When’s Too Soon to List My Villebois Home for Sale?

 

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‘When’s too soon to list my Villebois house for sale?’ is a common homeseller question. To be clear, there are many factors that influence a good time to sell. When considering the best time to sell your home, several factors stand out. One is the amount of homeseller competition based on predictable seasonality, such as Springtime, when many homesellers place their property on the market. Another related, but independent factor is competing homeseller inventory, which can fluctuate wildly. Curious about factors to consider when timing your home sale? Find out more…in this insightful edition of the Oregon Real Estate Podcast!

Click here or on the above ‘play’ button to hear the audio podcast presentation of this feature article.

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Combining high homebuyer motivation & reduced competition can ignite activity

Each season of the year has some built in advantages, even during the holidays. But especially enticing for home sellers hoping to beat the Spring rush is the dynamite combination of highly motivated buyers, plus reduced seller competition. Speaking of competition, it’s helpful to understand that when the balance of more sellers enters the equation, buyers have more of a choice and are in a better position to pit one seller against another in search of their best deal.

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A Spike in New Listings Increases Homeseller Competition from March-September

Charting Your Course
A month-by-month new listings chart illustrates the seasonality of real estate. In Oregon, the months between October through February provide the lowest homeseller competition, with fewest homes placed on the market. This means March through September is typically our ‘hottest’ time for home sales. Does this mean if you don’t have your home on the market before March, you’re ‘out of luck?’ No, because seller competition is but one element to consider.

That’s because housing inventory fluctuates, irrespective of season. And depending on how many homebuyers are looking, demand can be considered relative. We can help adjust for seasonality to better determine buyer demand by using a buyer/seller ratio. For example, typical housing demand in a particular community or neighborhood might be 100 buyers interested in 50 homes in June, a 2 to 1 ratio, then fall to 50 buyers showing interest in 25 homes in January, also a 2 to 1 ratio. Under such a scenario, relative demand would be the same, which should result in a similar amount of real estate activity.

Yet while relative housing demand may be a functional rule of thumb in theory, it doesn’t take into account one other extremely important factor: Motivation. That’s because in less active periods, homebuyers frequently have a more urgent need to buy, or they would be looking during the more usual times of Spring and Summer. Looking for a house in the bad weather typically indicates a higher-than-usual need to purchase. In addition, some buyers beginning in April or May have the luxury of months to ponder their next move.  

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‘Seize The Gray’
To address the question of how soon is too soon to list your Villebois property for sale, the short answer is that it’s often never too early to place your home on the market…for good reason. That’s because even in the midst of Winter, highly motivated homebuyers often make a home purchase their New Year resolution and start looking early…sometimes before Christmas.

Some homebuyers take a week or two off during the holidays, but beating the Spring homeseller rush gives you an early advantage against a very large number of competing homesellers who will be ‘up and running’ during Oregon’s earliest good weather. This clever strategy places your property before these highly motivated buyers before a glut of competing homesellers goes head-to-head against you.

But the good news is that in order to take advantage of seasonal ‘soft spots’ in seller competition, homesellers needn’t place their properties on the market during the holiday season, or even immediately adjacent. There’s plenty of ‘gray area’ to go around throughout the year and that’s typically enough to help make your house stand out even more from the competition. Navigating around May through August is usually enough to help counter higher-than-usual competing listing activity. And if you happen to notice lower than usual housing inventory, that can be a big help for homesellers, too, regardless of when you sell…including between May and August in Oregon. That’s because low housing inventory helps sellers.

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Time Can Be Used to Your Advantage, But Be Careful

Timing Your Sale—Without Unpleasant Surprises
If the goal is to get a ‘jump start’ in selling your Villebois home with less competition, consider several factors. This includes getting an honest evaluation of your property by a licensed Wilsonville Realtor. But first, ask your agent for an honest opinion. Not sure you want an honest opinion? Check out our previous podcast and feature length article ‘Can You Handle An Honest Real Estate Agent?’ here

The experience and objectivity of an expert Realtor is difficult to overstate. Take repairs, for example. If you truly want to maximize your return and your home has some needed repairs, it’s unrealistic to expect buyers to absorb, for example, that complete spendy roof repair ‘hit’ by themselves by coming in with a full price offer on your property. Before listing your property what you’ll need is a professional analysis of necessary repairs that could make a difference in discouraging homebuyers. And aside from repairs, sometimes it’s what you don’t do that can make a difference. Like maybe don’t put in new carpet or have the exterior painted, if it’s going to push your price up considerably. Normally, carpet and paint are frequently good ideas to have completed. Yet few updates provide a 100% return, so consult your Realtor for details.

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School Cycles Can Affect Buyer Activity

The ‘School Year’ Equation
Some buyers aren’t the likeliest candidates for ‘off season’ marketing by homesellers. This can include families with children, a significant homebuyer pool for many. That’s because many families with kids begin their home hunt around the end of school in late Spring, usually settling into their next home by September. On the other hand, much of the impact of losing these buyers using ‘off season’ marketing depends on the property type you’re selling. Are you selling a condo three floors up, or a significantly larger home? Big homes with fair sized yards, or those located close to parks are often better matches for larger families. Conversely, if you decide to sell a smaller home out of season, marketing to other suitable buyer groups can substitute for larger families, with significant success. Good prospects for smaller or more urban homes might include ‘Baby Boomers,’ professionals, singles, or ’empty-nesters’ with grown children.

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Now You See It…
Regardless of season, one interesting real estate phenomena can occur when buyer interest suddenly increases for a home that’s been sitting on the market for a while, with little buyer interest. Then suddenly: ‘Whoosh,’ multiple offers on the table! What could possibly create such a positive shift for homesellers? Buyer activity can spike quickly once a competing property is sold, or otherwise off the market. Price changes aside, sometimes it’s because the most similar competing home is now off the market. This has the effect of buyers then turning their attention to the next closest suitable replacement and the ‘substitution principle’ in action. That’s where the maximum value of a property is often achieved, due to the cost of acquiring an equivalent substitute property with similar use and features.

