me know. I served on the Capital Area Preservation Committee and am also a member of National Trust for Historic Preservation. I would be happy to supply you with any information that you would like.

Old time shucking.......

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

No more water under the bridge.....


For those of you local this certainly isn't news....however, if you are in another part of the country let me just say that we are experiencing a serious drought! If anyone knows a bonafide rain-dance please pass it on. Not only are we lacking rain but the heat has become unbearable. Yesterday set an new all-time high in the Raleigh-Durham area with a temperature of 105 degrees.

The City of Raleigh held a meeting yesterday to discuss the current water restrictions that we are under and the following link will take you to the new restrictions that are to take effect August 28. Please take heed! Fines are hefty and we need to conserve.

Raleigh Water Rules To Get Stricter

Water-conserving shucking...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

How Low Should You Go????

I found this great article that I wanted to pass along. You must admit that the shift to a Buyer's Market has certainly occured. As with all things cyclicle we will eventually stablize and start the pendulum move back in the other direction. However, I have many buyer's that are currently looking for "deals" and the question always arises, "How low should I go?" The following link is for a story about just that from The Real Estate Journal. There is some practical advice for making that initial offer without offending the seller. Hope you find it helpful!

How To Bid Low On A Home Without Offending The Seller....

"Do your research" shucking......

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Does Sex Sell?


Um, in this case the answer would be NO! You have already read how a dirty house turns a buyer off but what about a "dirty" house?

Again, this past weekend while showing homes I not only ran into filthy homes that were on the market but some interesting situations to say the least. I know that many Realtors®, on-site agents and friends of mine that are contractors read this blog - so, I ask you to please take heed and learn from this story.

While touring homes this past weekend my clients and I had visited a new home community. One home in particular that was under construction was just to the phase of flooring being installed. Cabinets were in and some finishes were on the walls. It was great the first time through. Laborers were there working while we toured and there were no problems at all. After previewing we left and went on to other homes. The next day my clients decided that they would like to return to the home. This particular home had everything that they were searching for and then some. (Including the "man" room which has nothing to do with this post but I will venture to explain that in a later post)

We arrived about 4:30 in the afternoon on Saturday. I was a little surprised that there was no one in the house working but actually that was great for us to go through without feeling like we might be in someones way. We made our way through the living room, dining room and butler's pantry. My clients were in front of me and started to round the corner into the kitchen when the wife started laughing hysterically. You know the kind of laugh, it is the awkward, giddy kind of laugh when you don't know the appropriate response to a certain situation. The husband followed and also was surprised. As I made my way into the kitchen I was blessed with 2 hard-core porno magazines laying on the counter beside a Mountain Dew can. Wow, how do you recover from that one? Fortunately, my clients are well aware that it was beyond my control that the magazines were there and, at that point, there was nothing that I could do since they were already "spied". (Very hard to miss!) We were able to move past them and continue through the house.

My point? What if my clients had their child with them? What if, what if, what if. Extremely embarassing! It is the responsibility of the on-site agents to police their inventory of homes as well as the superintendents of the work crews to maintain a professional atmosphere regardless of the stage of construction the home is in. I have spoke to the on-site agent and she apologized profusely - however, no one should be put in a most embarassing postition such as we were this past weekend.

So, to my associates out there........dirty homes don't sell, and "dirty" homes don't sell either! Clean them up and keep them clean!

Here's to porn-free shucking...............

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Through the eyes of a buyer.....


I really thought that instructing sellers to have a clean house when it was on the market for sale was like beating a dead horse.......the point should have been long understood! Boy, was I wrong!
After showing many houses this weekend I can safely say that I was appalled at the condition of some of the homes. One of the first responsibilities of any real estate agent worth their salt when preparing a home to be listed for sale is to advise the sellers to CLEAN UP! Get rid of the clutter, scrub walls, clean floors, and keep it neat. Spruce up the entrance, set an atmosphere, open the curtains, etc. But, the fundamental remains - clean your house.

