Monday, January 7, 2008

House Swap?

Looks like desperate times call for desperate measures. I spoke with my dad over the holidays (who doesn’t know about my secret life as a RE blogger), and he was telling me how they were trying to work out a “house swap” with someone in El Dorado Hills.

Background: Dad sold his home in Stockton, and moved to Puerto Vallarta to retire about 6 years ago. They have been trying to sell their home in PV for the last 2.5 years. With the proceeds, they want to buy a cheep home in the states for summers (they were looking in Pollock Pines) and one in Mexico for the winters. If they were to do the swap, they would simply move back to the States.

Luckily, my dad has found some of the online tools like Zillow, and has realized that these people are still asking 2005 prices for their home. All of the folks he has been in contact with are underwater on their homes and looking for a way out.

9 comments:

mr big said...

Hope it works out for your parents.I would hate to be a seller right now myself.Mexico sounds pretty awesome.The stock market is confused today.I think we are going to sell off again towards the close.People are getting very nervous about recession.

Sippn said...

Be careful with Zillow. You can even get bad infor if you are a buyer.

While I see it underprice nice homes in nice neighborhoods by $100s of thousands of dollars, I ahve also seen it overprice tract homes by the same.

Look at the comps it is using. . . I saw $400K Antelope tract homes comped with Placer county golf course homes - whoops by $150K (40%).

Paul said...

Your dad could just "value" his PV home at 150% of 2005 prices, then he will be on parity with local folks who are still in denial about El Dorado County home prices!

Buying Time said...

Good to see ya Sippn. I was getting worried the housing bears might have finally scared you away.

In all honesty, I don't really want the deal to go through so I wasn't about to to mention Zillow's flaws. Pollock Pines is close enough for comfort =)

Dad doesn't want to move, its my stepmom that's pushing the deal. He is perfectly happy fishing the day away in PV.

big n rich said...

Zillow is horrible folks.It is behind the market bigtime.Would not use this site for current comps.We need a better datbase that is more current other than mls which has everyone by the balls.After a sale it can take the county months to get the information recorded where it is then accessed by companies.It is especially slow in times off high volume.

Buying Time said...

I actually contacted dataquick last week to see what products they had available....they sent me some literature for a product they have that does comps....but its a $200 start up fee. Not sure Mr. BT would be willing to fork that over for my obsession. I plan to work on him though....

Sippn said...

I actuall write almost everyday for theorpy, but delete it!

Of course DQ wants your $200 bucks. . . they're rehashing the same data that the Bee is getting from the county assessor.

No magic. You are already getting it free from Mellisa Data. THe Bee publishes is as fast as DQ.

Also, check the El Dorado Asso of realtors for trends. . they publish.

I don't believe data run through their computer sorting program is going to help you ANY.

The market segment you are looking at is better served by the sophisticated RE analysis tool between your ears.

Get the comps and go out and look at the properties to understand why one is higher or lower. Your eyes can absorb more data variables in a minute than the programers will input in a year.


Zillow is a great example of data rehash. They have downloaded tons of data without verifying its validity. I've looked at the strings of data and it is garbage. . . but as long as they get the "clicks" and the ad revenue - who cares?

Cmyst said...

My ex's house is listed on Zillow as a 3 bed/1 bath and it is a 4 bed/2.5 bath. That additional bath is sweeeeet...Jacuzzi, seated shower, heat lamp, and double sinks. Man, I miss that Jacuzzi. The owners before us did permitted additions to the house that are really good, including that bathroom which is part of a large master bedroom, an additional half bath and laundry room, and a huge dining room with built-in oak and glass cabinets. Then, they added a 2 car garage on. And the lot is huge, too. He put an unpermitted storage building on it, on a raised foundation. Place rocks. Hindsight is 20/20, but I sure wish I'd fought him for that house now. At the time, it just seemed like way too much house for me, too much yard, all his equipment was stored there, etc.
If I'd gotten it, it would be SO within my budget now! He's HELOC'd it to the max, of course.

Gwynster said...

It's a red letter day. I agree with everything Sippin said except I think it overvalues everything in a downmarket. There isn't anything out there better then using your noggin which you do a fine job of BT.

What _I_ really want is the financing data behind each transaction. I want to see how much was cash back, how much was gifted from the seller as a downpayment, how it was financed and through who. That's the real dirty laundry the industry doesn't want us to see.