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Oregon Realtor Roy Widing

Thinking About Selling Your Villebois Home?
Go with professionalism, experience and results. Contact your Oregon Real Estate Podcast host, Roy with Certified Realty, with 30 years of Oregon real estate expertise.  For a free homeseller consultation, call Roy at (971) 258-4822, or use the convenient contact form below. 

Holiday Real Estate in Villebois

Common wisdom suggests Oregon home sales should decline during the holidays. At first glance, this makes sense, given Oregon’s less favorable weather, less daylight and a general aversion to adding yet one more task to an already overloaded holiday schedule. This is especially true around Villebois. However, there’s a compelling case that the time surrounding Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s is among the most active seasons of all…and for a variety of reasons you might not have considered.

Click here or on the ‘above play’ button to hear this podcast episode.

Holiday Househunt Hysteria

But is there really any truth behind such a counter-intuitive dynamic, or is it simply a lot of hype? And what possible rationale could there be to suggest that both home buyers and home sellers are more energized and ready to ‘sign on the dotted line,’ during the holiday season, compared to other times of year? Holiday House Hunt Hysteria: Hot or Hoax? Find out more…in this helpful Oregon real estate podcast!  

Oregon Homeselling in Winter
Home for the Holidays

Why Winter is Special
While there’s a case to be made for home buying and home selling in each of the four seasons, Winter is actually one of the best times sellers can have their home on the market and when buyers might get their best deal.

Oregon Housing Inventory Chart
3 Year Graph of Oregon New Listing Inventory: Housing Supply Drops During the Holidays

Sellers Face Fewer Competing Properties
Viewed over multiple year periods, Oregon housing inventory is often at its lowest during the holidays. This unique situation presents some special opportunities, especially for sellers, where one advantage is less competition from other home sellers. This can tend to make a ho-hum market good, or a good market hot. 

It’s more convenient to sell in the Spring and Summer, especially in Oregon. The weather is usually better, flowers are blooming and with plenty of home buyers looking. The bottom line is that it’s generally more of a ‘target-rich environment’ for sellers seeking buyers, who enjoy the fact that there are more homes to consider.

Yet while it’s easier and more convenient to sell in sunny weather and there are more buyers looking then, this convenience often comes at the cost of increased competition from other sellers. Another factor is that not all buyers who look during Spring are motivated. Conversely, Winter home sellers can expect less competition from like-minded sellers competing for buyers. And the buyers looking around the holiday? They are generally very motivated. So just like the successful contrarian investor who sells when everyone else is not, avoiding a ‘herd mentality’ can pay off with a better deal, whether you’re buying or selling.

Motivation
For a home buyer to be looking around the holidays and for a home seller to be selling during this same season, there’s usually a good reason. Otherwise, there are plenty of excuses for choosing a different time of the year to buy or sell. Let’s take a closer look at what can be some motivating factors for both buyers and sellers. 

Motivated Homesellers
For home buyers to get a better-than-average deal on their home purchase, much can hinge on one main factor. Namely, how motivated is the seller? For home buyers fortunate to locate their dream property with a very willing seller, that’s akin to receiving some extra, very nice presents under the Christmas tree.

What drives homeseller motivation? Sometimes a seller is eager to close out an estate, or benefit from an end-of-year tax situation. Another reason is seller-fatigue, where the goal is to simply end the process and move forward with one’s life. For some, homeselling can seem like living in a fishbowl. When sellers tire of the process, buyers can sometimes find themselves working with a grateful seller.

Motivated Homebuyers
Is your idea of fun getting into a cold car on drizzly nights to look at houses in the dark? Probably not…unless you just got a job transfer. Or a nice raise. Or you received an inheritance. Or you just added another child to your family. Or you really want to get out of your tiny apartment. It’s helpful for prospective Winter sellers to know that corporate relocations and family changes can occur anytime and estates are settled year around, as well. These all add up to some good reasons why prospective home buyers hit the road in the dead of Winter in search of their next home.

By The Numbers
Here are ten reasons why the holiday season can be a very good time for real estate.

  1. It’s A Unique Market.
    Homes often sell faster and for more money in Winter. One way to understand why is by considering a motorist with a flat tire in bad weather. That motorist has an urgent need and is less likely to haggle, or even seriously consider less expensive options in order to meet an immediate need. Winter home buyers can experience the same kind of urgency and this helps to explain the premium that homes can command during the real estate ‘off season.’ Another way to look at the Winter market dynamic is if you want to buy snowshoes in July (at least in Oregon), expect to pay more, since availability is typically lower.
    Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  2. High Quality Buyers.
    Because home touring is generally less convenient, there tend to be fewer ‘Lookie-Lou’s’ during the Winter. This means Oregon Winter homesellers have fewer buyers tracking dirt into their house, with less energy spent preparing for real estate ‘tire-kickers.’

    Oregon Real Estate Podcast
    Real Estate Competition Can Be Strong
  3. Less Competition.
    Let’s face facts: It’s convenient to sell in the Spring and Summer, especially in Oregon. The weather is usually better, flowers are blooming and with plenty of home buyers looking, it’s a ‘target-rich environment.’  Yet while it’s easier and more convenient to sell in sunny weather, this convenience often comes at the cost of increased competition from other sellers.
    Conversely, Winter home sellers can expect fewer like-minded sellers competing for buyers. Just like the successful contrarian investor who sells when everyone else is not, avoiding a ‘herd mentality’ can pay off with a higher price and faster sale. Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  4. Higher Motivation.
    Whether you’re a home buyer or home seller, it’s simply takes more effort to be either during Winter in Oregon. This means the party on the other side of the negotiating table may very well be even more motivated than you are…a good situation to be in when you’re involved in a real estate transaction.


    Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  5. The Hunt for Red December: Getting a ‘Jump’ on the New Year’s Competition.
    The best time to get your property on the market could be when everyone else isn’t. Placing your home for sale in Winter gives you access to hyper-motivated buyers who have made home buying a New Year’s resolution. That way, when these eager home buyers begin their ‘hunt,’ your house will be a prime ‘target,’ visible as Rudolph’s nose. So if your home is market-ready and available to tour leading up to the New Year, expect to tap into this highly focused ‘pent up demand.’
    Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  6. Homes Look Inviting During the Holidays. Who doesn’t enjoy the happy glow of Christmas lights or other holiday decorations, along with the pleasant smell of a Christmas tree, fresh-baked pumpkin pie, cinnamon buns, or a vanilla candle? Homes often look their most inviting during the holidays. Oregon Real Estate PodcastPlus, given the pleasant, even emotional attachment so many have during that time of year, expect some home buyers to fully embrace the holiday theme of ‘Peace on earth, good will toward men.’ As a result, such positive feelings can spill over into the home selling process, making it smoother.

    Oregon Real Estate
    Homes Can Look Especially Stunning During the Holidays
  7. Lawn & Landscaping is Virtually a Non-Issue. Forget to mow your lawn? No worries. Some buyers won’t care if they tour your property and it’s covered in snow, raining hard, or after sundown. Buyer landscaping expectations can be quite reasonable during Winter months in Oregon.Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  8. When Your Home Sells, You May Buy With Less Competition. Few home sellers stop to consider that given good timing with their sale, their own future home purchase may also benefit from similar, unique seasonality. So depending on a variety of market factors where and when you buy, home sellers can sometimes take advantage of lower Winter activity levels to successfully negotiate with highly motivated sellers.This is because some sellers place their home on the market during Winter not for convenience, or desire to maximize their selling price, but from genuine need. In other words, they are highly motivated. Such home sellers could therefore provide a good buying opportunity.Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  9.  Movers Are Easier to Schedule. Competition for moving companies can be challenging during the real estate ‘high season.’ As a result, expect less difficulty scheduling with moving companies in Winter. Oregon Real Estate Podcast
  10.  You Can Dictate Which Days & Times Are Available for Showings. As a home seller, you typically have control over tour times and dates for your home. This includes during Winter months. Given holiday-related gatherings and events, buyers are likely to understand their need to schedule a tour of your home. Your Realtor can help by specifying days and times your home is available for showings. For example, you could have your house available for tours on Saturdays from 2 to 5pm, weekday mornings after 9:00am, or between 5 and 8pm weekday evenings.

Thinking about buying or selling a Villebois property? Use the convenient form below to contact Certified Realty for a FREE consultation!

 

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Villebois Housing Market Update

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New figures from the Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS) are now available on our greater Wilsonville housing market, which includes Villebois. In short, the positive trend continues. Read the full Portland metro area real estate report here, with Wilsonville/Villebois area market information highlighted below.

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Inventory A Factor
A low supply of available homes continues to drive prices higher around Villebois. That’s because a market inventory of between three and six months is considered a ‘normal’ housing backlog. For more than two years, our regional home supply has been below three months.

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Click Above Image to Enlarge

Local Homes By The Numbers
These new numbers reveal home prices around Wilsonville and Villebois are up 6.7% over the past year. The average home sale market time for our area is now 30 days. The average selling price so far this year is $412,400, with the most recent monthly average home sale price coming in at $434,400.

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Selling?
If you’ve considered the sale of your Villebois home, taking advantage of our present ‘seller’s market’ could be a smart move. Contact our VilleboisHomes.com sponsor, Wilsonville’s own Certified Realty using the form below for a free consultation, or call 503-682-1083.

Villebois Homeselling Costs

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If you’ve considered selling your Villebois home, one question you may have asked yourself is ‘What it will cost?’

Though homeselling costs can sometimes vary, you can be prepared. Click here for helpful information in audio podcast format to make your Villebois homeselling experience easier, or press the ‘play’ button below.

Can I Trust My Villebois Realtor?

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Most Realtors Are Thankfully Law Abiding

Before entering into a business relationship, it’s helpful to know your real estate agent is nice, patient, available when needed…and honest. So while many of us assume we’re ‘safe’ in the hands of our doctor, attorney or pastor, what about your Villebois Realtor? For the audio format of this presentation, find out more here, or use the player below.

Due Diligence
Sadly, as seen in this news report, not all real estate agents are trustworthy. However, some preliminary work has already been performed by the state of Oregon confirming a real estate agent is sufficiently trustworthy to work with the public. These include a state screening, which involves a criminal background check, fingerprinting and mug shot.  This data is submitted for review by the Oregon Real Estate Agency (OREA), which also provides regular updates about investigations in their insightful publication Oregon Real Estate Agency News Journal.  

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Robber John Dillinger Proved Crooks Wear Ties

Of special note is the OREA ‘Administrative Action’ section, which provides information about decisions regarding Oregon real estate violations. The resulting consequences to untrustworthy real estate agents could include a reprimand, license suspension, license revocation and/or a civil penalty. So while no screening process is foolproof (as witnessed by crimes committed by doctors, attorneys and other professionals), the state of Oregon does considerable due diligence to vet real estate agents.

As part of the application process to become an Oregon real estate agent, any felony and misdemeanor convictions and arrests must be disclosed. The disclosure requirement is fairly high, because in addition to any criminal activity, also requiring disclosure are any administrative proceedings, plus civil and even financial issues. For example, if a prospective Oregon real estate agent has an unsatisfied judgment or bankruptcy, each must be disclosed.