To help you with a visual.......one home in particular was trashed from top to bottom. Dirty dishes all over the living room, important documents strewn about the furniture, dirty dishes in the sink, "sticky stuff" on the kitchen floor, writing on the walls (literally), the master bedroom was PILED high with dirty clothes all over the floor, end of bed and in the closet, bed was not made, master bath was a disaster with filthy shower, dried toothpaste all over the sinks, nasty, nasty toilet, a dresser top that was so clutters and stacked with "stuff" that you couldn't see the dresser. You literally had to side step through the house to move about. My buyers didn't however; I chose to see the rest of the house for myself - UNBELIEVABLE!

The topper came when the buyers had wanted to see the back yard. A dog was in the kitchen with "doors" up so it couldn't run about the house. We stepped over the "doors" and went to the sliding glass doors to exit out onto the deck. What did we step on? A doggie pad that was saturated with dog urine. DISGUSTING!

Seriously, if you are contemplating selling your home you MUST put yourself in a buyers mindset. If you were with me and you saw this house would you remotely be interested in buying? I have to also say that this home was in a neighborhood with gorgeous homes and a higher than average price range. It was not tenant-occupied so clearly the owners had full control over what the property looked like.

Folks, live your life how you wish.....but, when it comes to selling your home - it is BASIC, FUNDAMENTAL, and INESCAPABLE to clean your home. If you can only see through your eyes it is then your real estate agents duty to guide you through the steps necessary to get your home ready to be shown. What a disservice the agent representing the above mentioned house has done to their clients.

Excuse me while I step down from my soap-box!

Shucking on.......

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Doing it Old-School Style!



Well, can you believe it??!!?! The summer is almost over, commercials are advertising the best back-to-school clothes, the stores I have visited lately are brimming with notebook paper, pens, pencils and every supply under the sun for the triumphant return of students to their respective educational institutions! Don't fret! There is still time to get one last hurrah in before that "first-day-back" arrives. I thought I would get a little creative and make some suggestions for short getaways that are reasonably price.

  • Wet-N-Wild in Greensboro/Winston-Salem. If you and yours are into water (personally, I am not) then this is a great place to spend the day. Several different pools to lounge by and play in geared for all ages, a plenitude of rides ranging from a lazy float down a river to a ginormous (technically a word now thanks to Will Ferrell and ELF) water slide. Food concessions are moderately priced and the drive is only 1-1.5 hours from Raleigh.
  • Falls Lake - Is camping your bag? Falls Lake has numerous campgrounds with a variety of amenities at each. Two that I recommend are Rollingview and Holly Point (great lakefront first come-first served sites!)
  • U.S.S. North Carolina Battleship a short 2 hour drive gets you to Wilmington! Not only is there the USS North Carolina to explore, there is Fort Fisher Aquarium, historic Wilmington and Wrightsville Beach OR Carolina Beach just minutes away!
  • Have you been to the Blue Ridge Mountains lately? Checkout Linville Caverns for a cool respite from the summer heat. Just a short trip and a great way to do some family exploring before the first school bell rings.

If you would like more suggestions or ideas just drop me a line! There are tons of things to do that only require a short drive, a little spontaneity and some adventurous spirit!

Here's to lazy summer shucking....

Friday, July 27, 2007

Seriously, another list.....


Folks, I am not doing this intentionally but, Raleigh just keeps showing up on these lists. Here is another to add to the ranks of popularity......





Talk about your healthy growth!

Expanded shucking..........

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Raleigh Makes Yet Another Elite List....

Raleigh just keeps popping up on lists! These are the lists we WANT to be on! Following is an article regarding the best places in the US to sell a home. Hhmmm.....guess who was number one?

The 5 Best Places To Sell A Home...

If you are hesitant about the Raleigh area and don't quite want to take one person's word for it - check out the articles that I provide - some good reading!

Some list-topping shucking going on......

