For this townhome I sold in Santa Clara for $930,000, I was the agent for the seller, who actually bought this townhome with me as well. Fun story, I sold his wife a condo some years back, she referred me to this client, they ended up getting married, and now they were selling this townhome to buy a SFR together.
When the market is changing and a bit uncertain, there are certain things that come up and become more important to buyers, than when the market is hot and buyers are competing and seem to buy anything they can get their hands on. In this case, we thought this home would sell for at least $1m. It’s a great home, great location, all signs point to a hot home that will sell fast with competition. In fact, it was registering as a hot home on the consumer sites.
But, what became a bigger issue than ever possibly anticipated here were the HOA dues. The HOA dues for this community are $546/month and it was literally a deal breaker for a number of buyers. I realize it’s on the higher side, but I’ve sold numerous communities with high dues before with no issue whatsoever, but in this market, paying that price point plus those HOA dues just kind of tipped people over the edge and it was a bit shocking.
The bummer for the seller was that there is actually going to be a meeting to lower the dues and take out a ‘perk’ that no one seems to want anyway. But, of course, we can’t guarantee that will happen and the dues will decrease. And, the sellers found a home they really wanted to buy, so they wanted to move forward and not wait around for that meeting to see if the dues would indeed go down, so it was a Catch 22. There just seemed to be this balance with buyers where they tapped out at this price range in order to compensate for the high dues, and that sale price is where it seemed to tap out.
Since the sellers found a home they loved and really wanted to buy, they didn’t want to wait for the HOA dues to go down, or the market to go up, and decided to just move forward so they could buy the home they really loved.
The transaction itself went fairly smooth, there was some frustration, the buyers were somewhat difficult to deal with, but we muddled through it.
At the end of the day, it is often difficult to buy and sell at the same time. If a client has to sell a home in order to buy a home, this type of thing can easily come up, where the clients are in a stressful situation on either the buying side or the selling side…or both sides frankly. I realize in many cases it feels like the only way to make the transition, but anytime one has to sell in order to buy, there can be a lot of pressure and the negotiations can be tough and sometimes end up not in their favor.
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