What Makes Total Real Estate Solutions Different?
There are actually many things that differentiate us from other Real Estate firms, but there is one major aspect of our organization that is quite unique.  Our offices are staffed with both Realtors and Real Estate Investors, who work together to provide you with all of the services that are so critical in today’s challenging real estate marketplace.

In order to understand what this means to you, let’s first look at what caused us to create Total Real Estate Solutions.  Today’s headlines are filled with disturbing information about the real estate marketplace.  Only a few short months ago, property values were continuing to rise, just as they had been for many, many years and Real Estate was (as it usually is) one of the best and safest investments a person could make.

The rush of the public to acquire property on very buyer-friendly (or so they appeared) terms, was staggering.  Loan companies really were competing to be able to hand out mortgages at what were perceived as inexpensive interest rates to anyone who could even come close to qualifying.

At this point in time, multiple events and conditions have dramatically affected the real estate industry.  In fact, today’s real estate climate is sometimes referred to as “the perfect storm”.  Some of the major components of this “climate” change are:

(1)    Property tax rates have risen.  In many markets, taxes are twice what they were only a few years ago.

(2)    Insurance rates have risen.  Based on natural disasters and inflated prices, insurances rates have increased to twice and sometimes as much as three times what they were two years ago.

(3)    Property value increases have indeed slowed, eliminating equity growth.

This means is that in some situations, the tax and insurance portion of a monthly mortgage payment is more than the principal and interest portion.  That would have seemed impossible a few months ago, but it is this triple-headed money monster that has created the final major component of this adjustment.

(4)    Many of the people who were financed with adjustable rate mortgages are now unable to continue making their mortgage payments because in addition to the dramatic increase in their taxes and insurance, their “grace” period of low interest has expired and their mortgage interest rates have been raised.  This adds to their already higher overall monthly mortgage payment and since income increases are virtually flat, there is often simply not enough money in the household budget to continue to make these higher payments.

Indeed, it is a very rough time for homeowners and homesellers and also for real estate professionals.  It would seem that this is the least likely time for a new concept in real estate to emerge.  Most people would be “hunkered down”, waiting for the storm to pass.  

However, Total Real Estate Solutions is not waiting for times to improve, we are making better times happen today.  Stormy times like these are exactly what Total Real Estate Solutions is built to not only withstand, but also to provide shelter to our customers as well as a path to a brighter future, allowing growth and success to continue.

We are realists.  Rather than pretend that all is well in the real estate world while simply “wishing” it were, we recognize that change is occurring and that traditional methods and strategies no longer apply.  We know that many people in our community can no longer continue to make the payments on the homes they currently are struggling to afford, especially if they are experiencing the challenges of rising taxes, rising insurance rates, and adjustable rate mortgages that are recasting at a much higher monthly payment level.

In some cases, these homeowners need to relocate quickly before they default on their loans and face the harsh reality of  foreclosure and even bankruptcy. TRS can help!

To raise their incomes, some people are relocating, but in order to do so, they need to quickly sell the home they are currently occupying.  In these stormy times, speedy sales are a big problem.  TRS can help!

As these people need to quickly dispose of their current homes, they also need to quickly find new homes they can afford.  TRS can help!

In order for any of these transitions to occur, buyers need to be found and new mortgages written to enable new purchases at affordable rates.   TRS not only can help, but as a matter of fact, this is one of the biggest areas where our Realtor / Investor partnership works best!

Let’s examine the way Total Real Estate Solutions does business:

First, let’s look at a real estate sale transaction.  First, a homeowner must make a decision to sell their house.  Sometimes, this is for happy and positive reasons like a better job elsewhere or a new house that the homeowner wants to acquire.  It can also be based on a change in family situation such as emptying nests, divorce, older parents coming to live with children, illness or a myriad of other circumstances.  Sometimes, as discussed above, this need to sell is forced by financial reasons and in some cases has been delayed so long that that it’s not simply a selling decision, but foreclosure is actually imminent.  Regardless of the motivation, the house needs to be sold.

Depending on the circumstances, the homeowner may elect to try to sell the home themselves (avoiding the payment of a real estate commission) or more typically, they seek out a Realtor® and sign a traditional listing agreement.  Now the long waiting period begins – filled with uncertainty.  Ads may be run; signs could be posted; maybe an open house happens and if all goes well, a trickle of “lookers” may actually stop by to take a look at the house.  Unfortunately, ready buyers are fewer and further between, but if the seller is lucky, sometime in this process, a legitimate buyer appears and a sale occurs.

Unfortunately, what more frequently happens is that a seller becomes disheartened and takes down their weathered “For Sale By Owner” sign and either gives up on the dream of relocation and/or the home they want or they replace that sign with a Realtor® sign and the process repeats.  Sometimes the company sign in the yard starts with one realtor and then a few months later is replaced by another and the cycle repeats.