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Whom Can You Trust?

A Matter of Trust
Trust is an important factor when buying or selling real estate. Thankfully, trusting your Villebois Realtor is not super risky. That’s because consumer surveys consistently reflect a high level of satisfaction with Realtor performance.  One study by Forbes magazine revealed 96% satisfaction for the real estate industry. So if many real estate agents were dishonest, we could expect that figure to be much lower. 

This doesn’t mean blindly signing off on every suggestion one receives from their Realtor. But obsessively hand wringing over transaction minutiae is one sure way to make the process less enjoyable. A recommended approach is for Villebois homebuyers and homesellers to carefully read all documents, ask plenty of questions and work with a recommended professional with a solid track record. 

Trust For Homesellers
Looking at trust from a seller’s perspective, for starters there’s significant trust needed to deal with buyers. For instance, trust is needed to allow strangers in your house. There’s also trust in taking your property off the market, in the hope a sale will go through. And trust in finding a replacement home.

Trust For Homebuyers
Trust is needed for homebuyers, too. Trust is necessary in working with a lender and that the discomfort of prequalifying will be worthwhile. Trust they’ll find a home they like and can afford. Trust their lender will come through.

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Trust For Both Homebuyers & Homesellers
So what do Villebois homebuyers and homesellers share in common? Trust. And there is perhaps no greater trust that Villebois homebuyers and sellers have in common than their Realtor.

After all, your Villebois Realtor is someone you expect to be there to help navigate your way through what is frequently the largest financial transaction of a lifetime. Similar to an attorney or priest, Realtors are expected to keep confidences.

But let’s first look at a few situations which underscore why it’s important to be able to trust your Villebois real estate agent.

  1. Trusting your Realtor means you don’t have to second guess suggestions you receive. Let’s take pricing your home, for example. If you can’t trust your agent to provide meaningful comparable home activity information, how can you possibly expect him or her to advise you once an offer comes in?
  2. Trusting your Realtor means you can breathe easier with less stress. Buying or selling a home is considered to be a particularly stressful activity. In addition, most homebuyers and homesellers don’t want to take on real estate as a second job, especially when making a house move. So expect that by having your bases well-covered by a professional you can believe, you’ll find the entire process far less taxing. If a Realtor is ‘pushy’ and won’t listen to your concerns, it’s likely a good time to find a new one.
  3. Trusting your Realtor means you can access his or her reliable resources.
    Speaking of taxing, if you need recommendations for an experienced 1031 tax exchange professional, or real estate attorney, or home inspector, or mortgage lender, or home repair contractor, expect those recommendations to be even more valuable from a trustworthy agent. 
  4. Trusting your Realtor means you can focus. There’s usually enough to deal with throughout the course of any real estate transaction. Dealing with lenders, appraisers, inspectors, contractors, title companies and the like can be overwhelming. As a result, you’re more likely to be far more effective if you can concentrate on what you’re best at, while having your real estate agent handle what he or she is best at.
  5. Trusting your Realtor means more time. Just like you can expect to have more time to go fishing if you hire a contractor to build your new deck, working with a trustworthy real estate agent allows you to do other, more enjoyable tasks than scheduling a home inspection, constantly dealing with escrow details, or meeting an appraiser.     
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Chemical Equation for the Explosive Called TNT

Relationship Chemistry
Trust is easier when there is good ‘chemistry’ between a Realtor and their clients. When seeking an agent to refer for out of area homebuyers or homesellers, there are many things I can readily confirm. These include an agent’s years in business, designations earned, coverage area, plus areas of specialty like homes, farms or commercial property. 

As a result, I’m frequently able to locate a very good Realtor to ‘match’ with an out of state homebuyer or seller and it’s not always difficult.  That said, the one challenging element to know with certainty is the ‘chemistry’ that even a highly qualified, out-of-area Realtor will have with a new client.

People are different and that includes real estate agents. Most times relationships work out swimmingly with the referred agent. On rare occasions, it doesn’t work out. But going in and at least on paper, the homebuyer or homeseller who interviews a previously unknown, yet vetted Realtor, knows the agent is qualified and experienced, along with some important other facts about him or her. Plus, knowing these facts up front is typically less risky than taking a ‘shot in the dark’ with an unknown agent.

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Does The Company Matter?
Because agents are independent contractors, the individual Realtor is who typically matters most. After all, you don’t expect a faceless corporation to answer your late night question, or go over the details of your settlement statement. For example, I don’t care that much about what hospital I go to, but I want to have a say in the surgeon who will do the operating. Similarly, it’s the individual agent who is in a position to make the most difference, whether from a small or large office. However, longevity of a real estate firm can be helpful in determining that they are probably doing something right.  So if a company you’re considering has been in existence for half a century or more, they’re likely not a ‘fly by night’ outfit.  

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Alternative Agent Finding Methods
One of the ‘little secrets’ about real estate online or via magazines is that they’re paid ads. Realtors frequently buy what are known as ‘leads’ online. Examples include Zillow and even Realtor.com. Sometimes this is done by the agent buying incoming inquiries regarding a specific zip code. Sometimes, the agent pays for better placement on a real estate website page in order to stand out.

If you decide to use a magazine or the Internet to locate an agent, it may be best to consider that as a first step of information gathering. Promotional materials can be misleading and if carefully crafted, can leave out a lot of important information. For example, if an agent is brand new, he or she may focus on how many agents their company employs, personal community involvement like donations to charity, or sponsorships. While these may be nice facts, they may not have a lot to do with the agent’s proficiency, professionalism, or trustworthiness. 

Referrals Are Built on Trust
One good way to find a trustworthy Realtor is to ask people you trust and get a referral. The ‘proof is in the pudding,’ so if your friend or family member is happy with a specific real estate agent, there’s a good chance for a similar repeat performance.

