Tag Archives: offer

Ever feel like you are on a treadmill?

One thing I like about the work of a real estate agent is that every day is different.  No 2 days are the same….. Yet sometimes I feel as if I am on a treadmill… Slowly winding my way this thing we call life…. I only rarely make things happen or create big changes…..  I wake up and drink my coffee… I check the web… I might blog… Read the paper.. I go do my business… I avoid the cleaning (my bad)… I feed the dogs and cats… I used to get the kids ready to go to school…

In fact there used to be a time that I had a very active social life between 7 and 8:30 AM… My dad would stop by and have breakfast before work.  My friend would drop off her kid at the junior high and drop by… We would all have a nice visit as I my kids got ready for school.. I would put my kids and the next door neighbor’s kids in the car and deliver everyone to school by 8:30 AM… This was before I put the kids in private school and before my dad retired and before I became a real estate agent… It was a bit invigorating…. But it was still a treadmill…  Mom got sick I had care of a elderly aunt (in assisted living) but the days seemed the same….

I tried to get off the treadmill and go to work as a scientist… My boss lost his grant and I lost my job….  Then I became a real estate agent…. Now maybe I am reading an inspection report with my coffee… I will show a home in 20 minutes… If I am lucky I will write an offer…  I go through life wanting to make a difference but mostly I do the things I need to do to complete the day, the week, the month, the year… Yes and perhaps the year… I fail sometimes to see what is most important to me… My husband, my sons, my family and friends…. I am so busy on my treadmill that I fail to stop for the things that most matter… It doesn’t seem very long that my first baby was put in my arms yet I have ridden the treadmill and am now 50… I shake my head and wonder where the time has gone… I have enjoyed most of my life but sometimes I feel that I am on a treadmill…. My goals now are to help my kids…. Go to China (where my eldest is)… And put money away for retirement…. Will I look up at 70 and say I don’t feel old?  Where did the life go?  We are retired…. We volunteer  or travel… Maybe my husband is still playing in second life… Maybe I help with the grand kids, not yet born… Maybe I have pets….. But will I be on the treadmill….

Yesterday I was at lunch with the ladies of my synagogue and I said grandchildren are my due for raising my kids…. Are they?  I hope so…  I have done some pretty exciting things… I have run for Congress… Twice I have lived on the economy in foreign countries…. I love my husband, my children and my family…. So why do I sometimes feel as if I am on a treadmill… Walking nowhere except to the final destination…. It is the journey and building a better world that is important… My journey isn’t bad and I stand for causes I believe in… I help where I can… I do my job… So how do I get off the treadmill mood and enjoy the beautiful cool sunshine….  Do you ever feel that you are on a treadmill?

Contingent short sale? What is it?

So we know a short sale is when the seller owes more then the house is worth….. So the third party the lender needs to approve or even renegotiate the deal….. We have all seen this…..


So the short sale listing gets an offer the buyers and the sellers come to terms….. Now the package is sent to the bank… If the buyer and seller are lucky the bank has given the listing agent an idea where the house should be listed…. More likely they told the agent they wouldn’t talk until the agent had an offer….

At this stage the sale is marked as a contingent short sale… The sale is contingent on the bank agreeing to the terms or renegotiating the contract.  The bank can take as long as they want….They never seem to care what the timeframe of the offer is…. The classic question of the buyer is when can we move in?  The answer is 30 days to never.   All rules of ethics seems to go out in a short sale situation.  Unless the listing agent sets rules position doesn’t matter very much…If more offers are sent to the bank they just reject the lower offer no matter when it comes in…   The sale is still active in the multiple listing service (CSS) but venders like Zillow don’t seem to have this information… Also some buyers are insistant on seeing them… Once in while you get the news that they welcome backup offers because the buyer is about to walk…Or the offer is to low….

