What if you could stay in your home, enjoying independence and comforts of home longer? Do you have a family Realtor who will advise you to not sell unless necessary? Do you have a realtor who has resources for medical needs, for VA assistance benefits, to give you financial options and resources to speak to when you have questions regarding whether to sell or not?
Seniors Real Estate Specialists (SRES) do more than just sell homes. We are a resource for families under stress during times of medical need for, or loss of, a loved one. We are here to be a calming agent during very emotional times.
SRSEs know that selling the home is not always the first or even best option. Because of this, we have access to in-home care resources to let you or your loved ones stay in their home longer. We understand VA benefits for care, how to keep eligibility when you do need to sell, and the grief that comes with an actual move out. If you have a reverse mortgage, an SRES is your best choice when you decide to sell, because of the special rules surrounding these mortgages! We have your trusts reviewed by Title company attorneys to make sure you have corrected wording to sell and close. Did you know that some trusts are not written right, and the seller cannot close? What if you were counting on that sale for medical bills, but no-one had taken the time to review the trust? Did you know that not all Power of Attorneys allow real estate sales even when they say they do? An SRES can review those as well.
SRESs usually have teams to help you clean, pack, do light painting, some moving and run yard sales when you are ready to move. What could be better than having a team to help?
As your family SRES, we help you stay in your home longer, providing you with tools to make comfortable decisions. Always call on an SRES when you have real estate questions!
This article was submitted by Gina Gonzales SRES, she can be reached at 801-544-6829.
Being up front with you, for the first 10 years (of the now more than 25) of being "in business" as a home buyer, I really didn't know why a home seller would sell to my company. Although I looked at houses, made offers, and bought houses, I also had the question in the back of my mind... "why doesn't this person just list their house with an agent?"Then the real estate market, along with the rest of the economy "corrected" in 2008. In the several years after that, I had more seniors and their families calling me that wanted to sell a house. Because they typically had no or very little debt, they actually could sell their house if they wanted to.The way the market was back then, I would talk to numerous sellers who had listed their house with an agent (some more than once), and when the house didn't sell, would call me. We are in a much different market now, but the reasons that a seller would sell to a home buyer haven't changed all that much.Sellers would typically tell me that they had spoken to one or more real estate agents, were told they needed to do this, fix that, etc, to list their house, but they didn't want to do those things. They just wanted to sell their house.For years, one of the first things I ask a seller is, "why wouldn't you just list your house with an agent?" And, they typically always have or had a reason or reasons why they didn't.A common item that I heard and continue to hear from sellers is, "I'm sure I could get more for my house if I listed it, but I like and value the benefits your company offers, so I would prefer to just sell the house to you."These were the hundreds of sellers that "taught me" why they would choose to sell their house to me.Not needing to get "top dollar" or finding value in home buyer company non-financial benefits are something that seems impossible to grasp for most real estate agents.Are Home Buying Companies A Scam?In my view, some certainly are. As I've discussed in other articles and videos, beware of "wholesalers." Wholesalers are individuals or companies that state that they buy houses, advertise that they buy houses, but actually have no intent or financial ability to do so. Once they get a contract to purchase a house, they look for a "real" buyer to sell the contract to and close on the transaction.Because they have no financial risk, they can often overpromise what they can pay for the house. And, if they cannot find an end buyer, it leaves the seller in a very precarious position, or the wholesaler tries to reduce the purchase price.Another problem is when a home buyer doesn't actually look at your house before making an offer. When they make an offer without looking at a house, and the seller signs an agreement with them, and they do finally inspect the property, the price will likely be reduced based on some unknown item the buyer states that they weren't aware of.A real home buyer should be able to "close" and purchase a property as soon as a title company can check title and prepare closing paperwork. With Home Downsizing Solutions, in less than 7 days, or when the seller wants. We've even purchased a house within 