At Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Fort Lauderdale Beach Office, we work with buyers and sellers in conventional and complex real estate transactions across Broward County. We are especially skilled at working with Baby Boomers and other clients facing both predictable and uncertain life challenges and changes. Our team recently helped position, negotiate, and sell the home of a couple putting a unique spin on the concept of the “snowbird.” They were hoping to leave South Florida and return to Indiana.
Whether you’re a boomer who’s retiring, relocating, and downsizing; you’ve sold real estate and reinvesting proceeds as a 1031 exchange; are underwater or facing a family estate sale or probate sale; or are just moving to your next stage in life, the talents of a top real estate agent can be invaluable in helping manage any complex transaction.
George and Mary Beth were empty-nester baby boomers looking squarely at life’s next chapter. They had moved to Coconut Creek in the 1990s and raised their family in their suburban Fort Lauderdale home. When their daughter graduated college and moved to Idaho, the couple faced an empty house and ample choices.
Because they had been in the home for two decades, the neighborhood had appreciated significantly. The couple had accumulated significant equity in their home. This gave them various options for their future.
Since they had family ties back in Indiana, Mary Beth suggested they sell and retire to Indiana. George contacted me and my team to outline their choices. George knew what he needed to clear at closing from the home’s sale in order to move north and successfully achieve the couple’s financial goals.
At Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Fort Lauderdale Beach Office, we’ve earned a reputation for successfully navigating and negotiating challenging transactions. While this wasn’t necessarily a difficult transaction, we still had to sharpen our pencils to calculate a working solution. Team members bring unique skills, like my decades in the South Florida real estate market, and Gary Lanham Group Team Administrator Eileen Mulkey, whose role as a senior forensic Fannie Mae appraiser brings superior experience for difficult pricing opportunities.
The way we see it, rolling up our sleeves to help a client arrive at the best possible solution helps the client, and allows our team to grow more skilled, confident, and trusted in the marketplace.
Our team gathered area comps, or comparable dollar values of sales and listings in the surrounding community. We then reviewed the home’s documents, including records from the county tax office and the original building plans, in order to determine such details as the exact square footage, any improvements that had been done over the years, and what role each played in the home’s current market value.
We knew how much the county tax appraiser’s office had assessed as the home’s taxable value. That’s often thousands of dollars – even tens of thousands of dollars – below the home’s “market” value, or what it could reasonably sell for.
Looking at the list price versus sale price of homes in the neighborhood, we arrived at a figure that both made the home a reasonable target for interested buyers, while still allowing George and Mary Beth to walk with enough proceeds after closing to relocate comfortably to Indiana.
Within days of putting the home on the Multiple Listing Service, or MLS, we had several serious inquiries. Within weeks, we had a contract. When the home closed, the final sale figure was within $2500 of the figure we originally calculated based on what George said he needed to provide the couple the peace of mind they sought.
During this process, the couple was scouting Indiana homes, even working with leads our team at Coldwell Banker had provided. Once in Indiana, the couple found a perfect home that cost them less than half what they cleared on their Coconut Creek sale.
George’s projections, along with our calculations, proved the perfect alchemy to achieve a golden result.
George and Mary Beth were enthusiastic following the sale. In a video testimonial, they call our team “extremely professional and they were go-getters,” said Mary Beth. George said. “They sold it fast and we got our price. And we think of them as friends now.”
“Family, actually,” Mary Beth corrected.
I still get texts from George, thanking me for the help my team at Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Fort Lauderdale Beach Office provided throughout the process. He has shared our name with friends and family, and says he’s keeping my contact info close. Now living through his first northern winter in 20 years, George isn’t sure how long he’ll last before wanting to move south again.
“It’s pretty cold up here,” he wrote me recently, only half joking as the thermometer dropped far below what he enjoyed in the Florida sun. “Keep your eyes out for a house down there in case something comes up and this doesn’t work!”
No matter how the frigid north affects their future, several forces converged to give George and Mary Beth options. They invested in their home and grew their equity in a market that appreciated significantly over the past two decades.
They aren’t alone. Across Broward County, from Coral Ridge to Imperial Point, Las Olas, Oakland Park, north to Boca Raton and south to Miami, South Florida real estate is appreciating. This is putting baby boomers in an enviable position for life’s next stage. They can capitalize on their home’s equity and relocate where life takes them – east to the shores of the Atlantic Ocean, or north to be with family, children, or grandchildren.
My team at Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Fort Lauderdale Beach Office helps sellers meet life goals and family goals and improve their living situation. We also help buyers looking for their next great Fort Lauderdale home. If you’re a buyer or seller, give us a call.
Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Fort Lauderdale Beach Office is a boutique real estate organization offering sales, leasing, and brokerage services to the Greater Fort Lauderdale area. A listings agent matches home sellers with buyers and tenants with landlords. While Broward County is our universe, we focus on Coral Ridge Country Club, Oakland Park, Wilton Manors, Pompano Beach, and the surrounding areas. Call us today at (954) 695-6518 or visit www.GaryLanhamGroup.com.