Wow! We have a show packed with information today! Find out about some great new land listings that just hit the market. Plus, Ron is with us from Eagle Home Mortgage to share some of the highlights from the 2018 Realtor Conference and Expo.
Thom and Dave discuss the Fair Housing Act and finish up with a segment on the importance of credit scores and building credit!
Dave Burnett: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. Here is Thom Dallman, the co-owner, associate broker of Core Group at eXp. CoreGroupRealty.com is the website. 208-933-7777, that's the phone number to go to, and you can always find out more about Core.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, go to our website. All of our information about us, all the details, everything that you want to know, all these radio shows that we do are on our blog site. So, you can go to our blogs and go to Idaho Real Estate Buzz and listen to past segments and all that stuff. So, we've got all kinds of useful information on that site.
Dave Burnett: There is. And if you're looking for homes, if you're looking for property, you can find out more about it there.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, go check out our search site. We have most updated listings. They come in every 15 minutes, so you have the freshest, newest information of what's out there on the MLS, directly fed through our search engine. It's very useful.
Dave Burnett: Yep. Now, we've always heard the term landlady, but today, we're going to talk to Meghan, who's a little bit different than landlady. It's more about being a lady who talks about land.
Thom Dallman: She's had a unique opportunity, Meghan, to have some great opportunities with lots and lands, deals. We brought her on to talk about what she has out there available.
Meghan Moore: Right.
Thom Dallman: Hi, Meghan.
Meghan Moore: Hi. I do have some nice ones. Down in Oreana, I have a 40-acre piece that borders the BLM all along the backside of the lot. It has a driveway roughed in and a building pad. It's already in a private subdivision, which is really nice. There's no power out to it yet, but it's not far away, so that's not a terrible concern.
Dave Burnett: Okay, let me interject here and ask a question. If somebody goes, "Where is Oreana?" where is Oreana?
Meghan Moore: If you just head south down Highway 78, you'll go past Murphy, and then Oreana is the next one down.
Thom Dallman: How long of a commute would it be to get into Boise if you were wanting to live out there, but wanted to still be able to get downtown every once in a while?
Meghan Moore: Oreana is probably a solid hour.
Thom Dallman: And it's all? Okay.
Meghan Moore: It's a little further than Murphy. Yep, I commute in from Murphy, so that's not terrible.
Dave Burnett: When you say it's backed up next to a subdivision, okay ...
Meghan Moore: It is the subdivision.
Dave Burnett: Is it? Because in my mind, immediately, I think of Legacy Subdivision or one of these subdivisions. What kind of a subdivision is there in Oreana?
Meghan Moore: Okay. So it's a rural property subdivision, so all the lots along this BLM bordering wall are 20 acres.
Dave Burnett: Oh, nice.
Thom Dallman: Nice.
Meghan Moore: So these are sold together. It's two separate lots, but it's just ... It's so beautiful. When you go out there, you drive up this little driveway, and it just overlooks all this BLM. It's the ultimate privacy.
Thom Dallman: So it's really nice because, yeah, not only do you have the 40 acres around you, you have BLM land next to you so that you know that you're going to be kind of very private, very ...
Meghan Moore: Yep. There's nothing in the Treasure Valley like it right now. It is that unique.
Thom Dallman: That's nice.
Meghan Moore: It is really nice.
Dave Burnett: Who is the perfect kind of client for this, would you say?
Thom Dallman: Be careful.
Meghan Moore: Somebody who wants a nice place.
Thom Dallman: We're going to be talking about fair housing a little bit later. Sorry.
Meghan Moore: Somebody who doesn't mind driving, but really wants to be away from the noise, the busyness of town. It's quiet, and it's nice, and we do get less snow. We're in a sub-climate down there that gets ...
Dave Burnett: Oh, is that right?
Meghan Moore: Yeah, so we get less snow. You guys get snowed on, and we don't.
Thom Dallman: Oh.
Dave Burnett: The reason I say that is I just read a study two weeks ago talking about ... It was talking about the population of people moving to the Treasure Valley, and one of the reasons so many people are moving here who are of working age is because they can work online, and their entire employment is online, so ...
