By Zach Sparks
Ray Grant’s heyday as a real estate agent looks nothing like the real estate market today. Back in the 1950s, prospective clients would walk into his office on Baltimore & Annapolis Boulevard, browse listings displayed on the wall, and finalize the deal using a two-page carbon copy contract, unlike today’s 50-plus page contracts.
That was nearly 70 years ago. Ray, who turns 98 years old on April 19, still has a sharp memory of those days.
Before he joined the real estate industry, Ray flew torpedo bombers and dive bombers in the Navy. He served from April 1943 to November 1945, missing World War II. He then went to college and was selling insurance around the Washington beltway in 1945 when he received a call from his father, Raymond Grant, a Baltimore City resident who purchased a waterfront lot for $1,500 in Linstead on the Severn.
Raymond asked his son to move to Severna Park and buy the lot next to his for $2,500. Ray’s response? “I don’t even have a girlfriend. What do I need a lot for?” That would soon change when Ray married Ruth Porter in 1947 and eventually built a home nearby in the community of Olde Severna Park.
While Ray was still in college, a Baltimore real estate broker, Colonel Rutherford, encouraged both him and his father to pursue a career in real estate. After getting their licenses in the late 1940s, Ray would take the streetcar to Baltimore to sit open houses for Colonel Rutherford for two years.
When Raymond and Ray opened Arundel Realty together in 1951, they settled on downtown Severna Park, in the strip that is now occupied by Sofi’s Crepes, The Big Bean and Pedal Pushers.
After Raymond Grant died in 1962, his son changed the business’ name to Ray Grant Realty. Ray started building the business as his agents were the only Realtors representing the builders in the new construction communities of Severna Gardens, and later, Severna Forest.
“When we came to Severna Park, there was no new construction,” Ray said. “You had to find a builder.”
Later, as Severna Park began to be developed, he represented builders in new construction sales in sections of Oakleigh Forest, Fair Oaks on the Magothy, Westridge and Ulmstead Estates (in Arnold).
“There was one Cape Cod [in Fair Oaks] with a large dining room, two bathrooms, maybe four bedrooms,” Ray said. “I don’t think it was $40,000.” Per Ray’s advertisement that ran in the Baltimore Sun, starting prices were $33,500 in 1961. According to Ray’s grandson and local Realtor Matt Wyble, the Fair Oaks community regularly sees list prices over $800,000 these days.
Decades before the internet arrived and multiple listing services became common practice in Maryland, Ray and other real estate agents relied on walk-ins and referrals. Another notable practice was that agents could represent both a buyer and seller in the same transaction. “It was perfectly legal, and I didn’t feel like I was being favorable to the buyer or seller,” Ray said.
Agents would show their listings first, but if clients wanted to see a property listed by another broker, Ray would need to have a co-op with that broker. Since there were no lockboxes, Ray would need to pick up the keys from the other broker’s office and get permission to show the home. In contrast, today’s real estate market includes automatic co-ops, instant new-listing notifications, and virtual 3D tours.
Ray’s reputation helped him get referrals from Westinghouse Electric Corporation when the company transferred employees from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Other people recommended Ray after meeting him through the Severna Park Kiwanis Club or Chartwell Golf and Country Club, where Ray joined 60 years ago as a charter member. In addition, all of the families who moved to Severna Park new construction communities became repeat clients when they moved.
“He was well-liked, supportive to the community and helped raise four daughters,” said his youngest daughter, Betsy Grant Wyble, who explained that her dad would always support the Severna Park community by donating when local organizations needed advertisements, sponsorships and/or fundraising.
Ray’s career lasted more than 30 years, a milestone that did not come by accident as his business survived at least two economic downturns where the real estate market was hit pretty hard.
Asked about his success, Ray said he had four good agents, a desire to help people, and a commitment to community. When you ask others, his honesty and integrity were memorable characteristics, too.
