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Old 12-02-2010, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Australia
45 posts, read 137,539 times
Reputation: 35

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I've posted this as part of another thread, but I think it also warrants its own.

If realtors are wondering why they can't shift their properties, read on -

I have only become an investor in the last few months and use Realtor.com as my main point of reference, as I am currently living overseas. I am looking to purchase multiple properties which I can hold for many years and rent out, either to the general public or to Section 8's.
I SPECIFICALLY target homes that are currently tenanted.

Now, my very biggest problem is that in the majority of cases, there is NO INFORMATION on the listings. When I pick an area to look at, all I see is one picture of the front of the house. No information on whether the property is tenanted or otherwise occupied.

On the rare occasion I find one where the realtor has bothered to mention a tenant, often there is no indication of what the rent is!!!! How am I supposed to work out whether or not I want to pursue this property?

Perhaps 1% of the listings are good enough for me to look at. If there is information on tenancy + the amount, then guess what - I CALL OR EMAIL THE AGENT!!! The rest simply get skipped over.

So, if agents are wondering why they are not getting enquiries and why properties are sitting on the books month after month, perhaps it's time to put some more info in the listings. Same thing for the sellers - pursue your agent to put ALL the relevant info on it. If you've moved out but the place is tenanted, put it on the listing!

Some listings show photos of an empty house, but say that it is tenanted. Well, which one is it? Don't confuse the potential buyer.

If you put in more effort, more people like me will make enquiries and will buy more properties. Not only that, but if I do find a realtor who has bothered to put in the information someone like me is looking for, then not only will I probably buy that property, but will look at their inventory and see other properties that realtor has (which are tenanted) and very probably look at purchasing those as well!
I'll also most likely use that agency to manage my property, so it's a win-win situation.

So, in a nutshell - Realtors, your listings are below satisfactory - if you want the business, you have to lift your game to attract the buyers.
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Old 12-02-2010, 03:37 PM
 
Location: Salem, OR
15,205 posts, read 38,020,497 times
Reputation: 16373
While I appreciate that it is frustrating for you, you need to understand a few things

Tenants have rights. Many don't want the interior photographed. The owner has the right to photograph the building but not their stuff. Unless you are going to move their stuff out of there and then move it back in, most landlords just go without photos. Your goal should never be to make your tenants mad so that they don't cooperate with showings.

Second, tenants don't have the same care in selling a house that an owner does. I have shown up to take photos with "cooperative" tenants only to find the house a pit. I don't put pictures of messy homes on the MLS. I feel that is bad marketing, personally. You are welcome to think otherwise.

Third, the reason you see vacant photos is because of this very dynamic. They snag some interior photos between tenants for marketing.

Sometimes you get a cooperative tenant, but some aren't. If you are limiting yourself by R.com searches, you would be missing out on 95% of investment properties in my area. Personally, I don't get restricting yourself like that. Why not just find a buyer agent and let them do all that work for you?
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Old 12-02-2010, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Boise, ID
8,047 posts, read 27,246,624 times
Reputation: 9443
In my area, if there is no information about rent amounts, it is because the property isn't being marketed as an investment property. If there is a tenant occupying, it is probably a new thing, where the owner just wanted to have some income while trying to sell, or didn't want the house to be vacant, and the rent amount probably isn't indicative of current market rates.

In this area, at least, if the property is being marketed as a rental, things like annual expenses and current and expected rent amounts are required fields, as the listing goes in as "residential income" rather than just residential. You might see if your area has something similar, maybe you are searching in the wrong place.
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Old 12-02-2010, 04:09 PM
 
11,115 posts, read 18,217,611 times
Reputation: 10142
Quote:
Originally Posted by bevk23 View Post
I've posted this as part of another thread, but I think it also warrants its own.

If realtors are wondering why they can't shift their properties, read on -

I have only become an investor in the last few months and use Realtor.com as my main point of reference, as I am currently living overseas. I am looking to purchase multiple properties which I can hold for many years and rent out, either to the general public or to Section 8's.
I SPECIFICALLY target homes that are currently tenanted.

Now, my very biggest problem is that in the majority of cases, there is NO INFORMATION on the listings. When I pick an area to look at, all I see is one picture of the front of the house. No information on whether the property is tenanted or otherwise occupied.

On the rare occasion I find one where the realtor has bothered to mention a tenant, often there is no indication of what the rent is!!!! How am I supposed to work out whether or not I want to pursue this property?

Perhaps 1% of the listings are good enough for me to look at. If there is information on tenancy + the amount, then guess what - I CALL OR EMAIL THE AGENT!!! The rest simply get skipped over.

So, if agents are wondering why they are not getting enquiries and why properties are sitting on the books month after month, perhaps it's time to put some more info in the listings. Same thing for the sellers - pursue your agent to put ALL the relevant info on it. If you've moved out but the place is tenanted, put it on the listing!

Some listings show photos of an empty house, but say that it is tenanted. Well, which one is it? Don't confuse the potential buyer.

If you put in more effort, more people like me will make enquiries and will buy more properties. Not only that, but if I do find a realtor who has bothered to put in the information someone like me is looking for, then not only will I probably buy that property, but will look at their inventory and see other properties that realtor has (which are tenanted) and very probably look at purchasing those as well!
I'll also most likely use that agency to manage my property, so it's a win-win situation.

