That’s Who We R®

That’s Who We R® is a new marketing campaign from the National Association of REALTORS®.

Personally, I am glad to see more talk about what it means to be a REALTOR®.

As an industry, I feel like real estate agents have done a poor job conveying the value of working with a professional. I also believe that representation and guidance is of utmost importance for consumers to get from their REALTOR®.

That's Who We R RealtorFor me, the symbol is a way to reflect on why so many of us do what we do. As I get older, I find myself wanting to give more back to an industry that has been so good to me in so many ways. I also want to help people to choose their real estate partners wisely. Knowledge and experience can make all of the difference in the world.

I appreciate the fact that NAR is starting this campaign to talk about home ownership as being an important part of the American dream.

That’s Who We R® – We’re REALTORS®

In a world where people are told that they can instantly buy homes with the click of a button and do everything faster, easier and with “no hassle”, I hope they are working with experienced professionals who will walk them through the pros and cons of multiple situations.

The fact is, quick and easy is awesome for booking a hotel room, but for buying a home it can leave room for costly mistakes and oversights. True value comes from knowing areas, knowing recent sales of comparable homes, contract negotiations, the escrow process, financing options, contract negotiaions, property condition, agency relationships, local and regional real estate laws and so much more.

A computer algorithm doesn’t live in your neighborhood, it doesn’t see the true condition of “comparable sales” and it isn’t there to negotiate on your behalf. – Nick Bastian, REALTOR®

While the purchase or sale of a home can run rather smoothly, many real estate transactions have a LOT of moving parts to them. Having an advocate on your side to help you negotiate the transaction can be very valuable. Especially if and when things go wrong.

Heck, if you don’t know what you are doing, there’s a very good chance you will make a mistake that could cost tens of thousands of dollars, and you may never even realize it was made. Or, even worse is making that mistake and finding out it could have been avoided if you would have had a knowledgeable REALTOR® on your side.

That’s Who We R® and that’s what we do.

Look, we all want an easy button and we all benefit from phone apps, websites, computer algorithms and the vast amount of data that is available to us. My true belief is that the vast majority of people who are buying and selling real estate can and do benefit from working with a REALTOR® they can trust to guide them through the process.

We R® The Nick Bastian Team and – That’s Who We R® and what we do


That's Who We R - Nick Bastian

The Nick Bastian Team

Real Estate Texting – A Handy Guide

“Real estate texting” is a VERY popular way for people to communicate. In fact, texting about real estate might just be more common than you think.

I want to share a few of the most common acronyms people use to talk about their home purchase or sale via text message:

  • NP: Not Pre-Approved
  • SMH: Sell My House!
  • WTF: Want The Fridge?
  • BRB: Bonus Room, Baby!
  • IDC: Immaculate Downtown Condominium
  • IMHO: I Might Hit the Open
  • DTF: Down To Flip
  • WYD: Where’s Your Disclosure?
  • OMG: Offer More, Girl!
  • LMAO: Let’s Make An Offer!

real estate texting

Real Estate Texting – Break It Down:

NP – Not Pre-Approved – Not good. If financing a home, one of the very first things you should do is contact a trusted mortgage advisor. If you are ready to begin searching for a home, we are happy to help point you in the right direction!

SMH – Sell My House! We are happy to help! Have you outgrown your current home? We can certainly help find something that is a better fit. Maybe your current home is too large? It could be time to sell your house and “rightsize” your situation!

WTF – Want The fridge? Typically, the built-in appliances like a stove and dishwasher convey with the home. If you want the fridge, we’ll need to be sure to add it to your offer!

BRB – Bonus Room, Baby! – A den or extra bedroom can be cool. But, a man cave, she shed, home theater? Now we’re talking about a serious bonus room, baby!

IDC – Immaculate Downtown Condominium – People love homes that are in immaculate condition. We have seen all kinds of people from baby boomers to millennials look to the convenience of condos in downtown areas.

IMHO – I Might Hit the Open. OK, window shopping can be great. Put on a baseball hat and some shades and prepare to use a fake name when the open house agent asks you to sign in. Just make sure to grab a cookie and some punch while looking.

DTF – Down To Flip – Some people just want a nice place to live. Others like to buy a home that needs some work. If you are down to flip, let us know. We can help!

