Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Seven Ways to Make EXTRA Money When You Sell Your Home

Posted on: January 30th, 2017 by adam

Some great ideas here. Many agents refuse to negotiate commissions. I have been told by agents “I work too hard to negotiate my commissions”. I silently think “hmm. I’ve worked at a biker bar, helped ability challenged folks toilet back at MSU, lawyered and asphalted…this job is freaking very straightforward, and not nearly as hard as many other jobs, where my salary was ALWAYS up for negotiations.”

sorry, its a sticking point for me. Soapbox put away, I will now share these good ideas. Apparently per the picture, another way to make money is to marry a white girl with some inexplicable and ugly extensions, go get some awkward looking arm tattoos, then lie down on the floor. The money will start rolling in.

Seven Ways to Make EXTRA Money When You Sell Your Home!

Spring Cleaning Time!

Posted on: April 1st, 2014 by adam

Well, the polar cap has started to recede from Washtenaw County. Dog owners know what waits for us under said glacier. On top of doodie duty, and picking up the yard and hanging the hammock, there are many

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things we as homeowners can be doing to protect our homes.

The good folks at U.S. Inspect (A great national inspection chain with some great local inspectors) have put out this handy checklist of items in, on and around our houses that we should be checking on as the weather warms.

Spring Home Repair Checklist

Selling A Hoarder’s Home

Posted on: October 14th, 2013 by adam

I’m in the process of getting a huge, beautiful old home in Downtown Ypsilanti on the market.

The home has rooms on a grand scale, beautiful wood floors, amazing woodwork, massive pocket doors — all the trademarks of an early 1900’s mansion.

The problem is that the woman who lived there was a hoarder. First time I walked through it was hard to figure out how to move from place to place. Like craft scissors? She had like twenty pair. Rooms filled with

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tiki lamps, huge vertical stacks of magazines from the 60s and 70s, multiple bicycles, a virtual museum of radios and tvs, and hodge-podge glasware and other tschochkes that would make hipsters worldwide salivate openly.

Below are two interesting articles from the New York Times – one about getting hoarder’s homes sold in the city, the other about a cool set of hoarders in Harlem in the 1940s.

Unlike New York City, although demand for inventory is also high here in Washtenaw County, it is not such an insane market, in my opinion, that you can hope that “buyers will see through” rooms filled to the brim with accumulated stuff. In the case of this Ypsilanti home, I counseled the seller’s estate to get the home completely emptied of its decades of consumer craziness. The home’s beauty needs to be exposed in order to get the home sold.

In fact, I would counsel even homeowners who aren’t truly “hoarders” but have unused or cluttered homes to get them as streamlined and decluttered as possible prior to putting the home on the market. I put together a web page on de-cluttering your home, and the link to same is below.

Interesting Article on Hoarder Brothers in 1940’s Harlem

Article on Selling NYC Hoarder Homes

How to Declutter Your Own Home

Eulogy for a bookstore

Posted on: December 3rd, 2012 by adam

Ann Arbor folks do a great job of expressing themselves. Walking down Liberty

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Street today, saw a great eulogy / art installation on the windows of the Border’s flagship store. Very cool.

why ann arbor?

Posted on: November 2nd, 2012 by adam

when rachel and I first moved here, a lot of folks we knew from growing up in oakland county would ask: “why ann arbor”. So, the other day, it came to me that that very question would be a great name for my blog “why ann arbor”.

I will, from time to time post things — events, places, houses, opportunities, that seem to clearly answer that question.

A video I shot on my

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mark’s carts a few weeks ago is a perfect example of for me, “why ann arbor” is a no-brainer. click on the button for good feelings time.

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mongol hordes of deer on the loose! lock up your tomato plants!

Posted on: June 26th, 2012 by adam

heartless hordes of marauding mongol deer swept through my yard last night.

the evidence was laid bare, literally, before me, as I walked to my car this

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my “little tomato plant that could” had been callously nibbled to near-death.

for a moment I shook my fist and cursed the deer and their ilk.

then I remembered that I live in a beautiful corner of the world that looks and feels like the set of bambi.