With Total Real Estate Solutions, the whole process is very different.  It starts with the answer to a simple question.  Is there is some time available to prepare, stage and effectively market the house to secure a higher selling price or is a quick sale the most important objective?  Based on that answer, we move quickly to meet the seller’s objectives.

If there is time available to maximize value to the seller, then we pull out all the stops to do just that.  Here are some of the key elements in the Total Real Estate Solutions selling process:

(1)    Assessment & Recommendations – First, we take a close and critical look at that house itself.  We look at everything with the eye of an inspector.  In fact, if a trained inspector is needed, we will recommend one who can help in the process.  We assess the house itself and advise the seller regarding what might be necessary to put the house in optimal selling condition and what are the best options based on the seller’s circumstances.  If there are necessary repairs or upgrades, we have established, wholesale relationships with professionals in all the areas this might entail such as landscaping, painting, roofing, flooring and carpets, carpentry, plumbing, heating and air conditioning and electrical.

(2)    Pricing – Often the advertised selling price of a house is the number one deterrent to making a sale.  The reason is simple.  A buyer’s initial screening decision is almost always determined by price.   They will usually say something like, “I’d like to look at homes that are $250K or less.”  If your home is priced at $255K, they might never see it.  However, that does not mean that we will advise you to under price your home.  We want to help you make sure you to get the best possible price for your home. Therefore it must be priced correctly to sell, not just sit there.  
We’ll provide you with lots of information to help you make a well-advised decision.  We look at sales in your area of similar properties.  We consider factors that make your home “different”.  We will frankly discuss your individual financial circumstances with you and some creative financing options that can influence your ultimate acceptable selling price.

(3)    Selling Strategy & Budget Consultation – We will work with you to craft a selling strategy that is unique to your house and circumstances.  If your home is in a development, the strategy for selling it needs to be different than if it was in a more rural area on a multi-acre piece of property.  If it’s a town house or condo vs. a single family home, the approach is different.  Selling “as-is” versus “newly upgraded” requires a different approach.  Every home is different.   If there are six other “for sale” signs on your street, something unique needs to be done to separate yours from the crowd.  We will discuss all of the things that can be done and possibly ask that you enable our efforts with a small marketing budget to be used on your behalf and under your direction to augment our already extraordinary efforts.

(4)    The Basics – Of course we excel at doing all the “normal and customary” things to market your home such as:

a.    Immediately posting your property into one or more of the local Board of REALTORS® "Multiple Listing Service (MLS)" databases so that all other local realtors are aware of its availability and begin to consider it as they show properties to whatever customer they may have.

b.    We start advertising on your behalf in whatever other media we have jointly determined in your marketing plan is most appropriate.  This may include newspaper (classified and/or display), radio, television, direct mail, billboard, flyers or others.

c.    Posting a For-Sale sign in your yard with a brochure box filled with the professionally designed flyers we make for each property we list.

d.    Creating and posting “specialty signs”.  These are additional signs that may identifying unique attributes of your property or help direct automotive traffic to your home.

e.    Take the appropriate digital property photos and/or create a “virtual tour” of your home.

f.    Arranging and staffing our unique “Sunday Home Auction”  open houses for your home where that is part of your marketing plan.

g.    When offers are received, negotiate them and make counter-offers on your behalf.

h.    Executing our legal and fiduciary responsibility in bringing your transaction to the closing table once an offer has been accepted and is appropriately under contract.

(5)    The TRS Exclusive “Extras” – In addition to the “Basics”, we also go the extra mile (actually many extra miles) on your behalf.  Many things we consider as standard procedure are things that other firms would consider as “above and beyond” or only available at an extra cost – some of which NO ONE ELSE does at any price.  These are such things as:

a.    Your House’s Own Website (Another TRS Exclusive Service) – We create a website specifically for your house and include it on our highly-promoted national and local corporate website’s listings as well as posting it to  Yahoo and AOL and over 5,000 other websites.  We saturate the World Wide Web quickly with information about your house.

b.    Our Weekly Reporter (Another TRS Exclusive Service) – All too often, we hear people say things like, “I haven’t heard from my Realtor in weeks.  They don’t even return my phone calls.”  That never happens at Total Real Estate Solutions.  We not only maintain frequent contact with our customers, but our operational standards require each of our listing agents to report weekly to each listed homeowner regarding all activities that pertain to their property.  