Thom Dallman: You can work from home.
Dave Burnett: If you lived out in Oreana, it wouldn't matter that your job was in California because you're online.
Thom Dallman: It amazes me more and more how many people are ... how many buyers we're getting that are registering online that are that. Like, we say, "Where are you going to be working? Do you want to be convenient to work?" And they're like, "Oh, no, I work from home, so I can work anywhere." And it's like more and more people are starting to be able to do that, and it's, I think, really one of the neat things about technology these days.
Meghan Moore: Yeah. And in the past, when you get out too rurally, people are like, "Ooh, satellite internet, gross," but we actually use SpeedyQuick out of Meridian, and it's great. I can stream Netflix and everything.
Thom Dallman: It's speedy quick?
Meghan Moore: Yeah, really.
Dave Burnett: The old -
Meghan Moore: It's not like it used to be, so it's all right. Yeah, we like it.
Thom Dallman: That's awesome. That's awesome. So 20 ... 40 acres, sorry, 40 acres.
Meghan Moore: 40 acres, yeah.
Thom Dallman: How much are they listing that for?
Meghan Moore: They're listed at $120,000.
Thom Dallman: $120,000?
Meghan Moore: Yep, they're combined. Have the roughed-in driveway. It is on well and septic, so you have to put that in your own self, but that's not terribly hard. We know people.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, exactly. We do. We do.
Dave Burnett: We've got people.
Thom Dallman: I think this is a good point to make, too, to people who are looking for land is to make sure they're doing their due diligence to look for those things. Are they planned for well or septic, or are they connected to city services and stuff like? You should always be kind of digging into that and have a real estate professional that can help you navigate some of that stuff to make sure the environmental testing has been done in those subdivisions and stuff like that.
Meghan Moore: And some people get nervous with ... Like, if your land doesn't perk, they think, "Oop, that's it. I can't have a septic system." No, the district health people, central or southwest, are so helpful. They just know all kinds of things, and they don't mind. Call them up. Ask them questions.
Thom Dallman: If you need the help to figure out a solution to it?
Meghan Moore: Yeah, it's very helpful. Yeah.
Thom Dallman: Yeah.
Dave Burnett: Meghan is with us today to talk about ... She's with, of course, Core Group at eXp. Been talking about some land, some lots. Of course, that one in Oreana is available.
Meghan Moore: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.
Dave Burnett: What else you got?
Meghan Moore: Well, I also have a five-acre down in the same area, and that has permanent water rights on it. The 40-acre has a water permit, so you have to satisfy that. It's kind of rural-people talk. So you have to get your well in and start using it. But the five acres has permanent water rights on it, and that's listed at 75. It's in the same subdivision, but on the paved road. So yeah, that one's a really nice one, too.
Thom Dallman: Cool.
Dave Burnett: Let me ask you this question, Meghan. If somebody goes, if this strikes a fancy and somebody says, "I've got to see this," do they get a hold of you at Core and you take them out there to take a look at it, or how does that work?
Meghan Moore: Yep. The people who are selling it are very private, so they've asked that I accompany all showings. So, you'll have to give me a call at 208-494-8360, and then I'll take you out.
Dave Burnett: Perfect.
Thom Dallman: There you go.
Dave Burnett: I like that.
Thom Dallman: And then you also have one more?
Meghan Moore: Yep. I have one more that we just listed yesterday that's up in Idaho City. This one is inside the city limits, so it'll be a hookup to water and sewer through the city. And this is over two acres. It's right on the edge of the city limits. What's awesome about it is that you get the city fire prevention, so you'll be able to get homeowner's insurance, which people don't always think about when they buy the cabin in the woods.
Thom Dallman: When they're buying up in there? Yep, exactly.
Meghan Moore: You don't think ... You think, "Oh, I'll just get my insurance." No, not necessarily. So that's really nice. It is land-locked, and what that means is we're in the process of getting an easement from one of the neighbors for your driveway.