24 hours of having an agreement signed!Characteristics Of A Good Home Buying CompanyI will provide several characteristics of what I think you should look for in a good home buying company, as these are items that I have done to ensure we are "one of the good guys."Have a Real Estate License. I think its beneficial for a member of a home buying company to have a real estate license. In an effort to serve sellers I work with as well as possible, I have a real estate license as well as an SRES (Senior Real Estate Specialist) designation.This allows me to provide information on the positives and negatives of listing a house as well as selling to a home buying company. Have The Financial Ability To Actually Buy Houses. As mentioned above, there are companies that state that they buy houses, but actually don't or can't. In my company's case, we actually buy houses. I encourage sellers to call the title/closing company that the home buyer says will close the transaction to confirm that they can actually buy the house, and not just act as a middleman to sell the contract to the end buyer.I also encourage sellers that I work with to call the title/closing company to ensure the purchase agreement contains the specific information that the seller is agreeing to or understands about the agreement, so that there are no misunderstandings before closing.No Pressure Sales Tactics. I would warn sellers to beware of companies that pressure a seller to sign immediately, or before they were comfortable with signing a purchase agreement.For a similar reason, I would also beware of agents that just want to disparage home buying companies and not acknowledge at least some of the benefits sellers find of value and choose to work with them.Transparency. I think a legitimate home buying company should share market information with a seller so they can be as educated as possible. In my case, we typically always show sellers comparable information for their area. I want them to see the gross selling price that houses have sold for and the condition of those houses. I also want to provide a realistic explanation of all the transaction costs to sell a house.Realize that when an agent says they can sell a house for $200,000, for example, that is a "gross" number and not the "net" amount that a seller will put in their pocket. The total amount of transaction costs and what a seller will "net" from the sale of a house will vary and is dependent upon a number of factors. In average markets, transaction costs will typically amount to 10% to 15% of the gross selling price.Credible and Trustworthy. Home Downsizing Solutions and their predecessor entity have had an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau for more than 25 years. They also have numerous testimonials and 5 start Google reviews from those 25+ years.As mentioned above, I have a real estate license with an SRES designation.I've written books, articles, and provide other information to educate homeowners about selling a house and downsizing or moving to senior living.Home Downsizing Solutions is also an Industry Partner with the NASMM (National Association of Senior Move Managers).Why Would Someone Want To Sell A House To A Home Buying Company?What I tell every homeowner I meet with is, that if the benefits that Home Downsizing Solutions offers are of enough value, we can be a great solution. Otherwise, one of the Total Solutions Agents we work with could be a better option to list and sell their house in a traditional manner.What Are Home Buying Company Benefits?No Need To Do Repairs or Updates to A House. If your house is in great condition, this item is most likely not very important. But to a person who has owned a house for 20, 30, or more years and has deferred maintenance or updates to be competitive with potential buyers, this may be a very valuable benefit.Contacting multiple contractors, getting bids, ensuring the work is done well, and living in a construction zone is not something that every homeowner wants to deal with. I've also had numerous sellers say, "If I do all that work and put a bunch of money into my house, I just as well stay."No Need To Get Rid Of The Stuff. With Home Downsizing Solutions, I always tell sellers to take what you want, sell what you want, and leave the rest... we'll take care of it. Unlike a traditional sale, where you want the house to show as well as possible, we don't care what the house looks like or the amount of stuff. We purchase hoarder houses, so whatever stuff a seller has is not an issue. This eliminates the need of getting a dumpster and the time and effort to go through stuff that a seller just doesn't care about.No Showings. A lot of sellers we've worked with just don't want to get and keep their house in a show ready condition. They don't want strangers in their house. They don't want to have to leave their house every time an agent wants to show the house. Maybe someone in the household has health issues that does not allow them to leave the house, or at least not without a great deal of effort and