I love watching the critters that come sashaying through the yard

(with far more impunity now that the total aggregate weight of all dogs on site is under ten pounds)

c’est la country vie. buy the ticket take the ride.

and keep your garden run like a maximum security prison, or be prepared to be made the salad bar to the natives.

I love how so much of washtenaw county is rural or rural ish. with every such blessing comes a cost, and I refuse to be someone who moves

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out to the woods and then curses the deer. so eat up, bambi.

Buyer Craziness

Posted on: June 8th, 2012 by adam

Trying to get my mind around the current state of the Ann Arbor residential real estate market.

The market has gone nutty – crazy. Frantic.

There are still some dated or overpriced (or combo of both) houses that are languishing on the market, that is for certain.

However, any new listings that have been well kept, and are priced right, are getting good showing volumes and, often, getting multiple offers within days of going on market.

The result is a market where buyers are frantically combing the internet, driving though subdivisions of choice hoping they’ve missed something, and turning Buyer’s agents into paramedic / ninjas, where the moment the whiff of a new house hits the air, there is a mad scramble to get in immediately, before the throngs of rabid buyers.

What’s going on??? I know it doesn’t have to do with people smoking bath salt. That merely turns them into face-eating zombies.

What I believe is happening is this:

The market here in Ann Arbor has finally begun to show a slow but insistent uptick in home sales values. There is a LARGE group of buyers – both the usual group of transient university and tech associated folks AND locals ready for a home change — who have decided the time is right to buy again.

However, there are a LOT of homes here that were bought between 2000 and 2008. Homes where the owners have realized a big loss in home value. And they don’t HAVE to move, even if they might WANT to. They also see that the market has stabilized, but the value they lost in those years means they will lose money on their investment, and they are therefore staying put.

So we have a significant EXCESS of buyers to

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sellers, causing the current kerfuffle.

This is a good situation for people who need or want to sell now.

One potential problem that arises out of this “Buyer Frenzy” I experienced firsthand.

I am selling a VERY cute home for some friends in the $200-$300k pricepoint.

They did a great job of getting their home staged, and we had multiple offers the first day the public had a chance to see it.

We had full price (plus) offers.

The problem was that the buyers were willing to pay more than the market value — which was discovered when the buyer’s lender’s appraiser appraised it for nearly $15k less than the offer price. And the appraiser was right. We all knew it.

Buyers have become so frantic to lock a house down that they are willing to write an offer beyond what the market really SHOULD bear.

What does that teach me?

That buyers need to evaluate HOW BADLY they NEED the home.

I got in trouble with a recent buyer I was working with.

I preach, as much as possible, that Buyers should take a CALM, reasoned approach to the purchase, and try, as much as possible to stay “detached”.

It is getting harder to get buyers to maintain such cool-headedness as they watch houses fly off the market in hours.

It requires a very clear message to your buyers: If you’re gonna be mad at yourself (or me) if you don’t get this house, be prepared to go over asking price with your offer. Its not ideal, but we’re not in 2009 anymore.

But please, try to remain calm?

I do believe the incident I experienced with the appraiser harkens back to the zany bubble days, and we should take the mentality of the appraiser and not the bath-salt crazed zombieinto our home-buying

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But don’t get your face bitten off either

Hello People of Earth!

Posted on: April 3rd, 2012 by adam
Just heard on the a.m. radio that all the young people are on about something called the interweb. So I had my nice young (and talented) friends at Insite Design Lab make me an interweb. You should call them. They are polite and smart and very reasonably priced. Thanks Jonathon and Kelly!
Tune in from time to time. We’re working on having Guy Lombardo and / or Johny Carson stop through.
While we’re working on that, I will also be putting up content regarding what is happening around Washtenaw County, with an emphasis on Real Estate

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(home sales, business changes of note, and related data), local events, humorous anecdotes, and as much information about unicorns as I can get my hands on. Salut!