I ask my buyer why would you want to look at a contingent short sale?  It’s mostly like a pending without bank approval… During the time the a property is a contingent short sale everyone waits…. No money is spent and all timelines are suspended while bank approval is sought..  The bank will either say yes, no or renegotiate…. Often the bank will let the home go to foreclosure (especially if the offer is low)…

Many times a buyer walks (they actually do want to buy something) and the agents lists the home as active and seeks another buyer to slip into the spot.  These are better for the new buyer because the process is started…

If you need to settle a deal quickly it important to stay away from most short sales and contingent short sales…Once in a while the buyer walked as the bank came back… Those are the safe short sales to buy in a timely manner…Your real estate agent knows the lingo to indicate that a short sale can settle quickly.

After the bank comes to terms with the buyer and the seller the listing status changes from contingent short sale to pending…. I hope this helps…

  Debbie Holmes

Gold Key Real Estate     Company logo

(208)761-2551 Email: d5holmes@msn.com

To search Boise Homes visit my website

Should I take my home off the market for Christmas?

Wondering about the wisdom of taking a home off for the market for Christmas

As Christmas approaches there are less homes on the market…. Who wants people going into your home while you are getting ready for the holiday?  Your family is coming…. You have presents to wrap…. Parties to go to and make….  The holiday is a lot of work!  The holiday is also a lot of fun!  Who wants to show or buy houses now?


I have sold homes….One on Christmas eve…. I have a listing at 105 E. Bridgewater Ct., Boise, ID 83706 …. Since I have exactly one listing left and I cannot put up directional signs in the neighborhood, I have been opening it up for 3 weeks running….In preparation of the open house I prepared a list of homes in the area for sale… On Dec. 4 there were 12 homes in the subdivision for sale… On Dec. 11 there were 10 homes for sale in the subdivision… On Dec. 18 there were 7 homes for sale in the subdivision…. Some went pending other listings were cancelled…. So what does it mean to the seller?

There are less houses to choose from!  You might just get the best Christmas present of all… A good offer on your home…. I just had an offer on Saturday on Bridgewater!  We are now $1500 apart… I think we will settle…. If I had pulled the listing because we were getting close to Christmas I wouldn’t have the offer… My seller would still be wondering…  

 Remember the movie “ Miracle on 34th ST”?  What is a better present to give your family than a home to celebrate the holidays in… Some people are still looking…. If you can bear the intrusion on your holiday keep your home on the market!





  Debbie Holmes

Gold Key Real Estate    

(208)761-2551 Email: d5holmes@msn.com

To search Boise Homes visit my website

Working together to get the job done!

Working together to get the job done!

105 E. Bridgewater Ct., Boise, ID 83706  is a beautiful home where I helped the investor on the renovations….

I listed it in September ….  Nothing happened….. After Thanksgiving we reduce the price….  Nothing happened….. I was becoming nervous…. When my other listing at 722 Pearl St., Boise, Idaho 83705 went pending I took more action…. My buyer was settled and I started spending my Sunday afternoons at the home….  I had good traffic….  But still no offers…..  Worse yet my fellow agents didn’t seem to notice my price change…. Gulp….$10,000 off and no change in showings….

My seller and I had a long discussion….I told him even though the comps are there we need to lower the price…  I didn’t want to lower the price a lot before the New Year….So this is what we did….

On Friday we reduced the price by $1000… At the same time I had him sign for a $25 price reduction every 3 days until the New Year…In our MLS 3 days is critical because that seems to be how long the change appears on the status change button….  I had 4 showings in 24 hours…. I also had a low ball offer… Something that we can work with but not accept…..I am delighted for the offer….On Sunday morning I find out my seller didn’t receive my email….Something went wrong with his email and he felt it was too late to call….We already had a 7 AM  telephone appointment.  I emailed it to another address….This was a busy but good day for my seller….He had another early appointment and his Mom’s 94 th birthday party….  This sounded like it could get tight for our 2 PM deadline to respond to the offer… I emailed the other agent to give him a heads up…  He emailed back, thanks…

