Friday, March 28, 2008

Real Estate Terminology: Mary Umberger Syndrome

The syndrome whereby buyers show up at your property during the week regurgitating something they read in Mary Umberger's column in the Chicago Tribune on Sunday.  Frequently this syndrome manifests itself with the clutching of the oversized Sunday Tribune tucked innocently under an arm, or with ink-smudged fingers leaving prints all over your appliances.

Confirmation of this syndrome can be achieved by simply reading Mary's column and comparing it to what you hear in these situations.

Buyers show up at your development open house asking for tons of upgrades (or even a CAR!) because they read that:

An unscientific sampling of marketing materials finds a number of arresting, exclamation-point laden promotions. Many continue to offer tens of thousands of dollars in goodies or price reductions. And if you have your heart set on a big-screen TV -- or even a car -- such opportunities still exist.

Buyers turn in a low offer on your listing because over the weekend they read that:

A trio of economists told the nation's beleaguered home builders Wednesday that housing probably will continue its slide through much of 2008, until a painful but necessary drop in new- and existing-home prices -- 15 percent or more in some parts of the country -- helps find a turning point.

Thanks to Greg Braun from the law firm of McCormick Braun Friman, LLC, for the idea for this post and continuing series.


BuyMoreProperty said...

All too true!! Mary has the distinction of being the first to slam the Chicago real estate market at a time when it was still strong. Her cries of "the bubble is bursting" caused many a buyer to hold off from buying and thus, had a self fulfilling prophecy. What are her qualifications to be such a maven on real estate? Wasn't she previously in the fashion section? Why not print something optimistic for a change instead of continuing to hurt our economy?!