Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Survey – Would you support a ‘Sunday only’ open home policy

Calling all agents!

If all NZ real estate companies adopted the policy that open homes could only be held on weekdays or Sundays, would you:

a) Agree with the policy?
b) Comply with the policy?

What do open homes achieve?

stk20561pwhLots of my business revolves around open homes. I prepare paperwork for them, advertise them, put signs up for them, travel to them, stand at them, meet nice people at them, record people’s details, do callbacks, appraise & list visitors’ homes, etc.

Did you notice there is one vital activity missing from that list of weekly activities?

Of my last 16 sales, a grand total of 3 sold to someone who came through the open home as their first point of contact with the property.

Is this unusual? Is your experience the same? What if every listing was ‘viewing by appointment’? Would it make any difference to the sales results?

My plan to fix New Zealand’s leaky homes crisis (update).

It’s time to stop beating around the bush and tackle New Zealand’s leaky homes crisis head on.

To start with, New Zealand needs to enact new legislation to protect buyers and sellers of at-risk homes.  Until now there has been too much focus on finding people to blame and recovering money lost.  The Weathertight Homes Resolution Services Act 2006 was set up to provide speedy, flexible and cost-effective procedures for resolving leaky home disputes as an alternative to the courts.

The Act might help you if you own a leaky home, but what about the thousands of genuine, unsuspecting people who are out there trying to buy a new home or investment.  What measures were put in place to protect them?  The answer – None!

Most people don’t know/won’t admit the extent of New Zealand’s leaky home problems.  Newspaper reports often try to tally up the current and future cost of cleaning up the problem.  Most estimates talk in the billions of dollars.  That is a big problem.

Most plaster homes are worth less than their (for example) brick equivalents.  This is partly due to stigma and partly due to previous, existing or possible future water ingress.  Not all plaster homes leak.  Many will never leak.  But if you were buying, how would you really know how safe your $500,000 or $1,000,000 investment is? 

Many owners of (broadly speaking) 1991 to 2003 homes think their home might look like other leaky homes, but couldn’t possibly be one.  In my experience, many are sadly mistaken and could suffer emotionally and financially sometime in the future.  If nothing else, the plaster stigma is going to cost them money.  That is sad.

A classic example of what is going on right now is as follows:  A plaster home is listed for sale by an owner who knows their home was built during the “danger’ years.  They don’t have a pre-sale inspection done.  A buyer has a pre-purchase inspection done and fails the house, walks away.  The house is then listed with a new agent (for obvious reasons!).  Another buyer has an inspection done and buys the house.  Two different inspectors, two different buyers, two different agents, two different outcomes.  Too many variables and variations of opinion.  No set rules from Government to adequately protect buyer or seller.  Very much “buyer beware”.  Nobody taking responsibility for the original poor building practices.  Shouldn’t the Government take this responsibility?  I say yes!

I have a big problem with the fact that new immigrants (and some locals) are being literally stitched up into potentially leaky or (actually) leaky homes.  (Update:  Sometimes sellers know there’s  a problem and hide it from all parties, sometimes they simply don’t know).  At-risk homes are still selling without the buyer approving a building inspection report.

This is where Government must step in to protect the citizens of this country. 

If a house leaks and is bought “eyes shut” by a new immigrant for $1million, the actual value of that house could be, say, $800,000 if the problems had been/were found/known.  If this immigrant stays a few years then sells under the same circumstances (to another buyer) then the problem is hidden again.  The value of the house remains artificially inflated until finally the problem(s) is/are discovered.

This is what Government needs to do:

Legislate that all homes constructed in the danger period (to be defined) cannot be listed for sale or sold without having a Government directed and tightly controlled inspection report attached to the listing agreement and the sale and purchase agreement.

Shock horror this will cost homeowners about $1000 to have done, but that is a cost they will just have to wear.  If Government really wants to help, Government could subsidise this from the funds they will save by generating fewer court cases in the future.