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Downtown Raleigh has seen the light...

Here is another great article regarding downtown Raleigh and the efforts to revamp, revitalize and make us an even bigger contender.....

Building Booms in Downtown Raleigh

Entrepreneurial shucking at it's finest....

Monday, July 23, 2007

McMansions, Estates and Lotsa Money


It seems that home sales are down in most of the country - you would agree with that, right? Well, not all home sales! Even in the Raleigh area the sales of luxury, high-end properties have drastically picked up. Following is a story relating the country as a whole.

Soaring Into The Stratosphere

As for Wake County here are some statistics that might surprise you.

In Wake County ONLY sales jumped from $546,765,433.00 in May to a whopping $601,819,487.00 in June. That is the highest monthly sales in over a year - now I ask you, are we in a slump? Keep in mind, that is WAKE county only. It does not include Durham, Chapel Hill, and smaller areas such as Youngsville and Franklinton. Pretty astounding.

The zip code with the highest amount of sales is 27587. That includes all of Wake Forest and part of Wakefield Plantation. According to statistics there were 198 home sales in the month of June for just that zip code.

If you would like monthly updates on statistics for Wake County and surrounding counties please just send me an email and I will be happy to oblige.

Some serious house-buying shucking going on.....

Saturday, July 21, 2007

We Built This City.....

Well, the following article is tandem to the article a few days ago about growth creeping into Creedmoor. When I lived in Charlotte (years ago) the exact same thing had happened. Charlotte became synonomous with Mecklenberg County. I remember when I would get new clients back then they would specifically say, "We only want county taxes!" I had to disclose that I could sell them a house with county taxes but that there was no way I could predict when their home would be annexed by Charlotte. It was inevitable - everyone within the county was scopped up by Charlotte. Not only was Charlotte the same as Mecklenberg County -there was also a fine line between North Carolina and South Carolina. Rock Hill, SC was growing north and Charlotte (at the time) was growing South - the two met at one point.

My friends, the same is happening here. I am constantly getting requests from people that they want a house in Wake Forest (where I live), Cary, Knightdale, Apex, etc......my friends, it is all the same. There is rarely a defining line between the two and as evidenced by the article, soon there will be no difference between the "city" and the "county". It is the price we pay. We have some of the best schools in the country, best universities and colleges in the country, the biggest research area in the country, a fantastic cost of living and, interestingly enough, a slower pace compared to the rest of the country despite our achievements.......as I said, it is the price we pay.

Farmland Threatened By Wake Development

Busting and booming shucking.......

Monday, July 16, 2007

Like your momma said - Gettin' too big for your breeches....

Bound to happen! There is no more room in Wake County! Okay, not exactly true - but, I got your attention! Many smaller bedroom communities have experienced a boom in the influz of residents. Why, duh! First was Cary, Wake Forest, then came Zebulon, Knightdale and along came Holly Springs, Apex and "The Quay". If I left anyone don't scream and throw a fit - it wasn't intentional. Now, slowly creeping in is Creedmoor. Honestly, I am surprised that it took this long.

from WRAL.com
Would you live in Creedmoor? (I would!) What do you think of the bedroom communities becoming mainstream?

Just a curious shucker....

How about a side of real estate with that? Smotherd and covered.....(thanks Waffle House!)

Oh, come on! You have all seen the red and white badge plastered all over my blog and website....you know you want to go. Don't be shy!

Free cup 'o joe, free pastries, free home tour, free advice - did you get the FREE! I am so excited for the first tour. I have quite a few that have signed up! Should be interesting how it all turns out. I have high hopes....For those of you that have signed up but not registered on the website will you please do so? It is so much easier to keep track of all of you that way!

Countdown begins -

T-minus 12 days and counting - Communications a go! We're rollin' her out to the pad....

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Raleigh Bound....