planning.No Whole House Inspections or Appraisal Surprises. Most traditional buyers will, understandably, always want a whole house inspection. And since most buyers need to get a loan from a traditional lender, they will need an appraisal. In almost all but the very "hot" markets, these items notoriously will turn up "deficiencies" that give the buyer opportunities to renegotiate the purchase price. In my company's case, we buy the house completely "as is." Unless a structural issue has been discussed with a seller during the initial walkthrough or signing a purchase agreement, the price doesn't change.Move When You Want. With Home Downsizing Solutions, we can close and buy a house, but let the seller remain in the house for up to 90 days or more.We have worked with many situations where the seller had a "catch 22" where they could either move into a new living arrangement right away but didn't want to leave a vacant house, or they wanted to sell but their new home or apartment wasn't ready for them to move into. By buying their house and letting them transition to their new home or apartment on their schedule, we eliminated those issues.By being able to buy a house before having to move, sellers are also able to eliminate the need of a bridge loan, if they needed funds from the sale of their house to move into a new living arrangement.We have also worked with situations where we purchased a house, and let the seller keep possession until they were able to have a local resource have an estate sale so they could monetize whatever "stuff" they could. Then we took care of any of the stuff that didn't sell, so the seller or estate sale company didn't have the time or expense to dispose of the items.Sell Your House And Stay As Long As You Want. If you love your home but don't want to worry about maintenance or repairs, we now provide an option for that. We can buy a house and allow the seller to rent the property as long as they want. We can even come in, make updates or repairs to "age in place," and create the home environment you want.Provide Concierge Services. A good home buying company, like Home Downsizing Solutions, will learn and understand the logistical needs of the seller. We have provided or introduced sellers to services such as senior placement agents, senior move managers, moving companies, or other resources that made the transition to a new home less stressful.What Do Home Buying Companies Actually Pay For HousesOne of the first questions I typically am asked is, "what do you pay for houses," or "what percentage of market value do you pay for houses?" It is common for real estate investing "gurus" to teach their new students to make offers of 70% to 75% of market value, minus repairs. However, for a good home buying company, this is not all that accurate, and is a very simplistic way to look at this. It would be comparable to say, "all real estate agents charge 7% to sell a house."With Home Downsizing Solutions, it depends... it depends on what time of year (holding costs are higher in the winter). It depends on the comparables we can find to determine values or potential values of an area or subdivision. It depends if there are just cosmetic and "stuff" issues to deal with or if there are structural or potential structural issues. Another way to state the above is, it depends on risk. If we perceive more risk to buying a house, our offer is going to be lower than if we perceive less risk.When a real estate agent lists a house, they have no financial risk. When a wholesaler makes an offer on a house, they have no financial risk. When my company buys a house, we have a lot of financial risk. If our calculations are wrong, or there are issues with a house that we were not able to determine before purchasing a house, we can't go back to a seller and renegotiate. We have all the risk.I know that when we speak to a seller, we have to be competitive with our offers, because they have multiple other options to choose from. If we were not competitive or provide value to potential sellers, we would not be in business after 25+ years.Home Downsizing Solutions home buyers provides multiple types of offers for sellers. One example of an offer, other than an all-cash offer, is if a seller doesn't need all of the funds from the sale of a house immediately, we can pay a much higher than retail price by making payments to the seller and turning the equity in the house into an income stream. Another way to look at this type of option is, the easier it is to buy a house, the more we can pay.Is A Cash Home Buying Company A Good Option To Sell A House?Everyone's situation is unique, and one size does not fit all. If you're considering selling your house, we can provide a free consultation to discuss the positives and negatives of the multiple options you have to get your house sold. We want to provide the information you need to make an informed decision of the best path forward for your real estate needs.For additional information, just go to www.HomeDownsiziing.com or call us at (855)-433-5854.