WYD – Where’s Your Disclosure? This one is so true. Don’t let some smooth talking “flipper” try to tell you that he or she has no information about the home they are selling. This one is serious, folks. Disclosure is a law

OMG Offer More, Girl. This one cn certainly apply to guys or girls. It at first you don’t succeed, you just might have to offer more!

LMAO – Let’s Make An Offer!  Seriously! What are you waiting for? If you are renting, if you are in a home that you have outgrown, if you are in a home that is more than what you currently want or need, just give us a call. OR a text! We are always happy to help!

Real Estate Texting – Are Your Kids Doing It?

I know that your little ones are glued to their phones for countless hours of the day, and I know they are texting their friends about anything under the sun. As a really good parent, I am certain that you are watching what they say to their friends. Right!?!?

Please know that if you see any of these messages on their phone, they might be trying to tell you something. If it is clearly time for you move, just call / text the Nick Bastian Team at 602-803-6425 and LMAO!

As always, we are here to help with all of your real estate needs!

Can A Real Estate Deal Just Be A Deal?

Can A Real Estate Deal Ever Just Be A Deal?

I totally get it… Everyone wants a deal when buying a home. Right?

Sometimes, people get so wrapped up in “making a deal” and hammering a seller on a price, that they end up paying more for a home than necessary, because they lost several properties because they wanted to hammer the seller for a really good deal.

Eventually, in certain markets, they realize that paying asking price ( or more! ) can be a “deal”, even if you weren’t able to work your magic negotiating skills to squeeze someone for every last nickel.

home values

I’ve seen this happen a lot, and I never really thought it would make sense to write about it, because the tone of the post can be hard to explain.

The last thing I am trying to do is to say that there is no negotiating needed when buying or selling a home!

The reality is, knowing the market and knowing market conditions is a BIG part of knowing how much to pay for a property. I’m just going to talk about a few examples and try to let people know why it is important to work with a REALTOR who looks out for your best interest.

For some people, it is hard to take advice when buying or selling. They know the market and they know how to make a deal… For others, advice is exactly what they want. They want direction, they want someone with experience who will help guide them through the home buying or selling process.

Here’s an example that comes up a lot this time of year as people begin to try to find housing for their student at ASU.

They often call from a state where the market is completely different than what it is here in Tempe.  Many want a 3 bedroom home for Johnnie or Suzie with a garage in a really nice neighborhood for under $150,000. They saw one on Zillow, and they want to see some properties over the next few days while they will be in town. Here’s the problem: You won’t need a few days, you probably won’t need more than an hour, because IF a 3 bedroom home with a garage came on the market near ASU, there’s a really good chance it would be sold way before your head stopped spinning.

Yes, really.

Chasing a real estate deal can be costly:

A textbook example of someone wanting a deal near campus happened recently. A guy says that he wants a “nice gated community” for his daughter to live near campus. His budget began at $200,000. Um, that’s tough, because he also doesn’t want to “pay too much” for the monthly maintenance (HOA) fees. I showed him some gated communities in Tempe like North Shore, Regatta Pointe and over at Villagio. North Shore was “perfect” but the HOA fees are “too high” for him. Regatta Pointe also fit their criteria but only had one floor plan in his price range, so we’ll have to keep watching for new ones to become available/ Villagio? It is “kind of far” from campus.

BUT, he just wants a deal…

After looking around a bit and having several conversations about current market conditions, I mentioned a condo that we will be listing next week for $120,000. This one is near ASU at Rural and Broadway. I happen to know that this price point is VERY attractive for being so close to campus, and I believe the home will sell very quickly.  The condo is not gated, but it is close to campus, so he thought he would like to see it. Without ever asking about what had recently sold in the complex, and without knowing what was for sale in the area, he mentioned that the home would need about $10k in repairs and that he would want to pay $110k for this condo.

OK, great… Interestingly enough, the home wasn’t as “nice” as his wife wants for their daughter, so we will need to continue to search for them.

My point here is the fact that the property could easily be worth the $120k the seller will be asking, but his “deal making” mentality never even put him in the game. By the way, when we did put the home on the market, it did sell in less than a week and we had “multiple offers” submitted.

As the market continued to heat up, the buyer began to realise that he was missing out on properties that would have fit the needs of his daughter. Eventually, he figured it out.

