Are Distressed Homes Worth It?


I recently read a great Wall Street Article which talks about the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing distressed homes. Having obtained my CDPE (Certified Distressed Property Expert) designation I can attest to the fact that it is a complicated and lengthy process that demands patience and nerves of steel. For the right people and in the right circumstances the distressed property process can pay off big. This year I have worked on a good number of transactions where buyers did really well, and I mean really well! I’ve noticed the ones that were successful showed lots of patience and persistence.
As is often the case the bigger the risk, the greater the reward. Buying foreclosures can involve some element of risk, particularly in the home inspection process. Many lenders only sell “as is” and buyers may take some chances on the physical condition of the home. Typically these defects are pretty easy to identify if you have a good home inspector. Armed with that info home buyers can then decide if they are comfortable making the purchase.

Are distressed properties for you? Here are some good questions you might ask yourself before moving ahead.

1) What is my timeframe? In other words - when do I want to occupy? Short sales involve a very lengthy approval process that can last between 3-6 months before final approval is granted to close the transaction.
2) Am I prepared to lose a home and start over? Short sale lenders may not approve the sale and you might have to start all over. You could lose 3-6 months if this happens. See question #1 for impact.
3) Am I ready to add some sweat equity? Foreclosures often require some cosmetic, minor or sometimes even major repairs. You will need to decide what cost or work level you are prepared to contribute.

Have more questions? Email me and I’ll be happy to share some good info with you.

Thanks for helping me better serve our Real Estate Community.

A Realtor in Maryland...
The McGinn Group of RE/MAX 100 is a group of Realtors in Maryland and we can personally help you or someone you know in the Baltimore, Silver Spring, Rockville and Annapolis areas. In the areas we don't personally service, we can connect you with experienced colleagues who are part of our regional network.

Or Anywhere Else...
If you're not looking for a home in Maryland we can help you find an experienced Realtor anywhere across the country and in Canada. We belong to a network of realtors that we can recommend. Instead of blindly trying to find a realtor, get in touch with us and we'll do all the work finding the right Realtor for you. Not all real estate agents are experienced or full time. Our referral network has the best credentials to represent you at the highest level. The combination of personal service coupled with knowledge and experience will ensure a great transaction. We have done all the interviewing and vetting. We will provide you with some names and you can then select the one that you feel most comfortable with, knowing that they are already highly qualifed professionals.

Here's the best part...
The cost for medoing all that leg work for you is nothing!

Boyd's personal cell: 443-310-8824
Email: boyd@mcginnhomes.com

Selling Homes in a Challenging Market - A Price War and a Beauty Contest


Selling a home in this market involves a very important two-step approach.


First, sellers have to be priced aggressively. That does not mean they have to give away their home, but in this market homeowners simply cannot afford to be priced higher than their competition. Otherwise they will die on the vine waiting for buyers who will never come. One of my key responsibilities is completing market research in order to see what similar homes are asking and have sold for in the area. I thoroughly analyze the data and then sit down and review pricing strategies with sellers to determine the best possible price. A well-priced home that is a real looker presents a very compelling opportunity for buyers. That leads us to the second step.


Sellers need to have their homes ready to wow buyers – this is the beauty contest. Imagine buyers everywhere watching HGTV. When they are ready to buy they have a clear idea of what they want as far as decorating and home design is concerned. It seems most have Champagne tastes on a Ginger Ale budget. That can discourage sellers who see themselves spending tens of thousands of dollars getting their homes into selling shape only to disappoint buyers’ high expectations. It may come as a surprise that it is possible to present a home in a very exciting way without breaking the bank. My secret weapon in this step is Kristi of Energizing Spaces. I call her "the House Whisperer."


Together we work with sellers to develop a lean budget and then through a combination of using the seller’s own furniture and decorating accents along with items from Kristi’s decorator library, Kristi uses her great design ideas to help transform homes into HGTV classics. Sellers are amazed at the results both in shortened selling time and increased price. Using this two-step approach we have (even in this challenging market) managed to attract multiple offers for our sellers to consider. Now that’s a winning combination! So, who do you know who wants to win the price war by coming first in the beauty contest? Tell them to contact me for all our insider secrets.


Thanks for helping me better serve our Real Estate Community.

Homes: Sell at a Loss, Buy at a Discount

The Issue

A question I hear all the time these days is – "I would like to upgrade and buy a new home, taking advantage of low prices and low interest rates, but how can I do that while I still own my existing home? Can I sell my home at a loss and still buy a new one?"

The Solution

The answer is yes, you can and here’s how:
  1. It is possible to sell your home at a loss as long as you have enough equity to break even. I have even helped clients complete transactions where they brought money to settlement in order to complete the deal. They then purchased their dream home at a drastically reduced price. So your first step is to get an idea of what your home is currently worth. Call or email me, I can help.


  2. Obtain a loan pre-approval – find out what you can afford to buy now that interest rates are low. I am seeing 30 year fixed loans around and just below 5% these days. Talk to your lender or contact me and I will connect you with a lender who will review all loan options with you.


  3. Shop Like a Shark – Once you are ready we can find the right home for you. When it comes to negotiating I am like a Pitt Bull and there are lots of great deals I can bite into for you.

If you or someone you know is interested in taking advantage of the opportunities in our current real estate market, call or email. I can get some good information into your hands.

Thanks for helping me better serve our Real Estate Community.