Flat Fee MLS Listings in Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana,
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Ranking of the top 100 agents in all of Las Vegas Metro Area

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Friday, October 6th, 2017

GLVAR Ranking of the top 100 Agents

Attached is a list of the top 100 agents in the Las Vegas area according the GLVAR in 2017.  A few things to keep in mind:.

  1. These #’s are factual and can not be disputed.
  2. From what I can see, I am the only flat fee broker who made the list.
  3. There are about 15,000 to 20,000 total agents in the Las Vegas area that are eligible to make this list
  4. While we are pleased to be ranked in the top 40, we believe we will finish in the top 30 by the end of the year. (if you remove the teams, we would easily crack the top 20 of individual agents)
  5. This list has nothing to do with what a Realtor(R) simply listed for sale… It is solely determined by what that Realtor(R) actually SOLD.

Analysis… if a friend or neighbor in the Las Vegas area tries to tell you that you can’t sell your home through a Flat Fee Broker, we advise you to print off this list and hand it to them. Once again, the factual data shows that Flat Fee Listings are shown and sold just like 6% competing listings.

Competitors changing their company name and why?

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Thursday, September 7th, 2017

We try to keep things positive but we also want the public to be educated on the different tricks of competing firms. A popular trend has been for other discount firms to change their company name every few years. So why is this happening? Admittedly, not all online reviews are created equal. Sites like Google do a great job of ensuring posted reviews are real actual reviews. The BBB is also great about ensuring all reviews posted are real. On the flip side, sites like Zillow allow anyone to post anything w/out any sort of monitoring process. Now that said, back to the original topic… Why do certain Discount Real Estate companies change their name? 9 times of out 10 is has to do with poor online reviews. One of our competitors had 37 filed complaints with the BBB over a 12 month span… So what did they do? They changed their name. Problem solved. This trick is becoming all too common and can be extremely frustrating for a company like ours. Anyone can type in the term Congress Realty and get nearly 15 years worth of reviews and customer feedback regarding our company. Another trick being used… companies switching to extremely generic terms as their company name. Why would they do this? B/c if you google a generic term like “American Real Estate”… (fictitious example) countless results will come back that don’t reflect the actual company you were searching for. It allows a company to hide their reviews and customer experiences.

With any online purchase…whether it be Real Estate, Ebay, whatever… always do your research before paying your hard earned money.

Interested to know the name of the company with 37 BBB complaints who simply changed their name? Call us and we can provide the info. (including another large flat fee company that has changed their name 3 times in the last 5 years)

How does Congress Realty cover all of these states directly?

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

The first thing to keep in mind is that we don’t 3rd party anything out. What this means is that when you call Congress Realty and speak to Andrew or Donald… you are speaking to the person who will actually list your property. We do not refer it to another company or agent. Both myself and Donald are licensed in every state we operate and we are members of the MLS’s we cover directly. What this means is that if you call the Prescott Board of Realtors and ask to verify if Congress Realty is a member of their MLS… they will say yes. The same is true of Green Valley, Fort Worth, Austin, San Diego, Las Vegas, etc…

So how do we do it? Over the years, we simply have done the work to acquire a brokers license in every state that we operate. In addition, we have joined each of these MLS’s directly. This means that we have gone through the hoops and hurdles set forth by each MLS to acquire membership. This includes sitting through orientation classes required by MLS’s… amongst other requirements to obtain membership.

Why does this matter to the consumer? We are the direct source. You have one contact with Congress Realty. As a consumer myself, I always prefer to deal directly with the party that is performing the work and service that I have paid for. I don’t like the idea of paying one company but relying upon another company that I didn’t choose. Things go much more smoothly when the consumer is able to rely upon the company that they chose themselves.

E Lockboxes for White Mtn Area in Arizona now available

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017

We recently received a shipment of WMAR lockboxes. This is the first time in years we have had these available for the White Mtn area. These are the brand new blue tooth enabled Supra boxes programmed exclusively for the WMAR MLS. (used by all traditional 6% Realtors in the area) Currently, we have E boxes available in all cities throughout Arizona with the one exception of Flagstaff. To order, please contact us via phone or via email at english@congressrealty.com

 

Buyer Rebate through Congress Realty

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Thursday, July 21st, 2016

The idea is simple – When you find a property you want to buy, allow our firm to be the buyer’s agent and we will rebate you 2/3rds of whatever commission is paid. Many times, this will cover all of your closing cost and then some…  What is the cost to you, the buyer? Zero, Zilch, Not a Penny.