Well, I have to say that CBS Early Show did a FANTASTIC job showcasing Raleigh and the Triangle area. They touched on everything from the southern charm, local wineries, local restaurants, research and BBQ. Applause! The ONLY thing that they touched on which really tripped my trigger was the year round schools. They had the two least equipped people to interview - it was awful! I don't know how they picked them. The gentleman on there was a School Board member and he was an opponent of mandatory year-round. Hey, everyone has an opinion. But if you are going to speak on a subject at least know what you are talking about. At one point he mentioned that with "tracks" you get two-week breaks throughout the year. Huh? Two-week breaks? Sorry, dude, it's 9 weeks on and THREE (3) weeks off. The other interviewee offered no information, insight or reasoning. She kept repeating something to the effect of "Education and growing". I am not sure what that meant. You could tell that Hannah was frustrated with her answers and kept deferring to the other guy. Oh well, maybe a more in-depth interview next time with educated guests both for and against!

Regardless, if I lived somewhere else and had seen the show - I would definately consider moving to Raleigh! Wish I had been there!
A few links:
Happy shucking.....

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

"I'm gonna be a star........"


Here's your chance! The Early Show is coming to Raleigh LIVE and you can be on TV. Unfortunately, I can't make it down there but if someone wants to make a sign for me and get it on the air there might be something in it for you!!! :)


If you GOOGLE it there are several articles and links. Here are a few with some additional information:



WRAL.com


Raleigh NC - The Early Show


CBS News

Monday, July 9, 2007

Atomic Ranch? New dressing or funky diggs?

So, I meet this great couple from Massachusetts and they start inquiring about "atomic ranches". They also used terms such as borax - huh? It was a new one to me but like all things placed before me I had to run out and learn what this craze was all about! Barnes & Nobles was a great place to start. There are a few magazines specifically dedicated to this trend. FYI, here is one: Atomic Ranch

Pretty darn cool! The term references homes built in the atomic age. You know the ones.....many times the brick ranches, split-level homes and the like all built in from the 1940's - late 1960's. There seems to be quite a sub-culture, which is now going mainstream, of collectors that purchase the homes, remodel and period decorate. While I was skeptical at first it was amazing to see all of the homes that are being scooped up specifically for that. Don't get me wrong, I am used to the historic homes being updated but this was new. See, you can teach an old oyster new things!!!!
I'll keep you updated on my clients progress and hopefully will be able to get some pictures along the way. It will be interesting to see the before, during and after.......
Shuck on......

Sunday, July 8, 2007

What should you know?

Michelle Young Home Is for Sale (from WRAL.com)

Posted: Jul. 7, 2007 Updated: Today at
7:15 p.m.

Raleigh — The home where a Raleigh woman was beaten to death
is up for sale.5108 Birchleaf Drive, the 11-room home of Jason and Michelle
Young, was listed this week on the Triangle real estate market at $424,900.
Described in the listing as a "beautiful, all-brick home on a large 1.8-acre
lot," it has four bedrooms, 2½ baths, a bonus room and French doors "leading to
a back deck overlooking a large fenced-in back yard."

Click here for the rest of the article

For those of you that are local I am sure that you are familiar with this tragic story which still has not come to a resolution and I know that there will never be closure for the friends and family of the victim. It appears now that the home where the devastating murder took place is now up for sale. Again, this brings up the question of disclosure. While a Listing Agent is not required by law to disclose any crime related information regarding the home you are certainly well within your rights to have your Buyer's Agent research the property.

Again, educated shucking.....know your rights!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Kijiji.....Say What?

Check it out! Brand new site out there from the creators of Craigslist. Funky name (gotta love those!), clean design and nationwide!





Happy shucking...........

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Hoping you and yours celebrated a very safe and Happy 4th of July!




As the end draws to a close on the nation's celebration of Independence I just wanted to say Happy 4th of July! There was a multitude of activities from kid-friendly fairs, explosive fireworks, and in my neighborhood alone, the grills were working overtime!