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What Color Hat Does Your Realtor Wear?

White Hat or Black Hat?
One area where certain real estate agents are sometimes revealed to be wearing either a ‘white hat’ or ‘black hat’ is in the area known as ‘dual agency’ or ‘disclosed limited agency.’ This is a situation when an agent with a listed property also works with the buyer. To be clear, most Realtors are aboveboard and honest, continually looking out for their client’s best interests.

That said, the challenge to some agents comes when the agent attempts to ‘elbow aside’ other buyers, their agents and/or offers, in order to push his or her offer through. Why on earth would a Realtor push hard to get their offer accepted, since it’s all about simply selling the house, isn’t it? Not exactly. That’s because if the listing Realtor also sells your home, they typically get paid more.

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Agency Pamphlet

Dual agency is well known as a potential minefield among ethically challenged agents and as a result, the State of Oregon, National Association of Realtors and Oregon Association of Realtors all have rules in place to help prevent its abuse.

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Dueling with Dual Agency
In Realtor circles, the topic of dual agency has proponents and detractors. As a result, don’t expect every real estate agent you run into to have the same opinion. In reality, dual agency can be a very good thing, as seen in our previous article titled “5 ‘Insider Oregon Real Estate Tips.’ There, the topic Having A ‘Double Agent’ Can Be A Good Thing ranks as item #1  out of the five items listed. The advantages to having an agent on both sides of a real estate transaction are clear.

The result, good or bad, can significantly depend on your agent’s trustworthiness. For example, hurriedly accepting the first offer can work out. That’s because sometimes the first offer is the best offer. Alternatively, acting without as much available information as possible sometimes comes at significant expense to the seller, who may be urged to quickly accept the offer their listing (seller’s) agent has written. The problem is that the listing Realtor can be expected to reasonably know how much activity there is on the property for sale. Again, trust is key here.

Plus, given the amount of agent and buyer activity, along with the quality of inquiries (such as highly motivated, qualified buyers), the seller’s Realtor may have even heard comments from other agents about possible future offers. So by pushing his or her own offer, is the listing Realtor providing the seller with all known information in order to truly serve the seller’s best interest? Sometimes the only person to seemingly know the answer is the listing agent. This Harvard Business Review article notes why this can be a problem:

“Take cheating. Claremont McKenna psychologist Piercarlo Valdesolo and I have conducted many experiments on the topic, and one surprising (if disheartening) result we have found, time and again, is that 90% of people—most of whom identify themselves as morally upstanding—will act dishonestly to benefit themselves if they believe they won’t get caught. Why? Anonymity means no long-term cost will be exacted. Even more startling is the fact that most of those who cheat also refuse to characterize their actions as untrustworthy; they rationalize their behavior even while condemning the same in others…”

More than once, an ethical real estate agent working with a highly qualified and motivated buyer has inquired about a property, even written up that buyer’s offer, only to have the listing agent hurriedly put together his or her own offer and submit it to the seller in order to ‘tie up’ the property (and presumably make more money), before other offers can be considered. It’s a fact of the real estate business and as a result, unethical agents develop a reputation and are often viewed warily by others in the business.

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The ‘Commission Effect’
If all these elements don’t sufficiently complicate the task of finding a trustworthy Realtor, there is also a phenomenon you might call the ‘commission effect.’ This is outlined in a previous article titled ‘5 little Known Realtor Insider Tips:’ Realtors Can Calculate Their Paycheck by Viewing a Property Listing Sheet. This means that for agents truly focused on maximizing their payday, you might expect them to guide you toward homes that pay a higher commission structure. However, the listing sheet is typically only seen by multiple listing members. Thankfully, most Realtors simply don’t do business in this manner.

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The Bottom Line
President Ronald Reagan sometimes used the term ‘Trust, but verify’ during his high level negotiations. This old Russian proverb could be a  helpful approach to grant you peace of mind in finding a trustworthy agent for your next real estate transaction. Do your research and ask family and friends for Realtor references. Be open and honest, then make your best decision based on relevant, reliable information for your situation.  

Do you have a real estate question? Contact your Villebois professionals, Wilsonville’s very own Certified Realty today for a free consultation using the convenient form below, or call (800) 637-1950.

Finding Your Villebois Real Estate Superhero

To adults and kids alike, superheroes seem to have time-tested appeal. Some think it’s because they look different. Indeed, some superheroes dress uniquely. Others believe superheroes represent the ‘good guy’ and these days, we can always use more good guys and gals.  Yet others suggest that superheroes are in the rescue business and we all have an area in our lives where we could use help. Whatever the reason, it’s undeniable that superheroes hold a unique place in our imagination.

Click here or on the above play button to hear the audio podcast of this article.

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Clark Kent Could Have Easily Passed As A Realtor

Do Real Estate Superheroes Exist?
Fighting bad guys is an expected vocation for a superhero. So how could there possibly be real estate superheroes who serve Villebois? And would they use x-ray glasses to view inside homes to find potential problems, carry an anti-kryptonite pen to protect against real estate ‘evil doers,’ or hold their trusty multiple listing lockbox keycard in a utility belt? 

The Realty Reality
While not superhuman, some real estate agents stand far apart from others. And when hundreds of thousands of dollars are literally on the line during your next home sale or purchase, chances are you’ll feel better throughout the entire process when working with a truly ‘super’ Realtor. But is it possible to easily locate a terrific real estate agent that’s not only experienced, but also dedicated, plus recognized for excellence among his or her peers? You’re about to find the answer.

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‘Superhero’ Defined
Superheroes are considered to be more than mere heroes, in part because their achievements transcend what is humanly possible. Superheros are often portrayed as heroes with extraordinary, superhuman powers. So while no Realtor is superhuman, in comparing performance, it’s clear that sometimes a single real estate agent can outperform several other, less productive Realtors.  There are different reasons why this is true and part of it relates to the ‘Pareto principle,’ better known as the ’80-20′ rule, where 20% of a group is frequently responsible for as much as 80% of the results.

