Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Your Questions Answered every weekend in July!

Come to Press Coffee & Tea (315 S. Broadway, Rochester) to get your real estate questions answered every Saturday and Sunday morning from 8 AM until Noon 
throughout the month of July. 

There are a variety of blog posts, newsletters and mass-emails sent each day designed to push general information to the public regarding the real estate industry and market. But this is YOUR chance to ask YOUR question! You may be as specific as you wish. This is all about you.  And there is no obligation whatsoever.

But there's more!  Ask your question and you will be entered to win a $25.00 Press Coffee Gift Certificate!  Every Sunday, one winner will be chosen from those asking questions during that weekend.  You can come (we hope you do) every weekend!  You'll have 4 chances!  Bring your friends too.  It's a great coffee shop, the people are friendly and it's very relaxed.  Have your morning Java and learn a little about your real estate market at the same time.

Sound good?  See you there!

Sunday, May 4, 2014


While visiting The Press Coffee & Lounge in Rochester yesterday, I began to write an answer to Laura's question "How do buyers stand a better chance in counter-offering?"

Those few words followed by a question mark are the very essence of what it means to negotiate.the purchase of a home. And, there are so many variables.

In order to simplify things a little, I've developed a small matrix to help explain my answer.  Click the link under the picture below for a readable diagram.

Let's start as the transaction begins.

Once a buyer has found a home, a purchase offer is drafted.  This agreement includes all of the terms and conditions pertaining to the particular transaction and each is important.  Who pays for what, the offered price, the closing date, the included personal property, inspections, contingencies, the type of financing, seller contributions and the status of the buyer's mortgage application are the most common.

Click link to enlarge
Once signatures are attached, the offer is presented to the seller.  The seller then has three options; 1) Reject the offer entirely, 2) Accept the offer as written or, 3) Counter some of the terms and conditions of the offer.  As number three is the most common, this is where Laura's question becomes the issue.

Hopefully, this buyer is working with a "Buyer Broker" Agent. - an agent representing the best interests of the buyer, not the seller.  This will help a great deal with the strategy of the offer presented as well as the counter-offer scenario. The buyer should be well informed as to statistical market conditions, subject property history and recently closed comparable properties,   But, make no mistake.  All decisions as to strategy are the responsibility of the buyer. Negotiating a possible counter-offer begins and ends with the buyer's initial offer.

The goal or main point of the question is assumed to be "How do buyers get the best price?" But there can be much more involved here. What is the buyer's motivation when they make an offer?  Is this their absolute dream house?  Are they under any time or location pressures such as school enrollments, job transfers or special medical needs?  Are they making an offer to try and "steal" a property?  Or maybe they're just testing the market as the house works, but there are many to choose from. When you combine this motivation with the market conditions, you see the offer strategy begin to take shape.

Anticipating what a seller counter-offer might be is also part of this strategy.  "If I do this, how will the seller most likely respond?" is a question which must be considered while drafting the original offer.

As you've probably determined, the answer to Lauren's question is not a one-size-fits-all. A purchase offer becomes an executed purchase agreement when the needs of both buyers and sellers are negotiated to the point where each party feels that the transaction makes sense to them.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

At The Press Coffee & Tea Lounge

Good morning from The Press Coffee & Tea Lounge in Rochester, MN
Bring your Real Estate Questions between 8 am and 10 am - you could win a $25.00 Gift Certificate for this great coffee shop! And, let me tell you, I'm drinking an Espresso French Press and it's delicious!

Laura has asked the first question today. (8:30 AM)

Q. What's the warranty seller should / would offer for selling the house?
A.  Home Owner Warranties are a popular option for sellers.  Warranties are purchased as "insurance" from a third party vendor. Of course, they come in a variety of forms but usually a seller will contract for the an appliance and mechanical warranty and may optionally cover air conditioning and even installed sprinkler systems.  Sometimes, the seller is covered during the listing period free of charge.  At closing, the seller pays for a one year premium which will cover the buyer after the transfer of title.  Just know, however, that like all insurance policies, there will be a deductible paid by the buyer when a claim is filed.  And, the warranty usually states that the vendor (not the buyer) has the right to repair or replace under any claim.  All in all, warranties can be a great selling tool and give buyers the peace of mind to proceed with a purchase.  Just read the fine print.  Thanks Laura!

Laura has been very helpful today, and so far, is the only person asking questions!

Q.  How do buyers stand a better chance in counter-offering?
A.  I started working on this but time is running short.  I'm finding that I may have to build a matrix of sorts in order to answer this completely.  Look for this soon!

And, guess what?  Although a number of invitations were sent out, invitation response wasn't exactly spectacular. But, that's OK.  It was the first time and I just might have to do this again!

As promised, we have a winner for the Gift Certificate this morning.  $25.00 goes to Laura!  It was great meeting you and having the opportunity to "Talk Real Estate" with you!  Congratulations!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Who is Meridian Concepts?

Meridian Concepts is a Real Estate firm serving the communities of Rochester, Minnesota and the Twin Cities.  As a member the National Association of Realtors and of local organizations (SPAAR - St. Paul Area of Realtors) and SEMAR -South East Minnesota Association of Realtors),  full access to the Multiple Listing Services in these communities is available.

Meridian Concepts, Inc. has been licensed since 1998 but the individual license dates back to 1986.  Yes, I've been around a while.

The company name is only a name.  The company conscience is personal - and it starts with me.  So, the real question is not "Who is Meridian Concepts", but rather "Who is Mike?".

Here is where I become a bit uncomfortable.  You might expect that I "blow my own horn".  But let's not look at it quite so bluntly.  You just want to know a little more about me - that's all.  So, since I've had to write about this topic before, let me just point you to a couple of links that will help you figure things out.
Responsible Referrals Blog - The Who and the Why
Segway Off the Streets - Fundraiser for StandUp For Kids

Of course, checking links takes time and effort.  If you prefer, feel free to call!  I welcome all of your questions and concerns.

This is just the first posting and it's a good place to start.  This weekend (May 4-6) we hope to provide a number of answers to inquiring minds regarding real estate.  You're invited to bring your questions on Saturday morning, May 3, 2014 to The Press Coffee & Tea Lounge (315 S. Broadway, Rochester).  Ask your question, fill out a little survey card and be entered to win a $25.00 gift card to this great coffee shop!

Mike Taylor
Email: (or just click here)
Cell: 651-303-1932
Rochester: 507-216-7816
Toll Free: 800-921-4298