For my family and some of our friends we chose the celebration at the Wake Forest-Rolesville high school last night. The entertainment was stellar with the Band of Oz, the crowd was in awe of the Don Carrington Skydive team and the fireworks were spectacular. It was amazing was $5 per ticket got you! I highly recommend you check it out next year.

Festivities were carried over to today with a festival at Holding Park here in Wake Forest. Referred to as "Art in the Park" there were food vendors, watermelon seed spitting contests, tug-o-wars, sun visor painting, Wake Forest firetrucks for the kids to explore and a demonstration by the Wake Forest Police K-9 unit. Very entertaining and family oriented day.

If you get the chance, check out the Town of Wake Forest website. There is a calendar of events that showcases all that Wake Forest has to offer on a monthly basis. Not too bad for a smaller town - not too bad at all!

Have a very safe evening!

Don't Bite Off More Than You Can Chew....

Realtors Spread the Word on Avoiding Foreclosures

Posted: Today at 5:31 p.m.
Updated: Today at 6:01 p.m.

Raleigh — A group of local realtors wanting to put a stop to the growing number of foreclosures in Wake County took to the streets Wednesday to help educate people about their options when buying a home.

"We don't want to see people losing their homes. So, we're trying to get out and educate people and work with people so they don't have to," realtor Darlette McCormick said.

Click here for the rest of the great article.

I am so happy to see this happening. Time and time again I have seen the same thing with my own buyers. They "qualify" for an astronimical mortgage payment, don't do the homework, get a glazed look in their eyes and less than a year later are not able to keep their heads above water. As the article says, they can't refinance because they are late on payments and it just snowballs from there. Please, keep a level head when searching for a home......stay within a level that you are comfortable.

Educated shucking.......what it's all about!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Wow - Happy 40th to me!

No words will ever describe skydiving! There is that moment when the parachute opens and you literally “stand still” in the air! No noise, complete silence and the most awe inspiring moment of your life – EVER! Will I go again – om my god, I can’t wait!!!!!

Monday, July 2, 2007

And I'm Free, I'm Free Fallin'













"I wanna glide down over Mulholland
I wanna write her name in the sky
I wanna free fall out into nothin'
Gonna leave this world for awhile"

Oh faithful readers.........nothing prepared The Pink Oyster for her 40th birthday!!! May not be real estate related but I just had to share. My wonderful husband bought me the present of a life time - a SKYDIVE!!! Let me just say, no words could ever describe the experience. I want to extend a huge thanks to Carolina Sky Sports for helping to make this the most memorable birthday EVER, a big hug and kiss to John Terry, my instructor and a shout out to Peter my photographer and videographer! I can only describe my experience as the most peaceful, quiet, reflective and awe inspring moment of my life.

When that parachute opens and the deafening stillness and quiet seeps in, there is nothing but you and big open sky. Folks, if you ever, ever think you might want to do it, JUST DO IT!!

As soon as I get my head out of the clouds, we'll be back up and blogging!!!





Just a teeny disclaimer - this is my own amateur video - the real one will be up later in the week!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Held hostage............


This post goes out to all of the frustrated buyers and sellers! This one is for you!

I currently have a potential client that is in a listing agreement with another company. Before any of the Realtor® police come after me - they contacted me! Let's make that very clear!
They have had their home listed with the other company for about 4 months and are very, very unhappy with the service that they have received. No communication, no advertising, no open houses, no feed-back, no return phone calls and the list goes on. The sellers contacted them last week and stated that they wanted to terminate their listing agreement. At first thought, the company said they would email the release papers. Four days later, the company emailed again and said that they would NOT release the seller unless the seller paid them $600.00. FOR WHAT? They didn't advertise the home, their level of service was way less than stellar and they never even returned a communication until the seller wanted to terminate the contract.

Now, I ask you.......why would you want to make an already unpleasant relationship volatile? Had they simply released the sellers it would have been said and done. Now, however, the seller is contacting the Real Estate Commission and lodging a complaint among other actions.

