Why You Should Work With a Boutique Real Estate Agency
With thousands of brokerages collectively employing millions of agents, the real estate industry is undoubtedly huge. If you’ve stumbled upon this blog, you may have already found yourself asking: What’s the benefit of working with a boutique firm over ‘big brand brokerages’ such as Rodeo Realty, Compass, or Douglas Elliman?
Before we reveal the answer, we’d like to share a little bit about our founder, Chana Gedy, and what persuaded her to establish her own boutique firm, Chana Gedy Real Estate.
Chana Gedy’s career began in 2008 when she managed 25 buildings in downtown Manhattan and three additional properties in Washington Heights. For the first three years of her career, this opportunity gave her the chance to work firsthand with the property owners and learn the ins-and-outs of the business. After obtaining her Real Estate Salesperson license in 2011, Chana joined a firm specializing in leasing and sales based in the Union Square neighborhood. And just two years later, after her dear client introduced her to the owner of the Weinstein Realty Group, she began working for their hybrid firm specializing in leasing, sales, and property management.
In 2016, Chana moved to Los Angeles, California and began working for one of the biggest management companies based in the Sherman Oaks area. Her mission was to build the company’s single family homes portfolio by offering personalized and concierge style services with a focus on leasing, sales, and management. Through hard work and determination, she quickly climbed the company ladder. As her responsibilities grew, she tapped into business development by signing on new accounts and building a website for the successfully growing single family homes division, all while continuing to provide leasing, sales, project management, and property management services for her extensive client list. In other words, she was a one woman show — determined to do it all.
This path of success led her to pursue continuing education courses and eventually led to further career advancement. In the summer of 2019, she obtained her broker’s license and decided to leave the world of corporate real estate to open her own firm in 2020.
Why Did Chana Gedy Open Her Own Firm?
After 14 years of working with various companies ranging from small to large, Chana noticed an unmistakable pattern: time and time again, property supervisors were not getting enough support to manage their portfolios. Some didn’t even have proper leasing training and consistently missed important steps in the advertising and qualifying process as well as important aspects of the move in and move out, such as the make ready and inspection process. Ultimately, this contributed to the overall property mismanagement, which resulted in the inability to collect rent, keep up with property maintenance, and quickly fill vacancies.
Eventually, small issues scaled exponentially and due to tenants not paying rent and owners deferring maintenance as a result of mismanagement, properties were declining and with them, their value and income potential. The lack of specifications in the property management contract regarding the scope of work, amount of time spent on each property per month, number of inspections, or property visits hurt not only the property owners, but the management companies themselves.
With so much inevitable decline, their reputation was at stake. Since the management companies were charging a flat fee for all-inclusive property management that was impossible to fulfill given the circumstances, many upset phone calls and angry voicemails ensued as the owners relentlessly fought to receive the professional and accountable service they initially expected.
But this is avoidable…
The Benefits of Working with a Boutique Firm
When Chana made the decision to open her own firm, she was doing much more than establishing her own company — she was breaking the pattern.
Built on the guiding principle of quality over quantity, Chana Gedy Real Estate takes only a select number of clients at any given time, allowing us the opportunity to provide limitless, unconditional support. Many have described working with us as a “comprehensive and holistic” experience, so it’s no surprise that we take extra care to fulfill our mission of walking side-by-side with our clients through every step of their real estate transaction. Our goal is to provide our clients with the most in-depth data, information, and understanding to help them make the most informed and lucrative decisions for their real estate portfolios. Whether you’re buying, selling or leasing, you won’t have to worry about when your call will be returned or when your email will be answered— with Chana Gedy Real Estate, you are guaranteed clear, consistent communication.
Will Your Listing Get the Same Exposure?
Absolutely! While our firm may be small, our resources are extensive. Along with full access to the MLS and all aspects of marketing and advertising platforms, we work with the best in the industry and constantly learn about new features and technology; priding ourselves on being fine-tuned with the ever-changing demands of the industry. And since full access requires technology, we’re endlessly working on making sure that we’re ranking up and providing you with the best exposure and personalized features for your real estate needs.
Due to our vast experience in the various aspects of real estate, we don’t see other firms as our competition; furthermore, because our guiding principle is quality over quantity by only taking on a select number of clients at one time, we are constantly searching for YOUR dream home and will most likely spot it before ‘our competition’ will!
We pride ourselves on providing the most customized and tailored real estate services with an emphasis on open communication throughout what could possibly be the biggest transaction of your life. At Chana Gedy Real Estate, we focus on what matters most to each client; whether it’s finding a home with the perfect chef-worthy kitchen, or tracking down a property that fits environmental requirements for green living, we listen to what each client wants and then work hard to deliver that dream.
