There’s an old English proverb popularized by legendary Notre Dame football coach Knute Rockne that says, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” Bret Lang and Scott Ostrode epitomize this attitude in their real estate profession.
The two Realtors, who work with Keller Williams Realty in Folsom, are not phased by the current real estate environment, with tumbling values, foreclosures, short sales and changing lending requirements. Like skilled kayakers in whitewater rapids, they have learned to watch the currents and hazards and arrive safely at their destination — a good sale that provides the greatest benefits for all parties.
Sharing information leads to shared success
How do they develop their skills? “Education,” they say. They are continually learning and continually educating their clients. For starters, they take advantage of the training and information forums provided by Keller Williams in the fully equipped learning center at the entrance to the office.
There is an updated version of the proverb that goes, “When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.” Lang and Ostrode are there for tough shoppers (and sellers).
The questions their clients ask are usually pretty similar:
Buyer question No. 1: How do I find the best deals?
Check the market daily to find out about new listings. The best deal doesn’t mean the lowest price. Other considerations, such as time spent traveling, nearby schools and your personal requirements may be more important.
“Foreclosures are not always the best deal,” said Ostrode. “We can show our clients where other opportunities are.”
“Our services are tailor-made to the needs of our clients,” added Lang.
Buyer question No. 2: I get conflicting information about the economy, about jobs. Do I qualify for a mortgage loan?
The lender will determine whether you qualify. If you qualify, prices and interest rates are near the 2001 lows. A mortgage is often less than or equal to apartment rental. The inventory of homes for sale is shrinking, which will raise prices in the future. This is a good time to buy.
Lang noted that there is increased interest in buying second homes for investment, for vacation homes or to ensure housing for children as they leave the nest.
Seller question No. 1: Why should I sell in this market?
This is a market full of opportunities. There is affordability in all combinations, whether you want to go bigger, smaller, more affordable or to a better location. Interest rates are low, and payments may be the same or less. If you are planning to buy another home you can find a home you like and make an offer subject to the sale of your home.
Seller question No. 2: I’m upside down in my home. What are my options?
You have several options. Recent state and federal laws are more favorable to homeowners in your position, and can help you walk away with a clean slate. Avoiding foreclosure is better for the bank and for the seller. This gives you the ability to re-buy in the future because it is less damaging to your credit. Some lenders are giving loans post-short sales. Different banks have different programs. The U.S. Treasury Department’s Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives program provides homeowner’s relocation assistance.
About Ostrode and Lang
Scott Ostrode and Bret Lang are both Top 10 Keller Williams Realtors. They specialize in short sales and foreclosures for buyers, sellers and investors. Soon they will add luxury homes to their repertoire. They say that Keller Williams plans to open a luxury homes division in El Dorado Hills at the end of the year.
Both have been area residents since the early 2000s. Ostrode graduated from UC Santa Barbara, and got his real estate license. He has been working in the industry ever since. “I give a high level of customer service, and there’s no better feeling than having a happy client,” he said.
Lang came to the foothills from New Jersey by way of Sacramento. He spent 20 years in the corporate world as a top salesman and negotiator before discovering a passion for real estate. “I love the feeling of actually helping someone,” he said.
Ostrode has two children, 7 and 8. “The schools are fantastic here, and the outdoor activities are great,” he said.
Lang also has two children, 12 and 14. He is a runner and enjoys the trails. “The culture and the quality of life here is the best,” he said.
To find out more contact Realtor Bret Lang at Keller Williams Realty, 2365 Iron Point Road in Folsom, (916) 235-7012 or [email protected]. His website is BretLangRealty.com. Scott Ostrode is at the same address. His direct telephone number is (916) 404-3667 and e-mail contact is [email protected]. His website is www.Top-Sold.com.