SOARING interest rates have sent the housing market into a spin. That current turmoil, combined with the stress associated with buying and selling a home, prompted Eastern Eye to catch up with leading property expert Yawar Charlie.
The successful actor and TV personality turned estate agent is part of a leading company that has sold over £12.5 billion worth of property. The director of a top ranked sales team has worked with everyone from first time buyers to celebrities and appeared on property reality TV show Listing Impossible, where he and the top team help sell multi-million dollar properties languishing on the market.
The Los Angeles-based expert was happy to discuss all areas of property, including buying and selling tips, division after a divorce, his reality TV show and more.
What has been your most memorable moment as a realtor?
Each time I hand over the keys to a new homeowner is the most memorable. I recall the thrill of acquiring my first home with my hard-earned money from my acting career. This profound sense of achievement is universally experienced, irrespective of whether it’s your first or tenth home. The exhilaration of possessing something entirely your own is incredible and it’s a privilege for me to be a part of this important milestone in my clients’ lives.
What was the experience of being part of TV show Listing Impossible?
Listing Impossible was a remarkable journey. The business-centric show on CNBC didn’t dwell on personal dramas but offered viewers a bird’s eye view of the intricate process of selling luxury homes in one of the world’s most competitive markets. The show’s authenticity, organic nature and unpredictability were the defining aspects of this experience. It offered a rare insight into the real-world challenges of selling luxury homes.
Is there a secret to selling property at a time when prices have come down due to high interest rates?
Selling property in a high-interest-rate market depends largely on specific market conditions. For instance, in Los Angeles, despite rising interest rates, property prices have increased owing to low supply and high demand. Buyers have accepted the reality of higher interest rates and adjusted their budgets accordingly. The key to selling in such a market is the understanding that the law of supply and demand ultimately governs property prices.
What advice would you give those who have struggled to sell their property?
For sellers who’ve struggled to sell their property, it’s crucial to reassess their strategy. Sellers need to consider whether their property is overpriced, how their home compares with others in the area and whether they are working with the right realtor. The right realtor can provide expert guidance on proper pricing and strategic marketing to ensure the property reaches the widest possible audience.
What can help increase a property price?
Enhancing property value could be achieved through basic maintenance and upgrades such as a fresh coat of paint, new window coverings and improved landscaping. Curb appeal is crucial for fetching a top dollar for your property. Moreover, staging the property, especially when vacant, can make it more appealing and inviting to prospective buyers.
How have high interest rates affected the average homeowner and buyer? Higher interest rates affect a buyer’s purchasing power. For example, if a buyer could afford a £1 million home, they might only be able to afford a £500,000 home at a higher rate, to keep their payment amount the same. This necessitates an adjustment in price points. For sellers, it means a smaller pool of potential buyers and they need to factor this into their pricing strategy.
What advice would you give those buying a property?
First, know your purchasing power. Work with an established mortgage broker to understand what you can afford. Second, work with an experienced realtor to navigate the complexities of the market. Assembling a strong team is vital in a volatile market.
How do you get a good price when buying?
A key aspect of the purchasing process is negotiation. Having an experienced realtor who’s familiar with the neighbourhood can ensure you don’t overpay. Additionally, exploring developing neighbourhoods can help you find a good deal and grow your equity.
What advice would you like to give a first-time buyer?
As a first-time homebuyer, it’s important to work with a team that can guide you through the process. Remember, your first home is likely not going to be your dream home. It’s a stepping stone towards building equity and increasing wealth, which will help you afford a bigger home in the future.
How important is to choose the right real estate agent?
Choosing the right realtor is crucial. You want someone who understands your needs, communicates openly and honestly and prioritises your best interests over their commission. Selling or buying a house is not just a transaction; it’s about creating a space for life’s most precious moments. It’s a big responsibility and should be treated as such.
What key advice would you give separating couples who own a property together?
Dealing with property during a divorce or separation can be emotionally charged. It’s essential to involve an accountant or attorney to decide how proceeds from the property sale should be divided. It’s also advisable to work with a neutral real estate agent and to treat the transaction as a business deal, rather than an emotional one.
What inspires you as a realtor?
My greatest inspiration comes from my clients. It’s immensely satisfying to know I’ve served my clients well. My approach to business is always client-centric and integrity-driven. Success, in my view, is a natural outcome of doing the right thing.