Let me tell you a quick story…
• I started my Real Estate career in 1989. I was 25 years old. I was hired by as a Property Analyst for a San Diego based company named Challenge Systems. While there I traveled the country mentoring and teaching hard-nosed real estate investing with a besting selling author named Robert G. Allen
. I later became a licensed Realtor and worked with many investors throughout the years finding them investment properties and helping them get top dollar when it was time to sell. While working with all of these investors, I started to see many of them targeting Homeowners who were in need of making housing transitions due to health and aging concerns. These investors would offer to pay all cash for their homes with no repairs and no commissions. This sounds very appealing to most Homeowners.
These investors were making it seem like they were helping the Homeowners with their situation. Well, when I started to take a closer look. Many times that just was not the case. Many times, the Homeowners were being taken advantage of in my opinion. Most of these investors were making HUGE profits in these transactions. Paying ridiculously low prices for some of these homes.
I would have conversations with many of these investors about my feelings. There response was “Hey, the homeowner agreed to the terms. No one forced them to sign a contract. As long as everyone agreed and was happy in the end, What’s the problem?” I thought, well there is some truth to that, but the problem is that the homeowners (mostly Senior Citizens) didn’t know that they were being taken advantage of. They didn’t know they were leaving thousands of dollars on the table when selling to these investors.
I became frustrated and disappointed. I decided to change my focus and start helping these homeowners keep their equity rather than give it to investors.
• I helped the homeowners to realize that if they were to hire me, an experienced, honest and aggressive realtor, to put their home on the market. I would put these investors up against each other in bidding war, which would drive the price up dramatically and the homeowners would make much more money in the end. Even after paying a real estate commission.
- Then in 2014, my mother's health was failing. My siblings were living out of state and it was up to me to find a solution to fit my mother's needs.
I was struggling with running my busy Real Estate business, having a personal life and caring for my mother all at the same time.
I was getting more and more confused, scared and bewildered by not knowing what options were out there and who I could turn to and trust.
A few years went by and my mother wound up in the hospital for the umpteenth time. Possibly unable to return home. Now I was scrambling to find a place and/or people I could trust to help care for my mother. This left me feeling I couldn't help my mother in a way that I felt she deserved, because I didn't have the knowledge or resources to do so.
As you can imagine, I was in a bad place and desperate, but I wasn't ready to give up on my dream of providing a comfortable lifestyle for the woman who cared for me and was always there when I needed her… I needed to be there for her now that she needed me.
Through much research, I discovered a small group of professionals focused on helping Seniors. They had my same vision, compassion and desire, which was to ensure that seniors are cared for correctly in their time of need. I ended up joining forces with this group and we have grown dramatically. We are the San Diego Senior Advisory Council and are also members of the National Senior Advisory Council.
At that point, everything changed!
I discovered how to:
• Match the appropriate professional to the specific needs of seniors
• Vet these different professionals and organizations to make sure our loved ones are safe and
not being taken advantage of.
• Apply my many years of real estate experience to help seniors transition comfortably and with
much less stress.
Because of the San Diego Senior Advisory Council I was able to:
• Help seniors and their families navigate through the plethora of options available to them.
• Help children of seniors using my own experiences
• Use my experience and knowledge to help others
I was now at ease knowing how to provide a comfortable lifestyle for the woman who cared for me and was always there when I needed her. I never had to worry about struggling to find the appropriate services that my mother needed ever again.
This is why I'm so passionate about helping Seniors transition from a potentially dangerous space (their current 2 story home) into a safe place (1 story home or other safe living spaces) where they can live more comfortably.
Once I started working in this arena, I saw more and more Seniors being taken advantage of when they were in need of making a housing transition.
Many real estate agents were taking advantage of them. Investors were taking advantage of them. Even their own family members were taking advantage of them.
Some of the real estate agents that were taking advantage of them were putting their homes on the market at ridiculously low prices just to make a quick commission. They were not marketing the homes properly to get the homeowner the most money possible out of their home. The agents would just put the home on the MLS system at a very low price and do nothing else. The home would sell quickly, but the homeowner was leaving thousands upon thousands of dollars on the table in the end.
I also saw investors out there taking advantage of the seniors. Offering to purchase their homes for ALL CASH. The investors would say, “No need to pay a realtor a commission.” “Just sell your home to us”. “We’ll give you top dollar”. This rarely nets the homeowner the most money. I have extensive experience with investors. I have been dealing with investors for over 26 years. As a matter of fact I have a huge list of investors that will pay all cash for properties. The main thing homeowners need to realize when selling their home, is that COMPETITION is the one thing that is going to bring them the most money possible. It sounds appealing to sell to an investor quickly for all cash and no hassle, but you will almost ALWAYS leave money on the table. We see investors making HUGE profits off of the senior community. This just sickens me…
For many Seniors, the equity in their home is basically all that they have left to support them for the remaining years of their lives. They need every dollar they can get.
• These were Senior Citizens being taken advantage of. This became more personal to me now. This was like taking advantage of my parents.
THIS IS WHY I CREATED HARP. – Housing Advocates for Retired People.
I then went through extensive training through the National Association of Realtors (NAR) to become a Certified Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES).
HARP was created to PROTECT Seniors
from greedy investors, unscrupulous real estate agents, and other individuals that might take advantage. We are a team of Licensed and Certified Senior Real Estate Specialists (SRES) with certification from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). We are dedicated to helping Seniors get the most money with the least amount of stress from the sale of their most valued asset.
If you’re considering a move, ask yourself the following questions to help clarify your situation:
* Do you have trouble maintaining your home the way you’d like to?
* Do you have any difficulty going up and down the stairs in your home?
* Have there been health changes or restrictions limiting your ability to maintain your
home, and does your home meet those challenges?
* Is this the best location to proximity to doctors, family, etc.?
* Have you cut yourself off from your friends and family because you’re no longer proud to
invite them to your home?
* Have you had trouble finding good workers to take care of the maintenance problems?
* Are finances keeping you from enjoying the home you’ve loved for so many years?
If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, then a change would probably be advantageous for you. Leaving your home of many years may seem scary, but the good news is that lots of cost effective options are out there and you can find something that fits both your needs and your budget. Of course, it takes a little legwork, but there are people who can help. The HARP team can help you with every step of the process to save you time, legwork, and money.Ready to get started?
We want to hear from you. Please call us at 619-871-0900
and we will work with you and your family to sell your current home and assist you in every step of the way to transition to your new home. If you prefer you can also contact us by filling out our form and we will respond to you as soon as possible.
Call us toll free at 619-871-0900