Thom Dallman: Yeah. Yeah.
Meghan Moore: So yeah.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, that's an interesting phenomenon as far as land-locks, where there's no real road to it and stuff like that. So yeah, you do have to apply for ... And once again, why you need a real estate professional to be kind of looking at some of this stuff, because there are still segments of land out there that are landlocked that you have no direct access from roads. So, you have to work with the neighbors to get easements and stuff like that put in to be able to access the land and get an actual physical address, because if I understand correctly, this one does not have a physical address as of yet.
Meghan Moore: No.
Thom Dallman: Wow!
Meghan Moore: Yeah, yeah. And sometimes the neighbors end up being your best buyers, and other times it's people who come in and they're like, "I really have a vision for this place, and help me find someone to get the right kind of easement for what we need," and we do it.
Thom Dallman: Yep, yep.
Dave Burnett: Let me ask you this question, Meghan, and I'm just going to throw this one at you in left field. Let's say somebody is thinking, "I would really like to buy some property X in wherever." Can they call you, and then you'll kind of put a lookout and start looking for them?
Meghan Moore: They can. Yep, yep. I had an investor come to me just a couple weeks ago. He was like, "I have a very specific thing that I want to do, and I need this amount of land, and I need it to be in town." So, we just start checking off the list, and then we hunt through things, and we find it.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, yeah. That's part of our job, is to actually keep an eye on that market, set ourselves up to be able to look at that every morning, kind of see what's new, what's out there. Meghan does a really amazing job at following her clients and making sure that her clients are getting what they're supposed to be getting to look at and stuff, so ...
Dave Burnett: And I go back to, that's where if you get somebody who's really dedicated to their job ... Meghan, I'm going to talk about you, so close your ears for a second. With somebody who's really dedicated to their job and loves what they do, they can make life so much easier for you.
Thom Dallman: Oh, so much easier for the home buyer. Yeah, especially for unique people who are looking for unique properties.
Dave Burnett: Yeah.
Thom Dallman: In a market where things do go so fast, especially unique properties, it's important to have that dedicated person who is so passionate about getting you that right fit and stuff. So, it's super important to make sure you have that right person.
Dave Burnett: Okay, Meghan, you can listen again. We're done talking about you.
Meghan Moore: All right.
Dave Burnett: That was perfect. All right, Oreana, and, of course, the other one was ...
Meghan Moore: Idaho City.
Dave Burnett: ... Idaho City. There were two lots in Oreana or not lot; it's 40 acres. That's a big lot. And then five acres in Oreana and up in Idaho City.
Meghan Moore: Yep.
Thom Dallman: Perfect.
Dave Burnett: So, you can give Meghan a call, or if you forgot, if you go, "Oh, what was that gal's name?" all you have to do is just give Core a call and say, "Who's the lady that knows all about the land?" And they'll have the answer for you.
Meghan Moore: That's right. They will.
Dave Burnett: 208-933-7777, that is the phone number to call, of course, at Core Group at eXp. And Meghan, thank you so much for joining us.
Meghan Moore: No problem.
Dave Burnett: Idaho Real Estate Buzz being brought to you by the folks at the Eagle Home Mortgage and, of course, Core Group at eXp. Find out why they say you get more with Core.
Dave Burnett: The Idaho Real Estate Buzz. He is Thom Dallman, a co-owner and one of the associate brokers at Core Group at eXp. We always get the chance to talk a little bit about finance, and Ron is with us with Eagle Home Mortgage. A conference? Tell me, what was the name of this conference again?
Ron Wieczorek: So, the 2018 Realtor Conference and Expo was a little bit ago. They highlighted some of the issues that are challenging our industry, both real estate and the financing end of it, as we prepare for 2019. They pointed out five current issues that they're dealing with, and obviously there's more than that, but the five big bullet points and then the five issues that they see moving forward that's going to pop on our radar, if it's not already on our radar.
Dave Burnett: Okay. Let me find out first, is this doom and gloom, or is this a positive?
Thom Dallman: This is a doom and gloom session.
