"HIDDEN HAMPTONS" ...Coming to Bookstores Soon!!

Tue, 15 Sep 2020 - "HIDDEN HAMPTONS" ...Coming to Bookstores Soon!!Nothing has prepared any of us for the changes taking place from the Pandemic. My life has had a cataclysmic shift as I deal with the loss of my brother in Flint Michigan, without the benefit of a proper funeral... This, all the while, working every waking hour with people who are frantically looking to move here to the Hamptons, either to a new home or a simple rental--Anything that will act as a fortress against the unknown.So, now it is time to publish--the final edit is just finishing up and I will be formatting and making a cover for the book itself. It will be just weeks now before it hits the bookshelves--I am relieved and very excited to share another excerpt with all of you.If you have been keeping up with the original story, after reading THE SLED, A LITTLE BIRD TOLD ME, A PURPOSEFUL LIFE, and UNTOLD STORY, you will find the excerpt below a little more revealing of the HIDDEN HAMPTONS. Keep in mind that I am writing this book as one of fiction but I have taken the stories from real-life happenings here...ENJOY! THE STORY UNFOLDSI sat across from Fred at the stainless steel table. The metal chair stuck to my bare legs, and so I pulled at my skirt hem to lessen the contact with it. The metal was almost refreshing to my skin on this hot fall day, but it was the stickiness that made me almost queasy; what the heck made this chair sticky? I thought to myself. I needed to put my attention back on Fred. He needed me more than ever right now!As Fred shared this part of the saga with me, he could not control the way his hands were shaking. I noticed that he held them together to try to halt the startling movement but to no avail. He was in a state that I had never seen him before. Even the night of his drunkenness was not this bad! At least then, I could blame the liquor. This time, it was sheer fear and anguish that permeated his being. His shoulders shook under his awful orange prison garb.I did not want to look at anything below his face. Still, there was that stubbled cheek and chin and again, the deep sea-blue eyes, so liquid yet firm in the way he looked at me.I have held him in the highest esteem since the day I met him. There was a time, however, when I began to question my judgment when I had started to suspect that Fred was keeping things from me. But I could not quite figure out what so-called “things” he was hiding. It was driving me up a wall.Now, we were in a face-to-face situation. I was telling Fred that he needed to tell me everything. I was finally going to get my answers. His information sharing would be a clarifying time for the two of us. I was hoping that it would not destroy my trust in him.Many times over the years, I have had moments of clarity; usually, they came from my hard work and my ability to analyze a situation and come to an awareness of facts. In this case, I was searching for a reason to think that Fred was a victim of this apparent crime.“My darling Holly, I do not want to hurt you any longer,” Fred said as he sat, facing me in his orange jumpsuit. “ I want to tell you how this all happened so that you can see how I became involved in such a questionable activity.”He looked down as he said that, trying to keep his mind from halting as the story unfolded. He swallowed hard, and I knew that he was in agony.Fred’s story began right after he found out about the agreement with the former tenant after his father had told him about the “Right of First Refusal” agreement that he had signed with Jayson Slattery.Fred thought he could get the right legal advice to help his father. But Jon Stevenson was determined to search for his legal help on his own. He needed to defeat Slattery, in what would be one of the most complicated lawsuits of all time. At least that is what Fred thought as he read the deposition.Fred’s father hired a lawyer from Riverhead, and he was a Town attorney. He would know the strict laws regarding property rights and questionable legally binding agreements. In short, he was going to try to claim trickery in the way Jayson Slatery got Jon Stevenson to agree to and sign such a document. Behind it all, the lawsuit suggested, was criminal intent to defraud a naive man into turning over his entire farm for a pittance.Fred found out about Jon’s lawyer just before he filed the papers for the lawsuit. He went to Riverhead to talk Jon’s lawyer out of taking the approach of trying to prove criminal intent. The retainer that Jon had given to his lawyer came right out of his bank account; it was all he had left. The last $15,000 from his life savings was now in the lawyers' pocket!Fred was outraged that a lawyer would require such an amount upfront and immediately suspected foul play. The hired attorney had a rough reputation, and Fred was sure he would not be able to handle the complicated case of property fraud.Instead, Fred said to his father, “Look, Dad, I know this lawyer who knows the law better than anybody out here! His name is Carl Benencort, and he has a long history of getting agreements thrown out because they were not legal!” Jon Stevenson was not about to go along with his son—a pattern that was well established in the Stevenson family. He did not want to give Fred the satisfaction of saying, “I told you so, Dad!”