Are you ready to break the pattern and work with a boutique firm? To find out if we’re a good fit for your property and real estate services, contact us today!
March 20, 2023
The housing market has been going through shifts lately. That’s why it’s so important to work with an industry professional who can be your guide throughout the process.
A real estate expert uses their knowledge of what’s really happening with home prices, housing supply, expert projections, and more to give you the best advice. Someone who can provide clarity like that is critical right now. Jay Thompson, Real Estate Industry Consultant, explains:
“Housing market headlines are everywhere. Many are quite sensational, ending with exclamation points or predicting impending doom for the industry. Clickbait, the sensationalizing of headlines and content, has been an issue since the dawn of the internet, and housing news is not immune to it.”
Unfortunately, when information in the media isn’t clear, it can generate a lot of fear and uncertainty in the market. As Jason Lewris, Co-Founder and Chief Data Officer at Parcl, says:
“In the absence of trustworthy, up-to-date information, real estate decisions are increasingly being driven by fear, uncertainty, and doubt.”
But it doesn’t have to be that way. Buying a home is a big decision, and it should be one you feel confident making. You can lean on an expert to help you separate fact from fiction and get the answers you need.
The right agent can help you understand what’s happening at the national and local levels, and they can debunk headlines using data you can trust. Experts have in-depth knowledge of the industry and can provide context, so you know how current trends compare to the normal ebbs and flows in the industry, historical data, and more.
Then, to make sure you have the full picture, an agent can tell you if your local area is following the national trend or if they’re seeing something different in your market. Together, you can use all that information to make the best possible decision.
After all, making a move is a potentially life-changing milestone. It should be something you feel ready for and excited about. And that’s where a trusted expert comes in.
For expert advice and the latest housing market insights, reach out to a real estate professional today.
March 20, 2023
Though there are more homes for sale now than there were at this time last year, there’s still an undersupply with fewer houses available than in more normal, pre-pandemic years. The Monthly Housing Market Trends Report from realtor.com puts it this way:
“While the number of homes for sale is increasing, it is still 43.2% lower than it was before the pandemic in 2017 to 2019. This means that there are still fewer homes available to buy on a typical day than there were a few years ago.”
The current housing shortage has an impact on how you search for a home this spring. With limited options on the market, buyers who consider what’s a necessity versus what’s a nice-to-have will be more successful in their home search.
The first step? Get pre-approved for a mortgage. Pre-approval helps you better understand what you can borrow for your home loan, and that plays an important role in how you’ll put your list together. After all, you don’t want to fall in love with a home that’s out of reach. Once you have a good grasp on your budget, the best way to prioritize all the features you want and need in a home is to put together a list.
Here’s a great way to think about them before you begin:
Must-Haves – If a house doesn’t have these features, it won’t work for you and your lifestyle.
Nice-To-Haves – These are features you’d love to have but can live without. Nice-to-haves aren’t dealbreakers, but if you find a home that hits all the must-haves and some of these, it’s a contender.
Dream State – This is where you can really think big. Again, these aren’t features you’ll need, but if you find a home in your budget that has all the must-haves, most of the nice-to-haves, and any of these, it’s a clear winner.
Finally, once you’ve created your list and categorized it in a way that works for you, discuss it with your real estate agent. They’ll be able to help you refine the list further, coach you through the best ways to stick to it and find a home in your area that meets your needs.
Prioritizing what you need in a home is a critical first step of the buying process. If you’re ready to find the one that’s best for you, connect with a local real estate agent.
March 20, 2023
Though the housing market is no longer experiencing the frenzy of a year ago, buyers are showing their interest in purchasing a home. According to U.S. News:
“Housing markets have cooled slightly, but demand hasn’t disappeared, and in many places remains strong largely due to the shortage of homes on the market.”
That activity can be seen in the latest ShowingTime Showing Index, which is a measure of buyers actively touring available homes (see graph below):
The 62% jump in showings from December to January is one of the largest on record. There were also more showings in January than in any other month since last May. As you can see in the graph, it’s normal for showings to increase early in the year, but the jump this January was larger than usual, and a lot of that has to do with mortgage rates. Michael Lane, VP of Sales and Industry at ShowingTime+, explains:
“It’s typical to see a seasonal increase in home showings in January as buyers get ready for the spring market, but a larger increase than any January before after last year’s rapid cooldown is significant. Mortgage rate activity this spring will play a big role in sales activity, but January’s home showings are a positive sign that buyers are getting back out there. . .”
It's important to note that mortgage rates hovered in the low 6% range in January, which played a role in the high number of showings. What does this mean? When mortgage rates eased, buyer interest climbed. The jump in home showings early this year makes one thing clear – while rates may be volatile right now, there are interested buyers out there, and when mortgage rates are favorable, they’re ready to make their move.
