Today's real estate market requires innovative thinking. With inventory levels at an all time high in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area, (2X as many homes for sale now as there were 5 years ago) home owners, prospective home buyers and agents have to think outside the box to make transactions work.
Add to the mix the mortgage crisis, which effectively axed a large number of "would be buyers" out of the market, and you have a really interesting jigsaw puzzle when it comes to figuring out how to put a transaction together.
But, there is one area of the housing market which is seeing some increases in activity. This is occurring in the rental market for homes! Over the past several months, our office has received a number of calls inquiring about homes for rent. We've fielded calls from different parts of the country as well as the local Grand Rapids, Michigan area. With the glut of housing in the market, you'd think that it'd be easy to find homes to rent. Not at all! In-fact, the opposite has proved to be the case. It has often required an exhaustive search to find suitable homes...or a sprint to the finish line to get an offer in before 3 other offers have been tendered on the nicest properties!
I often wonder if home owners desperately trying to sell their properties are aware of this emerging dynamic in the housing market. When I see homes VACANT on the market for 236 days or 359 days, I wonder if these home owners know they could have been earning income while they waited for their homes to sell?
There are so many tools available to real estate agents in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area to assist home owners who need a little support while they wait to sell their home. These include the ability for homes to be listed "For Lease" in the Multiple Listing Service. This increases the exposure of the home for rent to prospects who are serious about buying a home...generally a higher quality lead pool than prospects who are only interested in leasing. In addition, a web savvy agent can significantly enhance a listing and chances for a Sale or Lease by uploading the data to a number of websites such as craigslist and rent.com and advertising on their website or blog.
When our office gets these calls, we begin to mine the MLS database looking for prospects who might be interested in making money while they wait for a home sale. In addition to assisting our prospective clients in locating suitable homes, we will also approach the Listing Agent and ask them to inquire about the possibility of renting with an option to purchase. We're surprised by how often this has not been discussed and how many sellers, who have vacated their homes, are open and grateful to engage in negotiation if the renter has a good rental and credit history.
This highlights one of the most Value Added Services that a good real estate agent can provide. While mortgage companies are tightening standards which would have enabled many prospective buyers to purchase homes a scant 6 months ago, real estate agents can facilitate solutions which enable both the home owner and home buyer to accomplish their goals in a reasonable manner.
When submitting offers for lease to purchase options, a prospective clients full credit report is checked and made available to the prospective landlord. In addition, we facilitate the completion of the lease documents and arrange for the closing to be held in a title escrow office which ensures proper accounting for earnest money deposits and any other agreements which are in place.
We have found that this Value Added Service is truly appreciated by home owners because it protects their interests through a careful review of the prospective tenant. It is also greatly appreciated by home buyers who can take the first steps towards home ownership and in some cases even begin to build home equity through their rental payments.
If you're interested in knowing more about how to obtain some relief while you try to sell your home or want to explore purchasing your home through a lease with option to purchase, please contact our office for a FREE, Value Added, No Obligation review of your specific situation. We specialize in creating WIN WIN scenarios.
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Lola Audu, is the Designated Broker & Owner of Audu Real Estate. Our company specializes in helping people buy and sell homes in the greater Grand Rapids, West Michigan area. You can contact us via e-mail @ firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 616-791-0511. Thanks for visiting our blog. Here are links to some of our most popular posts for you to enjoy!