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2014 expected to be a busy real estate year

Q&A with Brooksby selling and moving experts

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February 25th, 2014
Q&A with Brooksby selling and moving experts
Q&A with Brooksby selling and moving experts

As sales counselor, Jane Kiegel has been facilitating moves to Brooksb..., the Erickson Living community in Peabody, Mass., for more than five years. But she has honed her expertise during more than 13 years working for Erickson Living. 

Kiegel recently added a real estate licensure and the purchase of her own home to that experience. She joins Brooksby Personal Moving Consultant Laurie Phillips to talk about the real estate market and what they expect to see this spring.

Q: Under what circumstances do people typically meet you? 

Kiegel: I have the opportunity to interact with customers as they begin considering retirement living options. As our customers discover Brooksby, we work together to determine needs, assess finances, and explore the campus and inventory. I typically meet customers when they are first starting their research, sometimes even years before their possible move.  

Q: What have you seen in the past year from the real estate market and people moving to Brooksby? 

Phillips: The real estate market has taken an exciting turn over the past 12 months. The spring of 2013 experienced a surge of activity, with housing inventory continuing to be low in most areas. Interest rates cooperated, staying low for much of the year, which kept the buyer pool strong and supply low. 

Our customers in 2013 were able to take advantage of rising home values for the first time in several years. Those who had the most success found that pricing their house right when it initially listed generated the best results. We had houses with multiple offers, and some sold at slightly more than the asking price.  

Q: What are your expectations for the real estate market this spring? What can home sellers expect? 

Phillips: With the ongoing stabilization of the economy, experts predict that the real estate market will continue to strengthen in 2014. Financial analysts are predicting a slow rise in mortgage interest rates over 2014, which buyers will be aware of. 

Sellers who were timid about listing in 2013 may be more ready to market their homes in 2014, which could create more supply. With the feedback we are receiving from existing and new customers, we expect this to be a busy year!   

Q: Jane, last year, you were in the process of buying your first home. What was your experience, and did it change your viewpoint of your role at Brooksby?   

Kiegel: Indeed! 2013 was a year saturated with real estate education. My husband and I sold our condominium, found our new house, and I also obtained my real estate license. 

Each experience has provided me with tremendous insight into the process and stress that our customers and their families are under. I have more understanding and empathy than ever before. I know the importance of following what I tell my customers: Take it one step at a time, one decision at a time.  

Q: You manage the inventory of apartment homes at Brooksby. What is currently available, and how can people secure themselves a spot in line for an apartment?   

Kiegel: Brooksby is just over 95% occupied, with availability changing regularly. Our priority list is the first step toward securing a future option to move and finding the perfect apartment home.  With a refundable deposit of $1,000 and nonrefundable application fee of $150 per person, priority list members have a place in line, and priority over those who join after they do.  

Phillips: Priority list members also have complimentary access to my services as personal moving consultant, plus downsizing seminars, and even overnight getaways at Brooksby. For priority list members who decide to make the move to Brooksby, I will help them choose real estate, downsizing, and moving professionals and work with them on furniture layout in their new apartment home.

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