David Rathgeber's

Frequently Asked Questions

General FAQs

[Click here for Seller FAQs] [Click here for Buyer FAQs]

How many hours do you spend on real estate each week?
I spend 40 to 60 hours weekly on real estate. It's not a job, it is my life and I enjoy it.

If necessary, how can I contact you immediately?
Just call, email, or text. I always respond promptly. This is critical when we are negotiating an offer.

Do you specialize in any type of property or in any area?
No, I do not. Specialization cannot benefit you. With technology and ambition, it is easy for me to cover the entire spectrum over a wide area.

Are you licensed as an agent or as a broker?
I am licensed as a broker, the top license granted. A broker's license requires more education, testing, and experience.

Did you win any sales awards last year?
I have consistently won the "Top Producer" award from the Realtors' Association.

Have you earned any professional designations?
These are generally based on classroom education. I am usually teaching the class, not sitting as a student.

Can you supply names of references?
Yes, upon request. Also, click the "Testimonials" button in the navigation panel at the left.

FAQs for Sellers

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How many listings do you currently have?
It ranges from 2 to 4 homes during an active year up to a maximum of 15 homes when the market is slow.

What is the average time on the market?
Most homes sell in 2 to 6 weeks, but individual results can vary widely. Time on the market is within our control.

How many showings will we need to find our buyer?
It varies widely, but we will need 15 to 25 showings on the average.

How many showings should we expect each week?
If our price is in tune with the market, we should have at least 3 showings each week in order to sell within 5 weeks.

What is the industry's average selling-price to asking-price ratio?
Currently over 97%.

What is the selling-price to asking-price ratio for your listings; how close to full price do you negotiate for your sellers?
My record is consistent, and well above the industry average. Details are available.

Can we determine the expected contract price for my home?
Like professional appraisers, I select three similar, nearby, recently sold properties and make dollar adjustments to the contract price of each one in order to estimate your property's market value.

How is a home's tax assessment related to that home's expected contract price?
There is no relationship. This question is addressed statistically as well as logically in my real estate books. If there were a reliable relationship, the entire professional appraisal industry would be out of business.

What about those web sites which give my home's value?
Those catchy web sites are designed to sell you something. If they get the value of your home correct, it's an accident. Read their disclaimers. Mortgage lenders use State licensed appraisers who visit a home before estimating its value. Many classroom hours and thousands of hours of apprenticeship are required to become an appraiser. When mortgage lenders start relying on those catchy web sites, I'll be impressed; but I'm not holding my breath.

Where should the initial asking price be set for my home?
In the current market, a home should be priced 2% to 4% above the expected contract price.

Will you market my home alone or with a team?
I will always be personally available to you. I also have excellent, professional associates who can help me, but this is rarely necessary.

FAQs for Buyers

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How many homes can we expect to see in a day?
We can see as many as 30 homes in a day if necessary.

What is the upper limit of what I can afford?
I can estimate this for you in just a few minutes. Alternatively, I have excellent lenders who can help you answer this question. (Click "Useful Links" in the navigation panel at the left.) Whether you stretch to your upper limit or opt for a more conservative purchase is your decision.

How much can I expect to negotiate off a home's asking price?
Unless the market is hot, the average local buyer negotiates a small discount off the asking price. For many years my buyers obtained nearly 8% off the asking price; double the industry average!

How do we deal with competing buyers in a hot market?
In a hot sellers market, often the main goal is to win your home of choice over the other competing buyers, always at a minimum price. I have developed a unique approach that almost guarantees a win. Ask about my successes in beating other offers.

What is the market value of the home I intend to buy?
I often perform a full market value analysis for my home buyer clients, which is similar to what I do for my home seller clients. Of course, our objective is to buy for less!

What should the initial offering price be for my home purchase?
A lot of information can be developed for this critical step. We must consider the initial offer as it relates to a possible final offer (i.e. the highest price you might pay) and how you can avoid ending up there. Negotiating strategy and timing both change greatly with market conditions.

Can we find out how long a home has been on the market?
Yes indeed, and more importantly, how long it has been on the market at its current price. As a rule of thumb, a home that has been on the market for 4 weeks or more at the same price is over-priced by at least 5%.

What commission do you charge for buyer-brokerage?
None of my buyers have ever paid for this service. The seller pays the entire commission. I use special language in my agreements to guarantee this.

How big a car do you drive?
I own a late model Lincoln Town Car.

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Your Friend in Real Estate, LLC
Arlington, Virginia, USA


* Copyright © David Rathgeber *
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* * * 2019 * * *