We stay current with market activity in your neighborhood as well as what’s happening with your house. This weekly report will contain information about our sales prospecting activities; showing information, advertising; marketing budget reports, any new comparable sales or listings that might have implication on your house’s sale and anything else we feel might better keep you informed regarding this process.

c.    Financial Pre-Qualification (Another TRS Exclusive Service) – Often what keeps a home from selling, especially at top dollar, is the inability of a buyer to finance the transaction.  At TRS, we have an in-house lending capability that is unlike any other and makes use of both conventional lending funds as well as funds from private investors.  As soon as your house is listed with us, we immediately start the lending process.  We help you complete the necessary paperwork with all of the information regarding your home, minus the buyer (to be named later) and we start the ball rolling on the lending process.  

Anything our lenders are going to need from you to close a loan with a qualified buyer is prepared in advance so there are no issues on your side.  If an appraisal or an inspection is needed, they are done in advance as well as any other required items such as title insurance.   That makes certain when a buyer appears, they are presented with a financial package that clearly states that this property is pre-approved and all that remains to be submitted is the buyer’s information.   Your end is already done – no hassles!

d.    B.E.D. (Buyer Education Day) & Breakfast (Another TRS Exclusive Service) – In today’s market, you can’t just put up a “for sale” sign, run an ad and sit back and wait for the buyers to show up. It just doesn’t work that way anymore.  We know that and that’s why we do our regular, B.E.D. & Breakfast Meetings.  

We do multiple forms of advertising and bring prospective home buyers to our TRS Saturday morning meeting where we first feed them a hearty breakfast and then we educate them in the same way we educate sellers – using full disclosure.  We carefully explain our buyer / seller partnership program and ask that they furnish us with the exact specification for the type of home and price they are seeking.  Working with our staff and our lenders, we then pre-qualify them to buy, just like we pre-qualify your home to be sold.  Just like you, their end is already completed – also without hassles!

e.    Buyer Match (Another TRS Exclusive Service) – Now that we’ve secured buyers and sellers, the rest is easy.  We look at the buyer profiles and see which properties in our current inventory meet those needs.  If your property is close to meeting a buyer’s specifications, but is not an exact match, we may see if there is flexibility on either side before we proceed.  

As soon as we have properties that seem to match, we put buyer and property together and quickly consummate a transaction. Nothing can happen faster in Real Estate today than when a pre-qualified TRS Buyer is matched with a TRS Seller’s pre-qualified property.

f.    TLS Closing Coordinator – We assign a dedicated closing coordinator to each transaction.  Once a property is under contract and a closing date set, our closing coordinator makes absolutely sure that there are no surprises or delays.  Our coordinators watch each deal working from lender-certified checklists to make sure we stay far in front of the entire process and that you have as little to do as possible.

As you can see, we work very hard to earn every penny of our commission.  We are justifiably proud of our Realtor® programs and urge you to compare it to anything else in the industry, but that’s not where it ends with Total Real Estate Solutions. 

Sometimes, even with our extraordinary efforts, we are not able to find a buyer that meets your needs in the time frame that meets your needs.  We can promise that you will have been well-informed and well-satisfied with the efforts we have made to meet your needs, but even Total Real Estate Solutions cannot guarantee that a buyer will appear when you need them to.

What we can guarantee is that our unique marketing methods will produce more traffic through your property, than will a conventional brokerage, with their tired and unimaginative advertising.

That is when the other side of our house joins in to come to your assistance.  This is our team of TRS Certified Professional Real Estate Investors.  These are well-trained people whose chosen profession is Real Estate investment.  They specialize in not only selling real estate, just like our Realtors®, but also in regularly buying properties as investments.  Each of them has spent a significant amount of time and money on their personal real estate education and they are also schooled daily in the real world of property acquisition, ownership and selling.  

These members of our team are professional risk managers who invest their own money (as well as funds from other sources), time and talents to creatively acquire property.  They then seek either a buyer who will pay them an amount greater than the price they negotiated when buying the property or a tenant to occupy the property and pay down the mortgage, building their personal equity.    

When our conventional Realtor® services are unable to get your house sold in your needed time frame or when a quick sale is really all that matters, that’s when this aspect of the Total Real Estate Solutions team kicks into high gear.  It’s kind of like the Realtor® side of TRS is the offensive unit and our TRS Professional Investors are the defensive unit of a Super Bowl Winning Football Team whose goals are both the same – meeting your real estate objectives.

When a quick or immediate sale is critical, our TRS Professional Investors are always ready to discuss strategies that can eliminate your financial pressure and allow the necessary transitions to occur.  They are absolutely not predators, waiting to pick over the remains of broken dreams.  They are simply experienced, honest, well-trained real estate professionals that all subscribe to our rigid code of Total Real Estate Solutions Investor Ethics and can help free you from the burdens of your current situation.  