Ron Wieczorek: I think it's educational. I don't think it's doom and gloom, I think a lot of it we know already, and the more you know the more you can get around some of your obstacles whether it's life or business or anything else, so I think it's good education to know it's present instead of just ignoring it.
Thom Dallman: I think that's a good point. This isn't to put scare and fear out there in the world but to just educate people and have people be prepared for what's happening in the industry and so they can keep an eye out for when these changes happen.
Ron Wieczorek: Absolutely.
Dave Burnett: I guess the thing that I see when I look at what's happening with the stock market and with everything going on is everything is cyclical, and when it comes to real estate I know I've owned my home long enough now that the value went up, the value went down, the value went up, and now right now here in Treasure Valley it's kind of holding its own.
Ron Wieczorek: Yeah, it's stabilizing. And if you're buying anything in a very short term period you're very sensitive to those kinds of things. But if you're it for the long run, those bumps in the road don't really affect you, because it's all on paper at that point.
Dave Burnett: So, what did you learn at the conference?
Ron Wieczorek: The first one is something I talk about quite a bit and you kind of touched on it is interest rates in the economy. The economy is doing better, the economy has produced more jobs, unemployment is down, but with that we have the interest rates over just the past two years have risen a point and a half, so we're talking about a seismic move in our industry. Just little movement from day to day, an eighth, a quarter. A point and a half over a two year period is a big move, because now you're talking from the mid 300's to the low 500's. That can have an impact on a lot of people's budgets and what they're able to buy. So the question I ask is will rates continue to rise, and will the economy continue to improve, and will they coincide with each other? Because right now a lot of the economy getting better is the reason the rates have gotten worse or gotten higher, but it's offset by people's income. You're not feeling it as much. Some people on either side of the spectrum are feeling it, but maybe not as much with deeper pockets.
Dave Burnett: So, as you look at it, it's kind of a wash.
Ron Wieczorek: I can't speak for everybody, you know there are some listeners that will say “it's affected me a lot”, and there are some listeners that will say “my payment might be higher, but my paychecks are higher so it's become a wash”. It can't speak for everybody, but for the most part it has been a wash, and what does that look like moving forward?
Dave Burnett: And what did you learn as far as moving forward?
Ron Wieczorek: I think they didn't get into that piece, because they can't prognosticate, and I don't claim that I can either.
Thom Dallman: I did see a chart recently that just came out from Keeping Current Matters, KCM blogs. They're predicting that interest rates will continue to rise and get up towards six by the end of 2018.
Ron Wieczorek: That's the feel, I just didn't want to give doom and gloom. I've been warned before not to do doom and gloom, and you're pulling me back in Thom!
Thom Dallman: Not doom and gloom, it's just preparation.
Dave Burnett: In comparison to what it was at one time.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, remember in the 1980s it was up in the 18's. It was high.
Ron Wieczorek: These guys are older than me.
Thom Dallman: Well, I remember buying a house and it being 10%, when I got an 8% loan it was like woohoo!
Ron Wieczorek: Right, no doubt. We talk about how the prices of homes have stabilized. I think that this was much needed. We got spoiled by a lot of the low home prices in the valley, and a lot of the low rates that made bigger homes more achievable when they maybe shouldn't have been, and good on anybody that got in when the prices were low and the rates were really low. This is more what a normal market looks like. In fact, we're below what a normal market looks like still if you look at it, and I've talked about this in the past. What's going on in different pockets and they're the same as ours, but their prices are a lot higher. So, we're not even in a normal market, we're still well below. It's just if you're used to something and you see increases like that, you feel like something is being taken away.
Dave Burnett: What else did you learn?
Ron Wieczorek: I learned the second issue, and it's a current issue and this probably hits for everybody: politics and political uncertainty. We're kind of in unchartered territory right now with what's going on in Washington, and when it comes to politics there's an obvious dysfunction in the state of today's political discourse and both sides. I don't care which side you're on; there seems to be an unwillingness to work on the other side of the aisle and there seems to be more tension than I've ever seen in my lifetime. Maybe you can tell me differently, but that goes into our everyday real estate, that goes into the regulations for my industry, that goes into how the economy is growing, that goes into what the rates are doing, so that ties into everything, so that's a big picture item that a lot of eyes are on is "what's going to go on with politics?"