So, if you are buying OR selling a home, please consider working with an agent you can trust. One who will help you determine a fair value and help you negotiate a fair price…

The Herm Edwards Train Has Arrived in Tempe

Yesterday was the “official” announcement that Herm Edwards has been hired to coach the ASU football team. This morning, there was a press conference where we learned a little more about how Dr. Crow, Ray Anderson and many others hope to “elevate” this program to another level.

Welcome to Tempe,  Herm!

During the press conference we learned more about the “new model” that will be used at ASU going forward.

Under the new athletic department model being run by Ray Anderson, it sounds like Herm will have roles in management and as the head coach. There will be a multi-pronged approach that is more common is professional sports organizations.

We heard that success in the atletics department is critical to the future of the University. We heard several times that there is a goal to “elevate” the program at ASU.  Ray Anderson gave a lot of credit to former head coach Todd Graham by saying that ASU has done a great job with their student athletes in academics, discipline and character.

We also learned that Herm Edwards is a man of “extreme decency and extreme integrity” who never intended to leave ESPN until he learned more about what Crow and Anderson have as a vision for the athletics programs at ASU. Personally, I think many of us are glad to learn more about the character of Edwards, as we felt that Todd Graham had done such a good job in mentoring the athletes into better players and better people.

Discipline was mentioned several times in the press conference. We also heard Ray Anderson say that this is not a starting over. ASU has been doing a good job in developing, coaching, and preparing student athletes. The new model is being put in place to give the head football coach more support from people outside of what has been the traditional model.

Recruit. Coach. Develop. Elevate.

Those are things ASU plans to accomplish.

Anderson made it pretty clear that he knows there are people who don’t agree with their decision, but he was very clear in the vision to elevate the program to a new level of excellence.

Said Anderson: This train is leaving the station. Jump on board, because we’ve got a seat for you.

Some things I remember hearing from Herm Edwards during the press conference.

I’m on the train!

Herm addressed some of the criticisms about his age and about not having coached for a long time by saying things like: “That’s what I do, I coach football.” “They’re not bringing me here to play.” “I’m here to build a program.”

We also heard a lot about his role and about what it means to be around football players. “Coaches don’t give players talent, God does.” Leadership on and off the field are going to be key initiatives for Edwards. He is looking forward to hitting the recruiting trail, and he is looking forward to getting back in the huddle of football.  He said he’s proud to be the head coach and promised to give whatever he has to work tirelessly and be committed to the vision of Dr. Crow and Ray Anderson.

Herm’s ESPN duties are over this coming Friday. “After that I’m out recruiting.”

Welcome to Tempe, Herm!

Go Devils.

What Should Replace Marcello’s In Tempe?

Marcello’s Pasta Grill has been at the southwest corner of McClintock and Warner for many years. It’s in a really great area in South Tempe where people feel like we are in need of more good restaurant choices.

**Update! As of 10/18/16 it sounds like The Oink Cafe will be moving in to this space! I’m super happy to hear this as it looks like a really great place for breakfast and lunch.

So, please join us in welcoming The Oink Cafe to South Tempe!

Marcello's building for sale

For quite some time, we’ve heard “rumors” that Marcello’s would be closing their doors. Quietly, the business has been for sale for months and months. Some would tell you that they were going to stay and they would cite recent renovations and internal changes that indicated they would be around for many more years. Others would say that the changes indicated that the end was near. On May 17th, Marcello’s announced via their Facebook page that they would close their doors for good on Saturday, May 21st.

It is with such a heavy heart that I must announce, after serving Tempe for over two decades, Marcello’s Pasta Grill will be closing their doors for the very last time on Saturday, May 21st. It has truly been an honor to have served all of you for all of these years.

On Sunday, the 22nd, I noticed the large For Sale sign on the building and began hearing a lot of people talking about what is next for the space. People who live nearby are interested in having a quality restaurant fill the space.

What’s Next For Marcello’s Space?

So, I’m curious to hear ideas of what is a good fit for the space. Do you prefer a “high-end” restaurant? Maybe a fast-casual space? There’s several places to eat nearby, but it seems like we need something nice. A cool spot to enjoy a night out. Since we have RigaTony’s on the northeast corner, maybe another Italian restaurant isn’t a huge need?

South Tempe has a style all its own. I’m really curious as to what you think would be a good fit for our ‘hood.