Has SpotProperty got a deal for you!
Finding a great real estate deal shouldn't be hard.
from the SpotProperty website
No, it shouldn't, in this best of all possible worlds, and maybe that's why the accolades for SpotProperty pour in: "fun and easy"..."patent-pending DealSpotter algorithm"..."analyzes records from over a million for-sale homes and nearly five million sold homes in order to locate the best deals"..."user receives a fun and simple daily deal email"..."new, unique service for homebuyers"..."the real estate deal finder"..."uses the best methods that an experienced real estate agent has been using for years to automatically discover great deal (sic) for homebuyers".
Sounds like the greatest thing since putting listings on the Internet, and more wholesome fun than a full day at Disneyland. And, certainly, homebuyers caught up in, and hung up by, today's real estate boom on steroids could use a little this-changes-everything! wholesome fun and certainly an unfair advantage over the competition. But since the accolades I quote come from SpotProperty's launch press release, their source may not be completely objective, so let's put ol' Spot to the test. Find me those great deals, boy! Point, boy, point! Good Spot!
Spot's first "deal" in our neck of the woods is 2221 Jefferson Ave., Redwood City, a humble abode, judging by the photo, and located on a very busy four-lane street, judging by the address. (Sounds like a great CarSpotters location.) "Why is 2221 Jefferson Ave a deal?", asks Spot, sensing our skepticism. Because it's "More Bang for Your Buck", replies Spot. Listed at a paltry $689k, Spot tells us the home's market value is actually $961k, a whopping "savings" of $272k, or 28%.
Now, thanks to Spot, you have insider information known only to the "36 people [who] have already viewed this home" during its ten days (according to Spot) or eight days (according to the MLS) on the market. Along with, presumably, all those "experienced real estate agent[s]" referenced above, the ones who can always spot bargains, as well as the hundreds if not thousands of homebuyers looking on the 'net for Redwood City bargains. Because, as I always say, no one knows value better than homebuyers—real, realistic, motivated, knowledgeable, financially-qualified, battle-hardened homebuyers, that is—because homebuyers are the market. So I'm thinking they'll know a bargain, even without Spot pointing and barking. But at least Spot doesn't charge for pointing and barking.
Now I'll do a CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) for Jefferson, just as if you were my buyer. Seasoned pro that I am, I've already noticed that the listing agents, who work out of an East Bay brokerage, have put the home in MLS Area 334, which starts on the north side of Jefferson. But 2221 is on the south side, in MLS Area 333, where prices are lower. So I'll use Area 333 homes as my comps.
Of course, to really comp the home I'd have to know its condition, either by getting inside, which I can't, because it's tenant-occupied and apparently the tenants have barred the door, or by looking at the photos, which are remarkable by their lack of abundance. But I'm guessing—or to be more accurate, personal experience suggests—that any eighty-three-year-old rental owned by a distressed seller—it's a short sale—might be a little rough. So my comps are either distressed sales and/or rough homes.
I come up with an estimated market value of $590k-$620k, based on comparable sales that closed after July 1, 2012. Now, of course, I haven't factored in the significant appreciation I expect to see this year, even as early as February. On the other hand, I also haven't factored in the location on a very busy street. So call it a wash. So call it a home that, based on the most recent sales, seems a bit pricey. About 14 percent pricey.
Then again, I could be wrong. I don't have a database of "over a million for-sale homes and nearly five million sold homes". No, I just have the pokey ol' MLS, and the benefit of knowing the area and having seen a few of the comps I used. But I can tell you that a completely remodeled home, two-hundred square feet larger, on a much less busy street, and just a few blocks away, sold for $810k late last year. And now Spot says 2221 Jefferson is worth $961,000.
You know, the scary part is that that home might actually sell for $689k. But $961k? Hot market! I guess. Some deal! I guess. This changes everything! I guess.
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