Originally, this is something we did for close friends and family members to help offset the cost of the moving, closing cost, etc… We’ve opened this program up to our clients and the response has been overwhelmingly positive. In today’s market, most homebuyer’s are online shopping themselves. They have access to all of the properties out there through Redfin, Zillow, etc… So why not get paid for your research and effort?

Is it legal? – Yes. If you are financing the property through a lender, you simply need to inform the lender upfront that you are receiving a credit from Congress Realty at closing.

How much money can I really get back? It depends upon the purchase price. To provide a real world example… I have a buyer deal in escrow right now. The purchase price is just over 600k. The buyer is literally receiving a credit at closing from Congress Realty for just over $12,000.

New Construction – Does this work the same way? It’s honestly easier with new construction. We have 2 new construction deals through this program under contract as I write this blog entry.

Besides the rebate, why else do I want to consider this program? It is a full service based program. We provide all of the services a typical buyer’s agent provides when it comes to negotiations. We will handle the purchase agreement, counter offers, opening the escrow, coordinating inspections, drafting inspection responses, etc… all the way until closing.

How can having Congress Realty on my side as a buyer agent help me? The fact is that Donald and myself handle more deals and see more deals in a few months than most agents handle in their lifetime. It’s a fact. It’s the dirty secret no full service Realtor(R) wants to admit to… If you are hiring an attorney… do you want to employ someone who handles 3 cases a years similar to yours or someone who handles 3,000? We’ve seen it all. We’ve been involved in every situation you can think of. Most importantly, we’ve seen it from the seller side as well.

How do I get more info – Email info@congressrealty.com or call 800 657 6579

Full Service – What is it and Do I need it???

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Tuesday, April 12th, 2016

The full service option can be a savior for some and not needed for others. It all comes down to time, experience, and peace of mind for the seller.

First – What is the Congress Realty Full Service Option:

Once a seller receives an offer, we review the offer in detail. We fwd this offer to the seller and then call the seller to review the offer. We will answer any questions the seller may have. In addition, we will provide our opinion of the offer and we will point out any pitfalls that we see. Our hope is that we can help reduce the # of escrows that fall a part by warning the seller of what we see in advance. Once the seller understands the positives and negatives of the offer, we will then formulate a response and convey that response to the buyer or their broker. This can be in the form of a counter offer, conversation, etc… it varies on a case to case basis. When an agreement is reached, we do all of the little things… For example, verify the EMD is deposited, ensure disclosures are on time, resale packages are on time, and so forth… In addition, we negotiate the buyer inspection request/response on behalf of the seller. (via the same process as the initial offer, we call the seller to review, formulate a response, etc…) We periodically check in with the lender during the escrow, etc… Prior to closing, we review the settlement statement to ensure all of the #’s are correct prior to the seller signing their final docs.

 

Second – Do I need it?

If you’ve sold multiple properties on your own, you probably don’t need the FSO option. We are not in the business of trying to sell someone a service they don’t need. However, if you are new to this or simply don’t have the time to deal with the process, we can do everything for you. That said, the most common reason people go with our full service option is peace of mind. They simply want myself or Donnie to review the offer and ensure everything is up to speed. In addition, Donnie and myself have been directly involved in over 10,000 transactions. Rarely, if ever do we come across something we haven’t seen before. The average Realtor(R) is involved in 3-4 transactions per year…. and they charge anywhere from 5-6% for their “expertise”…stemming from their experience…. Very few, if any have more experience than myself or Donald.

Example –

We recently just closed on the following property via our full service option. In this instance, Donald was able to negotiate a rent back for the owner so that she could remain in the property while her townhouse was being completed. Donald negotiated the rent down to a number that is well below market rent. In addition, Donald was able to negotiate/acquire $25,000 more than what the seller had told Donald she was happy with.

http://www.congressrealty.com/Buyers/Our-Listings/435788.aspx

 

 

 

Photos Explained

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Wednesday, August 7th, 2013

We preach to our clients to add your photos before you send in your paperwork… Why do we do this?

You want your photos to go up with your initial MLS listing for a number of reasons.

