Our ‘Old-Fashioned Service’ ‘5-Star’ Program

Our ‘Old-Fashioned Service’  ‘5-Star’ Program

 

As your local real estate specialist, going on 35 years, it has come to my attention that now more than ever, there is a HUGE need for higher quality of services to be offered to our aging and elderly population.

 

The reality is that everyone gets older, but technology is always changing, and that can be scary. The good news? My team and I have found a solution that solves this problem to make the real estate transaction process easier, let me explain…

 

The real estate process, along with technology-and the way that transaction documents are now digitally processed, has changed incredibly over the years, and has become far more complex.

 

Because of this, coupled with the sheer volume of required documents, the process can be overwhelming for many; particularly our seniors. We have created a new service to help them with all of the many ‘steps’ involved, throughout the process. We call it our ‘Over 55’ Five-Star Service Program.

 

Instead of having to read through volumes of never-ending overwhelming documents, fumbling online, trying to figure out how to e-sign documents, and even trying to understand ‘what it is exactly that they are signing’-we now offer to have one of our knowledgeable team ‘Document Specialists’ meet with these clients, in the comfort of their home, and sit with them, answer all of their questions clearly and patiently, and explain precisely what they are signing and then walk them through the entire process’ -making sure that all of the required documents are filled out correctly and properly signed.

 

Due to the transaction process, more often than not, this requires two separate meetings-at different times during the escrow period.

 

Additionally, I will introduce them to our special ‘Five Star Network’ of other professionals, to assist them, in the event that they have a need.

 

Our Network includes Estate and Elder Law Attorneys, a CPA, Movers, Landscapers, Estate Liquidators, and a Handyman.

 

We will also provide them with helpful and timely information on organizing their move-so that they can structure their move, at a comfortable pace.

 

There is no additional cost for this service-and you don’t have to be ‘over 55 years old’ in order to receive this service. You simply just need to let us know that this is your preference.

 

Throughout the entire process, as always, I will check in with these clients, weekly, to answer their questions, explain the ‘next steps’ and provide them with timely and helpful information-along the way-to make the process as smooth and seamless as possible for them.

 

If you, or someone you know, that is getting on in years, and may be considering selling their home-please feel free to contact me for a ‘pre-sale’ consultation.

 

I can answer their questions and help them design a sound strategy that will make the entire process, smooth and seamless-with a positive outcome-and very likely save them money, as well, based on my recommendations of ‘cost-effective’ repairs and small home improvements that can yield thousands extra from their home sale.

 

In fact, most of our clients that take advantage of our free ‘Pre-Market Consultation’ realize a ‘5 to 10 times’ return on their investment in these small home improvements.

 

 

There is no cost or obligation for this new service, so call me anytime on my cell # 858-336-1114 or send email to: donp@pelletierhomes.com

 

Also, be sure to read the article, further down in this newsletter, entitled ‘Look Out for Seniors-Real Estate Scams Often Target Seniors’

Look Out for Older Clients

Real estate scams often target seniors. You can help reduce their risk.

 

In an aging population, more and more of your clients are likely to be seniors. Unfortunately, you may well run into cases where they’ve become targets of financial fraud. It’s the fastest-growing form of abuse against seniors, with an estimated 40 percent falling victim in any given five-year period, according to True Link Financial, a firm that helps seniors and their families protect against fraud. On an individual level, approximately 1.8 percent of reported fraud cases against seniors result in the victim losing his or her home or another main asset, according to the Federal Trade Commission.

 

Every state has enacted laws criminalizing financial abuse against the elderly, and because many cases involve real estate, you should be familiar with potentially high-risk schemes. Reverse mortgages, property investment, and foreclosure-rescue offers are areas in which older people are prime targets. But another form of financial abuse—often subtler and more difficult to detect—occurs when a trusted individual exerts undue influence over elderly home owners, convincing them to sell their property, often to devastating effect.

 

An ill-intentioned adult child may convince his parents to sign their home over to him, and then sell it out from under their feet. Family members or other confidants with a power of attorney may similarly cause harm to the people who trusted them, forcing victims into quick, financially inadvisable home sales and other transactions. If you remain vigilant for the signs of financial abuse, you’ll avoid becoming embroiled in real estate transactions—and possible legal actions—involving criminal or unethical exploitation of the elderly. What can real estate professionals do to help prevent financial abuse against seniors? Here are a few tips for protecting yourself and your clients.

 

  • Document and follow up. When working with an elderly client, take extra care to be sure that the client understands and consents fully to every stage of a transaction. Whenever possible, follow up oral advice or updates with a written recap of the conversation.
  • Remember who your client is. Don’t allow yourself to be strong-armed by family members trying to make decisions on behalf of an elderly home owner. Your duty is to work for your client. If a family member claims that he or she must make decisions on behalf of the elderly person due to dementia or other health problems, make sure that an appropriate power of attorney is in place.
  • Understand powers of attorney. If a family member or other person claims to represent an elder pursuant to a power of attorney, insist on receiving a copy and provide it to an independent lawyer to verify that it is both legitimate and applicable to the real estate transaction at hand. If it appears that the family member would financially gain from the transaction, especially to the detriment of your client, advise your client to delay the transaction and consult with an attorney to determine the appropriate next steps.
  • Educate your team and clients. Brokers should be certain that their agents are educated about real estate–related exploitation of the elderly, and practitioners should talk to their clients about fraud risks. Point them to resources such as the Administration for Community Living, a federal agency that offers support for the varying needs and preferences of older adults. Real estate pros who work with seniors on a regular basis may wish to take continuing education courses to receive their Senior Real Estate Specialist designation.
  • Know the signs of elder abuse. If someone’s financial situation suddenly deteriorates, and at the same time he or she becomes emotionally withdrawn or less alert, this could signal that your elderly client is being taken advantage of. The federal Administration on Aging has a wealth of information on how to spot elder abuse.
  • Report suspected abuse. As uncomfortable as it may be to get involved, you should report abuse if you suspect it. Your first call will likely be to your local Adult Protective Services agency. Visit aoa.gov for more information about how to file a report.

 

By Jessica Edgerton, NAR associate counsel.