Ken Mears Joins Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish Realtors!

by Jala Harris 25. May 2015 21:06

Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish, Realtors welcomes Ken Mears as the newest addition to our professional team.

Ken is a true “Floridian,” born and raised in the sunshine state and graduated with honors from the University of Central Florida. Ken currently lives and works in Gainesville, and along with his wife and growing family, enjoys all that Gainesville offers young professionals in the area.

Ken’s professional background began in Marketing, specifically Internet Marketing, where he helped businesses maximize their online presence through social media, content creation, and ranking at the top of Google. It was during this period of time in Ken’s professional growth where the value of customer service was nurtured and quickly became paramount to his professional success.

Ken has always enjoyed working in real estate, and with his Internet Marketing background, understands how buyers search for real estate information, and in turn, the best ways for sellers to maximize exposure with listing their properties. Thanks in large part to this, Ken has already surpassed more than a million dollars in closed sales.

Ken is a member of several local associations and organizations. Ken serves on the Board for the Builders Association of North Central Florida and also served on the Board for Alachua County Emerging Leaders as a Director-at-Large. Additionally, Ken is a member of the Young Professionals Group of Gainesville.

With these professional connections, Ken is able to stay up to date on the pulse of the local community, ensuring you always have the most recent information on the local Real Estate market. With this in mind, Ken looks forward to assisting you with all of your real estate needs!

Contact Ken today!
Ken Mears, REALTOR®
352.505.9597 cell


Daniel Brenneman Joins Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish Realtors!

by Jala Harris 21. May 2015 10:27

Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish, Realtors welcomes Daniel Brenneman as the newest addition to our professional team.

Daniel Brenneman grew up in Gainesville, Florida and graduated from Gainesville High in 2002. Daniel has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management with a minors in Accounting and Marketing. After graduating he was employed with Aaron’s Sales and Lease in Daytona Beach, Florida for seven years. He then moved to their Palatka store for the next five years, and it was during that time and under his management that the store was awarded "store of the month" for the organization twice and his team broke the previous record for sales and profit. Currently, Daniel owns a healthy vending machine company called Conveniently Healthy LLC.

He is married to his high school sweetheart Carlee, and they share two beautiful daughters, a four year old named Jaida Marie and Emmerie Jayne who is 15 months.

Contact Daniel today!
Daniel Brenneman, REALTOR®
352.231.1233 cell


Featured Gainesville Florida Home of the Week!

by Jala Harris 19. May 2015 09:15

4207 NW 32nd Street, Gainesville, FL 32605

Gainesville Featured Home

Welcome Home to Northwood South! This pristine three bedroom, two bath concrete block home in Northwood South has many upgrades and move-in ready! New cabinets '05 new roof and AC in '06,new commodes, bathroom sinks, tile floors, light fixtures, ceiling fans in '07, Back patio extended in '09, new DW '14, new gas hot water heater'12, cellulose attic insulation '10. Large utility room with storage. Fenced back yard. This home is close to UF, SFCC, shopping. Don't miss this meticulously cared for home. Minutes to UF, SFCC, shopping. Bring us an offer! Click here for more photos and details.

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

People are back to buying houses right now and supply is low. If you see a home that you love, make sure you give one of our Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish sales associates a call right away, before it’s gone! It’s a seller’s market and we need houses… list with us! We can get it sold for you!

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+, we’ll keep you updated on Homes for Sale in Gainesville, FL!

Featured Gainesville Florida Home of the Week!

by Jala Harris 5. May 2015 11:21

3833 SW 91st Drive, Gainesville, FL 32608

Gainesville Featured Home

Welcome Home to Colson Corner in Haile Plantation! Stunning Tommy Waters built 4/3 with wonderful 3 way split floor plan has been meticulously maintained by the original owners and shows like a model. Huge kitchen is a chefs dream with tons of countertop and cabinet space and offering a gas range along with a bright skylight. Inviting Great Room boasts a cozy fireplace, sculpted built-ins, and lots of windows streaming natural light. Both upstairs bedrooms offer walk in closets and a separate practical computer desk. Like the Master Retreat, the fourth bedroom is downstairs and offers a separate entrance with its own bath and pocket door creating a semi Mother in Law Suite. Enjoy the nice weather on the screened patio surrounded by cleverly designed landscaping all maintained by the HOA. Click here for more photos and details.