Around late 1989 or early 1990, Ray closed his office and went to work for O’Connor, Piper & Flynn, which has since been acquired by Coldwell Banker. His last sale was a waterfront home that sold for just over $1 million, a lofty price that was rarely seen in 1997.
Real estate still runs in the family. Ray’s grandson, Matt Wyble of The Matt Wyble Team of CENTURY 21 New Millennium, is now the fourth generation to be in the real estate business.
Like Matt, Ray cites personal relationships and meeting people as his favorite aspects of real estate. He remembers taking one of his agents to Baltimore for dinner several decades ago. “At least five people came up to me and said, ‘Hi Ray, you sold us a house,’” he recalled.
Ray might be turning 98 years old in April, but his fond memories of his Severna Park real estate career are still as vivid as when he started selling Severna Park almost seven decades ago.
Hot real estate market sparks warnings to potential buyers as complaints to regulator double
As home sales in the province continue on a dizzying trajectory, the province’s real estate watchdog and regulator are warning buyers to be wary of what they may be getting into.
The Real Estate Council of B.C. (RECBC) and the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate said that in the first three months of 2021, they have seen an increase in inquiries and complaints.
Calls to the regulator were up 42 per cent over the previous year, while complaints, such as how offers were made and accepted, were double the number received in the same period in 2020.
“Buying a home is one of life’s biggest financial decisions. There are potential risks at the best of times, but with the added pressure and stress of the current market conditions, those risks are amplified,” Micheal Noseworthy, superintendent of real estate, said in a statement.
Planning on buying or selling a home this spring? With increased market activiy, its important to understand the risks, and we are here to help. Here are some tips to help you find the most up-to-date information before you make a decision: <a href=”https://t.co/7D8d5Of5XZ”>https://t.co/7D8d5Of5XZ</a>
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver says sales in the region have continued at a record-setting pace.
Residential home sales covered by the board totalled 5,708 in March 2021, up 126.1 per cent from March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and up 53.2 per cent from February of this year.
Rural and suburban areas have experienced the biggest spikes.
For the past two weeks, Jay Park has been in the middle of the buying frenzy.
He and his partner are trying to upgrade from their one-bedroom apartment to a two-bedroom condo or townhouse in Vancouver.
“I wish we had done this a month or two ago,” he said.
Park put an offer on a $1-million condo, $4,000 above asking price.
“To entice the [seller], we put in a subject-free offer, but it wasn’t successful,” he said. “They accepted $110,000 over asking price that was also subject-free.”
The hot market has led to bidding wars. Some would-be buyers have even lined up outside for days to try to get a jump on a property.
Erin Seeley, the CEO of the council, is warning buyers to do their research and be aware of risks before making an offer.
“It’s really important that buyers have engaged with their lender before they’re making offers so they know how to stay within a reasonable budget,” she said.
Seeley said some of the complaints the council has heard from buyers is that they weren’t aware the seller has a right to take an early offer.
“And the seller was really in the driver’s seat about setting the pricing,” she said.
Aaron Jasper, a Vancouver realtor, advises clients to avoid cash offers and to include finance clauses even if it may mean they lose a deal.
“There’s a lot of frustration among buyers, feeling pressure to take some risk,” he said.
“You’re better to be delayed perhaps a year getting into the market as opposed to being completely financially ruined.”
Jasper also says realtors are limited in the advice they can give to clients on legal matters, home inspections, potential deficiencies with homes, and financing.
‘Caught up in the craziness’
Other tips from the council include seeking professional advice before making a subject-free offer or proceeding without a home inspection, and speaking to a professional to determine how market conditions may be affecting prices.
Meantime, people like Jay Park say they are still keen to buy. Park has more viewings scheduled and is optimistic.
“It’s a very exciting time for us, but I also don’t want to get caught up in the craziness and make a purchase that’s above our means.”
Source: – CBC.ca
Black Press Media introduces one of Western Canada’s best real estate platforms helping home buyers Find. Love. Live. that new home
Need an agent who knows the community?
Or, is it time to look for a new place to live, but you don’t know what’s on the market?
