Skip to content

Buy, Sell, Show Me Now!


Here we go. The American Public is giving every indication that they want to see homes, sell homes, and buy homes on the internet – without involving those ‘pesky’ professional Realtors©. Recent events in my professional work life as well as Pamela Seley in her post Where’s The Buy Button? , inspired this post.

Buy Sell Show me now

Press the red button and Voila! – anyone can buy that house now!  Just fill in the online form and you’re done! Ha! 

Just press the blue button and Voila! – a real estate genie appears in front of the home to open the door at your whim! 

Press the green button, fill in the form, and Voila! – the corporation that owns that website will conveniently remove their commission, fees, and charges before transferring the remaining balance to your account.

Is there any reason this cannot or should not be done? Never mind that Ralph Nader, along with hundreds of thousands of citizens, fought and marched and petitioned Congress for years before winning  rights of representation for people when purchasing real estate. Never mind that sellers really want only qualified buyers coming to view their homes at all hours. Never mind the Title Work and Underwriting. 

Let’s just move along and pretend that Consumer Rights Advocacy never happened for real estate transactions. Let’s just pretend that this seems convenient and will make everyone happy. Heck, we know the banks will love it, right? Zillow and Trulia will make loads of money. What could possibly go wrong?

Remember when we let the greedy buggers maneauver control of our health care away from doctors and give it to the insurance corporations? Heck, that turned out just hunky-dory, didn’t it? 

Best Mobile App to Search Homes For Sale on your smartphone


Best Mobile App to Search Homes For Sale on your smartphone.

Best Mobile App to Search Homes For Sale on your smartphone


Scan the QR Code to get the App. See the details on the house when you’re standing right in front of it. Includes photos, price, remarks, etc. QR Code Maria Office Google Map
This phone app covers the entire Kansas City Greater Metropolitan Area including Kansas City MO, Kansas City KS, North Kansas City, Overland Park KS, Leawood KS, Shawnee KS, Lenexa KS, Olathe KS, Prairie Village KS, Fairway KS, Westwood & Westwood Hills, Blue Springs MO, Lee’s Summit MO, Independence MO, Raytown MO, Grandview MO, Belton MO, Raymore MO, and more. All houses listed for sale on Heartland MLS (covers >5,000 square miles) are on the mobile app! This app is updated directly from MLS every 10 minutes.
mobile app screen shots 3
If you need a good QR Code reader for your phone, try OptiScan. It’s free just like the mobile app to see details on homes for sale in Kansas City.

Mission Hills Real Estate 4.21.2013


Real estate market report for the city of Mission Hills in the Kansas City Greater Metropolitan Area: including Mission Hills, Indian Hills, Sagamore Hills (the three sisters), and Belinder Hills. 1st Quarter 2013.

Active Listings (homes for sale) = 33.

Contingent = 1.

Pending = 14.

Back-Ups = 7.

Sold in the last 180 days = 30.

The highest price paid for a home in Mission Hills during the last 180 days was $3,000,000. (This was the sprawling 2 and 1/2 acre estate overlooking the Kansas City Country Club golf course.)

The lowest price paid was $345,000. (This was a smallish ranch home on a small lot south of 63rd street in Sagamore Hills.)

The Average price paid for a home in Mission Hills is $950,096.

High end, luxury properties did not move well during our recent recession. We are enjoying a comeback now that the economy is showing signs of improvement. Notice that not only are the homes in Mission Hills selling, many have Back Up Offers attached. That tells me two things: 1, there are buyers for luxury homes in Kansas City; and 2, the best homes in Mission Hills are attracting multiple offers.

If you know Kansas City, then you know that Mission Hills is a desirable neighborhood to call home. If you are not familiar with our beautiful city, please feel free to learn more about Mission Hills here.

Information and data from Heartland MLS is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.
Portions of this post were originally published at

How to Find a Real Estate Agent


Need a Realtor in Kansas City?
Here, let me Google one for you.

5 Things A Real Estate Agent Cannot Do


by Maria Morton

1. I Cannot Sell Your House For More Than It Is Worth. Seriously, I do not set house values. A house is worth what a ready, willing and able buyer will pay for it today. Home Buyers are not stupid. Most will have an agent to help them determine value of houses they are considering. They will not pay more for your house than what the recent comparables show it to be worth. They will not pay an extra $100,000 just because that’s how much you’d like to get. If the number you want is unrealistic, I won’t agree to list your house for sale. Another agent might but they will still not get you $100,000 more in price. Your house will just sit there. Sorry, but this is the truth.

