Lakefront home sales are generally one of two things. They are either quick and seemingly easy, or they are slow and drawn out- miserable affairs that can span months and then years and brokers. There is very little in between. If a listing sells quickly, what an amazing thing that is. The pictures are snapped, the sign is placed, the prose is written, and the traps are set. Then we wait, hidden like. And then a buyer moseys on over to that new listing and they buy it. What a glorious thing! The same procedure repeats with the other sort of listing, the signs and pictures, the prose, and yet, though the actions are the same the result is different. Instead of praise there is doubt. Instead of flowers there are tears. Instead of Realtor = Hero, it's Realtor = Goat.
When a listing sells quickly, it can be owed to many different things. In a city center, where traffic is increased and volume is large, quick sales are mostly due to the right price. Listings everywhere sell quicker at the right price, but even at the right price some places cannot sell. This happens in cities, but mostly it happens in low volume markets where even the right property at the right price will not sell until the right person arrives. And so it went, the pictures and the prose and the sign and some ads, and my listing on Bonnie Brae was on the open market. Signal the rush of buyers.
But there was no real rush. No occupy style mob shouting at me to let them in. But there were a few buyers on those first few days in April, and scattered amidst those first few buyers was one buyer who found something he liked. Something that she thought was just right. A deck, perhaps just the right size. The view, maybe perfection. The sand beach- they could see their family playing there. Something in the way that house looked and felt worked. So the offer was placed and the deal was struck, and yesterday after some late game hand wringing there was a closing. $3,005,000 was the price, Bonnie Brae was the location, Dave Curry was the listing broker.
It was a good sale, this sale. The transaction seemed, at first, easy. The buyer materialized without delay. The offer was written and a term was reached within mere hours of the initial buyer signature. There wasn't all that much to it. But towards the end, when lenders get sticky and underwriting departments punt an issue from one cubicle to another and back again, things got a little hairy. Brokers worked, title companies chastised, sellers paced, and buyers pleaded. In the end, the effort was worth the price. The seller now moves on to another chapter in his life and the buyer begins one in theirs. I needn't tell you which chapter I feel will be the better read.
For the market, the sale is a good one. For those who calculate price per foot figures and cling to them as if they are some leading indicator of actual value, the sale will dazzle (nearly $30k per foot). To understand why a sale is good for the market you just need to understand one very basic tenant: Every sale is a good sale. It doesn't matter where it is, what it is, or for how much it is. Every sale is a good sale just as any sale is a good sale. Low volume markets ride on the strength of comparable prices, yes, but they mostly maintain momentum through volume. Volume, like Jim Nantz, is our friend.
As with any post here, there must be some self promotion. Don't hate me for it- it's just the nature of the beast that is real estate. Since this day two years ago, there have been 7 lakefront sales on Geneva that have exceeded $3MM in price. I, your humble servant, have been either on the list, the sale, or both sides of 5 of those. There is a feeling that one firm somehow dominates the lakefront market. That one firm has a stranglehold on the lakefront- at once two fingers on the pulse of the market and two hands around its neck. The belief is that somehow, through hard work and dedication and divine intervention some single firm is the only firm to call if you're looking to sell a big lakefront house. All of these beliefs are apparently true, it's just that the firm leading the way isn't the one everyone thought. It's Geneva Lakefront Realty, sort of run by some chubby kid.
To the seller, I say thanks. To be trusted with a large sale is always a treat, and I'm grateful for the opportunity. To the buyer and the buyer's agent, I also say thanks. I will extend the most important piece of advice I have ever given to any buyer. If you use the lake house, it will be a rewarding experience. If you fully and entirely integrate this lakefront home into not just your life, but the lives of your family and friends, the effort will seem insignificant relative to the prize of enjoyment. If you use the heck out of this place, it will never, ever, let you down.