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

People are back to buying houses right now and supply is low. If you see a home that you love, make sure you give one of our Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish sales associates a call right away, before it’s gone! It’s a seller’s market and we need houses… list with us! We can get it sold for you!

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+, we’ll keep you updated on Homes for Sale in Gainesville, FL!

Dorene Webster Joins Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish Realtors!

by Jala Harris 4. May 2015 16:14

Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish, Realtors welcomes Dorene Webster as the newest addition to our professional team.

A graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, with a Bachelors in Science and a Masters in Cardiac Rehabilitation from Marshall University in West Virginia, Dorene’s professional experience spans 25 years in healthcare and pharmaceutical sales. The past thirteen years were with Pharmacia Pharmaceuticals and Watson Pharmaceuticals in which she was a Senior Sales Professional in Specialty Sales.

When deciding to make a career change, the real estate profession seemed like a natural fit for Dorene who loves connecting with people and building relationships and trust. Her father-in- law was in the mortgage banking business for 50 years and her mother-in-law was a realtor for 40 years (the last 15 of those years were with Coldwell Banker). Thus, she has a pretty good idea of what needs to be done to be successful in the industry. Dorene says, “I am excited to be selling real estate and to have the ability to help people with one of their most important purchases they will ever make.”

Michael Kitchens, President of Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish, Realtors says, "Dorene joins our organization with so many talents that make up a solid professional in our industry. We feel very lucky to have her as a member of our top team and look forward to assisting her in growing her business."

Dorene’s many hobbies include antiques, exercise/yoga, reading and writing. She is also very passionate about music, and has studied voice for almost 30 years. Being a songwriter and lyricist, she still performs and her songs are published by Jarie Rhodes Music Publishing, Inc., a company she and her husband founded. Dorene is also a frequent guest singer for various groups that support our Veterans. She has sung the National Anthem for the “Support our Troops” motorcycle ride fundraiser since 2009 where she met Bonnie Cameron, who is now her mentor at Coldwell Banker.

Dorene has been married for 18 years to Scott Webster. They have two children, Julia (13 years old) and Ryan (10 years old), as well as two dogs, Fenway and Bruin.

Contact Dorene today!
Dorene Webster, REALTOR®
352.256.3599 cell


Open House this Saturday in Willow Oak!

by Jala Harris 24. April 2015 14:37

Open House this Saturday, April 25th from 12:00-4:00pm hosted by Dorene Webster, REALTOR®! 

9005 SW 79th Avenue Gainesville, FL 32608 in Willow Oak Plantation
Property listed by Doug Baril, REALTOR®. Click here for property details. 

Gainesville Featured Home

For a list of other open houses this weekend in the Gainesville area click here.

Coldwell Banker Celebrates Administrative Professionals' Day 2015!

by Jala Harris 22. April 2015 13:12

Coldwell Banker Celebrates Administrative Professionals' Day 2015!

These individuals are the backbone of the organization and all of their efforts are appreciated by the owners and all of the agents they so professionally assist.


Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish Company News

Featured Gainesville Florida Home of the Week!

by Jala Harris 21. April 2015 10:30

2128 NW 104th Way, Gainesville, FL 32606

Gainesville Featured Home

An acre lot in a gated community is the setting for this custom designed home. This home has 4 bedrooms 3 1/2 baths with a living room, dining and family room and study, double-sided fireplace, wood floors, volume ceilings, granite counter tops and many built-ins.  Click here for more photos and details.

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

Gainesville Featured Home

People are back to buying houses right now and supply is low. If you see a home that you love, make sure you give one of our Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish sales associates a call right away, before it’s gone! It’s a seller’s market and we need houses… list with us! We can get it sold for you!

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+, we’ll keep you updated on Homes for Sale in Gainesville, FL!

Why Buyers and Sellers Don’t Need Zillow (and What They Really Need Instead)

by Jala Harris 20. April 2015 08:16

Thanks to our friends at Bosshardt Realty for sharing their excellent post about the Zillow Group. We share their perspective and believe others may benefit from this important information.

Why Buyers and Sellers Don’t Need Zillow (and What They Really Need Instead)

By Rick Chin, Chief Information Officer, Bosshardt Realty
Monday, April 13, 2015

Technology has definitely given consumers easier access to information about the housing industry. However, buyers and sellers need more than just information. They need an analysis of how that information impacts them. Everyone should feel confident when buying or selling a home when working with a trusted and experienced real estate agent who can simply and effectively explain a complex housing market.