For you fellow Realtors® I pose this question........if the marriage isn't working between you and a client, whether it be a buyer or a seller, why continue? Why turn this into a circus? Wow, just gives us all a bad image. Remember, word of mouth travels fast. Negative word of mouth travels at the speed of light..................
Curious shucking...............




Active Rain (Isn't that a little redundant?)

I have a great community that I would like to share with you. Remember, knowledge is POWER!! Take a minute and visit Active Rain. It is a great site with a Q&A section for anyone to pose a question. Some great reading and research available on the site and I highly recommend it!

Just passing on a pearl............

Saturday, June 23, 2007

20/20 Equates To Perfect Vision?

I think not! On the heels of the much maligned piece by 60 Minutes, 20/20 has decided to create their own mis-informed, poorly collaborated and inaccurate description of the Real Estate industry. I was not so shocked by 60 Minutes due to some of their one-sided and atagonistic reporting in the past. However, I had high hope for 20/20 last night.

A few items to rebutt some of the comments coming from my perspective:
  1. Is a Broker Worth It? You're darn right I am! 20/20 illustrated how a commission is split. THEY chose to use a 6% commission. Not me and certainly not the industry standard. However, using their suggestion of 6% and how they broke it down I beg to go a few steps further. From the sale of a home there is a 6% commission paid out. (Again, THEIR figure!) 3% is paid to the seller's agent and 3% is paid to the buyer's agent. Let's say that I am the Seller's Agent. I take my 3% and then split it with my broker-in-charge which leaves me with 1.5%. Out of my 1.5% I have to pay monthly dues to belong to the local MLS board, dues to the Association of Realtors, health insurance, dental insurance, vision insurance, taxes (no folks, that commision is not taxed) and, oh, do I have a 401K? No, I do not. On top of those items, I have to recoup the money that I spent on advertising the home I just sold. There are website fees, 800# fees, newspaper ads, signs created for the yard and open houses, printing costs for flyers and post cards, and the list goes on. It is unfair to start reporting a story and stop short!

  2. "No real estate agent can walk into the house and show it with the zeal that I can show it," she said. Taken directly from the story. Zeal? Hhmmm, okay, what about desperation, lack of sales skills and giving up leverage? Once that buyer walks in the door and you are selling on your own, do you know what to say? It's called leverage folks. Also, as we all know, our homes are well, our homes! What is that smell? Did you cook fish last night? Yep, still smells the next day. Oh, what is that fuzzy thing running around the house? Your beloved cat which the potential buyers are distracted by or even worse, allergic to. The potential buyer asks why you are moving - what do you say? Can't say too much! Remember, LEVERAGE!

All I know is that when my tooth hurts I go to a dentist. When I have a medical problem I go to a doctor. When my car needs repaired I go to a mechanic. So, where will you go when you want to buy or sell a home?

Shuck on..............

Top Seller's Markets?

Lists, lists and more lists! There are "Most Expensive Homes", "Best Cities", and more. Now? The Best Seller's Market and Raleigh makes the grade. Check it out....

This scenario is also playing out in Raleigh, N.C., the No. 1 city on our list. Moderate growth and disciplined building over the last five years prevented the market from developing a significant glut. Additionally, a strong local economy has helped contribute to the city's healthy 1.6% vacancy rate.


What's more, the rate of home sales against
home inventory was healthy in Raleigh; in this category, it ranked fifth best of big cities, according to Moody's metrics. Even though the market has low vacancy to begin with and displayed strong construction restraint during the housing boom, Raleigh still has the eighth best rate of tightening.

