"Palos Verdes Resident since 1947"

July 2018 Newsletter

Dear Neighbor:

The real estate market goes thru cycles as you know, and this one at 10 years is getting a bit long in the tooth. I’ve given up trying to predict the future, but there are more houses on the market now than at any time in the past few years, though admittedly the past few years have seen the fewest houses for sale that I can remember in my 33 years in this business. Interest rates remain in the low to mid 4%’s. As I have been saying for the past year, if you are thinking of selling your (or any) house and have the flexibility to control the timing, my advice would be to get it on the market ASAP.

I am continually amazed and re-amazed at how many real estate websites there are out there. The business model appears to be to get sellers to prevail upon their agent to put your house on that particular website for a fee. I can tell you that very few people look at the vast majority of those websites, and the ones that do also look at the big ones – Realtor.com and Zillow – which makes those obscure websites moot, and not where you want your agent spending his promotional dollars. Of those two, Realtor.com and Zillow, Realtor.com is the more accurate and up to date, as it is run by Realtors and is fed directly from the Multiple Listing Service. Zillow is really no different than the obscure websites, except that it got into the business earlier and has been fairly successful at making money (which is the goal). The thing (other than size) that sets Zillow apart is their claim to be able to give you the market value of any given house on-line – what they call their “Zestimate”. This is their “hook” to get you onto their site. As you’ve heard me say before, even Zillow admits, when pressed, that their “Zestimates” are often wildly inaccurate. The reason, of course, is that there is more to determining the value of a house than counting the bedrooms, bathrooms, and square footage, which is basically what they do. To address this, they now let the owner go in and, essentially, change the Zestimate, which casts even more doubt on the accuracy. If you want the best estimate of the market value of your house short of putting it on the market, get ahold of a local Realtor who actually does business in your area. He or she will be familiar with the past sales and is best equipped to give you an accurate estimate. In Palos Verdes, that would be me.

And now, back by popular demand, I am giving an updated version of my free lecture “Real Estate Realities and Myths” on Wednesday August 1, 10:30 am at Hesse Park in RPV. In it I dispel many misconceptions people hold about various aspects of real estate, as well as countering some of the bad advice I see out there. Many people have said that they regret missing the last one a few years ago, so here’s your chance. I have included a flyer. RPV TV (Ch 33) will also have a recent talk I was part of on memories of PV in the ‘60’s and ‘70’s, starting July 1.

If you’re thinking of buying or selling real estate, you really should give me a call. As my past clients will tell you, I really do treat every transaction as if it were my own. 310 613-1076 or website: www.DanaGraham.com.


Dana H Graham
DRE #00877973

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