I've been weighing myself a lot these days trying to get rid of the "Covid 19" I gained in 2020 learning how to make homemade ice cream while stuck inside. Suffice it to say that the pounds are coming off more slowly than they piled on . . . Still, having turned over a new leaf, I'm committed to this healthier routine; I'm on the Peloton bright and early most mornings, I have adopted intermittent fasting, and I am living on food only a rabbit should eat. And yet, the results are slower than I would have liked OR expected . . . (Remember when you could shed five pounds before the weekend rolled around? Those days are gone.)
Sure, I'm aware these actions are all good for the heart, not to mention one's mental health, but let's be clear, I'm not foregoing cookies and sourdough bread for my mental health. I'd swap a little "crazy" for a piece of chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting right about now. (Does carrot cake count as a vegetable?)
"You're building your body brick by brick!" Cody reminded his "virtual" class of 58,000 (and one) cyclists, "and that takes time."
Right. At this point, I'm just hoping to get out of drawstring pants and elastic waist lines. Granted, that requires some insight and understanding about my options - as in pancakes vs. oatmeal. (Definitely pancakes.)
In spite of, or perhaps because of the Coronavirus, our concepts of a home base have never been considered more than they are right now while we all navigate the "new normal." As it turns out, the Coronavirus has presented new paths to forge. In short, it's all about "weighing your options," making a decision, and then following through.
Opting for working from home and Zoom conference calls? That's understandable.
Ready to relocate to Tahoe and ski with the kids every day? The mountains are calling.
Moving to an entirely new city, state, or continent? Why not?
Heading back to your family of origin? That has its pluses.
Embarking on a completely new and unexpected opportunity? Go for it.
As such, some Sellers are opting to go the private route, selling "off-market" instead of fully exposing their house on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service). Armed with the knowledge that off-market sales don't actually translate to discounted sales (indeed, they often trade at a premium), there are many legitimate and sound reasons why Sellers choose an "off-market" sale rather than go through the expense and time of bringing their property to market.
"I'd like to sell without all the displacement and cost."
"Knowing who is buying my home is more important to me than potentially getting more money."
"I need to sell before I can buy."
"I'd like to sell quickly."
"I prefer discretion."
"I don't want the stress of carrying two houses at once."
"I don't want to move twice."
We hear you loud and clear and the good news is that we can accommodate your wishes as long as you understand the tradeoffs. (LOADS of Buyers are waiting for your "off-market" opportunity). However, when it comes to selling "on" or "off" market, it's definitely a risks vs. rewards game. The risk is that you may be leaving money on the table. The reward comes in the form of security and ease of timing.
Lest you think the "off-market" sale is easier than packing up a lifetime of "stuff" and finding temporary digs, you'd be surprised . . . these sales often come with a fair amount of negotiations, pushback, and second-guessing.
Because Buyers and Sellers are working in a vacuum. With no ability to "market test" the house, no competition, and no validation from the herd, things can get shaky in a hurry, and that often makes for a difficult and suspenseful transaction.
But, if both sides come to a meeting of the minds, under well-defined circumstances, an off-market transaction can be an elegant solution, with the caveat that the Sellers won’t know if they could have sold the house for more, or conversely if the Buyers could have bought for less. (Remember, an off-market opportunity often comes at a premium!) The ONLY way to definitively know you received top dollar for your property, is to fully expose it to the marketplace, and let the market carry it where it will.
With that in mind, this is your house, your risk, your reward, and your decision; our job is to support you in whichever route you choose. But if it's "mind-boggling" results you seek, we'll need to move you out, fully prep your property for 3-4 weeks, invest in its improvements (brick by brick), bring your house to market, and then see what happens.
Are we clear?
Gotta run. I've got oatmeal on the stove. (Ugh, I miss pancakes.)
How can we help you?
Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 15 years and has published more than 600 essays. She is also a frequent contributor to the Sound Off column in the Real Estate section of The San Francisco Chronicle.