As a first time buyer who had been looking at the market for 3 years now, I followed the yelp reviews to Patty and Julie. Interestingly, I noticed that most people that review their realtors give 5 stars (you’ll no doubt notice that all the realtors have 5 stars!!!) meaning if they posted for them, they gave them a rave review, if they didn’t like them, they generally did not post. My guess – the client realtor relationship is personal enough where they feel awkward or uneasy posting anything negative or only slightly positive. With this in mind I went with the realtor with the most 5 star reviews, Patty and Julie.
Both Patty and Julie were very patient with me and never made me feel pressured about a particular place. Though what I came to realize, was that if you like a place, you damn well better feel the pressure and put down a bid within 1-2 days. Even in the real estate doldrums of end of 2009, a good deal would go quick. It took a little while for me to realize this, with Patty nudging me towards this realization. She’s been in the business since the 70′s and so knows all the ins and outs. She also has very strong opinions about buying – a real philosophy about what her experience has told her will do well.
There were a couple instances when I really felt that Patty’s experience was of a particular tremendous help. Once when it was disclosed by the listing agent, that a condo I was very interested in was in litigation with its builder, she immediately took me aside and let me know that this would be an extraordinarily difficult lending situation. Banks simply would refuse to lend to me regardless of my credit. She immediately assessed the situation and let me know.
In the second instance, another condo that I LOVED looked like an absolute steal (undoubtedly a multiple bidder as it was underlisted). I was ready at this point (after seeing some 40-50 condo’s that Patty would list out for me weekly to see on weekends) to make a quick bid. I was extremely excited about the upcoming prospect and Patty went with me to take one last look at the place before placing my bid. With a very discerning eye, while the both of us were in the garage, she told me that something just didn’t look right. With a quick glance she realized that the foundation had issues. (It literally crumbled to the touch!) So after much heartache over whether it would still be worth putting a bid down, I decided against. I thank Patty again for not pushing me in this situation – I think she actually advised against simply putting in a lower bid, realizing that I would not want to spend the unknown tens of thousands to redo the foundation.
So in the end, the place that I did find I am very happy with. Patty guided me through the harrowing process of putting down such a large sum of money (remember first time buyer here) to buy my first home. In full disclosure, there were a couple instances where the two of us would run into loggerheads over what I wanted my bid price to be – I was looking for a steal of a deal whereas with her experience she let me know that it was in reality useless to put in such a low bid and that the steal should not be the overriding goal of the purchase.
So after getting accepted, she and Julie helped me to find a lender (providing 3 reliable contacts they had used), as well as a painter (Julie helped with picking colors for the place), and a carpet installer. Again, this is where their experience really helps.
So many thanks to Patty and Julie. For their patience, their experience, and their discerning eye. You would do well for yourself to give them a try.
So after all this what did I do? I gave my realtor 5 stars like everyone else. Whaddya think, maybe I should just go for 4? Be the first?
Nah, Patty would kick my ass =)