An increase in showing activity in January is a good sign that there are buyers who are eager to purchase a home. If you’re thinking of selling your house, talk with your real estate agent.
March 20, 2023
Over the past year, home prices have been a widely debated topic. Some have said we’ll see a massive drop in prices and that this could be a repeat of 2008 – which hasn’t happened. Others have forecasted a real estate market that could see slight appreciation or depreciation depending on the area of the country. And as we get closer to the spring real estate market, experts are continuing to forecast what they believe will happen with home prices this year and beyond.
Selma Hepp, Chief Economist at CoreLogic, says:
“While 2023 kicked off on a more optimistic note for the U.S. housing market, recent mortgage rate volatility highlights how much uncertainty remains. Nevertheless, the continued shortage of for-sale homes is likely to keep price declines modest, which are projected to top out at 3% peak to trough.”
Additionally, every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a panel of over 100 economists, investment strategists, and housing market analysts regarding their five-year expectations for future home prices in the United States. Here’s what they said most recently.
So, given this information and what experts are saying about home prices, the question you might be asking is: should I buy a home this spring? Here are three reasons you should consider making a move:
Buying a home helps you escape the cycle of rising rents. Over the past several decades, the median price of rent has risen consistently. The bottom line is, rent is going up.
Homeownership is a hedge against inflation. A key advantage of homeownership is that it’s one of the best hedges against inflation. When you buy a home with a fixed-rate mortgage, you secure your housing payment, so it won’t go up like it would if you rent.
Homeownership is a powerful wealth-building tool. The average net worth of a homeowner is $255,000 compared to $6,300 for a renter.
Experts are projecting slight price depreciation in the housing market this year, followed by steady appreciation. Given that, you may be wondering if you should move ahead with buying a home this spring. The decision to purchase a home is best made when you do it knowing all the facts and have an expert on your side.
Reach out to a local real estate professional to make the most informed decision about your next move.
Jan. 27, 2023
Spring is usually the busiest season in the housing market. Many buyers wait until then to make their move, believing it’s the best time to find a home. However, that isn’t always the case when you factor in the competition you could face with other buyers at that time of year. If you’re ready to buy a home, here’s why it makes sense to move before the spring market picks up.
Spring Should Bring a Wave of Buyers to the Market
In most years, the housing market goes through predictable seasonal trends in activity. Winter is typically a quiet point in the year, while spring sees a surge of buyers begin their search. And experts project that this year will be no exception.
Right now, buyer demand is low due to a combination of normal seasonal trends and a reaction to last year’s rise in mortgage rates. But rates have started to come down since last November, which has more and more potential buyers planning to jump into the market. That means right now is a sweet spot if you’re in a good position to buy, before more buyers reappear. Affordability is beginning to improve, but demand is still low — for now. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors(NAR), shares:
“. . . expect sales to pick up again soon since mortgage rates have markedly declined after peaking late last year.”
If you’re ready to buy a home, right now is the best time to do so before your competition grows and more buyers enter the market.
Today’s Sellers Are Motivated
Low demand from buyers often means sellers are more motivated to work with you, and that can set you up to buy a home on your terms. In fact, sellers have been more willing to negotiate this winter because there are fewer buyers in the market. According to a recent article from Forbes:
“. . . sellers gave concessions to buyers in 41.9% of home sales in the fourth quarter of last year.”
But keep in mind, the advantages buyers have this winter won’t last forever. The competition you face could be greater if you wait until spring to make a move, and increased buyer demand means sellers will have less motivation to negotiate with you. Be sure to work with a trusted real estate professional to learn what you can expect in your local market right now.
If you’re in a good position to make a move, it may make sense to move before spring. Working with your team of expert real estate advisors is the best way to learn about the current market and what it means for you. Let’s connect today to determine the best plan to achieve your home-buying goals.
Jan. 22, 2023
There’s no doubt today’s housing market is very different than the frenzied one from the past couple of years. In the second half of 2022, there was a dramatic shift in real estate, and it caused many people to make comparisons to the 2008 housing crisis. While there may be a few similarities, when looking at key variables now compared to the last housing cycle, there are significant differences.
In the latest Real Estate Forecast Summit, Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), drew the comparisons below between today’s housing market and the previous cycle:
Looking at the facts, it’s clear: today is very different than the housing market of 15 years ago.
There’s Opportunity in Real Estate Today
And in today’s market, with inventory rising and less competition from other buyers, there’s opportunity right now. According to David Stevens, former Assistant Secretary of Housing:
“So be advised…this may be the one and only window for the next few years to get into a buyer’s market. And remember…as the Federal Reserve data shows…home prices only go up and always recover from recessions no matter how mild or severe. Long term homeowners should view this market…right now…as a unique buying opportunity.”
