Saturday, November 5, 2011

Redefining the “Real” in Real Estate: A Conversation with NYC Metro RE Agent Michael Jeavons


Redefining the “Real” in Real Estate: NYC Metro RE Agent Michael Jeavons Shows Clients the Dynamic, Exciting (and, Yes, Sexy) Side of Real Estate, While Helping Them Find the Perfect Home


The term “unconventional” excites our imagination and our inquiring spirit. It makes us wonder, sometimes question, by offering a new perspective to all aspects of our lives, including professional lives. Therefore, for this blog post I interviewed a fascinating business professional who’s not afraid using this attribute to redefine the profession he’s so passionate about. I’m talking about real estate agent Michael Jeavons. His story sketches out a fresh new profile of the business of real estate, one that house seekers can better understand.  


RE Agent Michael Jeavons
“Real estate is dynamic, sexy [and] exciting,” RE agent Michael Jeavons comments, talking about the new face of real estate. To the three characteristics that also describe Jeavons I would add “charming.” This unique blend of qualities makes him the real estate agent of choice for anybody looking to buy, sell or rent a place.  His fascination with real estate is contagious, turning his clients’ (usually cumbersome) process of finding a place, an exciting process.

Michael Jeavons began his career in hospitality management because he enjoyed helping people. He then went on to work for a national real estate developer marketing large high-rise projects. Presently, he focuses on metro NY and NJ luxury residential real estate.

“It fascinates me,” Jeavons confesses talking about his passion for real estate, “and I like [sharing this] fascination with [my] clients.” At the same time, as agent and client work through the process together, they also develop a deeper relationship, one based on trust. This bond helps both agent and client to find that home (apartment or house) perfect for that client. This connection is real and it is possible for several reasons: Jeavons’ passion for, commitment to and attention to details that come through during the very first client/agent meeting; Jeavons’ ability to assure his client the guidance needed when navigating the maze called real estate.   

Indeed, for the layperson the process of shopping for a home can be an overwhelming, sometimes outright intimidating. Consulting a real estate agent for a home search brings access to that agent’s experience, knowledge, and expertise.

But what makes a good agent, one worth trusting with your home?

“Experience and knowledge of the different areas are very important when choosing a real estate agent,” Jeavons explains.  He goes on to explain what makes a great agent. “Great agents teach their clients. They are patient. They give guidance, yet allow their clients to learn for themselves as the process evolves. Above all, great agents have the highest level of integrity.”

A great real estate agent not only knows the “flavor” of different neighborhoods, but can also read the clients’ unspoken language and hear beyond their words in order to ascertain exactly their particular desires and needs in a new home. After all, Jeavons comments, “time is very valuable. No client wants to have his or her time wasted viewing properties [that] do not meet their needs.”

So, what do home-shoppers want?

Clients are in search of the best value for their special needs, no matter if they’re seeking a place in a metro area or elsewhere.  “Everything sells and rents,” Jeavons explains. “There is truly a place for every taste and price range. All the more reasons to work with a qualified real estate professional who can help direct search efforts.”

Finding a place can become an even more difficult task in today’s economic climate, especially during the winter season.  Yet, it does not intimidate Jeavons, who sees it as a challenge and yet another opportunity to look at the bright side of the real estate business.

Yes, the economic climate has changed, but those interested to buy can make the best of it. “Sellers and buyers should expect to see little change in the current sale price of units,” Jeavons explains. “Prices have stabilized in the metro NY/NJ markets. Historically, it is one of the best times to buy with prices and interest rates lower than they have been in years. On the other hand, landlords and tenants should expect a significant increase in monthly rents, as demand for rental units increases.”

Usually, the greatest selection of inventory comes out in the spring. In general, buyers purchase property in the warmer seasons (spring, summer, and fall). Yet, buying a home in winter has its advantages. “Given the current buyer oriented market, mostly any time of the year is a great time to buy,” Jeavons advises. “If you are willing to purchase or move during the winter months, there is generally an opportunity for greater negotiation. [That is because] units are more difficult to move during the winter, [thus] making it a great opportunity for buyers.”

So, what would sellers need to do to prepare their homes for potential buyers?

“Make it clean, neat, and fresh!” Jeavons advises. Remove all excess personal items. It usually makes a small urban space seem larger and more comfortable. Also, thoroughly clean and, if needed, repaint the space. Perform any deferred maintenance—for example, repair leaking faucets, replace broken windows, fix doors. “Buyers respond most positively to clean, bright, neat and well-maintained spaces,” Jeavons comments, “they sometimes lack the vision to see beyond minor imperfections, such as paint, cleaning and minor repairs.”

Another way to improve the quality and increase the value of a property is to invest in that property, but only in times that will add value and provide a return, Jeavons cautions. He explains that, traditionally, areas that sellers usually renovate include kitchens and baths, and replace general appliances. But, during the renovation process, sellers should “keep control of expenses,” Jeavons urges, “realize that extra expenses associated with personal preferences may not transfer into direct returns upon selling.”

Jeavons is a real estate agent, and also a shopper. This sets him apart from other agents because he understands what his clients go through when trying to find their perfect homes. This, in turns, helps them guide his clients through that real estate maze mentioned at the beginning of this post. Being a buyer himself, he also loves seeing property with his clients. “It is the whole reason I work in real estate,” Jeavons explains.

Real estate is about touch-and-feel. Therefore, Jeavons encourages all perspective buyers to go out and see as much inventory as possible. And then to find an agent who’s willing to do the same with them. “Because the value of real estate is largely subjective and based on what a buyer is willing to pay,” Jeavons explains, “the more property [clients] see, the more [they] understand what they’re seeking in a property purchase, how much they’re willing to pay and what a property is really worth. I enjoy seeing each new property as much as my clients do. It helps me grow my perspective, as well as that of my client.”




From Michael Jeavons, a real estate professional:

On real estate: “Real estate is about touch and feel. Get out and see as much inventory as possible, and find an agent who is willing to do the same.”

On clients: “There is no such thing as a best/worst client. Each client is an individual with special needs and desires. Finding a home is a very special process. Each search is unique and, in time, will yield special results with the perfect home.”

On preparing a place for sale: “Make it clean, neat and fresh! De-cluttering will make a smaller urban space seem larger and more comfortable. Buyers sometimes lack vision to see beyond minor imperfections, such as paint, cleaning and minor repairs.”

More on preparing a place for sale: “Keep control of expenses. Just because you value a $10K Viking range does not mean a potential buyer will.”

On best time to purchase real estate: “Given the current buyer oriented market, mostly any time of the year is a great time to buy. Winter months [offer] an opportunity for greater negotiation, [because] units are more difficult to move during the winter, making it a great opportunity for buyers.”

On real estate forecast for owners and renters: “Sellers/buyers should expect little change in the current sale price of units. Prices have stabilized in the metro NY/NJ markets. Historically, it is one of the best times to buy with prices and interest rates lower than they’ve been in years. [On the other hand,] landlords/tenants should expect a significant increase in monthly rents, as demand for rental units increases.

For more real estate tips please contact Michael Jeavons at 551-226-9804.



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