This would then be the scenario when a leaking home is listed for sale (like the $1million one referred to above):  The thorough report (includes invasive tests, moisture readings etc) would be viewed by the buyer.  The buyer would decide to pay about $800,000 due to high moisture readings found in some areas.  The sellers would understand why the buyer is offering such a low figure, after all they had a chance to make repairs but worked out repairs might cost them about $200,000.  If they had done repairs, the house might be worth $1million.  The inspection report would form part of the sale and purchase agreement by law.

Finally, the problems caused by bad building practices in the past are brought into the open and the problem is solved.  More leaky homes would be repaired more quickly than under any other program proposed in the past.

Of course this doesn’t help owners who never intend to sell, but at least it would be a great way to protect consumers buying houses. 

Fast forward twenty one years to the year 2030.  A recently painted and refurbished plaster townhouse comes on the market for the first time since built in 1998.  The listing includes a very comprehensive Government controlled building inspection report that shows serious problems, not the least crumbling timber framing and some walls with 40% moisture content.  The house sells for land value only.

Leaky homes are worth less than non-leaky ones and the sooner these homes find their real value the better.  Now is the time to legislate and protect consumers as described above.

Anyone agree/disagree?

Make a comment – win Powerball?

Lottery winnersLast year I met the winner of one of NZ’s biggest Powerball Jackpots ever – $18mil+.  It was quite an experience!  This Saturday Lotto’s Powerball has jackpotted to $12million.  And I’m giving you a chance to win it. 

All you need to do is make a comment below.  On Friday May 8th 2009 I’ll select the best two ideas and give each winner a $16.50 Powerball entry (open to anyone over the age of 18 anywhere).

Please comment below and give me one simple (preferably brilliant) idea that would put me on track to being the most successful real estate salesperson in the world.  It might help to decide what you dislike about real estate agents and what would you do differently? 

Thanks for your suggestion!

You Can’t Spend Your Way Out Of The Crisis

john-key1NZ Prime Minister John key is receiving plenty of accolades for his approach to the current world economic situation.

John Key’s March 10 2009 interview with the Wall Street Journal can be read here

Spot the Difference! Do I have a shoe fetish?

Spot the difference:
Lonely agent inside

Lonely agent inside

Steve Koerber inside

Steve Koerber inside

Remuera Kindergartens & School Librarians Love Steve Koerber’s Home Sellers

aliens

“If My Dad was a Dog”, “Aliens Love Underpants”, “Charlotte’s Web” and “Mrs Pepperpot” are a mere handful of the hundreds of stories that I’ve had the pleasure of reading to my two toddlers over recent years.

Just today they were at the library with Mum and brought home some fantastic pre-school readers with titles like “The Sports Day”, “Rita Blows Bubbles” and “Dinah’s Walk”.  All of a sudden it’s not me reading to them anymore, they’re reading to me!  They’re so eager to show me their newfound reading prowess.  It is truly an exciting time in their lives ….and mine.

So I’ve made a decision that I hope will add some value to our community via the gift of reading.  For every property I list for sale in Remuera (forever) I will donate a new library book to the school of the homeseller’s choice.  I’ll also donate a book on behalf of anyone who refers me to a homeseller.  charlottes-web

My goal this year is to donate 50 books.  This blog category will track the book titles and kindy/school library donated to.  All books will be purchased by me from Wheelers Bookstore in Remuera.

To summarise:

How can you boost your Remuera kindergarten or school library’s inventory?  It’s easy!

1.  List your property for sale with Steve Koerber = 1 book donated

2.  Tell Steve Koerber about a friend/family member who is selling = 1 book donated

Almost Everything you want to know about Steve Koerber’s Listings

The listing you’ve enquired about is below (please scroll down). 
 
Price guidance:  Please treat the sales stats range (below) as price guidance.  The 2008 Capital Value (CV) can be used as a rough guide for listings without prices.  Most homes sell either side of their CV but unfortunately there is no accurate formula you can use to calculate an exact value.  
 
For auctions, especially because many owners don’t really know how much they would accept when it comes to the crunch, it’s best to let me know your price range.  If you do this by emailing me at s.koerber@barfoot.co.nz I should be able to advise whether or not you should view the property you have enquired about.  
 