“Dad, you can’t get someone to sign something like what you signed without legal involvement! Don’t you see that? This Slattery guy didn’t know what he was doing, and neither did you. It's just that simple, and we need to get you the legal help required to toss out the agreement. It’s not worth the paper it’s written on!”The argument that ensued was long and painful to Fred as he watched his father lose control. Jon Stevenson became a monster. There were no other witnesses to the fight, but Fred told me later that his father became physical and attacked him. He struck him in the chest, saying to Fred, “I don’t want your pathetic help here, damn it! You don’t know anything about what you are saying. This guy I hired is a top-notch lawyer, and I intend to use his help ‘til I get every pennyback, and all my land too!” Jon’s face was beet red, and his muscular frame was shaking as Fred had never seen before. Jon then went after Fred and grabbed him by the throat.It took all Fred’s strength to push his father off him. Until the fear of death came into Fred’s mind, he had no desire to harm his father. Now, it was a life and death struggle, and Fred had to hit his father so that he understood that Fred was not going to be his victim. He struck his father in the jaw. Jon’s head swiveled from the blow, and he fell head-long into a pile of hay, nearly hitting his head on the giant tractor tire.From the time that Fred turned fourteen, he had always towered over his father. That was an issue with Jon, who fought the idea that his son would be a much larger man than he would ever be.When Fred grew into a 6’ 4” man of eighteen, Jon Stevenson was sure that Fred was not his son—how could Jon Stevenson have fathered a giant of a man, someone who could outdo him in any chore or challenge? No way! He thought: This kid is someone else's, and I can’t imagine whose!So, in time, Jon Stevenson fought the fight in his mind; his second son was not his, plain and simple. He fought the idea and never gave “the kid” a chance to outshine him.Jon Stevenson even went so far as to tell Fred that he thought he was not Fred’s father. That put Fred in a position of trying to prove that Jon was his father, even looking for physical characteristics that would match Jon’s.He knew that his mother’s side of the family had all been tall. Even though he and his father rarely saw his mother’s family after she died, Fred was confident that his father knew he had inherited his height from the other side of the family. The battle over his heritage soon vanished from his father’s mind, but Fred still carried the scar of what his father assumed to be an irredeemable flaw.Jon Stevenson was a “bandy” little man who stood 5’ 8” at the most, though he was a muscular man who could handle bales of hay better than most men his age, readily throwing a bale from the wagon in the barn to the haymow above his head. Now, he was on the ground at his son’s feet, and he could not tolerate the shame of it all. For the first time in his life, Fred finally had the upper hand where it concerned his father.Jon Stevenson came to his feet in a quick jump and lunged at Fred again. This time, Fred grabbed his arms and held them. He twisted Jon’s arms behind his back and said in a voice that even he did not recognize, “This is the last time I will ever do anything for you; you have made my life a living Hell, and you know it! Go, do your thing with the lawyer who is just waiting to take you for a ride! Your ignorant, stubborn ways will get you killed one day, just you wait!”Fred yelled this so loudly that the barn seemed to shake from the old, buried rage that fumed from his mouth. He finally pushed his father away from him and walked out of the barn, never to return.Jon Stevenson stumbled from the violent push and landed against the barn door. He yelled at his son’s back, “Don’t you ever come near me again! I don’t need you in my life—you have only been a burden for me all these years!!” And Fred just kept walking, hearing the voice he for so long feared. This time there was no fear, only the dark resentment that he felt in his frame, in his blood as it pulsed