Recently the housing market got a bit more complicated due to some actions by Zillow, an online site that displays property listings to consumers and sells access to those consumers to realtors using an auction/bid sales model. This property information primarily comes from local Multiple Listing Services (MLS) that agree to send their data to Zillow. Since some MLS boards chose to not send their data, Zillow had access to only about 80% of the available properties but they provided one place to look.

Zillow has attempted to become a destination for home buyers and sellers to visit to find properties for sale. To try to gain this mindshare, Zillow has advertised heavily to the public and tried to create or increase traffic to their website using a variety of problematic tactics such as:

Showing properties that are not for sale
Analysis of Zillow’s listings has shown that 30% of properties on Zillow’s site are not actually for sale. While they use this to drive traffic to their site, it confuses and frustrates buyers when they contact a Realtor® who then has to explain that regardless of what Zillow displays, the property is not for sale.

Showing inaccurate house price estimates
Zillow uses a computerized algorithm (branded as Zestimate) to attempt to predict the market value of a house. Even after years of attempts to improve these calculations, Zillow’s Zestimate is still frequently incorrect by a significant amount. (The Zestimate often relies on outdated information in public records and cannot account for local conditions and variables that are not easily discoverable by machine data collection.) This often leads to unrealistic expectations from buyers or sellers and makes negotiations more difficult when one party believes an unusually low or high value calculated by the Zestimate formulas.

Showing agents besides the listing agent for the property
For every property listed, Zillow auctions off multiple slots to agents who compete and bid to appear as the primary agent for a property listing. To cover the cost of this advertisement placement, these agents will try to retain the buyer lead and sell the buyer a house. They may do this by discrediting the existing property in some way and then recommend a property they have in their own inventory. This is certainly not in the interest of the seller and likely doesn’t serve the buyer’s best interests either.

Showing bad or misleading data
Redfin was hired to assess the accuracy of sites like Trulia and Zillow and their study found that approximately 36% of the listings shown as active on Zillow and Trulia were no longer for sale in the local MLS, compared with almost 0% on local brokerage websites. The study further found that brokerages using their local MLS feed displayed 100% of the MLS homes listed for sale on their websites while Trulia only displayed 81% and Zillow 79%. To summarize – over 33% of the listings the buyer sees are not actually for sale and buyers only see 80% of the listings that are actually available for sale. This was before many MLS boards and real estate companies made the decision to stop sending their listings to the Zillow Group. While Zillow’s website will experience different amounts of impact nationwide, in our local market Zillow is expected to lose between 25-50% of the listings.

Not acting to the level of integrity required of Realtors
Zillow is not a real estate company. Because of this, they are not required to maintain the same level of integrity in advertising that real estate companies and agents must maintain. Nevertheless the public perceives them as a real estate company and assumes that the information Zillow publishes is held to the same level of trust and reliability that a Realtor would provide. Unfortunately that is not the case. Zillow is willing to display properties that are not listed for sale as “available for sale at the right price”.

Now, as more and more MLS boards have decided not to send their information to Zillow, they continue to display the information but with the incorrect status of “Off the Market” even though the property IS AVAILABLE FOR SALE. No licensed real estate agent or company would ever be allowed to misrepresent properties so severely!

Based on past experiences, current circumstances, and future expectations, our local MLS, along with many other MLS boards throughout the US, have decided to no longer send data to the companies that make up the Zillow Group.

What does this mean for Sellers?

Sellers may be concerned that their property will not appear on Zillow. Here are some reasons why they can feel confident that their house will be seen by serious buyers:

  • Buyers have shown that they are resourceful and find websites that contain listings in the area they are interested in. Local real estate brokers have dedicated resources and a substantial budget to market the properties in our area so that buyers will find your property.
  • As people start to learn that Zillow has only a fraction of our local listings, they will turn to other websites to view all the available properties in our MLS. Most local real estate broker websites display all available properties in the Gainesville MLS, making them an excellent source for buyers and sellers looking for information.
  • Local sites often have more specific local information than generic big box sites.
  • Local Realtors understand the local market and can help you price your home to get the most exposure. Automated Valuation Models (like Zillow’s “Zestimate”) frequently show values for homes that are unrealistically low or high. This causes false expectations, frustration, and distrust during negotiations. Local realtors know their community in depth and can advise sellers how to get the best price for their home.
  • Your house is properly represented by a local real estate professional with your best interests in mind. Since Zillow auctions your house’s listing to the highest bidding agents, the agent the potential buyer contacts may or may not do a good job trying to represent your house. They are concerned with converting this lead into a buyer – for any property – and may try to move them over to one of their listings instead of showing them your house. They are trying to recoup the cost of advertising on Zillow.