Healthcare Directives are valuable to people in all walks of life. As you read this article, consider obtaining one for yourself.A Healthcare Directive is a tool to designate a health care agent, or someone to make health care decisions on your behalf. It goes into effect upon your inability to make or communicate health care decisions. If you fail to appoint someone to fill this role, the court will appoint a guardian, which may create a costly legal process. If you have Healthcare Directive, you are able to choose the person who will determine what treatments and health care you will receive, including end-of-life or palliative care decisions. Your health care agent makes surrogate decisions, which means that they step in your shoes and make the decisions that you would make on your own if you were able to do so.Ideally, surrogate decisions should be based on your input and the specific preferences you communicated before any loss of decision-making capacity. It should be based on a prior understanding your health care preferences and what you would want under the circumstances. Healthcare Directives are intensely personal documents. When thinking about creating your own, consider:Your values and how they may be reflected in your health care;Your priorities;What life means to you personally; andHow important quality of life is to you.Are there certain conditions that are worse than death to you? Would you undergo a risky procedure if it had a low chance of survival? What if that same procedure had a high chance of survival but would permanently lower your quality of life? How long would you like to be on life support? Its never fun to think about these things, but by selecting a health care agent and informing them of your preferences, you are preparing for the worst-case scenario and ensuring that your wishes will be followed. Clearly, the consequences of having or not having a Healthcare Directive can be huge, which is why we so strongly advocate that everyone, regardless of age or health, have one in their estate plan. Please dont leave your relatives to fumble in the dark if the unthinkable happens and you are unable to make your own health care decisions. Again, while an Healthcare Directive will be helpful to you in the future, you might have an elderly relative who is in need of one right now. So, whether you need one for yourself or for a loved one, contact us today at (385)334-4030 or send an email to email@example.com to set up your free consultation to determine your specific needs.
Today, we're discussing how to choose between appointing a guardian or conservator. When deciding what kind of protection you need in an aide, there are many things to consider, including:1. What is your personal capacity to care for yourself?2. What areas of life do you need supervision over? Healthcare? Daily maintenance? Or, do you only need help safeguarding finances?3. How extensive is your estate?4. What is the difference between a guardian and a conservator?5. What combination of conservator/guardian would you most benefit from? Guardian only? Conservator only? Or both?Differences Between Guardians and Conservators A guardian is a person (or an institution) who is given authority to act on behalf of a protected person as though they were that person. A guardian can be given a full guardianship over all aspects of your life, or authorities limited to certain areas such as health care, education, or finances. A conservator is given authority only over your finances. Like a guardian, a conservator must be appointed by a court order. However, unlike a guardian, a conservator cannot make personal decisions for you. Conservators DutiesOnce appointed, a conservator becomes the trustee of your estate, which includes income (wages, social security, annuities), real property (a house, other buildings, and land), as well as stocks, bonds, retirement funds, etc. In fact, once appointed, and unless specifically limited, a conservator has all of the authority given by law to conservators, additional authority given to trustees, and the authority of the protected person, except the power to make or change a will. This amounts to a lot of power. Thus, when acting on your behalf, a conservator must act as a prudent investor would. A conservators duties and powers include:Managing your incomeContinuing or participating in the operation of your business or enterprises Making necessary estate paymentsOrganizing and protecting your assetsAppraising and safeguarding your propertyMaking prudent investmentsPaying or contesting any claims against the estateRegularly reporting to the courtThe list above is by no means exhaustive. Because a conservator does have so much power, their authorities and responsibilities are highly regulated. An in depth conversation about these powers is outside of the scope of this blog post, but must be understood and tailored to your specific needs in order to best serve them. Deciding What Is Best For YouIf your are able to care for yourself in every area other than their finances, you might only need a conservator. If you need help in other areas of their life, you probably need a guardian. If your capacity to care for yourself is diminished and you have an extensive estate, you might need both a guardian and a conservator. We understand that deciding how to best plan for your future might seem complicated and daunting. We can help you balance the choices that you have with your needs. Contact us today. firstname.lastname@example.org skvlegal.com/book-online