through his bruised neck. The anger that he had pushed down for so long was coming out his nose and his ears and his mouth as he no longer held back the sadness and pain.Neighbors later said his howls resounded a mile away. They heard the yelling and the shouting but knew nothing of the anguish felt between these two men. They only felt the high emotion that moved through the dusk as the rage between Fred Stevenson and his father rose to a crescendo unmatched by any other conflict in memory.So, much later, when Fred had left the farm and headed to Southampton to try to distill this horrible interlude with his father, he had no idea that Jayson Slattery was heading in the other direction, toward Sagaponack to confront Jon Stevenson. Perhaps they passed each other on the highway. Perhaps they would each know the real strength of this old farmer by the end of this day.Fred drove quickly to Southampton. He had to talk to someone; he should go to the little church that meant so much to him in his youth. Perhaps he would go there and find solace, peace.As Fred walked through the heavy wooden church doors and saw the candle burning on the narthex, he felt a warmth come over him. Maybe the heat from the candle? It was huge, and there were smaller candles next to it. He knew that he could light a candle for someone, say a prayer, and light a candle. Maybe he needed to do that for his father. As soon as he burned the candle, he felt an enormous rush of emotion. He had an understanding of his father for the first time. THE CONVERSIONFred had a conversion; He was, for the first time, able to fully and completely see what his father was suffering. It wasn’t complicated, nor was it awe-inspiring. It was pure knowledge, an understanding of his father's simple life.Jon Stevenson lived his life for his family’s legacy. He lived his life only to pass along what was passed along to him. The 120-acre farm was a life mission of sorts. It was a marker for the history books, an identifier saying: Here too was a man who came through a long family line. He passed along the message that there was a man who struggled and fought for the right to live on the land, to farm it and raise crops. He also had a family to think of until the time comes where Fred shall pass the torch.Well, now there is no longer something to pass along. It is gone, dead, and forever a monumental loss. No one can make it easier; no one can appease the lost pride or assuage the pain.Jon Stevenson may have been the last in the line to carry forward his charge. His mission lay in ruins at his feet, and his anger burned in his soul. Now, sitting in the sacred silence, Fred felt the fear again. This time it raised the hair on his head and arms. He saw what could happen, and he had to get back to the farm; he had to get there to stop what he feared was about to take place. He needed to stop something that no one could stop if it were allowed to unfold.Fred rushed to his pickup and jumped into the cab and started the engine. He only closed the door after he was already well on his way, pushing the truck at a rate he had never driven it before. He had to get to his father; he had to stop his father from doing something foolish.“What did you think was going to happen?” I interrupted his dialog, so fearful for Fred and his poor father. “I was sure he would end it if I didn’t get to him in time—My foolish pride got to me, and I was not even thinking of what I would say to my Dad!” Fred’s hands were now anxiously twisting as he proceeded with his story.The road was dark now, and the truck was racing at a rate of speed Fred never had driven. He didn’t slow down, even running the red light at the monument in Bridgehampton. People can wait..I have to get to my Dad!There were so few cars on the road that night, Fred had no problem getting to the farm in record time. He jumped out of the pickup truck just inside the gate to the barn-yard, calling his father’s name as he ran to the house.Nothing. No one was there. The barn was empty, too, and Jon’s pickup truck was gone.Only now did Fred begin to calm down, thinking that his father probably went to Sag Harbor as he did many times after dark. Jon had a favorite place to hang out there in the Village. It was the Corner Bar, a rowdy place where all of his friends hung out to drink their beer.Fred started to feel a little foolish, but just to make sure he was right, he went to Sag Harbor to see if he could see his Dad’s truck. It took him a while to get there. Traffic was heavy on the Sag Harbor Bridgehampton Turnpike, and he couldn’t speed as he had out on the highway. There was the truck, right where Fred thought it would be. It sat silently in the darkest part of the street, a shroud of dust and dirt covered the