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      Blog :: 06-2008

      Mid-Cape Real Estate 2008, Part 1: "The stand off"

      This "changing" Cape Cod real estate market (or DYNAMIC, as Peter likes to call it) offers a new set of challenges to Realtors. Our recent favorite is the tendency among buyers and sellers alike to "hold firm" to their terms and not give in on any deal points.

      It being a well-publicized "buyers market", said buyers are feeling that they have plenty of choices out there and thus are less likely to fall in love with any one property.  Rather, when they find one they like they make a "take it or leave it" offer, and move on to the next property if it is not accepted.

      On the Seller's side, particularly the ones who have listened to their real estate professional and priced their home to reflect current market conditions, they feel they have offered their property at a fair price and certainly don't want to "give it away!"

      The New York Times recently published an excellent article on this very topic. In a previous market, prospective buyers would write love letters to Sellers, putting forth their positions on why the Seller should sell their wonderful property to them. Although I don't think this practice ever caught on here on the Cape, it was an interesting strategy.  The NYT article offers a new take on this practice,  including fictitious letters written by buyers to sellers and vice verse reflecting the current market conditions.

      As professional realtors, we understand both positions very well.  Rather than feeling trapped in the middle of these stand offs, we use our well-honed negotating skills to bring both parties to a point of agreement.  We call it "The Lomenzo Edge" and it often makes the difference between a closed transaction and a continued stand off, which ends up benefiting no one.

      Elaine

      Are basketball hoops "historic"?

      Basketball hoops and their accompanying flood lights don't fit in with quaint historic settings it seems.  Last Wednesday night, the Historic Committee concluded that fact after carefully reviewing a proposal that was very "enlightening".  The expectation of kids gathering for an evening pick-up game under flood lights creates a distortion of the quiet, peaceful historic neighborhoods.  In addition, the 10' high posts with glass backboards are not compatible with the cedar shingles and white trim of many historic homes which surround these playground type sets.

       It would not be fair to say that the Historic Committee does not want to see kids play basketball or have any other form of good clean fun.  More to the point, the Historic Committee needs to preserve certain settings as residential and prefers other settings such as schools and parks for sports and recreation.

       Meshing the needs of recreation with history is achievable with good communication and cooperation.

      Peter

      Historical or HYSTERICAL??

      Historical or hysterical?  That is the question.  For the past 10 years, I've been Chairman of the local historical committee in the Town of Dennis.   People stop me everywhere I go to ask whether or not the historic committee has the authority to tell people what they can or cannot do with their property.  The fact is the committee is governed by the Massachusetts Acts of 1973 as amended and therefore is a governed by the laws of the State.  So the committee has the authority to decide what architectural features are appropriate for a particular home and which are not.

      What I like about the Historic Act, as it is known, is that it applies equally to everyone.  Neighbors can take comfort in the fact that the Historic Committee won't allow your next door neighbor to add windows, dormers or other additions that ruin the way your neighborhood looks.  Also, keeping the look and feel of the Cape is exactly why everyone wants to live and vacation here. The historic committee is the "design review board" that keeps everyone honest. 

      Peter

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