How An Appraiser Sabotaged A Deal With Unclad Hands



Appraiser ruins home buying plans.

Many times an appraiser will wreck the home buying plans of the first-time home buyer. Across the country, agents and home builders are complaining. Too many appraisals are coming in low, scuttling deals. Let me explain how.

Mr. Appraiser, had sized up a four-bedroom, three-bath house in San Rafael, CA for $45,000. Less than what the buyers offered to pay. A typical deal-killer for a seller.

And now come the best part.

Mr. Agent urged the lender to force Mr. Appraiser to consider several other properties. That could back up the original $1,410,000 sale price.

He tells Mr. Appraiser his valuation was going to wreck this first-time buyers’ shot at the American Dream of home ownership.

Buyers beware when your agent tries to persuade the appraiser to back up his valuation. By considering other properties you’ll end up likely paying $45,000 more for the house.

According to the National Association of Realtors 25 percent of its members has reported clients losing a sale. Due to a botched appraisal. The National Association of Home Builders said low valuations were destroying a quarter of all new home sales. The trend is to compare distressed properties to recently built homes.
What do you think.
Should distressed homes sales sit side by side with other recently built homes?

Roughly 40 percent of all home sales in past years were foreclosures or short sales. Meaning the property sold for less than the mortgage balance.
Mr. Appraiser determined the value of the property by looking at recent sales of comparable homes. Not only that.
He took an apples-to-apples approach.

In most cases, a foreclosure isn’t used as a comparison for a standard sale.

“Over the piano a sign read: Please don’t shoot the pianist. He is doing his best”.-Oscar Wilde

Mr. Appraiser argues he is only sizing up homes according to the reality of the market. But he admits its becoming more difficult to determine the true market value of a home.

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How to get the home you want



Potrero Hill District

Searching for your first home is a nerve racking process. But Bates Real Estate Group has some inside info to make the search in San Francisco easy. So that you can find the home you want in less time.

How to get the home you want in San Francisco will take some planning:

1. Financial Options

Get approved for a mortgage loan . Visit your bank to see how much house you can buy. Get approved for a mortgage loan.

You will need at least a twenty percent down payment. This money should be in your account when you apply for the mortgage loan.

You may want to factor in a little extra cash for closing costs as well.

You might make a determination to go with a fixed rate mortgage. Where the interest rate remains the same. Fixed rate mortgage are usually for fifteen or thirty years.

Or you may decide on an adjustable rate mortgage. They offer lower interest rates in the beginning. But adjust to reflect changes in the credit market.

A fixed rate mortgage often seems higher in the beginning. But your mortgage payment will remain the same for the life of the loan.

2. Other costs and fees of home buying

First time home buyers are often unaware that there’s more to paying for a home. Than just the down payment.
Besides the down payment, you will also have closing costs. Appraisal fees, broker fees, and loan application fees .

Other expenses include the cost of the moving. As well as n property taxes, home owners or condo association fees. Which may have yearly increases and other related costs.

Considering making any renovations to the home? If so you should also set money aside for any changes that you are considering.

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3. Know what you want 

San Francisco is chock full of diverse neighborhoods. Some people never use their kitchen and want to be near great restaurants.

Other people love to entertain at home and want a larger space for their friends. And don’t care as much about the number of restaurants in the area.

Much of this is personal preference but can lead to buyer’s remorse. Down the road if you don’t stick to your instincts about your lifestyle. Bates Real Estate Group can help you find available homes in San Francisco. In a variety of neighborhoods and price points. And can help you find the perfect home through a process of elimination.

4. Extensive Research

You can use a  broker, or do your own  research in discovering if a property is right for you.

For instance, you may have heard that foreclosures are good deals.


Foreclosures take longer to close and having higher interest rates.

Condos can also have unexpected costs but by asking for the notes from prior board meetings. Try to find out about future improvements. That may lead to an increased financial burden for you, ahead of time.

You may also want to find out if the neighborhood itself has any major construction plans.
Some projects will be appealing. While others may not be so appealing. It is nice to know before you buy to avoid unwelcome surprises.

If you are a first time home buyer or need to sell your existing home to afford a new one, Bates Real Estate Group can help.


Each week we research and write enchanting articles on real estate trends for you. I hope you enjoyed this weeks subject. Share with friends and family.

Any questions? Would you like to chat? Call us at 415 378-6614 or send a note to

We look forward to hearing from you!



Random Act of Kindness

Make Someone’s Day Today with a Random Act of Kindness

Not only does a single kind action brighten the day of the person who receives it, kindness benefits the giver as well. Studies show that humans are naturally inclined to be generous and compassionate toward one another.

happy people


The Life-Changing Benefits of Altruism

Altruism may improve your mental and physical health, boost your self-esteem, create meaning and purpose in your life and foster a connection to your community.

  • Doing good will make you feel good. When you do something nice for someone else, your brain releases two powerful mood boosters; dopamine, and endogenous opioids. Experts call this “helpers high”, and it’s also found to reduce stress and lower anxiety and depression.
  • It’ll boost your health. According to an article in Scientific American, helping someone face-to-face triggers your body to release oxytocin, a bonding hormone that’s also responsible for lowering blood pressure and protecting your cardiovascular system. Kindness also activates the vagus nerve, which controls inflammation in the body.
  • You’ll live longer. People who volunteer tend to  live longer than those who don’t.

“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” John Wooden.

10 Free Random Acts of Kindness

It only takes a second to be kind and courteous to someone. Try some of these suggestions today.