So, in a nutshell - Realtors, your listings are below satisfactory - if you want the business, you have to lift your game to attract the buyers.
It takes a while to get photos into MLS depending on the area, and some offices or MLS services require that the MLS service itself takes the photos, not the agent. The property could be listed while the building is vacant and photos are taken at that time. Of importance as well is that agents don't usually photograph the contents of tenanted property because the tenant(s) have their privacy. All in all, the agent will follow the instructions of the seller on how much information is given for various reasons. The agent definitely wants to give you as much info as possible, but has to adhere to guidellines and instructions of the seller or bank if that is the case. In the $50K price range, maybe the properties are run down or vacant and that is a consideration. They are not keeping secrets.
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Old 12-02-2010, 04:16 PM
 
Location: Mokelumne Hill, CA & El Pescadero, BCS MX.
6,958 posts, read 21,300,615 times
Reputation: 6444
You might also try loopnet.com
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Old 12-02-2010, 04:35 PM
 
Location: Martinsville, NJ
6,165 posts, read 12,383,823 times
Reputation: 3986
Quote:
Originally Posted by bevk23 View Post
I've posted this as part of another thread, but I think it also warrants its own.

If realtors are wondering why they can't shift their properties, read on -

I have only become an investor in the last few months and use Realtor.com as my main point of reference, as I am currently living overseas. I am looking to purchase multiple properties which I can hold for many years and rent out, either to the general public or to Section 8's.
I SPECIFICALLY target homes that are currently tenanted.

Now, my very biggest problem is that in the majority of cases, there is NO INFORMATION on the listings. When I pick an area to look at, all I see is one picture of the front of the house. No information on whether the property is tenanted or otherwise occupied.

On the rare occasion I find one where the realtor has bothered to mention a tenant, often there is no indication of what the rent is!!!! How am I supposed to work out whether or not I want to pursue this property?

Perhaps 1% of the listings are good enough for me to look at. If there is information on tenancy + the amount, then guess what - I CALL OR EMAIL THE AGENT!!! The rest simply get skipped over.

So, if agents are wondering why they are not getting enquiries and why properties are sitting on the books month after month, perhaps it's time to put some more info in the listings. Same thing for the sellers - pursue your agent to put ALL the relevant info on it. If you've moved out but the place is tenanted, put it on the listing!

Some listings show photos of an empty house, but say that it is tenanted. Well, which one is it? Don't confuse the potential buyer.

If you put in more effort, more people like me will make enquiries and will buy more properties. Not only that, but if I do find a realtor who has bothered to put in the information someone like me is looking for, then not only will I probably buy that property, but will look at their inventory and see other properties that realtor has (which are tenanted) and very probably look at purchasing those as well!
I'll also most likely use that agency to manage my property, so it's a win-win situation.

So, in a nutshell - Realtors, your listings are below satisfactory - if you want the business, you have to lift your game to attract the buyers.
I understand that it might be frustrating for you to look at listings and not find the info you want. Why bother? Further, to eliminate on or more properties based simply on lack of info and the poor work of a real estate agent seems self destructive & silly. You may be missing the best possible opportunities. Contact a local real estate agent, have a discussion about your investment property objectives, and let them find suitable properties. Let them worry about going to see the ones with limited info online, or about contacting the listing agent to get that info for you. Save yourself a lot of hassle, and be better informed.
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Old 12-02-2010, 05:02 PM
 
Location: Australia
45 posts, read 137,539 times
Reputation: 35
Thanks for the interesting responses so far.

Bill - I understand what you're saying, but the truth is that when looking to buy property, I am considering many cities across the States, from Las Vegas to Miami.

Many cities have hundreds, if not thousands of local realtors and to be honest, my time is too precious to be phoning each one up from the other side of the world (I am in Australia) and finding out what they have and what they can do for me. That's why I rely on centralised sites such as Realtor and others to give me the info I need at a glance. (I use Realtor a lot, but it is not my only source of info)

Agents that I have contacted are the ones who are putting the information out there. If I come across a listing that includes the info I am looking for, then I will often jump to that agents website and may even call them or email them for further info. These are the guys who will get my business at the end of the day.

I suppose that it does not matter where on the internet a house is being listed - lack of information on a listing anywhere will deter a lot of buyers like me who will simply skip over them. Even putting something like "Vacant Possession" in the text is better than having people guess.
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Old 12-02-2010, 05:23 PM
 
Location: Salem, OR
15,205 posts, read 38,020,497 times
Reputation: 16373
I'd suggest that you find one agent you like and ask them to help you locate agents in other states. Some MLS's like in Washington, cover the entire state. One agent can look everything up for you and then can refer you to a local agent for assistance. They will do the legwork for you because they would get a referral fee in exchange.

Many buyers want the real estate information system to be custom tailored to their needs, but that is impossible. Why I know that you are looking for tenants, I actually think putting that in public remarks hurts an investor's chances of selling a property. Buyers tend to assume that all tenants trash homes and will avoid those homes if that is written in the remarks. They worry that the tenants won't leave the house and closing will be delayed...on and on... I actually contend that most of the time, it is in the seller's best interest to not publicly state that the house has tenants in order to facilitate a sale of that property. That way they don't lose the primary residence crowd as buyers.
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Old 12-02-2010, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Australia
45 posts, read 137,539 times
Reputation: 35
Silverfall, thanks for the comments.

Can I ask - if a tenant does not want the home photographed for privacy reasons or because the home is a pit, what happens when a buyer wants a walkthrough of the home in order to assess its suitability?
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Old 12-02-2010, 06:54 PM
 
Location: Tempe, Arizona
4,511 posts, read 13,043,706 times
Reputation: 2200
Quote:
Originally Posted by bevk23 View Post
Silverfall, thanks for the comments.

Can I ask - if a tenant does not want the home photographed for privacy reasons or because the home is a pit, what happens when a buyer wants a walkthrough of the home in order to assess its suitability?
Then the buyer can schedule a time with the listing agent to view the home. However, they will have to give sufficient notice to the tenant as required by local tenant/landlord laws.
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