Thom Dallman: That's a tough call to talk about.
Dave Burnett: It's just tough when politics dictate so much in our day and age, and my opinion, social media plays a big part into that. There can't be a burp in Washington without somebody making some sort of comment about it one way or the other.
Ron Wieczorek: Yeah, it seems like no matter what's said there's going to be some kind of dissection of how it was wrong. He could say that cancer is bad and someone would find a way to make that sound like he said something wrong.
Dave Burnett: Yeah exactly, but it does affect people's mentality and it affects their marketplace.
Ron Wieczorek: Number three on the bullet point, housing affordability. Everything is going to touch each other, but with the rise in interest rates and the massive appreciation in home values over the past few years have put a severe strain on a lot of people's budget, a lot of people's affordability. I've talked on this show before on how a lot of our first time home buyers have been priced out of our market because of the low inventory at that price level. When the rates do go up, and even when the economy is doing well, maybe they're seeing more in their paycheck, but they're not at that stage in their life or career yet where they can adjust on the fly to that. It's a serious problem or a serious issue that's going on is there's a lot of housing affordability issues with first time home buyers. It's across the board, but the first time home buyers is where I see the most strain.
Dave Burnett: Maybe one of these programs coming up, we could take a whole day, because I think planning now more than anything for young people who are trying to get into the housing market, they've got to have a plan. You can't just stumble in and go “let's buy a house!” You've got to have a plan. Maybe we can get people together Ron, and some other people together. How do you put a plan together for a newlywed that within a year you can get into a house.
Ron Wieczorek: You know and it's just that simple really, to put a plan together. I'm sure you see it Thom as well. You see a lot of folks that get really excited about the home buying process before they've done any research and or they've really put the numbers to it, because they know they're paying a lot in rent. Then they get real excited about a house, they see a house and they say “let's make an offer on this house Thom!” And your question is well “are you pre approved?” Often times there might be something, you know a medical bill that pops up that we could have taken care of six months ago when you just started planting the seeds like you mentioned, maybe it's a year, maybe it's six months, maybe it's three months, but to have a plan and a play in place is invaluable really.
Thom Dallman: We get that often. We get first time home buyers that tell us “oh we're six months out, we don't really want to start the loan process or anything” and we're like "no, this is the perfect time to start!" because things like that may pop up that we can get fixed when you're ready in six months to actually start looking.
Ron Wieczorek: What happens sometimes is that the homeowner is really excited and they're maybe putting the cart before the horse. I'll never tell anybody “no”, I tell them “not now”, but if we say “not now”, maybe they get deflated, maybe they're like “I'll never own a home”, you never know what's going on with that psyche and you don't want to discourage anybody from entering the home market, because it's still a great investment, and it's something that you really should think seriously about if you can afford it and you're going to stay in the area. We don't like to discourage anybody, but you get that discouragement if they're putting the cart before the horse, and they're saying, “I'm getting excited about this house”, and then all of a sudden, I have to tell them, “maybe it's a three month plan, maybe it's a six month plan”.
Dave Burnett: Too often we're an instant society; it's scratch and sniff. It's like, “let's go buy a new car this weekend!” Buying a home is not, “let's go buy a home this weekend!” You gotta have a plan.
Ron Wieczorek: You have to have a plan.
Dave Burnett: You have a plan, work a plan.
Ron Wieczorek: And that leads into number four. The generational change and demographics. You know Millennials, I've talked about this before, Millennials are dominating the housing market and they place a greater importance now on lifestyle and proximity to entertainment along with starting families later in life than the past generations, but we're now seeing that demographic, that generation really punch into the home buying market. With that, I've talked about this as well, the baby boomers are healthier. They're staying in their homes. Some of them are in smaller homes, because they've downsized so now they're taking up a lot of the inventory that the millennials are targeting and saying “that's the house I want, but that person's not going anywhere” So that goes to the inventory. That goes to the generation that we talked about, millennials that are really getting into the housing market right now. That's something that everyone's kind of trying to solve, whether it's through construction, is there enough land, do we want to build all starter homes? What's the answer to that? And do you want to over build? I don't know the answer to any of this; I'm just giving data.