hood and the roof.Fred thought to himself, “I should have known! This guy is not about to do himself in—he has so much vigor he would never think to do something so crazy.”Then Fred drove to his favorite bar in Sagaponack. The Old Stove Pub had been there for so long that it was a real fixture, a place where Fred would go for an excellent Greek meal when he had nothing else to do. The bar there was always full of both city people and locals. He loved the environment. It felt like home to him. The Greek owner and his wife ran the joint and served the best traditional Moussaka and lamb chops with chopped cucumbers and yogurt. Fred had spent many a long evening in this old farmhouse-turned-restaurant, and he loved it as if it were his only anchor in his hometown. He ate more meals here than he did at the farm.He sat at the bar and looked around the room. Then he saw a face he didn’t think he would ever see again.As he sat facing the door, a man walked in with another man. Jayson Slattery had not changed a hair on his head since Fred first met him so long ago. He looked fit and handsome. There was an air about him that reminded Fred of a magazine ad. Slattery seemed in a jovial mood as he greeted the owners and took a special seat in the dining room. He must be a regular here, Fred thought to himself.The man who came through the door with Jayson Slattery was a very tall thin man. He had a fedora or some such hat on his head, and he was also wearing the biggest overcoat Fred had ever seen." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005 Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill: MY REAL ESTATE SHOWS:


Fri, 10 Jan 2020 - MY BOOK, "HIDDEN HAMPTONS", IS ABOUT READY TO PUBLISH!I am so excited to let you know that my book about The Hamptons is finally being prepared for publication. It is in the category of fiction to avoid liability and to protect the local population: "HIDDEN HAMPTONS... a Novel" is the title and I plan to have it in bookstores and online as an e-book early spring-summer, 2020. It is a story of the local population of the East End of Long Island with romance and intrigue to keep the reader engaged.  The purpose of my writing is to dispel the fluff and outrageous stories concerning the population of the Hamptons who spend less than 3 months of the year here. I am speaking of the summer crowd and celebrities who come here only for June, July, and/or August.I wrote a post regarding this book including four short stories I published here on AR.  I have now rewritten those stories many times, but I include them in the book. In case you missed the first publication of that post and to read the four posts go to "THE HAMPTONS...Secret Lives" click on that link and the four links to the short stories are at the bottom.As you can see, there have been several iterations before I settled on an official title. Part of publishing a book is marketing. Just as in real estate, you want to get the message out there to those who the writer knows and who wants to read it.So I will publish here first, just to give you a head start on what I hope to be a successful launch. There is much curiosity concerning the Hamptons, and in my book, I tell the lesser-known stories of this place called The Hamptons. This is a part of the country, known more for its celebrity lifestyle than the local population and their centuries-long struggles in this bucolic place.The Hamptons has become a "play-ground" of the rich and famous and because of that, it has affected the local population in ways most cannot imagine. For instance, it has edged out many of the original families from their communities by the cost of housing. There is nowhere that a young local family can settle in and stay as did their ancestors.There are very few ways to make a living here on the East End. Farming and fishing were the mainstays of the East End from the early 1600s. But now, few farms remain and fishing has gone the way of the farm with fewer and fewer fishermen able to make a living because of the restrictive catch requirements. Not only that, many families left The Hamptons because the land they lived on has much more value to developers than it does to the local homeowner. It is a sad commentary but the positives that come out of it and my stories will try to let the public know the richness of the lives of the local farmers, fishermen, merchants and their families.  Watch for the Activerain launch in February--March 2020, and I love to get feedback from you once you have read it!  Thanks!  Paula ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005 Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill: MY REAL ESTATE SHOWS:

STRESS GOT YOU DOWN?...The STRESS FACTOR in Real Estate Getting to you too?

