Strip Joints and Selling Houses
Wednesday morning’s Naples Daily News had an article about a Fifth Avenue South restaurant that had a promoter running a dance club in the restaurant. Apparently while visiting this restaurant, undercover Naples police found meagerly dressed women dancing on the bar accepting tips in their thongs. Needless to say the City of Naples was not happy about this. The restaurant owner, who says he was unaware of his promoter’s entertainment events, put an immediate stop to this entertainment.
Understandable, people were upset by this event. The Fifth Avenue South shopping district has families that frequent the establishments on the street. Neighboring residents I am sure were horrified
As I read this article, a memory stirred to the surface of my consciousness. “Picture this,” as Sophia Petrillo of the Golden Girls used to say. It was 1981; I had only been in the real estate business for a while and was still learning. This was in a time where in the Berwyn, IL area where I worked computerized MLS’s did not exist. (Besides being noted for its wonderful Czechoslovakian food, Berwyn was also noted for the Spindle Sculpture.) At that time Realtors had to drive to the MLS to pick up photocopies of new listings and a sheet with all the pending and closed sales. Every Realtor in the Board had their own set of photocopied listing books. There were no adjustable rate mortgages yet and mortgage interest rates were around 15%. Yes, 15%. Hey, what did I know? I was young.
I teamed up with a woman from my office to work For Sale By Owners (FSBO’S). One day we landed an appointment in the neighboring community of Lyons, IL. Back then Lyons was noted for its strip clubs a la The Sopranos, Bada Bing, up and down Ogden Avenue. (It has since changed.) When my colleague and I arrived at our appointment destination, we saw the listing we were trying to obtain was an alley away from a strip club! Being young and fearless, we went to our appointment and actually obtained the listing.
A real estate seminar I had attended taught me to call agents that had shown my listings and find out what their clients had to say about my listing. The seminar leader told us that we should then communicate this information to our sellers. After about 20 showings with client reaction of “Too close to the strip joints”, I had my first revelation about price reductions. The house for sale was clean, in good shape it was just in the wrong “location”. The seller could not make the condition of the house any better, he could not change the location but he could change the price, which is what he did. Lo and behold…………the place sold!
Years later I was at a Mike Ferry real estate seminar. Mike told the audience that people always think a house will sell because of “Location, Location, Location”. He told us that statement is untrue. A house will always sell because of the price. He said a home could be located next to a rail road track with trains that passed by every 10 minutes and be a pigsty but if the house was priced right, it would sell. My listing next to the strip club surfaced in my mind.
There has been a great deal of talk about the Naples real estate market. The reality is that our pending sales are up and homes that are priced at market are selling. Mid May the Chairman and CEO of Toll Brothers was interviewed on CNBC’s Mad Money. In the interview he states that he thinks the Naples market has hit bottom. Naples is specifically mentioned at about 5min 30seconds. The whole video is pretty interesting.
Where am I headed with my strip club remembrance? Some Naples Sellers still think “Location, Location, Location” is going to sell their house today. These Sellers should think again. Price is the key for getting a home sold in today’s market. If you are a Seller who really does not have to sell your home and can wait for the market to come to your price, please take your house off the market now. You can put it back on the market when the market escalates to your desired price.
What about the hubbub about the Fifth Avenue South restaurant with the “dancers”? The neighbors, proprietors on Fifth Avenue South and the City of Naples, will not let Fifth Avenue South turn into a Ogden Avenue anytime soon. That is just one of the reasons I love living in Naples. Another reason is the sunsets!
I have attached the real estate market statistic charts to this document. When you click on the words I have highlighted, you will be taken to that report.
The Overall Real Estate statistics for May 2007 in comparison to May of 2008 shows that pending sales have increased in Naples. In the 12-month ending May 2008, the overall median prices have decreased 10.02%. The bulk of pending and closed sales still continue to be in the under $300,000.00 price range. The North Naples area is the leader in pending and closed sales. As of the end of May, there were 11,175 properties on the market.
The Single Family Home statistics for May 2007 in comparison to May of 2008, shows pending sales have increased from 181 pending sales in May 2007 to 334 pending sales in May 2008. In the 12-month ending May 2008, the number of closed sales has decreased. In that same period, median prices have decrease by 5.5%. The North Naples area is the leader in pending and closed sales in looking at the period of 12-month ending May 2008. The East Naples area has the highest amount of pending sales from May of 2007 to May of 2008. As of the end of May there were 5,609 single family homes on the market and that amount of inventory would last around 35 months.
The Condominium Statistics show a slight decrease in the number of pending sales in the 12-month period ending May 2008. In this same period, median prices have decreased 13.15%. The bulk of pending sales and closed sales are in the under $300,000.00 price range. The Naples Beach area and the North Naples area continue to be the leaders in pending and closed sales. As of the end of May, there were 5,505 condominiums on the market this amount of inventory would last around 32 months.
The bulk of available listings, 4,561 listings, are under $300,000.00. If you are in the market for a second home under $300,000.00, Naples is the place to buy. You’ll have a large selection and motivated sellers.
Summertime is a good time to purchase a home in Naples. There are less people in town and less competition for properties. I also want to add that summertime is a great time to vacation in Naples. The beaches are almost empty and you can enjoy a variety of wonderful restaurants without waiting!
There certainly has been a buzz in the real estate community since Ron Lieber with the New York Times wrote his article, Negotiating for a House? Start With ‘Dear Seller’ on May 31st. This article must have struck a chord with Realtors across the country.
Some Realtors are totally against a buyer with a low offer sending a letter to the seller. Other agents don't see an issue with it. I for one am all in favor of it! The broker who is working with the Buyer will need to obtain some proof from the broker that is working with the Seller that the Seller's agent presented the Buyer's letter to the Seller.
Here in Naples, as of today there are a total of 10,887 active listings on the market. Since January 1, 2008 we have had 393.4 sales. This means we are looking at 27.66 months of inventory.
Unless a seller and their Realtor are realistic about the current market, the Seller's home will not be sold.No matter how "special" the Seller's home is.....bottom line is that there are 10,887 listings on the market in Naples. Most Buyers are looking at numbers. Naples might have sun, sand and warm water.........
however, Buyers want to feel comfortable that they are making a good investment.
Mr. Lieber also has a suggested letter for a Seller to send back to a Buyer. If the Seller is truly "in tune" to the market, this is a great letter. Unfortunately there are some Sellers in Naples who are not in tune to the market. Their attitude is that they will keep their home on the market until they can obtain their price. These particular Sellers have the finances to do that. If you are that Seller, PLEASE take your home off the market until the market improves! I wish I had a crystal ball to see how many of those 10,887 Sellers in Naples had the finances to keep their place on the market until it improves.
I have said this before and I will say this again, I have refused to take more listings in the last 18 months than I have since interest rates were at 18% and there were NO adjustable rate mortgages! Can you tell this article struck a chord with me?
If you are a Seller in Naples, whose home is under $500,000.00, talk to your Realtor about trying to attract a FHA or VA buyer. FHA has changed a great deal since I first wrote contract back in 1978. If a Buyer is looking to purchase a residence, not a second home, FHA could be the way for a Seller to get their home sold.
ContactUs Think Lynn Wilber when buying or selling in SW Florida !!! Downing-Frye Realty, Inc. is a Florida licensed real estate brokerage