You’ll find my tips to help you navigate the pricing maze here.  I hope you find my weblog useful and informative.
 
  •   Price By Negotiation
  •   2008 Capital Value  $1,070,000 (what does this mean?)
  •   Floor Area  Approx 220sqm
  •   Land Area  845sqm
  •   Bedrooms  3 (plus study)
  •   Bathrooms  3.5 (2 are ensuites)
  •   Garaging  Double garage with internal access
  •   Google Map  click here
  •   Legal description – Lot 2 DP181492
  •   Annual Rates  $2621 plus ARC rates
  •   Sales Stats  $800,000 to $1,100,000 comparables here:  stats5
  •   Zoodle aerial photo  click  here
  •   Rental  My estimate $900pw
  •   More Info You’ll be surprised and inspired by the tranquility and privacy this 845sqm north facing, bush clad setting offers.  It’s hard to imagine you’re so close to busy Parnell, Newmarket and the City.   The exciting architecture and design reflects the first owners’ love of the sea and sailing.  Immaculately appointed, this home provides a true retreat for busy executives and/or families.  The roomy office feels quite separate from the main house and will appeal if you prefer to separate business and pleasure. 
  • Viewing  By appointment.  Reasonably flexible and easy access most days.  Don’t drive in, park on the street and walk in.

 Ref 388551   7 Dromorne Road, Remuera

  •   Price Auction 13th May 2009 (unless sold prior)
  •   Floor Area  Approx 220sqm
  •   Land Area 1264sqm (Leasehold)
  •   Bedrooms  4
  •   Study 1
  •   Bathrooms 2
  •   Garaging  Single garage plus carport and loads of off-street parking behind secure electric gates.
  •   Google Street View here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value click here
  •   Sales Stats:  Three leasehold sales occurred in close proximity in 2008.  20 Omahu Rd is a 162sqm home on 1011sqm land and sold by tender for $500,000 with a CV of $1,130,000.  27 Market Rd is a larger home on 2714sqm land and sold for $900,000.  48 Omahu Rd sold for $320,000 and is a similar sized home on 1114sqm land with a CV of $1,120,000.
  •   More InfoAlthough 7 Dromorne Rd has a current CV of $1,590,000, this CV reflects the “freehold CV”.  Leasehold CVs are not issued because a CV has a ‘land’ and a ’buildings’ component.  The land CV is $1,060,000 (owned by Dilworth Trust Board) and the building CV is $530,000 (owned by the vendor).  We are seeking interest from parties who would like to purchase the property as a leasehold home.  The current vendors bought this home in 2003 for $725,000 (L/Hold).  They have chosen to go down the leasehold auction path because they know that it is difficult to determine how much their home is worth.  Their current intention is to accept the highest bid at auction.  Although the lease allows the owners to freehold at any time (under the current lease) they have chosen not to do that.  The last valuation for freeholding purposes in early 2008 was $1.3million.  An updated valuation will be available before auction day and we speculate that it may reflect a lower value.  This home is an ideal solution for families with good cash flow who may have limited access to mortgage funds for one reason or another.  At an affordable entry price, you can live in an an upmarket area in a grand home so close to Remuera Primary, Kings Prep, Diocesan and St Cuthberts.  Do your sums and we’ll see you at the next open home.
  •   Zoodle aerial view click here
  •   Rent My estimate $1100 per week
  •   Lease costs Dilworth Trust lease fixed until 2024 at $48,750 per annum or $4062.50 per month.
  •   Lease Documents (large file)     lease
  •   Extra Documents (large file)     lim and title
  •   Viewing  Available most days with plenty of notice.  Open Homes Saturday & Sunday 2 .00- 2.30pm
Ref 410319   10B Dromorne Rd, Remuera  (STOP PRESS:  JUST SOLD)
  •   Price By Negotiation (CV is $1,350,000)
  •   Floor Area  Approx 340sqm (big!)
  •   Land Area 665sqm (Freehold – rear section)
  •   Bedrooms  4
  •   Study 1
  •   Bathrooms 2
  •   Garaging  Double garage plus loads of off-street parking.
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value  click here
  •   Sales Stats:  Two relevant and comparable sales have occurred in close proximity recently.  6 Omahu Rd Remuera sold at auction in Feb 2009 on 495sqm of flat land for $1,680,000.  26A Dilworth Ave sold in Apr 09 on 571sqm of flat land for $1,530,000.  Click here for some additional $1.2m to $1.6m statistics stats
  •   More InfoThe thing you’ll notice about this 12 year old home is its condition.  It’s immaculate, as good as new!  Remuera Primary and Kings Prep are about a 200 metre walk and the Remuera shoppoing village, cafes, restaurants are just around the corner.  This is a very convenient place to live.
  •   Zoodle aerial view click here
  •   Rent My estimate $1000 per week.
  •   Extra Documents Lim Report and Title
  •   Viewing  Available most days with plenty of notice.  No Open Homes.

