What is the Mueller silent market? That’s the question that all my visiting friends asked in February and March as they flipped through the MNA Newsletter and saw Hilary Herrin’s ad in the back. Hilary is an awesome agent who also lives in the neighborhood and conducts a lot of business here. I have worked with her a bunch on homes both on and off the market, and I have a lot of respect for her. I won’t try to paraphrase what her ad says too much, but it talks about getting buyers and seller together in non-traditional ways.
Mueller real estate on the residential side is in very short supply – often we find that resale homes receive multiple offers in the first few days on the traditional market, and often sell without the traditional market at all. I have one home under contract right now for a buyer without there ever being so much as a sign in the yard, or a spot on a web site mentioning the home. The last off-market home I helped a buyer with closed in December. And on the flipside, if you follow the link at the top, you’ll see I have off MLS listings too – homes that for one reason or another will be sold without the traditional mob of agents calling up and trampling through at all times of day and night with their clients.
So the off-market approach does work. A David Weekley Antone floorplan on my street snuck onto the MLS and had multiple offers in 2 days on the market last week. No sign went up. No neighbors knew unless they saw me standing out front waiting for clients. The list goes on. Certain homes are very popular here, and there aren’t many to choose from.
So how can you tell when a Mueller home is about to hit the market? First, you could connect with the agents who do the most business in the neighborhood and follow their updates. Second, you can do a bit of sleuthing. Here’s what I mean.
Something quite unusual happened to me a few weeks back. I got a postcard from the HOA – the Mueller Property Owners’ Association, run by the ever responsive Jennifer Harvey at Alliance. This was the first postcard I have received, so I eagerly read the back. It was a polite reminder that I should trim my weeds on the left side of my home. I was in fact waiting to get bids from my landscaper to get rid of the mangy strip of weed-infested, drought-scorched, and sadly ignored grass on the left of my home, and the weeds did indeed get dispatched.
I went to apologize to my adjoining neighbor Steve when I got the note, as I thought I might have upset him. Steve is awesome. He has a corner lot and has been kindly mowing the aforementioned strip of mangy grass for four years whenever he mows his lawn. Neighbor of the decade – I salute you! So I went over to tell him I was going to get rid of the weeds. He had received a note from the HOA about his weeds too. As a joke I said,
“I bet someone on our street is getting ready to sell their home.” Home buyers look into neighborhoods when they buy a home, and in Mueller with it’s dense housing, more so even than in a mature neighborhood, if your street is full of unkempt yards, and strewn with cars on blocks, buyers don’t leave with the best of impressions. Since Mueller has a HOA, we don’t tend to get the latter, but by and large, HOA notices are complaint driven, rather than Jennifer Harvey driving round in a golf cart with a tape measure checking the height of grass.
So, going back to the low inventory, silent market part of the post. I was right. A few weeks after my conversation with Steve, the home two doors down went on the market, and promptly got snapped up. It was an out of town listing agent, and one who isn’t in the usual suspects line up for Mueller real estate, so that was the first I knew of that one. Mostly, I try to find out about homes for sale before they happen, but I’m not perfect.
So the morals of the story:
- Get with a neighborhood agent if you want to get the scoop on new and resale homes hitting or not-hitting the market. Things are moving fast right now. +1 (512) 829-1351is a good start.
- HOAs aren’t necessarily a bad thing – they help neighbors enforce rules that protect property values
- Get a neighbor like Steve and be nice to them (and no, I’m not selling you my house – you can’t have Steve)
- Get with the off-market agents specializing in pocket listings in Mueller if you want a low-key hassle-free sale. Ahem. See point 1.
Yesterday I showed one of my off-market listings to two folk. Let me know if you want to see one too. 512 215 4785