Some sellers may still want their property to appear on Zillow. Sellers should know that:

  • Zillow controls the advertising, Zestimate, and agents shown on their property detail pages
  • Multiple agents will show up as the contact point for your house. (The highest bidders will appear.) The buyer will choose from among the agents displayed and how that agent represents your house is unknown.

What does this mean for Buyers?

Buyers may be concerned that they will not be able to find all the available homes when they are ready to buy.

  • Fear not! Studies show that local real estate broker sites have always had a more complete inventory of listings than Zillow ever had. Even at its peak adoption, Zillow did not receive all the MLS listings, meaning buyers looking for homes often only saw 80% of the available homes. Now that many MLS Boards and real estate companies across the nation have chosen to not send data to Zillow, their percentage of listings will plunge even further and local, feature complete websites will continue to be the best place to find your next home. 

Why should you choose to work with a local real estate expert.

The Internet is full of information – people will always have access to information. Yesterday it was Zillow, tomorrow it will be some other startup. Regardless of where the information comes from, what you really need to know is, “How does all this information affect me?”

Local real estate professionals have their finger on the pulse of local trends and developments. They know what’s happening in their market, why it’s happening, and they can help you analyze and understand how it affects you as a seller, buyer, or investor. They provide you with expert advice to help you make the best decision.

How Accurate Was Zillow Anyway?

Zillow is extremely protective of their Zestimate. Whatever formulas and calculations it uses, they want it to be a “black box” – data goes in one side and Zestimates come out the other. The principle behind a black box is this: if you keep everything inside it hidden and proprietary, you can charge for the use of it – assuming someone wants what the black box puts out. (This is the same model that pharmaceutical companies use – create a new drug that does XYZ, ensure you have exclusive rights on it, market it, sell it for far more than it costs while you have the exclusive (to pay back your research and fund other research for the next drug), then move onto something else when the drug is required to become generic.)

The problem with Zillow’s Zestimate is that while it has gotten better, it’s nearly impossible for it ever to be good enough. Zestimates are a form of Automated Valuation Model (AVM). All AVMs have limitations. They work best on mass produced items with few or quantifiable variances, like cars (miles, condition, options). However, houses aren’t mass produced and different markets affect the value of the house. Because of the differences between every house, it is almost impossible for a computer program to accurately determine the value.

Additionally, as houses get renovated, updated, and add additions, their value changes. Complex markets like housing are a worst-case scenario for AVMs. Worse yet, Zillow relies on aggregating public records data, but public records are riddled with errors. Garbage in, garbage out.

Zillow actually publicizes the accuracy of their Zestimates city by city. To measure the accuracy of the Zestimate Zillow compares the actual home sale prices of homes with their Zestimate. They’ve found that the Zestimate is within 5% of the actual sale price around 33% of the time and within 10% of the sale price around 50% of the time.

These following links will lead you to Zillow’s pages about their data.

“Nationally, the Zestimate has a median error rate of 8%…” This means that 50% of the Zestimates are closer to the correct value than 8% but 50% are more than 8% off the correct value.
This is a Microsoft Excel file of their data. You can use this to look at their accuracy nationwide or in any combination of areas you select.

What's Happening This Month in Gainesville, Florida!

by Jala Harris 1. April 2015 11:01

Below are some events in Gainesville for the month of April to mark on your calendar. We hope to see you out in the community enjoying all that Gainesville, Florida has to offer!

• April 5 – Jest Fest! at Bo Diddley Community Plaza
• April 11-12 – Santa Fe College Spring Arts Festival Downtown Gainesville
• April 18 – Annual ViVA! 2015 African Safari benefitting Haven Hospice
• April 24 – Mary Wise Golf Scramble at UF Mark Bostick Golf Course
• April 25 – Annual Hot Rodding for Heroes Car Show at Haile Plantation Villeage Center

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to stay updated on Gainesville community events!