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Some Superheroes Have a Handy Utility Belt to Get the Job Done

What’s In Your Utility Belt?
Effective Villebois Realtors are more likely to avail themselves of advanced tools on behalf of their buyer and seller clients. But it doesn’t stop there. That’s because in addition to ‘high tech’ expertise like sophisticated monitoring of real estate activity for their clients, a ‘superhero’ Realtor also combines it with ‘high touch.’ This means they help buyers and sellers with access to not only their own specialized experience and knowledge, but also to an often vast and diverse network of other experienced professionals, such as reputable mortgage lenders, roofers, 1031 tax deferred exchange experts, electricians, surveyors, title companies and repair firms.

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“Luke…I Am Your Appraiser”

But Why Even Hire A ‘Superhero?’ 
In considering the use of your own real estate ‘superhero,’ it helps to understand what they’re able to achieve better than other Villebois Realtors. After all, why use a ‘superhero’ when any old hero will do?

To begin, it’s helpful to understand that an agent is your representative. He or she advises and acts in your best interest, which includes ‘fighting’ on your behalf. So who or what might a real estate ‘superhero’ fight? Enter the real estate ‘super villain.’ In Villebois real estate, you’re not likely to run into comic book characters or movie baddies like Darth Vader, Lex Luthor or The Joker. Instead,  the kind of ‘super villain’ behavior you’re more likely to encounter is both real and potentially ‘deal-killing.’

The potential list of treacherous adversaries is long. Issues that could put the kibosh on your real estate transaction (while potentially costing you a lot of money) include dry rot, deferred maintenance (think leaky roof), a poor home inspection, title report issues, a low appraisal or a picky loan underwriter. 

If you’re a Villebois homebuyer, you can add certain challenging homeseller attititudes to the potential list of transaction implosions. If you’re a Villebois homeseller, you might include certain ham-fisted home buyer attitudes. The bottom line is that in order to deal with a multiplicity of potentially detrimental factors affecting your home purchase or sale, it’s clearly best to be prepared. And when you’re knee deep in transaction challenges, that’s not the time to wish you were working with someone more qualified.
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It’s A Bird…It’s A Plane…It’s The CRS Realtor
There are literally millions of real estate agents and as you might expect, not all of them are the same. As with any profession, experience, proficiency and dedication to clients can vary widely.

Most Realtors are indeed capable of providing good service, reasonable counsel and some helpful information. The fact is however, that some Realtors have considerably more experience, training and better results. It’s also undeniable that CRS designees are equipped to provide their home buying and home selling clients with advanced real estate insights, knowledge and competence. CRS holders hold an average of double the experience of Realtors without the Certified Residential Specialist designation. This illustrates a clear track record with elite standing.

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Realtors Holding the CRS Designation Outperform Those Who Don’t

But what differentiates a Villebois real estate superhero from other real estate agents? Here are a few examples.

X-Ray Vision
Because CRS Realtors are experienced and complete far more transactions than the average agent, many times they see can through and avoid problems, before they occur. This helps prevent missteps from an agent’s ‘on the job training.’ 

Benefits Beyond A Single Transaction
Another key benefit to working with a CRS Realtor is their networking advantage. So whether you expect to buy or sell in Villebois, elsewhere in Oregon, or if you’ll have a real estate transaction in another state, the CRS referral network is a proven way for you to connect with another ‘high caliber’ Realtor who holds the CRS designation. 

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Speaking of High Caliber: Faster Than A Speeding Referral
The CRS organization has an entire system devoted to a virtually seamless referral system for buyers and sellers who seek a super Certified Residential Specialist Realtor. For example, I recently received a phone call from an Idaho CRS agent working with Oregon buyers. These buyers found their ‘perfect’ Idaho home and needed to sell their Wilsonville home in order to purchase the Idaho property. The Idaho CRS Realtor suggested they work with a local CRS agent to most effectively sell their Wilsonville home. Mere minutes upon receiving a phone call from the Idaho CRS agent, I was in contact with these homeowners, then proceeded to list and successfully sell their property, all in short order.  

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Only 3% of Realtors Have Attained The CRS Designation

You May Never Have Met A CRS
It’s hardly surprising if you don’t recall ever meeting a Certified Residential Specialist. A CRS Realtor is in the top 3 percent of real estate agents in the United States. That means 97% of the Realtors you’re likely to run into aren’t a CRS. So what makes working with a CRS so much better?

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Clinical Specialization Meets Bedside Manner
To put the topic of Realtor proficiency in another context, if your 5 year old has a broken arm, do you want a pediatric orthopedic specialist to examine, accurately diagnose, then properly set the youngster’s bone, or would any young intern fresh out of medical school be your first choice?  After all, both are doctors. A similar principal applies to selecting an agent. The surprising thing here is that in choosing your next Realtor, it typically costs the same or less to go with the professional having more experience and proficiency. 

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Commitment
Similarly, there’s an understandable difference between an agent who just received a real estate license and one who has been diligently working full time in the field for decades. But taking it another step beyond mere experience are those who hold  accreditation for advanced real estate performance. The CRS designation isn’t easy to earn. It involves what is usually a multi-year advanced course regimen, plus documented real estate production and typically years of ‘in the field’ real estate experience. These recognized levels of education, training, production, time-tested experience  and provable success amount to a higher standard of achievement.  

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A Bundle of ‘Keys’ to Your Next Villebois Real Estate Transaction
To most Villebois homebuyers and homesellers, one key to a Realtor’s stellar real estate performance is consistent performance. Another is experience. Yet one more is education. The advantage to you as a Villebois homebuyer or homeseller in working with a CRS Realtor is that you get the entire bundle of keys and reduce your chances of being ‘locked out’ in your next transaction. 