Wed, 06 Nov 2019 - STRESS GOT YOU DOWN???...The STRESS FACTOR In Real Estate Getting To You Too?As real estate professionals, we are up against daily, seemingly insurmountable challenges . We deal with people where they live! We have a responsibility to the public that not many other professions have: A homeowner in distress or a buyer buying their first home. The Home is the place where emotional, financial and survival mechanisms are rooted. Not one other thing that an individual owns or manages is anything like their Home. Families laugh there, cry there, play there and raise children there--memories are in the walls and layered in the floors. As real estate professionals we now have an onslaught of new laws and new  technology  companies who are committed to our undoing--and they are more upfront about it than ever before! Turned inward, our frustrations about new laws that govern rentals are eating away at our well-being like never before. These STRESS FACTORS are embedded in our profession and need to  be recognized by each of us in order to heal and become polished, healthy, and ethical professionals.I find the stress from real estate is one of the most overwhelming of all the other stresses in my life--most other situations I handle with no effort, it seems. But the stress from real estate is rather subtle in it's impact on my system. My back is a place where stress ends up. I just found a great chiropractor who helped me get rid of a constant pain in my neck and back.Headaches come and go with the amount of stress I am having from my work...never had headaches before real estate!Anger management is necessary in real estate. Either learn how to manage it yourself or get help to manage it! I have fortunately found ways to get over my anger very quickly, and to move on.I find myself feeling resentful of the way some other agents behave, or the way a seller just talked to me. Resentment does nothing to improve your attitude. In fact,  it can kill you!STRESS IS THE MOST OVERLOOKED SIDE-EFFECT OF THE REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONI wanted to share with all of you the idea that one of the major tools that is left out of our real estate training is how to handle the stresses from our work. Our initial training and our Continuing Ed classes never mention the STRESS FACTOR. As a result, we are in a profession that loses so many new agents in the first year of their real estate career that it is a common thing to see agents leave their desk and not even say they are leaving! There is also the disappearing agent who can't handle the stress anymore and so they just leave the business. Then there are those who fall victim to the abuse of alcohal and drugs.THINGS I DO TO LESSEN THE STRESS FACTOR: Deep breathing after an encounter and before a reaction. Relaxation techniques, i.e. meditation, self hypnosis (self talk that will send your subconsious the message that you are NOT a greedy SOB, just waiting for your next victim to bilk out of their money). A mantra that is in front of me at my desk or on my refrigerator: "I am a worthy, honest person; I deserve to be treated properly; I am a happy, successful, and thoughtful person"...Well, you get the point! Make up your own positive reinforcement. Established agents have usually dealt with the stress that is built into our profession but many just push it down, try to ignore it. They may not even realize the deep influence this kind of stress can have on them and they go forward, working with other buyers and sellers without realizing they are bringing that anger, resentment and pain along with them into a new business relationship.Many agents become ill or over imbibe, never realizing that years of subjecting their minds and bodies to this STRESS FACTOR is taking it's toll.All professions have their stresses; all business comes with a substantial share of stress but none deal with the kind of stress that comes with a  seller who is about to lose his or her home. Financial stress Emotional stress Fear of losing equity Fear of losing the property Fear of letting go of a family icon No other profession has the multiplicity of emotions and conflicting feelings of a person who is letting go of such a personal possession as their home!Whatever else you do to lessen the strain and stress from your work, it is wise to keep a positive thought.As in a hike, life does not care what you suffer along the way. Life will end one way or another, just like that hike, and it is to your benefit and health to take the journey knowing that you will reach your final destination regardless of how the trip went. Why not make it as stress free as you can make it?After all, it is a choice you make about how you feel regarding your interactions with people that will determine your well being in the end. Feel The Bliss! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005 Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill: MY REAL ESTATE SHOWS:

#NOZillow Selling Your Home To An ‘iBuyer’ Will Cost You Thousands #NOOpenDoor #NOOfferPad