To view the article in it's full context please click here.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Chiclets - no, not PYTs


Do you know what a chiclet is? Well, a generation or two back it was GUM. Cute little square pieces of gum that came in a nice tidy box that you could keep closed. Perfectly packaged for the obsessive compulsive young at heart! (Anyone notice how Orbit has gone back to that? Dirty Mouth? Clean it up with Orbit - boy, that girl buggs me!)
Anyhow, back to the the topic......Chiclets are the little tiny icons that you see all over websites and blogs. Even The Pink Oyster herself has them. Here is a link that will help you decipher what all of those vibrant, teeny, tiny little buttons mean and how you can use them.
The wonderful world of Chiclets as only The Real Estate Tomato could explain!

Hey, Buh-dy............Freddy Krueger Meets The Weasel!

Okay - taking a stab here (no pun intended) and hoping that the majority of you remember (do you really want to?) Pauly Shore and of course, the king of screamers, Wes Craven. Seems like things are getting a little creepy in "The Hills"

Craven vs. Shore and the damaged property

So, after watching the clip - has Pauly been bonin' up on his Real Estate?

Friday, June 15, 2007

Priciest Digs in The South

Hey Mom and Dad.... neighbors?

So, you may wonder where the most expensive homes in the Southeast are...honestly, was there really a question about that?

Check out these homes in Florida.....anything you are interested in? Let me know - I know people!

Luxury shucking at it's finest!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Wow, The Pink Oyster has been busy packing it up and moving ......

Check out the new site! This blog will still be here and will "feed" into the Wikizine. I hope that you like the new digs and continue to support me. It has been great!

The Pink Oyster's Bed

Monday, June 4, 2007

And That's My Final Answer........

Seller: "Will you cut your commission?"

Me: "No."

Pretty straightforward? Yes. With all of the hoopla recently from the 60 Minutes piece I felt the need to address this to my colleagues, friends and potential seller and buyers. I, personally, have 7 key reasons why I will not cut my commission and here they are:


  1. "They" don't have a marketing system that works. Today's real estate market is more competitive and complex than ever before. Some agents are willing to cut their commission because they don't have a marketing plan in place that works. They are desperate to accept any terms and conditions to list a property. Sellers need strength and conviction! They need a professional that is ready, willing and able to defend their asking price at the negotiating table. Would you really trust the sale of your home to an agent that is so quick to devalue their own worth? If they are that willing to give up their dollars how willing are they to give up your dollars?

  2. "They" will cut service somewhere. When a buyer is willing to pay asking price there are many factors that have come into play. Marketing materials, advertising, direct mail and more are all valuable tools that experienced, full-service agents employ to realize the best term, price and timing when selling a home. Which will the other agent leave out to accommodate their commission cut?

  3. "They" won't give it their all. A 1 percent reduction in commission equals more than 15% of the total commission. Would you be really excited about a 15% pay cut? Is the agent really motivated to sell the property? If the agent has 5 listings and one is a discounted commission and the others are a full commission which one is LEAST likely to be marketed effectively?

  4. "They" might not get cooperation from other agent. A cut commission on one end means there is less to split on the other end. Making your listing attractive for agents to sell and show requires collateral. Leverage, if you will.

  5. "They" likely won't get top price. If the agent is willing to let the seller negotiate him or her out of 15 percent or more of the income of the sale of the property will they also let the buyer negotiate 15 percent or more from the purchase price? The seller might be losing tens of thousands of dollars just to save a couple thousand dollars in commissions.

  6. "They" simply don't know better. Some agents might be willing to take less because they lack the experience to fully understand the repercussions that they are agreeing to - not only to their own bottom line but also the seller's. As an experienced agent, I know that when I do not compromise on my integrity, service, systems or skills then I can, in good faith, give clients my honest promise to do my absolute best.

  7. "They" don't understand timing. Regardless of the sellers walk of life or any conceivable market condition - one thing remains constant and unyeilding. Seller's want to walk away with the most money in their pocket. Yes, a commission cut seems like the quickest way to accomplish that goal but, more often than not, it is a false perception. Lower commissions mean lower marketability, which means more time on the market. That equates into additional mortgage payments, utility bills, landscaping maintenance and much more.