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The Answer:
While the usual term for CRS is Certified Residential Specialist, some might consider agents holding this esteemed real estate degree as being more of a Certified Real Estate Superhero. That’s because it takes a lot to attain the CRS designation and the positive results of working with a CRS designee speak for themself. Some have even compared CRS credentials as akin to the CPA of real estate.

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Roy Widing, Wilsonville CRS Realtor

It’s Your Move
What if there was a way you could locate a real estate ‘superhero’ for your next transaction? Thanks to the CRS referral network, there actually is an easy way to find a ‘super’ Realtor, no matter where you live. Perhaps the simplest is to contact a CRS, like Oregon Real Estate Podcast host, Roy Widing, CRS with Certified Realty in Wilsonville. If you’d like to reach a CRS Realtor in a different state or region of the United States, Roy can connect you with a number of qualified Certified Residential Specialists near you and at no charge. From there you can interview one or more CRS Realtors and make your own decisions. 

Do you have real estate questions? Contact Realtor Roy Widing, CRS using the convenient form below.

What James Bond Can Teach You About Villebois Real Estate

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With That Suit & Tie, James Bond Resembles A Well-Mannered Realtor

Compared to the life of famed superspy James Bond, buying or selling Villebois real estate is dull and monotonous, right? Au contraire. You might be surprised to see how such a  comparison actually sizes up.

Click here or on the play button above to hear the audio podcast of this article.

Not So Mundane, After All
How could the seemingly routine tasks associated with Villebois real estate possibly compare to the life and adventures of ultra-suave Agent 007? Initially, it seems like a ridiculous question. Of course Bond’s life is far more treacherous, risky and ‘on the edge,’ right? As we’ll soon learn, not exactly. Buyers and sellers of Villebois real estate have a lot more in common with the famous spy than first meets the bullseye.

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Charbonneau Real Estate is More Daring Than You Might Think

Deceptively Daring
Many actors have played Agent 007 in film, yet each brings to the Bond character their own unique imprint on the multi-faceted Bond persona. But while each person playing 007 is unique, in each iteration of the well-known agent we recognize Bond’s uncanny ability to ‘land on his feet’ and ‘avoid being bested,’ while inching (or sometimes speeding) toward his well-defined goal. Let’s examine some of the super spy’s cinematic character traits and how they might relate to your next Villebois real estate transaction.

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Spies & Realtors Both Use Photography to Their Advantage

Turning The Tables
To a Villebois homebuyer or homeseller, ‘landing on your feet’ might not equate to jumping from a high rise building. Instead, it might mean effectively dealing with endless surprises…like a low appraisal, or poor home inspection.  It’s helpful to understand that one of Bond’s classic techniques is to shift bad odds to his advantage. Your way to ‘avoid being bested’ may not mean beating the tables at Monte Carlo like James Bond. Instead, it might be skillfully negotiating the terms of your Villebois real estate transaction. And to a Villebois homebuyer or homeseller, Agent 007’s ‘inching to his goal’ could simply mean patiently completing key tasks in order to close the sale. It’s nice to know that unlike the production of a Bond film, Villebois homebuyers and homesellers typically complete their ‘mission’ substantially under budget and in a relatively short time span, with no loss of life or limb. This makes you arguably ‘better than Bond.’

Diamonds Are Forever…And So Is Real Estate
Here are some factors that make the so-called ‘average’ Villebois homeseller or homebuyer more daring than even Agent 007. 

Risk
Agent 007 is frequently seen as daring and a tremendous risk taker. But while it’s true some of Bond’s actions are potentially perilous, it’s helpful to realize that his risks tend to be thoughtfully calculated. 007 is usually well-armed, whether that means carrying his Walther PPK, or preparing mentally for the task at hand. If he’s without a gun, James Bond is able to adapt and improvise, like using a fire extinguisher in the middle of a firefight to provide cover and escape.

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You Don’t Need A Gun to Effectively Buy or Sell Charbonneau Real Estate

Charmingly Disarming
But if James Bond gets into a ‘jam’,  he usually has his trusty sidearm to help take care of business. Yet using a small caliber handgun to get your way is not an option for Villebois homebuyers and homesellers. As a result, your options are limited to less obviously coercive means than Agent 007 can wield. Requiring the use of ‘wits, not weapons’ takes certain things off the table for you, since Oregon real estate demands non-lethal resourcefulness. By having to use safer and more creative methods of persuasion, it’s fair to say that once again, the average Villebois homeseller or homebuyer is arguably ‘better than Bond.’

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Effectively Managing Risk Can Pay Off Handsomely

Casino Royale
For an example of Bond’s risk reduction techniques, have you ever seen Agent 007 gamble great sums of his own money on a dice throw? The usual answer is ‘Not a chance.’ That’s because Bond virtually always plays with his government’s money, not his own. Yet you, as a Villebois homebuyer or homeseller, are laying your very own hard-earned capital on the table.  So once more, in comparison you can arguably be seen as ‘better than Bond.’

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Even Agent 007 Might Find Villebois Real Estate Challenging

Villebois Real Estate Tip #1 From James Bond: Maintain Your Humor
A superspy like Agent 007 doesn’t  constantly walk around like a tough guy. It’s actually quite the opposite.  Bond knows how to work a room and deliver a well timed joke. ‘Breaking the ice’ to disarm and/or relax the other side with a joke takes some guts…especially when someone means you financial or physical harm.  

Savoir-faire
Savoir-faire is a French term that roughly means: knowing what to do in any situation. Those with savoir-faire respond appropriately in a wide variety of circumstances. One dictionary reference suggests savoir-faire as demonstrating “a polished sureness in social behavior.” In other words, classic James Bond behavior, whether it’s disarming a bad guy, nuclear device, or flawlessly ordering the best item off a French menu.