2. I Cannot Find A Perfect House For You To Buy.
No house is perfect. We talk about this at our Initial Consultation. After Inspections, we can ask the Seller to repair some of the items on the Inspection Report but the house will still not be absolutely perfect – there’s no such thing. We can find a house that looks sound and has most of what you want and need in a home but we will never find a perfect house. Even if you build a house to your specifications, that house will not be perfect.

3. I Cannot Make The Banks & HUD Easy To Work With.
If you are buying a HUD home, an REO, or a Short Sale, we will be dealing with the idiocy of bureaucracy. ‘They ‘ will want everything from you yesterday but take eons to reply to your Offers and Counter Offers. They will insist on using their own documents which are written in their favor and try to take away as many of your Buyer rights as possible. They will not use the documents normally used in real estate transactions in our area; the documents which have Buyer rights incorporated within. They will refuse to conform to traditional practices and processes. We will have little control over the process and very little, if any, personal contact; they will be slow as molasses and awkward as a 3-legged horse on ice to work with. We can do it but you will need to be as patient as you would be with a toddler at potty training.

4. I Cannot Compel A Buyer To Make An Offer To Buy Your House.
If you listen to, and act on, all the suggestions I make about preparing the property to show, that will happen. If you decide it’s too hard, too much trouble, or not really important to prepare the home, it will not receive as many showings and it will take longer to sell. I can market your house for sale as well, or better, than any agent in the Kansas City area but I cannot force someone to make an offer to buy it. They have to want it. I can show you how to make them want it but I can’t force you to do anything.

5. I Cannot Make The Seller Give You Another Chance. If you choose to make a low-ball offer against my advice and the Seller accepts another offer in lieu of yours, I cannot make the Seller listen to your better offer after the fact. Move on. I cannot make the Seller reconsider doing business with you if you alienate them beyond all reason. When a person gets this aggravated with another person, it may be that that person will never do business with you no matter how much money you offer them. Move on. If you decide to ‘think about it’ and another buyer makes an offer on the house and the Seller accepts that offer, I cannot turn back time and make that house for sale again. Move on.

What Is The Cost of Living? Check Your Budget


by Maria Morton

Has anyone been paying attention to United States’ Health Care, cost of living, minimum wage, and how many pundits are saying that the key to getting over the recession is the recovery of the real estate market? money symbol

Who here believes that?

Let’s say a regular person earns $10/hour; that’s $21,200/year gross income. Suppose this regular person pays 20% in taxes, that leaves $16,960/year or $1,413/month. Please keep in mind that, according to the United States Department of Labor, the minimum wage for Kansas and Missouri is $7.25/hour, not $10.

According to the US Census Department, monthly housing costs are house $758/month including mortgage and maintenance; $705/month excluding maintenance & second mortgages. See Table 1A-7 on page 9 of the American Housing Survey for US 2003.

Here is a breakdown of costs of living for a budget of $1,413/month income:

Shelter [13%] = $480.42/month ?but the average cost is >$700

Car [15%] = $211.95/month ?that wouldn’t keep me in gas!

Food [13%] = $183.69/month ?Really? Where do they shop?

Pensions & Social Security [10%] = $141.30/month

Utilities [8%] = $113.04/month ?wonder which utility they choose to pay?

Health Care [7%] = $98.91/month ?you won’t get much coverage for that!

Entertainment [5%] = $70.65/month (just the movie; no popcorn)

Clothing [4%] = $56.52/month -shop the dollar stores!

Household Furnishings [3%] = $42.39 -shop second hand stores!

Education [2%] = $28.26 -that does not even cover the cost of Continuing Ed!

What about retirement? How much does this regular person need to saveWaikiki Beach Hawaii for retirement? According to the nifty CalcXML, this person needs to save $258/month starting at age 35 in order to retire at age 65.

Maybe I’m not doing this right, but the numbers aren’t adding up! The best I can do on my Health Insurance is $474/month! Food is easily $400/month! Exactly how is this enforced Health Care Law going to work?

Sure, I can get Health Insurance for $70.69/month – Do you know what it covers? =$100/Emergency Room Visit; Nothing for Inpatient; Nothing for Surgery; nothing for medications.

What about a mortgage? $150,000 mortgage @ 5% interest over 30 years = $805.32/month Principal & Interest only –that doesn’t include Homeowner’s Insurance or Property Taxes –and it’s 57% of our minimum wage worker’s monthly income! Are you sure that real estate is the first thing that needs to recover? Do you not think employment and health care have a role in this recession?

I don’t see how anyone can afford to live fairly comfortably on less than $4,000/month after taxes ($6,000 would be better). Am I missing something?