Having the right person with the right tools to tell the truth up front, set the best price, and promote the sale aggressively and effectively will result in the primary goal of putting the most money in your pocket.


ASK QUESTIONS! Be smart! Truly understand the marketing plan set out before you - it isn't just to list your home in MLS anymore or to send out a few postcards. Watch for my next post.........A list of nearly 200 items that your REALTOR® should be doing for you.....

Happy shucking.............

Friday, June 1, 2007

What Makes Me...........Me?

Here is a great article explaining what makes a REALTOR® a REALTOR®..........

Code of Ethics Sets REALTORS® Apart
Release date: 01/01/07

When you think of professionals who follow specific codes of ethics, what comes to mind? Doctors, lawyers, engineers – all are professionals who pledge to follow a strict code of ethics. For important life issues like your health and legal matters, it makes sense to have relationships with professionals who follow such a code.

The N.C. Association of REALTORS® encourages you to consider a similar relationship when it comes to real estate transactions. REALTORS® -- more than 1,000,000 real estate professionals who are members of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® -- pledge to adhere to NAR's strict Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice. Among other things, membership in NAR obligates them to be honest with all parties involved in a transaction, whether it is the buyer, seller or cooperating agent.

“The NAR Code of Ethics is the public’s assurance that they are dealing with a professional who has their best interests in mind,” explains Ronnie Thompson, past president of the N.C. Association of REALTORS®. “REALTORS® are subject to disciplinary action and sanctions if they violate the duties imposed by the NAR Code of Ethics.”

the rest of the article can be read here..................provided by the North Carolina Association of REALTORS®.
Remember, don't be bashful! Ask the professional real estate agent that you choose if they are a REALTOR®. I am proud to be a REALTOR® and represent this industry to the best of my ability with honesty, integrity and the knowledge needed to represent each and every client in the most professional manner.

Excuse me now while I move the soapbox!

:) Happy Shucking......................

Monday, May 28, 2007

Destination Unknown........

Have you ever seen the movie - The Abyss? Actually, one of my all time favorites! This story kind of reminded me of it for some reason. Anyhow, I can't believe what some people will do.....can you pay for this property with non-existent money?

And to think that some Real Estate agents are unethical.......haha!


Website to Sell Nonexistent Real Estate
By JAYMES SONG Associated Press
Writer
Posted: Today at 6:47 a.m.
HONOLULU — Real estate is often a
long-term investment. But 10,000 years? Lo'ihi Development Co. will soon start
offering oceanview lots speculators won't even be able to stand on for many
millennia. That's because they're currently submerged more than 3,000 feet below
sea level - on an underwater volcano called Lo'ihi, located about 20 miles
southeast of the Big Island.
His Web site will be renovated in the next
couple of weeks to officially begin selling parcels for an introductory price of
$39.95. Buyers will receive a brochure and a "deed," but much like Internet
groups that claim to sell stars, they probably can't call themselves
owners.
"What's the scam?" said Norm Nichols, co-developer of the online
venture. "If you really think there's something here that you can't live with,
nobody's forcing you to buy it. It's meant to be fun."
The Web site
advertises, "Lo'ihi Seaview Estates: Real Estate for the Future. Grand Water
View Front Lots." A photo of the sales office is a raft in the middle of the
ocean.
Nichols and his business partner, Linda Kramer, both Honolulu
entrepreneurs, envision online chat rooms and newsletters to discuss everything
from street names to what kind of government to install. They want to hold a
"homeowners association" meeting - a boat ride over the volcano - every April
Fool's Day.
Scientists don't really know when, or if, Lo'ihi will break the
surface of the Pacific Ocean. Many guess about 10,000 years, but it could be
much longer than that.
Stephen Levins, head of the state consumer affairs
office, said the offer could be a problem if it were serious. "However, if the
Web site is clear it's a parody and you're not going to be receiving an actual
interest in real estate, that's something else," he said.

Talk about your deep-thinking oysters????...........

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