Sun, 14 Jul 2019 - This is a Re-Blog of a very timely post by Chris B. Johnson for those of us who see the forest for the trees with Zillow and their kind who are going after the i-buyers out there lurking in the shadows, looking for the cheap way to buy/sell their homes. I think it is going to happen faster than any of us thought; we will see those predators swooping in on our market-places, and we will see many take the bait. This post will give you a sense of just why it will not be a force to contend with but a very weak and annoying little insect who just wants more blood. It is impossible to precisely compare iBuyer offers to actual home sale prices, but our investigation of a few dozen transactions comes close; “iBuyers,” the new real-estate companies that buy homes directly from customers, have grabbed media attention, investor dollars and consumer acceptance. Their approach offers a seemingly modern solution to the often laborious and invasive process of selling a home. But that convenience comes at a cost. A MarketWatch investigation of multiple transactions involving iBuyers shows that their offers would net their customers, on average, 11% less than owners who choose to sell their homes on the open market, when fees and other costs are considered, translating to tens of thousands of dollars lost. The findings also revealed considerably more uncertainty around the transactions — the scope of inspections, for instance — than the iBuyer model purports to offer consumers who are looking for ease. This data come from a series of inquiries involving a real-estate startup called Knock. As MarketWatch has previously reported, Knock is often lumped into the category of iBuyers, but its model is quite different from theirs. Knock advances homeowners cash to buy their next home and, once the customers are settled, sells the previous home. Customers pay a fee for the overlap period. See: Sell your home with a Realtor or an algorithm? Maybe both. In many cases, Knock solicits bids from such pure-play iBuyers as Offerpad and Opendoor when it’s ready to sell its customers’ homes. In most cases, however, Knock determines it’s preferable that its agents list a property on the open market rather than accept an iBuyer offer. That means its set of customer experiences are a natural experiment: a sort of Darwin’s Galapagos for any industry observer curious about how iBuyer offers stack up to actual sales prices. Using a combination of public-records searches, conversations with Knock customers, and data collected from the company itself, MarketWatch was able to create a data set of 26 sales. Most took place in or around Atlanta, the city where Knock started and where it, Opendoor and Offerpad have a strong presence. A few transactions took place in the Raleigh-Durham metro area in North Carolina, and a few were in Charlotte. In most cases, MarketWatch was able to match the sales price to an offer from both Opendoor and Offerpad, but in some cases only one iBuyer offer was received. This is not “big data,” to be sure, but there are clear patterns in the information recorded. The table below shows the averages for each city. In the 35 listed comparisons — that is, a completed transaction matched to an iBuyer offer — the instant offer was higher in four cases.Notably, not only are iBuyer offers generally lower than the ultimate sale prices, but their fees are often higher as well. Knock always charges a 6% commission for selling the existing home, but fees charged by Opendoor and Offerpad vary widely. (So do commissions across the real-estate world: If a homeowner hired a full-service brokerage he or she could expect to pay about 5% to 6%. The national average in 2018, according to industry source REALTrends, was 5%.) Jeremy Ano used Knock to sell a house in Acworth, Ga., in suburban Atlanta, this past spring. He and his wife run a business and home school their kids, and they’d outgrown the house. But he dreaded having to clean up and get two kids and two pets out the door every time someone wanted to tour the house. Ano, who describes himself as someone who likes to do lots of research — including an exploration of how much he could expect to fetch for his home based on recent comparables — initially reached out on his own to Zillow, Offerpad and Opendoor. “First of all, they gave us lowball offers,” Ano told MarketWatch. “But that still didn’t solve our problem of where do we move to? We’d essentially be homeless.” He knew that in the ultra-competitive Atlanta market sellers would be unwilling to accept an offer that was contingent on his selling his own home. Ano received an offer of $248,747 from Offerpad. Several weeks later, citing “recent market activity,” the company sent another offer, unsolicited, of $256,459. Offerpad wanted a 7.5% commission. Opendoor offered $278,300 — less an 11.5% commission. After a Knock agent listed the home, it sold for $297,749. Once Knock’s 6% fee was taken out, and a seller concession of $10,000 was granted during the inspection process, and about $7,000 was spent out of pocket on repairs, the Anos netted about $262,000.Repairs and other prep work is where comparing offers gets hazy. The Ano home was 23 years old, and it needed a fair amount of work. While iBuyer offers are often also known as “instant offers,” they are anything but. In fact, they’re always contingent on a home inspection, which some observers believe are carried