1) Adding your photos before you send in your paperwork ensures your photos will be posted with your initial listing. In basic terms…this means when your listing first hits the MLS, your photos will be present.

2) By doing this, you ensure your photos will show up on 3rd party sites.

3) Realtors(R) are much more likely to email a listing to a prospective client when photos are present. Potential buyers like to see photos.

4) Many MLS’s will not allow a listing to be activated until a front elevation shot is uploaded

5) It looks unprofessional to have a listing up without a single photo.

6) Adding photos at a later time only guarantees the MLS will accept your photos. There is no guarantee 3rd party sites will display all of your photos unless you upload them with your initial listing.

How do I guarantee that my photos are uploaded and I am good to go? When in doubt, email us the photos at info@congressrealty.com. If you are still unsure if we have them…give us a call at 800 657 6579.

What’s the easiest way to upload my photos BEFORE I fax in my paperwork?

http://www.congressrealty.com/FileManagement/PreListingControl/default.aspx

Things to avoid with regards to photos:

1) If you email us your photos, send us jpegs. Do not zip them or send us a link to drop box or any other file sharing website. Please just attach them as jpegs and we will take care of the rest.

2) If you add your photos to the pre listing manager…only do this before you send us the docs. Do not add your photos in this location hours/days after you have sent your paperwork in. If you need to add photos “late” to your listing…use the private client area or email these to us. This guarantees that we will get these added for you.

When do I add my photos?

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Thursday, August 30th, 2012

It is ALWAYS best to add your photos BEFORE you send in your paperwork.

How do I accomplish this?  You can add your photos before sending your paperwork by visiting the Congress Realty Pre listing manager or by emailing your photos along with your property address to info@congressrealty.com.

What is the direct link to the Pre Listing Mang? http://www.congressrealty.com/Flat-Fee-MLS-Listings/PreListing/default.aspx

Why can’t I add my photos after my listing is activated? You can do this, however, please understand that by delaying, your initial listing will be broadcast to the MLS w/out photos.

How do I add my photos if I failed to add them before I sent in my paperwork? Once the listing is active, we will send you a confirmation email with access to the private client area. This will include a login and password for you to utilize. From this interface, you can add your photos.

Why is Congress Realty so aggressive regarding the timing of my photos. After all… it’s my property? We want to sell properties, not just list properties. By adding photos with your initial listing, we increase the chances of ALL 3rd party websites picking up and displaying the listing correctly from the start. This GREATLY increases your positive exposure.

 

Positives of listing your home in the winter?

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

A handful of years ago I had a property in Kuna, Idaho that I wanted to sell myself. I had tried earlier that spring w/out success. The problem I ran into was the inventory during the spring simply exceeded demand. (I recall approximately 20 active homes during the spring on the market) As a result, my property sat on the market. Later during the year, as it became colder, more and more sellers took their homes off the market. By early Dec, only 3 homes in the subdivision were on the market. As a result, I placed my home on the market and had it sold by the end of the month. So how is/was this possible?

I tend to believe that homeowners put too much weight on spring and summer sold data. The reality is that yes, more homes are sold in the spring and summer. However, more homes are also on the market during spring and summer. Homeowners should study their competition and move forward with a listing when they feel they have the best opportunity to sell their home for the most money. For some homeowners, this will be in the spring and summer, however, for others… this may very well be in the winter. Give us a call or shoot us an email and we can examine your subdivision and tell you exactly how many homes are currently on the market in your neighborhood at any given point in time. (At no cost!)

 

Walk Throughs and Inspections

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

Should the seller be present during the final walk through and inspection? The truth is that 99% of inspectors, agents, and buyers do not want the owner present during either the walk through or inspection. If the owners presence is needed, one of the three will notify the owner ahead of time. As a general rule, I typically recommend sellers  not be present, however, dropping by unexpectedly during the inspection or walk through is perfectly acceptable. (Following the inspector around the property for 2 hours is not acceptable.)

Why would a seller not want to be present during the inspection? An inspector is going to note anything he/she finds during the inspection. Any information the seller provides the inspector during the inspection is not going to change the report. If anything, it will annoy the inspector. As a seller, the last person you want to bother is the individual responsible for finding every small detail that could possibly be perceived as an imperfection. Instead, step back, let the inspector do his/her job, and let the property speak for itself.