Ref 406445  32 Sonia Avenue Remuera 

  •   Price Asking $1,125,000
  •   2008 Capital Value  $1,090,000 (what does this mean?)
  •   Floor Area  Approx 180sqm
  •   Land Area  Approx 500sqm
  •   Bedrooms  4
  •   Bathrooms  3
  •   Garaging  Double garage with internal access
  •   Google Map  click here (Streetview not available)
  •   Legal description - Freehold Crosslease Lot 32 DP 44273 Flat 1 DP 193695
  •   Annual Rates  $2633 plus $591.39 ARC rates
  •   Sales Stats  $1,000,000 to $1,200,000 comparables here:  stats
  •   Zoodle aerial photo  click here
  •   Rental  My estimate $950pw
  •   More Info  A real gem nestled in a quiet cul-de-sac in the heart of Remuera’s northern slopes.  If you want a great family home in tip-top shape, without lawns to mow, this one’s for you.  Due to the “declared reserve price” early interest indicates that you’ll be competing with several other buyers if you wait until auction day. 
  •   Viewing  By appointment, reasonably flexible and easy access most days.  

Ref 404610  23A Fancourt St Meadowbank 

  • Price  Auction 13th May 2009, City Rooms
  • Floor area  178sqm
  • Land area  448sqm Freehold (not a crosslease, no shared driveway!)
  • Bedrooms  4
  • Bathrooms  2.5
  • Study nook  1
  • Garaging  2 x internal access, auto door
  • Google Street View click here
  • 2008 CV, Legal Description, Council rates  click here
  • Sales Stats  $650,000 to $750,000 comparables here:  fancourt23a 
  • Zoodle Aerial Photo  click here 
  • Rent  Formally assessed at $740 to $780pw
  • LIM Report lim (large file could be slow)
  • Title title2
  • Auction sale and purchase document  auction-docs
  • More info:  Superbly built modern GJ Gardner Home built in 2002.  The park-like space at the rear is an infrequently used tree-lined and wide private driveway.  The original owners have raised a teenage family here and now it’s time to move on to something bigger and better.  Here’s a great opportunity, in a superb location, at an affordable price.  Sales statistics of similar properties show what great value this home will be in today’s market.
  • Viewing  By appointment, flexible during working/school hours.  Final Open Homes Sat & Sun 1.00 – 1.30pm.