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Ordering in French is an Acquirable Skill

Savoir-faire can be adapted to Villebois real estate, where a wide variety of ‘tough to predict’ situations occur with surprising frequency.  For sellers, this could mean having a buyer’s loan fail, possibly due to buyer disqualification like a credit score drop, or job change. Or perhaps your home needs a new roof and there simply isn’t sufficient equity to pay for it. Or there’s rampant dry rot. Or severe mold. You get the idea.

How 007’s Savoir-faire Can Work For Villebois Homebuyers and Homesellers
A prepared and practical approach to problem solving is what both James Bond and successful Villebois homebuyers and homesellers bring to the table.  Agent 007 is able to adapt and navigate in almost any environment, whether he finds himself in a high-stakes casino in Monaco, a posh ski lodge in the Swiss Alps, or a poor fishing village in Asia, Bond knows what to do. When buying and selling Villebois real estate, you can adapt and navigate in different environments, too, including such changing factors as housing inventory (which can indicate if you’re in a buyer’s or seller’s market) and fluctuating interest rates.

Just realize that no matter how things appear, some factors and outcomes are not completely determinable and sometimes virtually unknowable. For example, let’s say you’re selling your Villebois home and have three offers on the table to consider. In this scenario, let’s suppose all buyers appear well-qualified and each offer is very similar to the others. Which one do you decide to accept? Which will actually close? Which buyer will be reasonable to work with? Which lender will have even-handed underwriting and not require needless delay or costs?  Working with your Realtor, you can reduce risk, perhaps by focusing on how much each buyer is willing to pay, their down payment (where a larger down payment makes it easier for them to get a loan) and even the earnest money deposit and time to your closing date. Such an analysis can help boil things down to those that might make the most difference.

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Villebois Real Estate Tip #2 From James Bond: 
Always Have a Backup Plan

The key is to limit your downside risk by making the best decision possible under the circumstances and remain alert. For example, if after accepting one offer on your Villebois home, the buyers begin loudly complaining about minor issues, have your Realtor stay in touch with other prospective buyers who expressed interest. That way, you keep the door open for a ‘Plan B’ and later, possibly a ‘Plan C’ if initial buyers bail on your home sale.

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James Bond Defines Debonair

Debonair
Agent 007 is often described as debonair. How can that term possibly apply to your next Villebois real estate transaction? There are varied definitions to the term debonair, but related terms include courtesy, graciousness and having a sophisticated charm. These traits can be powerful and disarming when dealing with the other side on a home sale. An example of courtesy might mean allowing buyers to schedule a tour before closing for measuring room dimensions or determining paint colors. Being gracious could mean as a buyer you allow the home sellers an extra day to move out, particularly if their moving van broke down. Sophisticated charm might mean leaving a box of chocolates or champagne after you sell a home for when your homebuyers finally move in.

Small details perhaps, but such activities are often long remembered. If after moving out, you remember leaving priceless heirlooms in the attic of your former home, imagine how much nicer it will be to request the return of your precious items from the current owners with whom you’ve been civil and friendly. They are also more likely to even contact you if they find something you mistakenly left behind.

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Villebois Real Estate Tip #3 From James Bond: Secrecy
There’s good reason undercover agents are also known as secret agents. ‘Don’t let them see you sweat’ is an adage Agent 007 works with aplomb. So you don’t want to lose out on your home purchase and are willing to substantially increase your offer, yet don’t want to overpay? Keep those cards discreetly close to your vest and understand that by doing so, you’re modeling James Bond, who can definitely keep a secret. He’s a spy, after all. 
 

Humility
Though James Bond can swagger with the best of those who hold the ’00’ license to kill designation, he’s usually discrete and avoids attention or bragging about his prowess.  Such meekness is supremely beneficial in situations to disarm adversaries, while catching them off guard.  Agent 007 doesn’t often talk about how many people he’s put in the hospital, or his annual income. Simply by observing him, it’s clear Bond has gravitas.

Courage
Having courage when buying or selling Villebois property doesn’t mean you don’t feel fear. It does involve pushing that fear aside to rise above whatever obstacle you are facing. Agent 007 pushes himself out of his comfort zone to face serious fears on a daily basis. This gets him used to feeling comfortable with the uncomfortable. As a Villebois homeseller or homebuyer, once you desensitize yourself to fear, it will become easier to perform courageous acts, like counteroffering that offer you really don’t want to risk losing, or agreeing to substantial repairs in order to pass a home re-inspection and close the deal.

Be Patient
In the middle of a real estate transaction, it’s easy to be overwhelmed. To be successful, it helps to have a well defined plan executed with patience. You also should allow sufficient time for your plan to work. For example, if you’re a Villebois homeseller who doesn’t receive an offer in the first few days on the market, understand that if you’ve already examined the latest market data and the average market time is measured in months and not days or even weeks, realize your anxiety may be premature. Keep cool.

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‘Q’ Is On Bond’s Team to Keep Him Out of Trouble

Consult An Expert
When buying or selling Villebois real estate, it doesn’t hurt to have an experienced Realtor as your own ‘Q’ to keep you out of difficult situations. An experienced Villebois real estate broker is someone who has been ‘over the road,’ thereby saving you needless expense, time and worry.

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So rather than having Bond’s sidekick ‘Q’ demonstrating gadgetry and armory (like a blowtorch on Bond’s Aston-Martin convertible), Villebois residents can rely on the calm, cool and collected experience of a proven Realtor to more successfully navigate pitfalls found in Villebois real estate. 

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Do You Have Questions About Charbonneau Real Estate?
For a free consultation, contact our VilleboisHomes.com sponsor, Certified Realty using the contact form below, or call them at 800-637-1950.