Our investors specialize in creativity and they know all the ins and outs of creative financing.  They might recommend several various strategies for you to consider such as:

Lease Option – In this strategy, our investor would lease your house with an option to purchase by a certain date.  They might also put in a tenant to help them make the payments to you while seeking a buyer.  The funds you would receive would make (or help you make) your mortgage payments and free up much needed cash flow to help you relocate or for other purposes.  When a buyer is found, our investor will exercise their purchase option and pay you the pre-agreed amount you will be free and clear of your mortgage.  Our investor’s profit would be the difference between the predetermined purchase option that they pay to you (in full) and the amount the house ultimately sells for.  Our investor also is solely responsible for all expenses they incur in holding and selling your house.

Outright Purchase – Our investor might actually make you a “hard money” purchase offer.  It would likely be for somewhat (maybe significantly) less than you were asking for the house since their offer is based on a “wholesale” price as opposed to “retail”, but that offer may be exactly what you need to move ahead in your life.  

Taking Over Payments – Our investors may be able to take over your existing mortgage payments and assume responsibility for all other expenses, until such time as TRS is able to sell your home. Depending on the particular circumstances, we may be in a position to give you some of your equity immediately, with the balance when we sell. In other cases where little or no equity is in place, we may well be able to assist with moving expenses.
Often we are able to arrange a "lease purchase" where we will be able to find a qualified "Tenant/Buyer" who will make monthly payments, be responsible for all repairs and will cash you out some time in the future.

This scenario can often also work with distressed situations, such as a pending foreclosure or bankruptcy. TRS are also experts at negotiating with lenders on behalf of homeowners who are behind on their payments.

If any of the options one of our investors suggests involves a tenant occupying your home, TRS can provide complete property management services and any tenant is bonded, protecting you and our investor against any property damages losses.  Our investor might also invest money in needed repairs or upgrades to make sure the house gets sold or leased.

In all cases, our investors engage with sellers as individuals and their efforts are rewarded by whatever the difference is between the satisfactory (to you) price they negotiate for the sale of your house and whatever they can negotiate with a buyer they find to buy your house.  You control the transaction and they are required to fully explain each and every option to you in detail.  Our TRS Investor Transaction Coordinator will also patiently explain every aspect of any program you may wish to consider via one of our investors.

While they will work with you individually and any transactions they make are considered personal, each one is subject to close scrutiny by our Investor Team Manager and the TRS Investor Transaction Coordinator whose goals are always to insure that all parties to any agreement are completely informed and that satisfaction is achieved.

We hope this has helped you understand more about what Total Real Estate Solutions is all about and what makes us different.  We feel that we offer the best of all worlds in Real Estate: 

  • Our TRS Premier Realtor® Speed Selling program featuring pre-qualification of both buyer and property for speedy loan approval and closing.
  • Our TRS Certified Investor Acquisition program to help you move a property when time is critical or when conventional methods are not achieving success.
  • Our TRS Express Lending program that makes sure that buyers and investors have ready sources of funds to complete any transaction that is necessary to allow your real estate transition to occur without delay.
We welcome your comparison with other organizations, but we also have one final way for you to make absolutely certain that we are the perfect match for you.  It’s called the TRS Four Week Frenzy which is another Total Real Estate Solutions exclusive.  It’s really simple, like most real estate firms, we ask that you sign a listing agreement for a minimum of six months.  That allows us the time to properly implement and deliver the complete array of marketing services described above.  However, unlike other firms, we guarantee to actually earn your business.  

The TRS Four Week Frenzy is simple.  In the month following your approval of our listing agreement, we will go full speed ahead and invest our efforts (time and money) on your behalf.  While we are certain you’ll be delighted with our efforts and the promises we make and keep, if we do not deliver on our end of the mutually agreed upon marketing plan during that initial month and you are not delighted, simply write “cancelled” on your listing agreement anytime during that period and we’ll consider our agreement terminated without obligation.  

Please be sure you understand that this guarantee is based solely on our performance and does not mean we could invest a bunch of time and money on marketing and you can then decide that you want to sell the house yourself and stiff us.  It means that if we do our job, you’ll need to honor your agreement with us.  We’ll earn your trust and we only give ourselves thirty days to make sure we accomplish that most important of tasks.

That brings us to the end of this document, but hopefully it’s only the beginning of our mutually beneficial relationship.  We look forward to working with you to eliminate your nightmares and help make your dreams come true!


The Real Estate Professionals of Total Real Estate Solutions

P.S. We are often asked why we can do what we do and other real estate firms cannot.  Here’s the simple answer.  Our founders are technology professionals, and real estate brokers/investors,who became involved in Real Estate in the late 1990’s and have consistently applied technology to the process of automating the more time-consuming parts of the selling, buying and financing process.  This not only reduces the hours needed to complete a transaction but also dramatically reduces the cost of those hours – allowing both buyer and seller to reap the financial benefits of these cost savings while still allowing the company to retain an appropriate profit for the diligent efforts it expends on behalf of buyers sellers and lenders.