 Ref 391191  54 Middleton Rd Remuera

  •   Price  $1,580,000
  •   Land Area  Approx 1880sqm
  •   Bedrooms  2 flats plus development site
  •   Bathrooms  2
  •   Garaging  Single carport plus off street parking
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value  click here
  •   Sales Stats  $1mil to $2mil comparables here:  Middleton-54
  •   More Info  This 1880sqm land bank comes with several appealing development options. Includes existing resource consent for five new homes. Another option is to retain the existing refurbished bungalow (in 2 flats) and create three desirable sections behind.  All reasonable offers will be seriously considered by motivated seller.
  •   Viewing is by appointment.  Flexible and easy to get through with 1 days warning.
  •   Price  By Negotiation
  •   Floor Area  Approx 220sqm
  •   Bedrooms  5
  •   Bathrooms  2
  •   Garaging  Off street parking for three at rear
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value  click here
  •   Sales Stats $800,000 to $1mil comparables here:  clonbern-80
  •   More Info 110 years old, 3 brms downstairs and 2 upstairs, many traditional original features, owners keen to move on and encourage offers
  •   Viewing  is by appointment.  Flexible and easy to get through most days.
  •   Price  By Negotiation
  •   Floor Area  Approx 950sqm
  •   Bedrooms  6+
  •   Bathrooms  4
  •   Garaging  Triple garage plus off street parking
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value  click here
  •   Sales Stats  $3mil to $5mil comparables here:  Upland-78
  •   More Info  Landmark home on 2757sqm of prime land.  21 generous rooms spread over two levels with internal swimming pool, spa and sauna.  Built in the 1960s and designed by “The Group” Architects, originally used as a convent and converted to a family home in the 1980s.
  •   Viewing  is by appointment.  Flexible and easy to get through most days.
  •   Price  $1,595,000
  •   Floor Area  Approx 201sqm
  •   Bedrooms  4
  •   Bathrooms  2
  •   Garaging  Double garage
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value  click here
  •   Sales Stats  $1mil to $2mil comparables here:  MacMurray-12
  •   More Info  On offer is this home on a flat fully fenced 834sqm garden.  A bonus aboved the double garage is a self contained studio. Walking distance of EGGS and AGS and Broadway Newmarket.  You may wish to purchase (freehold) the entire property on 1821sqm.  It is available for purchase in excess of $2million.
  •   Viewing is by appointment.  Flexible and easy to get through with reasonable notice.
  •   Price Asking $975,000 
  •   Floor Area  Approx 212sqm
  •   Bedrooms  4
  •   Bathrooms  3
  •   Garaging  1 x large auto garage plus OSP at rear
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value  click here - Freehold crosslease
  •   Sales Stats  $850,000 – $1,000,000 comparables here:  kohimarama132-sales-stats
  •   More Info This sensational bungalow has undergone a remarkable makeover and would be a great place to call home.  Equally suited to professional couples as families, the downstairs could be used for various purposes – work from home, home theatre, fourth bedroom, rumpus, granny flat etc.  It has its own entrance and parking spot.  If you like new and can’t stand the thought of a do-up, this could be your perfect opportunity. 
  • Zoodle Aerial Photo click here
  • Rent My estimate $800+ per week.
  • Viewing  by appointment anytime with reasonable notice.

[polldaddy poll=1413118]  [polldaddy poll=1413131]

  •   Price By Negotiation (CV is $285,000)
  •   Floor Area  Approx 54sqm
  •   Land Area 1/7th share of 1011sqm (Freehold - Crosslease)
  •   Bedrooms  2
  •   Bathrooms 1
  •   Garaging  Carport
  •   Google Street View  click here
  •   Legal description, council rates, land area, 2008 Capital Value click here
  •   Body Corporate  Administered by Body Corporate Administration Limited ph 0800210589.  I’m yet  to confirm the exact yearly fee but as a guide, similar unit complexes charge $600 – $1000pa and most of this cost involves building insurance.  Repeat:  Exact fee TBA.
  •   Sales Stats:  I’ve provided recent Remuera sales between $200,000 and $400,000.  Six units in these stats are in the Grammar Z0ne (GZ).  Note that GZ units like 4/13 Armadale Rd often attract a premium price.  The lower priced units are 1brm units.  Recent unit sales
  •   More Info:  Instantly rentable, this spacious ground floor unit in a nice block of seven units has its own exclusive north facing courtyard.  A quick paint and spruce up would add significant value.  Don’t under estimate to value of such a convenient location, just around the corner from the Remuera shops and buses.  “How much will the vendor accept” is the question on everyone’s lips.  The answer should be known (sale price announced) this Saturday night.
  •   Zoodle aerial view click here
  •   Rent Was rented until recently for $415 per week.
  •   Extra Documents Lim Report not available.  title
  •   Viewing  Easy access, phone for an appointment.

Click here to view all of my current listings

Click here for additional vital information on all my current listings