out in a way that squeezes profit from sellers. “If you’re comparing iBuyers’ offers it’s very black-and-white,” Knock CEO and co-founder Sean Black said. “The front-end stuff is very upfront. The repairs are the gotcha.” A home inspector with an incentive to, in Black’s words, “cover his butt,” in the eyes of the iBuyer that hired him, will almost always build a lengthier list of upgrades needed for the home to sell than a real-estate agent might in order to potentially reduce the final sales price. Indeed, Ano said he felt nickel-and-dimed. “The kinds of repairs that they were hitting us with, I felt, were very petty. They were subtracting a large amount for petty things, and had huge fees on top of that. If I’m going to sell to an iBuyer why would I pay [what amounts to] the traditional Realtor fee?” (Actual seller concessions are taken into account in our calculations, in determining how much each Knock customer netted, although it’s impossible to know how much any iBuyer home inspection would have cost the customer in either concessions or out-of-pocket repairs.) It “sometimes happens, we know,” she said, that an open-market price is more attractive. It’s worth noting that the modern real estate landscape offers consumers all kinds of models for listing homes and closing on transactions, and for some people, like the Ano family, a fast close isn’t always the best option. With iBuyer, you get one offer, with a good Realtor you can get multiple offers and “Why wouldn’t you get multiple offers?” it drives the price up! RateMyAgent VC 5 Star Rated Realtor ChrisBJohnsonRealtor on YouTube. Sell Your Home For More For More and Pay Less Using A 5 Star Rated REALTOR®. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005 Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill: MY REAL ESTATE SHOWS:


Mon, 01 Jul 2019 - 10 YEARS OF CHANGE...ON THE RIGHT TRACK??Jeff Dowler has challenged all of us to come up with 10 or more changes that we have experienced; life-altering in my case and to this day I am not complaining.The year was 2010: I began writing about my blogging; I was three years into blogging and I loved it!! That is when I took the long view that I was on my way to writing a book and I wrote "BLOGGING MY WAY TO A BOOK" in April of 2010. It has been my focus all along but I did get waylaid by the issues that I saw with the way real estate was so negatively affected by the internet tech companies that were rearing their ugly heads. At that time Facebook was a questionable character in my opinion and I have only grown in my concern about this social media platform. It was a very providential move to write this post back then. Look at the last year to see what I mean.The year was 2011: I wrote a post called "THE MONKEY ON YOUR BACK MAY JUST BE SOCIAL MEDIA" and I  intentionally drew a parallel of the use of social media to the addictive behavior of drug addicts... The post was featured here on AR and I have to date over 6000 hits on that post. It seems it hit a nerve. This was the beginning of my venture into trying to call out the "wasted lives" of the technology universe, seemingly trying to destroy human beings natural and normal interconnectedness. It was the start of my examination of a Zillow universe as it began to threaten all of us in the real estate profession. "PUTTING YOUR "LOCAL KNOWLEDGE" TO WORK FOR YOU" was another featured post that I wrote in 2011. It was the beginning of my focus on being a local expert; this was to begin to prepare for the onslaught of technology companies who were beginning to sneak in the back door of the brokerage business. Zillow was the main company whose stated goal was to put all real estate brokerages out of business--that was when they first opened the company after closing down all travel agencies through the use of their company "EXPEDIA". The owners were the same and they had sold EXPEDIA for billions and began the biggest challenge of all: Do the same thing to real estate brokerage!The year was 2012: "ON BECOMING A LOCAL EXPERT" was written in 2012 and this was the beginning of the end of real estate as we know it here in The Hamptons. Zillow had begun to command a huge commitment of advertising dollars from agents all over the country. Little thought was given to the idea that they were not a brokerage and therefore they did not have to follow the laws of individual states and the advertising requirements that make it a violation to advertise someone else's exclusive listings. More would surface about that law in 2018 when New York State threatened agents that very large fines would be instituted if they were found to be in violation of the advertising restrictions. The states would not be able to fine Zillow-but the agents--YES!The year was 2013: This was the bottom for me in real estate. I made very little money that year and was forced to sell my home. I listed it and Zillow pounced on it and made certain that the Zestimate was almost one half of the real market value of the house. I ended up selling it at a huge discount just to get it sold. My worst year ever in sales and in the price that I was able to get for my home. My local posts were getting a lot of attention and it ends up that my blog posts on local knowledge