  1. Hug your loved ones, and always take the opportunity to tell them you love them.
  2. Hold the door open for the person behind you.
  3. Offer your seat to someone on the bus or train.
  4. Write a note of praise to the manager of someone who has helped you (e.g., your waiter/waitress, a helpful flight attendant, the customer service representative who solved your problem.
  5. Write something funny, kind or inspiring on a sticky note, and leave it somewhere unexpected, such as the inside of a library book or on the mirror of a public restroom.
  6. Rake or mow your neighbor’s lawn.
  7. Clear the snow off the car next to yours in the parking lot.
  8. Pay the bridge toll for the car behind you.
  9. Visit the local senior center or nursing home.
  10. Smile at strangers, and say “hello”.

“Remember there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.” Scott Adams

The Best Home Scheduling Apps

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Whether you’re tracking your own busy schedule or trying to maintain the schedule of the whole family, the best home scheduling apps will help you keep track of every activity, meeting and lunch date on your tablet or smartphone.

  Freebie Calendar Apps

If your family is always on-the-go: Cozi (for Android and IPhone) is an award-winning app designed to easily manage the scheduling needs of the entire family. Access your information through your computer, tablet or smartphone and sync your appointments with Microsoft Outlook and other internet calendars.

  • Access a centralized calendar
  • Receive appointment reminders via text or email
  • Manage your shopping and to-do lists
  • Maintain a family journal

If you like the simple life: aCalendar by Tapir Apps UG (for Android) is another free app full of great features that make it easy to manage your schedule. And features intuitive navigation that allows you to change views with vertical and horizontal swipes across the screen. What’s more it offers several key features for optimal organization. You can:

  • Color-code your events and appointments
  • Create a QR barcode, and share events with friends
  • Share text and files
  • Incorporate birthdays and anniversaries (and photos) from your address book

Or if you like paper calendars: Jorte by Jorte, Inc. (for Android) offers the same look and functionality of a paper personal organizer. But it is lighter, less bulky and easier to navigate with the tap of a finger. Jorte syncs with Google Calendar. Not only that, it will

  • Customize your calendar by choosing the first day of your week, color-coding your appointment and tasks and changing the display colors
  • Control the app using Google Voice
  • Adjust the calendar screen for a wider view by turning the device on its side

Premium Calendar Apps That Do It All

Fantastical by Flexbits Inc. ($4.99; for iPhone, iPad touch and iPad) is a fast, easy-to-use calendar app that shows you all of your color-coded appointments for the day, week and month. Now comes the best part.

  • Add  events quickly by simply speaking the details of the event in English, French, German, Italian or Spanish.
  • Additionally, you can see and edit your calendar without even opening the app.

CalenGoo by Dominque Andre Gunia ($5.99) for Android; $6.99 for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad) syncs with Android Calendar and Google Calendar. And your iOS calendars for those using Apple products. CalenGoo focuses on flexibility:

  • Easily drag and drop a scheduled event to a different time
  • Zoom and pan through each month to get an overview of what’s schedules
  • Attach photos and PDF files to events.

Organizer by Aesthology Inc. ($7.99; for iPhone and iPad) allows you to enter text, events or diagrams; insert maps and voice memos; enter handwritten notes and drawings, and manage your to-do-list. Organizer syncs with your iCloud Calendar, Google Calendar and others. Additionally the app offers many of the standard features of other calendar apps, such as scheduling recurring events, syncing data, setting reminders and importing and editing events.

Optimize Your Family Calendar

  • Include standing appointments such as work, school, meals, etc.
  • Note any family vacations, sports tournaments and games or weekly or monthly commitments.
  • Have a family meeting to discuss important upcoming events and settle any conflicts.
  • Check the calendar before agreeing to do something in order to prevent conflicts later.


Time is spent each week researching and writing enchanting articles on real estate trends for you. I hope you enjoyed this weeks article. Share it with friends and family. We’re counting on you.

Any questions? Would you like to chat? Call me at 415 378-6614 or send a note to We look forward to hearing from you.



Impact Of Opting Out Of The MLS

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I just read an article opposing Zillow’s position on so-called pocket listings. Pocket listings or listings that are not marketed on the MLS results in brokers being able to double end deals.

Getting paid on both sides of the transaction is unethical and harmful to consumers according to a group known as Consumer Advocates in American Real Estate. They claim it’s a “harmful practice that thrives on breaching trust, deceiving clients, and intentionally putting them in a situation of duress and then profiting from it”. 

I disagree with this argument completely because there are many ways of marketing a property effectively.
After explaining the pros & cons of not using the MLS to market their homes, ultimately it’s my clients choice to have their homes listed on the MLS.
I take this position because there are many other ways of marketing listing to other brokers and consumers.   Let me explain how.

  • Marketing to my CRM
  • Postcard marketing. For about $50 I can reach every agent in the state..

Of course the different MLS’s around the country say no. Is it because they are afraid of losing all the fees they collect from us brokers. For very little value.

That’s why I was infuriated after reading an article by Doug Miller a consumer advocate. Who said  “pocket listings exist to generate a double fees & deceive the consumer”.

So my question to Doug is why is it wrong wanting to earn more money?

All sellers are required to sign an agency disclosure form where the pitfalls of not listing on the MLS is explained in detail.
Always give full disclosure to your clients, explaining the benefits and well as the bad of pocket listings.

Each week time is spent researching and writing enchanting articles on real estate trends. I hope you enjoyed this weeks subject. Share it with friends and family.

Any questions? Want to chat? You can reach me at (415) 378-6614. Or send a note to We’d love to hear from you.