By 10 AM I decided to go to my office… I hadn’t heard from the client after the early morning phone call… He is real estate savvy and knows that time is of the essence…. The party starts at 11 AM my time and I am sitting in the open house from 1-4 PM…. We spend time preparing the counter offer… Idaho does their counter offers differently then New York so I had to teach a bit…. We don’t rush but it is already past time for Mom’s birthday party…. He does not email scan so I am sitting by the fax machine at the office… After 10 minutes it spits out 3 of 8 pages…. At least the counter offer is on top!…. He tries again… No dice…I don’t know whether it is his machine or mine…. I really have stopped faxing…. I love email scan….  He is in the car 1 hour late to the party….

I email the other other agent what I have and explain about the fax problems….I tell him that my client has signed all the documents…. I have the counter but not the completely signed contract because of the fax problems…I let him know that I gave the client his fax number (in case it was my machine)…  He emails back that he needs a phone call from my client so that he can turn on his fax…He has also forwarded the contract to his buyer…. I call my seller and leave a message…  I get a call that I can’t take from my seller….At 4 PM I get a copy of the signed contract from the other agent….  Not how we usually do things…. 2 hours past the deadline…. But done….

Now my seller and I wait on the buyer… We hope they take the counter offer…. Of course they may counter….or worse let the contract go… We are $7000 apart… We will see…  Another day in the life of Debbie Holmes, Real Estate agent Extraordinaire!

(208)761-2551 Email: d5holmes@msn.com

To search Boise Homes visit my website

Offer… Counter offer…Counter offer….

Offer…Counter offer….Counter offer…. (edit/delete)

Well I have a beautiful listing that has been sitting…. We had made some price reductions. We were going to make the next one and I let the interested parties know…. Well I had a lowball offer with closing costs…..At the time of the offer we were about 9 K apart (thinking of new price)….I counter so that we are 3 K off the new price with closing costs…She counters so that we are 6 K off….

This is a broker bidding for her daughter….We will see if we settle this….I sure hope so…The house is great and her kids love it! My seller is sick of owning it but she needs the money to buy the next home….We will see what happens….

Make sue you are mentally there when writing an offer….

OKAY I can write this because I know I am a good agent. I write good clean offers without a lot of questionable jargon. On Wed. I wrote a doozy…..The other agent must think I am an idiot….Not sure what my clients think…I have egg on my face….

First of all Wed. was a busy day for me….Two of my kids were coming home and I was not on task. My clients just had their 8th offer rejected. A gorgeous home that they should have re-bid on. It is gone now….

When they heard about the rejection, instead of rebidding without the closing costs or upping the bid to include the closing costs, they wanted to see a home they had seen before. I took them to the home and it just wasn’t as nice as the other homes but it was a little cheaper. They decide to bid…. They tell me where they want to place the bid and I am really annoyed. I am sure that I am about to write the 9th rejected offer….Not only that I am a diabetic and my sugar is doing a dive… I don’t feel to well…. It shouldn’t be to hard to write the offer, submit and start getting my kids from college.

By the time I get to my offer I am driving dangerously. I had to run home first because my computer was at home…My buyers are waiting for me at the office. I am going to have to write the offer in front of them while I am not feeling well. I run into the break-room and grab some of the left over Cinnamon buns (something I never eat) to help raise my sugar. I am not even manipulating my computer correctly….

I eat the bun and hope for the best….I try to be careful….I even make sure they look at it closely because I am not feeling well. If you have ever experienced a sugar low you know what I mean….Its like someone took 50 IQ points off me….We write the offer….I submit it…I let the other agent know….Great! Now I get food and drive to Caldwell to get my youngest.

Lets see I forgot to check no for all cash offer, I included seller paid costs of a survey, well test, septic test, water potability test, etc….I meant to check NA for not applicable…. This means right away they have to counter….I offer to rewrite it but he says its almost Thanksgiving he will handle it with a counter….I did confess I was not feeling well when I wrote the offer…There were a few other mistakes but nothing as serious… It might make the other agent think I am not the expert I am… It puts me in a poor bargaining position…

The only thing I could have done different was to suggest that we get lunch before we wrote the offer….I could also have begged one of my colleagues to look at the offer since I felt so off when I wrote it….I thought I looked it over…I just saw what I thought I wrote….

By the way I am expecting a complete contract before noon today….figures crossed….

Signing off a really great agent who was sick and distracted….

Kids are home….price reductions complete…offer in….turkey defrosting….watching star wars….

Today the offer was rejected.  The clients were onto the next one with a low offer.  I think I must be frustrated with them….When they told me the price I smiled and said “lets write the 9th offer that will be rejected”.  Maybe I am wrong but I don’t think it will be accepted.  People don’t usually go $10K lower in the first few days of a listing…. We gave them until Saturday.  They still don’t understand that rushing the last clients during Thanksgiving weekend wasn’t wise.  I told them that they probably could get their price in a week or so….Just not today… The whole time I wrote the offer I talked about the real virtues of the other home and counseled waiting a week and resubmitting the offer.   Well by 1:30 PM the  frustration was over…The offer was signed and delivered. 

I also made small price reductions on my listings to put them forward for anyone searching the mls after the turkey.

 College of Idaho

Next to get my kid from the College of Idaho…I got stuck in traffic (very unusual in Boise) and went to Caldwell.  While in Caldwell I had a telephone call thanking me for my article (letter to the editor) that was published.  Yeah!  That was convenient.  I could pick up a print copy while in Canyon County.  Then I went to check on a rental of mine.  The windows were so clean that they shined!  I went up and peeked in and the floors looked gorgeous (I traded a deposit for floor refinishing) and the walls had a beautiful neutral color on them.  I was so happy that I found my business partner (who works part time in the local hardware store) to tell him.  I showed him my letter to the editor.  Turned out his co-workers had read it earlier and liked it.  I was feeling pretty good as I took my son (who seemed to be ill) home. 

Grandpa Allan and Jon

We got home and cleaned a little then went to get my middle son from the airport.  It is so good to see him for Thanksgiving!  We went home and I made a cheese fondue and we ate one of the two pumkin pies….It seems that I forgot to put the sugar in the pie…oops….Well we sprinkled sugar on the pie like it was cereal.   My Dad and Step-mom showed up after dinner and we had a nice conversation.  Then I skyped (video called) my oldest son and girlfriend in China.  It was almost like they were here.  The family felt complete.  Even the dog contributed.  

Now my turkey is having its bath in water to defrost… And the guys are watching Star Wars and I am blogging.

The day started out tense but it is turned nice as I was able to turn inward towards my family.

Tomorrow I hope to have a real estate free day….I really like Thanksgiving…




  Debbie Holmes

Gold Key Real Estate     Company logo

(208)761-2551 Email: d5holmes@msn.com

To search Boise Homes visit my website

I know it’s a short sale but…….

I just took my buyers into a home….I called the listing agent and she informed me that the seller was taking the dishwasher…..I know they do sometimes but when you see it there you expect it to be there…..I suggested that she had better put that it excludes the dishwasher since most people would expect it stay since it was there….I talked about agents who had to supply appliances…  I suggested that she excludes the dishawasher…Oh well we want to see the home…..I should have been suspicious when the pictures were from the last sale 1.5 years ago….


We walked in and the house reeked of cat urine….There was also some cat poop right in the living room….The house was absoultely filthy….The cat itself was adorable but obviously not well behaved…They had a sex book out on a dresser or table… Basically the home was in not at all showable condition.  Now the seller is moving by Dec. 1….It makes me wonder why the listing agent didn’t wait until they left and did the rugs….The price was OK but not great….The house itself might be OK but my buyers were grossed out…


Remember first impression mean a lot in our business.  This house was as bad as any rental I have seen when the tenant is being obnoxious.  I don’t gross out easily but I was disturbed…Guess which house we didn’t write an offer on?