were the best way for me to get listings: "TELL ME A STORY...A Story About Local Information"The year was 2014: Turns out, 2014 was one of my better years. I was teamed up with a developer and he was buying houses through me and then listing them with me for sale after they were built. It was a good match up and this was the year that prices began escalating beyond any reasonable level. It became impossible to buy a house in Southampton Village under $3mil. This is the year, however, that I stopped almost all my blogging on AR. Trulia bought out the database and I could not find my blog posts about Zillow after that. They owned it for a couple of years and I started blogging again in 2017.The year was 2015: I have been very ill and have missed a lot of work. This was another year of almost no income from real estate. I have started to write my book and it is impossible to spend time in the office with my ill health. I was hopeful that my writing would pay off and gave thanks that I began blogging when I did so that I was prepared to devote lots of time to creating a well-written book.The year was 2016: My struggles have been so monumental that I find myself in a very bad place indeed! I had sold my home so I rented one in 2013 that I found out was filled with deadly mold and free-floating asbestos in 2017. My budget was such that I was not living in the best conditions. I got very sick and in fact, was told that if I had not found out about the mold, I would be dead by the year 2020. I got out in the nick of time and am healing but it has been hellish and I still have some of the symptoms and may have them for the rest of my life.The year was 2017: My focus became so Z focused that I rarely wrote about anything else for the last three years. I still did local posts but the common theme for me was the impact that Z was having on my real estate business and how the brokerage business was not paying enough attention to what they (Z)  plan on doing...I became a pariah to most of my fellow agents as I warned and warned again about the threat this technology company was to our profession. "KILLING BROKERAGE...How Long Before Zillow Succeeds??" was written in 2017 and I was watching as my fellow agents began paying record amounts of money to the lead generator; one paid $6000 a month and I heard there were others who were paying even more just to get a handful of leads.The year was 2018: Suddenly last summer--That is when Zillow bought out all the local databases here in The Hamptons, including our internal platform--they bought out Streeteasy first and then they bought and renamed a public site as its replacement. HREO had been The Hamptons "MLS" so to speak but now it was something else entirely. Part of that deal with HREO included Realnet, our internal database. Then Zillow shut it down so we went into 2019, early spring, with NOTHING to work with. They literally were trying to put us out of business, just as I have always warned! I have had hundreds of agents here call me to say "You were right all along!" and "We should have listened to you!" Now, all agents are in a struggle for their professional lives...Between the shut down of all our data, the prices in this market went so high that the public now turns away from The Hamptons, waiting for a major price drop. But nothing prepared the public for the onslaught of the national websites who have appeared here now--destroying the rental market. This is a summer resort and most people who own homes here have planned on a summer rental business that in many cases helped them pay the mortgage and property taxes--NOT ANYMORE! Now, these homeowners have to become weekend, 2-3 day rental landlords. No long term rentals anymore! Air B&B and VRBO, Zillow and Outeast have no understanding of this rare market...and they have begun to destroy the infrastructure with the masses of the weekend, overnight and other transient renters.  Our waterways are in trouble; shellfish have been killed off and there is a green scum forming on the fresh waterways from the nitrogen gathering downstream--raw sewage is contaminating like never before.The year is 2019: The real estate market is dead in the Hamptons. High-end houses are sitting for years before a price is accepted and that is usually a fraction of the asking price when it sells! The average homeowner is either going to foreclosure or trying to sell their houses at a fraction of what they may have gotten 3 years ago. Nothing is selling so it is a lost cause and a very frightening one at that! The earliest families have pretty much left the area and all the potato farms have been sold off to developers. It is a very sad state of affairs. I wanted to write about them so that they will not be forgotten. So, I am back at square one. I am ready to publish my book about local life here in the Hamptons. It is called: "THE HAMPTONS...Secret Lives" and it is fiction but it will enlighten those who think The Hamptons is only for the wealthy and the celebrity. I have included two chapters from the book in this post and I look to be published sometime this year, 2019. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005 Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill: MY REAL ESTATE SHOWS: