November 07, 2007
Is It All In The Perception?
OK, Citigroup knocks out Wall Street with the underperform rating. Reportedly just prior, Citi sent this message to mortgage brokers, including those located hereabouts: Nassau and Suffolk have been declared a declining market by Citi. This means that they will now cut the maximum loan to value by five percent on all products and will demand appraisal comps that must be less than six months old. Generally, that will make it harder across the board. So far Citi is the only bank to announce, but the fear is that other banks will follow. So, if it's happening here on the East End, just how awful is it west of the bridge?
What does that tell us? Well, for me, it says mortgage companies have their doom and gloom forecasters as well.
Hang in there! When dealing with market responses, it is mostly all in the perception. We know, for example, if market weakening is the perception, then call your bottom fishermen and investors. The perception can change in a minute with all the stuff they will gobble up.
From the Corcoran Group: "Corcoran.com will now remember the visitor and present information targeted to the user in much the same way as on retail outlets like Amazon.com. Well-known for the innovative use of technology in its marketing, Corcoran is excited to deliver this degree of customization on its website." I wish I knew what that all meant, but I know you do.
Corcoran says the most fundamental power the site now offers is the ability to personalize the homepage where visitors may focus on a specific market and also ask for the newest listings, open houses, featured properties, or most-viewed properties. Yes, well, I am still of the loose leaf book school of real estate members referred to as dinosaurs. Listings fell out because we didn't use reinforcements.
Here's a nice deal made by John Healey, senior vice president of Town and Country Real Estate's Bridgehampton office: Just a simple cedar-lined ocean front beach house – yeah, right! – sold and closed at $18 million.
And now we have the eco-broker. This in from The Corcoran Group as well. I think it is all interesting on many levels so we are putting it all in. "Penelope Moore [the Corcoran Group, Shelter Island] is an example of the quality real estate professional the EcoBroker designation continues to attract," explains EcoBroker International's CEO, Dr. John Beldock. "Shelter Island needs more contributors like Penelope. The planet and our grandchildren need them too."
Ms. Moore said, "I live and work in real estate on Shelter Island, where my clients and customers seem to have a heightened awareness of energy efficiency and the environment, so there seems to be a natural fit. The EcoBroker designation allows me to better understand the issues and convey this understanding to my clients and customers." She added, "My EcoBroker designation helps me stay ahead of the curve."
A mention of sympathy to the family of Linda Stein, a New York City real estate broker who suffered a tragic and brutal death this past week. Ms. Stein was known to us and to many people in East Hampton and Southampton.
East End real estate: a strange and often a sad business as well.
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