Why Buy With Us?
Our Pledge to Our Customers:
Often people ask why they should list with us. Why, we’ve sold more land for more dollars over the last 47 years than any independent office..
Well, it starts with the boots. The tools of the trade are Jeeps, topos, aerial maps and compasses.
The competitive edge is knowledge. In fact, we don’t sell land. What we sell is knowledge . We toss in the land for free. The more knowledgeable the buyer and seller are, the smoother the transaction.
The bare minimum requirement for this business is to have a working knowledge of termite reports, structural reports, zoning regulations, setbacks, basic financing, closing costs and the uncanny ability to point out that there’s “Lots of closet space.”
However, success in this valley depends on a different type of knowledge.
Ask yourself, “How conversant are you on these topics?”
- The tax advantages of the Williamson Act?
- The difference between Type H and type A contracts?
- The Ag preserve?
- Measure J?
- The Hillside Ordinance?
- The Ag Watershed Vs. the Ag Preserve?
- What do you need to cut a parcel into forty acres? To sixty?
- What about certificates of compliance?
- Lot line adjustments?
- The value of plantable land in Pope Valley vs. Mt. Veeder.
- What does wasteland go for per acre? Or grazing land? Or premium Cabernet land?
- The cost of a building site?
- How can an additional acre increase the value of a parcel by half a million to three-quarters of a million dollars?
- The cost of drilling a well and finding water vs. the cost of drilling and coming up dry.
- The costs of holding tanks?
- CDF (California Division of Forestry) requirements regarding water, roads, and building permits?
- Iron in the water?
- The levels of Boron and their effects?
- How much water does a vineyard actually need? A two bedroom house? Is ten gallons per minute sufficient?
- Perc tests?
- Back hoes for soil analysis?
- Dressa dibble vs. Macadame?
- The Napa County Soil Conservation Department?
- What is the price per ton for Cabernet, Zinfandel, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc?
- How many tons per acre of each variety should you expect on the Valley floor? In the hillsides?
- What is the cost per acre to farm grapes? What can one expect to make selling grapes?
- How many cases in a ton of grapes?
- What are the effects of Utipa, fan leaf, leaf roll, nematodes and, of course, Phyloxra?
- What are the advantages of So4 over 1l0R? Are there any?
- How much will it cost to replant an acre of grapes? To plant on virgin soil? To clear an acre for grapes? What if a vineyard is on AXR-1?
- What does it cost to pave a road? To Blue shale it? To grade one?
- How many dwellings can you have on a parcel? What size guest ‘house? How about caretaker’s house?
- Who can farm your vineyard? Who’s in the market to lease your grapes? To buy your grapes?
- How much grazing land to horse require? Cattle?
- What’s the price of Hay — Alfalfa or oat?
- The definition of a Winery?
- The 75% rule?
- Above ground tanks and below ground tanks?
Sure. We sell homes. Lots of ’em. But our strength is in the land — because we’ve walked the land, galloped on the land, ridden over it in Jeeps.
We’ve got the most extensive collection of aerial photographs of any office in the valley. Not vanity pictures, but bluelines with parcels marked on them so one can really see what one owns, or is buying. Some of the aerials go back to the first flights in 1959, so you can see how the valley (or your property )has changed over the decades.
We’ve got more parcels marked out on topos than any office in the valley.
We invite you to compare our files to those of any other office. We feel confident that we’ve got more in-depth files on more pieces of property than anyone, anywhere.
But don’t expect to find us in the office. Most of the time we’re out on the land, helping a neighbor find an approximate corner, coordinating drillers, checking back hoe samples, examining a vineyard or tromping through the poison oak trying to find a building site we suspect is there from the looks of a topo.
We’ve got the dirtiest boots in town.
And we’re proud of it,
When you’re ready to find a home, the last thing you want to do is limit your possibilities. Dream big, right?
But you’d be totally bummed if you found a perfect pad, only to learn you don’t qualify for the home of your dreams.
If you don’t earn a loan pre-approval before you start looking, you might actually prevent yourself from finding—and buying—your dream home.
Streamlined Hunting With Pre-Approval
Most homeowners start out by browsing homes for sale online to get an idea of what neighborhoods and housing styles they like. If you don’t know what you can afford, you may be looking out of your price range and wasting your time. You may also be looking below what you would have qualified for and not getting the right home for you.
If you start off by getting a pre-approval, you can sort by price, identify the right neighborhoods, and find your dream home much faster.
Better Results From a REALTOR®
The bottom line is this: REALTORS® prefer to work with home buyers who have a pre-approval in hand for two reasons.
First, a REALTOR® knows the deal isn’t likely to fall through, and second, when they know what you want and what you can afford, REALTORS® are able to do a better job of finding your dream home.
For example, you told a REALTOR® you want a historic home, but the asking price for these homes varies widely. If they don’t know what you can afford, they can only do a general search across several price ranges and may miss hidden gems.
On the other hand, if you have pre-approval, a REALTOR® would know what exactly what to focus on and would be able to suggest different neighborhoods, sizes and conditions of homes to match your needs—making it easier to get you exactly what you want.
Higher Acceptance Rate for Buyers With Pre-Approval
Once you find the perfect home, the next step can go two different ways depending on a pre-approval.
If you’re not pre-approved and you find a home you want to make an offer on, you’re taking a gamble. REALTORS® and sellers are less willing to accept offers from a buyer without a pre-approval. Odds are, they’ll go on to the next offer—and you’ll miss out.
However, if you are pre-approved, you have more room to haggle. Sellers may be more willing to lower the asking price, include appliances, cover closing costs or make other allowances to work with a pre-approved buyer.
Less Stress With Pre-Approval
Finally, skipping this step can wreak havoc on your stress level.
If you aren’t pre-approved, you’ll spend longer looking for homes. You may not feel like you’re getting great service from a REALTOR®. You may get turned down once you’re ready to make an offer.
All of this adds more time and stress to what should be a very exciting time in your life.
On the other hand, if you’re pre-approved, you have less to worry about: you know you’re a qualified buyer, you know there are lenders willing to work with you, and you can feel pretty confident when you make an offer.
Escrow and Closing Costs
Buying a house can involve big and scary terms, and “escrow” ranks near the top. So what is escrow, anyway?
The good news is that escrow is not as ominous as it sounds. In the home-buying process, escrow is a financial tool that allows you to set aside important items such as the buyer’s earnest money check and purchase agreement document in an impartial holding area, where it will stay until all of the details are worked out between a buyer and a seller, says Andy Prasky, a real estate professional with Re/Max Advantage Plus in Twin Cities.
The escrow officer is a third party—perhaps someone from the closing company, an attorney, or a title company agent (customs vary by state). How much does escrow cost? That varies too—as well as whether the buyer or seller (or both) pays—with the fee for this service typically totaling about 1% to 2% of the cost of the home.