Friday, February 20, 2009

WSJ Formula: "Trapped in Their Own Homes"

I found a very interesting feature story in the New York Times, called Trapped in Their Own Homes. This article was about various Long Island residents trying to sell their home, but are unable to because of the current real estate market. The article starts off saying, "ON May 1, 2007, a very different economic era, Janet Faello put her former marital home on the market for $829,000. She and her husband were divorcing."

Although it takes awhile, the 6th graf tells what the article will be about. "Would-be sellers in New York City’s suburbs understand her pain, whether they are trying to sell a Cape Cod for $300,000 or a center hall Colonial for $1 million. In a housing market characterized by eroding home values, high inventory and tight credit for borrowers, many feel stuck in a place they don’t want or can’t afford. As the recession becomes more severe and unemployment mounts, they fret each week their properties remain unsold, and fear losing equity. While buyers hunt for exceptional values, sellers feel like hostages. And their pain is sometimes drawn out when deals that seem to be done blow up just before the closing."

The article is two pages and the the last two paragraphs ends with the person they started with at the beginning of the story, Ms. Faello. "In spite of the months without a buyer, Ms. Faello of Dix Hills is still optimistic that her house will sell, if she can just find the right approach. First she listed with a broker, then switched to an online multiple listing service that charged a flat fee. She also listed the property on Craigslist, which cost her nothing, and on, which charged. Recently she began interviewing new real estate agents.
'I feel as if I get a little sharper each time,' she said. 'The amazing thing is, they’ll see your home and come up with a number they justify by saying they’ve sold homes for that in the area. But list with them, and they’re ready to drop the price.'

1 comment:

Melissa Hale said...

I looked at this one. It was a good choice for an example of WSJ formula. Good explanations!