Thom Dallman: I don't think anybody really knows the answer. Planning and zoning doesn't even really know the answer technically; I don't think they struggle all the time with that. How much do they approve and what not.
Ron Wieczorek: I think there's a lot smarter people than me in this world making those decisions so.
Dave Burnett: Ask me in five years; I can give you the answer ... For this question. And number five on your list?
Ron Wieczorek: Number five is e-commerce and logistics, and Thom, you probably see a lot of this, especially with the behemoths like Zillow. Zillow has now what they call Zillow Offers, and they're trying to get into that market place from afar. They can never replace real estate agents and maybe I'm biased, because I know the value in a real estate agent, but I think in their model that they see that they can.
Thom Dallman: I get this all the time, and I've had lots of communications with our e-people over at Zillow and stuff like that; we're a premiere agent with Zillow. They're not trying to cut out the agents. What they're saying is they're trying to assist the agents in getting actual people who are qualified stuff and helping them, because when they have those offers and stuff like that, they do actually have a local representative agent that will help them with those. They're not cutting out the agents. They know the importance of the agents, but they're just narrowing down the field and trying to get agents that are specialized and used to their model if that makes sense.
Ron Wieczorek: No, it does make sense. I don't know if I always buy everything that they're saying and you know, and you start talking compensation when you get into that field, is maybe they have an agent and the agent maybe that they have in mind in their model, because there is a severe attack on brick and mortars across the country. That agent that they have in mind might be at a severe discount, which a discount is nice, but sometimes you discount the service. You know, “which part of my service do you want me to discount?” No one is going to answer “well, I don't want you to discount that part.”
Dave Burnett: Ron is with Eagle Home Mortgage, equal opportunity lender. Ron, if somebody wants to get a hold of you, how do they do it?
Ron Wieczorek: That's usually a cue that I'm out of time.
Dave Burnett: That is your cue.
Ron Wieczorek: You can always catch me on my cell phone which is always on me, it's 208-869-9154.
Dave Burnett: Eagle Home Mortgage, of course one of the sponsors of the program, or if you didn't catch that phone number, you can always go to CoreGroupRealty.com, the other sponsor of the program. Why don't you do this; call 208-933-7777. Find out why they say you get more with Core!
Dave Burnett: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, here's Thom Dallman, co-owner, designated broker. I should say, associated broker, at Core Group at eXp. As we are headed into the winter months, and it is that time of year where things change a little bit in the real estate market, cause right now you're at that point where if you were to buy and close, you're real close to getting it by the holidays. Would you make it?
Thom Dallman: Well-
Dave Burnett: I'm making you think about it.
Thom Dallman: It depends on how you're coming. Financing, probably not. Financing takes about thirty days. There are some people who are pre-qualified that may be able to go a little bit quicker, but I typically don't see them financing homes within two to three weeks.
Dave Burnett: But, you could be in-
Thom Dallman: But, if you have cash. If you have cash, then yeah. For sure, we can get you in before Christmas.
Dave Burnett: Cash is king.
Thom Dallman: I've seen cash deals go as fast as two or three days.
Dave Burnett: Wow.
Thom Dallman: And stuff like that.
Dave Burnett: That's amazing.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, yeah. So, cash is king in the world of real estate, but yeah. For financing, we're probably past the point of getting them in by Christmas, but definitely by, we should be able to get you in by New Years, depending, or by early January for sure.
Dave Burnett: Okay. One of the things we've talked about, Thom, off air, and it's something that affects the real estate business, a lot of business, but it affects the real estate business, and that is fair housing, and about that equal opportunity to buy property.
Thom Dallman: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah.