Today’s housing market is nothing like the real estate market 15 years ago. If you’re a buyer right now, this may be the chance you’ve been waiting for.
Jan. 22, 2023
During the pandemic, second homes became popular because of the rise in work-from-home flexibility. That’s because owning a second home, especially in the luxury market, allowed those homeowners to spend more time in their favorite places or with different home features. Keep in mind, a luxury home isn’t only defined by price. In a recent article, Investopedia shares additional factors that push a home into this category: location, such as a home on the water or in a desirable city, and features, the things that make the home itself feel luxurious.
A recent report from the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing (ILHM) explains just how much remote work impacted the demand for second and luxury homes:
“The unprecedented ten-fold increase towards remote work since the pandemic is an historic development that will continue to fuel second home demand for many years to come.”
But what if you bought a second home that you no longer use? If you’re now shifting back into the office or are seeing your priorities and needs change, you may find you’re not utilizing your second home as much. If so, it may be time to sell it.
And if you own what’s considered a luxury home, buyer demand for it may be even greater. In another report, the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing explains:
“. . . the last few years have left their legacy for the luxury market. While it might only represent a small percentage of the overall real estate market, luxury homeownership’s influence is growing. Not only has the purchase of homes valued over $1 million (a figure considered by the National Association of Realtors to be a benchmark for luxury) tripled from 2.6% to 6.5% since 2018, but demand for multiple luxury properties has soared over the last two years.
This phenomenal increase has been driven by a growing affluent demographic who consider owning a luxury property a necessity in their asset portfolio. All indications are that this trend is here to stay, albeit that demand is set to return to a more sustainable level.”
If you own a luxury second home that isn’t being used as much anymore, now’s the time to sell. There are still buyers in the market who are looking for a home like yours today.
Let’s connect to explore the benefits of selling your second home this year.
Jan. 22, 2023
It doesn’t matter if you’re someone who closely follows the economy or not, chances are you’ve heard whispers of an upcoming recession. Economic conditions are determined by a broad range of factors, so rather than explaining them each in depth, let’s lean on the experts and what history tells us to see what could lie ahead. As Greg McBride, Chief Financial Analyst at Bankrate, says:
“Two-in-three economists are forecasting a recession in 2023 . . .”
As talks about a potential recession grows, you may be wondering what a recession could mean for the housing market. Here’s a look at the historical data to show what happened in real estate during previous recessions to help prove why you shouldn’t be afraid of what a recession could mean for the housing market today.
A Recession Doesn’t Mean Falling Home Prices
To show that home prices don’t fall every time there’s a recession, it helps to turn to historical data. As the graph below illustrates, looking at recessions going all the way back to 1980, home prices appreciated in four of the last six of them. So historically, when the economy slows down, it doesn’t mean home values will always fall.
Most people remember the housing crisis in 2008 (the larger of the two red bars in the graph above) and think another recession would be a repeat of what happened to housing then. But today’s housing market isn’t about to crash because the fundamentals of the market are different than they were in 2008. According to experts, home prices will vary by market and may go up or down depending on the local area. But the average of their 2023 forecasts shows prices will be net neutral nationwide, not fall drastically like they did in 2008.
A Recession Means Falling Mortgage Rates
Research also helps paint the picture of how a recession could impact the cost of financing a home. As the graph below shows, historically, each time the economy slowed down, mortgage rates decreased.
Fortune explains mortgage rates typically fall during an economic slowdown:
“Over the past five recessions, mortgage rates have fallen an average of 1.8 percentage points from the peak seen during the recession to the trough. And in many cases, they continued to fall after the fact as it takes some time to turn things around even when the recession is technically over.”
In 2023, market experts say mortgage rates will likely stabilize below the peak we saw last year. That’s because mortgage rates tend to respond to inflation. And early signs show inflation is starting to cool. If inflation continues to ease, rates may fall a bit more, but the days of 3% are likely behind us.
The big takeaway is you don’t need to fear the word recession when it comes to housing. In fact, experts say a recession would be mild and housing would play a key role in a quick economic rebound. As the 2022 CEO Outlook from KPMG, says:
“Global CEOs see a ‘mild and short’ recession, yet optimistic about the global economy over a 3-year horizon . . .
More than 8 out of 10 anticipate a recession over the next 12 months, with more than half expecting it to be mild and short.”
While history doesn’t always repeat itself, we can learn from the past. According to historical data, in most recessions, home values have appreciated and mortgage rates have declined.
If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home this year, let’s connect so you have expert advice on what’s happening in the housing market and what that means for your homeownership goals.