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Saturday, May 10, 2008

Cashing in on a down real estate market

Seems that now the real estate market has come to a screeching halt in Arizona, everybody and his brother has come up with a way to help you sell your home faster. The other day I was at the grocery store and my shopping cart had an advertisement for a service called Home Tenders of America (HTA). The concept is someone lives in your home while it's still on the market after you move out so the home appears "occupied", thus decreasing the risk of burglaries, and increasing the chances someone will want to buy your house. HTA professionally stages your house and sets you up with the hometender. The service is free to the person selling the house and there is a "nominal fee" for someone to tend your house - between $650 and $1150/month. I guess HTA gets that money. Their website says they have been around for 25 years. It's an interesting concept, but if I were the hometender and I loved the house I was tending and was able to live there cheaply, I don't think I would be motivated to help the homeowner sell their house.