Misleading Exterior Shots — Exhibit A

Broken Clocks & Out-of-Season MLS Photos* Quick!  Test your knowledge of residential real estate and guess how big the Minnetonka home pictured above is: A. 1,200 finished square feet (“FSF”); B. 1,656 FSF; C. 2,370 FSF; D. 5,849 FSF.** Answer:  “D.” (believe it or not, at least according to MLS). When the curb appeal is...
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Dream Kitchen? Not Exactly. But Dream PRICE

How to Decipher the Condition of a Foreclosure (at Least in St. Louis Park) Without Actually Going Inside “Sold As Is. Great rambler in the most desired SLP location, minutes to Uptown, Southdale, shopping, etc. Needs work. Highest and best due by Friday October 11th at noon. As Is Addendum required. See supps, escrow required by...
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Parsing, “Offers Will be Submitted Upon Receipt”

First Come, First Served? Maybe “Owner-occupied offers only through 10/10/2013.  Offers will be submitted upon receipt.” –Excerpt, “Agent Remarks” on MLS foreclosure listing Why is the listing agent reassuring Buyers’ agents (the only ones who can see “Agent Remarks” on MLS) that “offers will be submitted upon receipt?” And exactly what do they mean by...
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Good Riddance to . . . “Traditional Sales”

(The Term, Not the Type of Deal) In a post earlier this year titled, “Halftime at the Housing Recovery,” I posited that one sign that the housing market has fully recovered is that the percentage of lender-mediated sales (foreclosures and short sales) returns to pre-bust levels (5% or less). Want another sign? The term, “traditional...
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“Walk-Thru? What’s a ‘Walk-Thru’??”

Not Getting What You Don’t Pay For It won’t show up in my 2012 sales statistics (or my bank account), but one of the more protracted deals I was involved with this past year was helping a good friend (and repeat client) buy a $63,000 St. Paul foreclosure. Why no record of the deal? Because I...
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Banks Try to Stick Foreclosure Buyers with Seller Transfer Taxes

“They Can’t Do That!!”  (Can They??) Add one more item to the list of annoyances — and expenses — associated with buying a foreclosure in the Twin Cities. So, word the last week or so is that at least some banks in town selling REO (“Real estate owned”) properties — also known as foreclosures — are...
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