Whatever the real estate need is for residents in the communities of British Columbia, Yukon & Alberta, there’s a new way to do that one-stop shopping – by visiting Today’s Home.
The slogan for the site is “Find. Love. Live.”
“We want people to find their dream home, love it, and live in it,” said group publisher Lisa Farquharson.
Building on the success of Black Press Media’s niche digital platforms – Today’s Home brings the same wealth of knowledge and local expertise to the search for a home, be it buying, selling, or even just daydreaming about what changes you can make in the future.
Search hundreds of listings that local real estate agents have available.
The listings cover properties around the region, from a one-bedroom, one-bath condo for $339,900 to million-dollar acreages throughout the province of BC, Yukon, Central Alberta and beyond.
Click on a listing, and see not only the realtor handling the property sale, but links to his or her other listings and social media feeds. With the click of a mouse, take a virtual tour of the property, find the property’s walking score, and learn about nearby amenities.
There are links available to schedule a showing, or send the agent a comment or question.
Want to share a listing? When you click on the share button, you’ll actually send an attractive digital flyer of the prospective property, not just a link.
There’s even a button to help determine how much you have to spend, courtesy of the convenient mortgage calculator.
Plus, scroll down the page on Today’s Home and find a list of expert local real estate professionals who can answer questions or help with that home sale, Farquharson explained.
Today’s Home offers the advantage of the massive reach that Black Press Media has built throughout Western Canada with its network of community newspapers and online products. That allows the public to tailor real estate searches based on location, price, and other key factors while allowing real estate professionals to gain unprecedented audience reach with their listings.
Today’s Home will dovetail into the media company’s existing print real estate publications.
“Black Press Media has real estate solutions in print and now we can add in the digital component,” Farquharson said.
Watch for expansion of the Today’s Home platform in the near future, she added. That will come as Black Press Media adds a new component – the development community. Developers will be able to reach a huge audience when their projects are ready for presentation.
For information on Today’s Home, contact group publisher Lisa Farquharson at 604-994-1020 or via email.
Happy house hunting!
Source: – Aldergrove Star
PGIM Real Estate, Revera Affiliate Target UK Market in Newly Formed JV
PGIM Real Estate has been active in recent months providing capital to facilitate blockbuster senior housing acquisitions. Now the firm is looking to capitalize on demand for senior housing in the United Kingdom.
The Madison, New Jersey-based real estate investor and lender announced this week it is entering into a joint venture with Signature Senior Lifestyle, an affiliate of Revera, to develop and operate senior housing communities around greater London
Mississauga, Ontario-based Revera serves 20,000 older adults in long-term care homes and retirement residences in Canada. It is also the majority shareholder of Sunrise Senior Living, one of the largest senior housing providers in the U.S. The company operates a portfolio of 12 communities in the U.K. under the Signature Senior Lifestyle brand, with one community in development that is slated to open in autumn 2021.
The JV has one development underway — a senior housing community, or “prime care” home, in southwest London. PGIM worked with Elevation Partners, a London-based investor and asset manager in U.K. health care real estate, in sourcing, structuring and executing the venture. Additionally, PGIM will retain the firm to leverage its expertise.
PGIM and Revera did not respond to requests for comment from Senior Housing News regarding details about its development pipeline.
London is emerging as a future hotbed of senior housing development, spurred by favorable demographic growth trends and a lack of available supply, and the PGIM-Revera venture will find competition.
Maplewood Senior Living CEO Gregory Smith told SHN last month that demand for U.K. senior housing is comparable to major U.S. markets such as New York and San Francisco, where supply has historically been constrained.
Maplewood and its investment partner, Omega Healthcare Investors (NYSE: OHI) are looking to expand its luxury Inspir brand to the U.K., and identified five suburban markets around London with high barriers to entry that are favorable for the brand’s growth.
Revera CEO Tom Wellner sees similar untapped upside potential for senior housing in the U.K.
Source: – Senior Housing News
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