Dave Burnett: Sometimes, we don't realize that discrimination does still exist.
Thom Dallman: It does. It never ceases to surprise me when I get a phone call, and this is such a sensitive topic, but phone calls that say, “I'd like to sell my house, but I want to make sure that I don't sell it to X-class, or X-race”, and it's like-
Dave Burnett: Does it take you back?
Thom Dallman: We can't do that.
Dave Burnett: When you get that call it's like, “Hello, the 1960s called. They want you back."
Thom Dallman: Right? Right, exactly. It's amazing to me that there's still some of that mentality out there and it's difficult to approach and you have to be, especially in the real estate business, you have to be cognizant of that and make sure that nobody is discriminating on those lines. Fair housing came out in the sixes like you said, in '68, to protect race, color, religion, national origin, sex, and so forth. And then, handicapped and familial status was added in the 80s to protect those classes as well. So right now, that's what is covered under fair housing.
Race, color, religion, handicapped, familiar status, national origin, and sex. So, we can kind of dive into those a little bit more individually, but the thing to keep in mind as a home seller, or even a landlord, majority of the lawsuits that have happened over the years have, I think the percentage is at like in the eighty percents area. Eighty percent of the lawsuits that happen, usually happen to landlords who are people to renting. There's a lot of people out there with second or third homes that they're like, oh I'll try to just rent them out and stuff like that. They don't realize that they could be discriminating against people.
For example, there was a lawsuit in 2016 where a gentleman had basically denied rent to a woman with a child saying that, “oh, this is a really bad area, you won't be safe here. I only rent out to bachelors”. Well, you know she's a protected class. He was coming from the kindness of his heart, trying to protect her.
Dave Burnett: He was trying to be good to her saying, “this isn't a real good neighborhood”.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. He turned around and got sued because you know that's a sex discrimination for her being a female, but then, familial status with her child as well. So-
Dave Burnett: Because, the bottom line is, it's her choice-
Thom Dallman: It's her choice where they want to live.
Dave Burnett: ...if she wants to live in a bad neighborhood or not.
Thom Dallman: Exactly, exactly.
Dave Burnett: That would be her choice to decide that, not yours as a seller.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. So, it's super, super important, especially if you're renting, to make sure that you're identifying your ads and making sure that you're not putting in verbiage that could be construed as limiting to specific groups, or specific areas. Along that lines, denying availability. You know, if you get an application and you just say, “oh sorry, no, this house isn't available", but it still is and you keep continuing to advertise, you could face some serious charges there.
So, refusing rent, obviously to those people, refusing to sell to a certain class, changing terms is another thing that sometimes happens. I have heard, in the past, lawsuits that happen with ... where the landlord has raised rent, or increased the security deposit, because you know maybe a couple decided to have a child and so, oh now you have a kid, we're gonna raise your rent.
Dave Burnett: Raise your rent. No, you can't do that.
Thom Dallman: Can't do that. And stuff like that. So, things like that are things that landlords don't necessarily think about, or home sellers, so it's very important that you're keeping that in mind when you're going down this road. With just the political atmosphere and some of the things that are going on with just immigration and stuff like that, we've gotta be super careful that we're not discriminating against certain classes. And that also leads to, you know, home buyers or renters who ... we've gotten phone calls from people who have said, “I am this race, so I would like you to show me homes that are in areas where-
Dave Burnett: It's predominately this race.
Thom Dallman: ...it's predominately this race”. To put it easily. We can't do that. We cannot steer clients into specific areas based on race, religion, you know, things like that. That happens a lot with religion. You know, I would like to stay in this ... near this church, or this temple, or what not and while we can kind of put in parameters of locations and stuff, we don't have access to boarders and boundaries and stuff like that. So, we have to be careful not to be steering as real estate agents as well.
Dave Burnett: Well, let me ask you this. So, if I were to call Core Group at eXp and say, “hey, we're moving to the area and we'd kinda like ... we go to the First Church of What's Happening Now, and we'd kinda like to be near the First Church of What's Happening Now”. Then, you put in the search, that's not discrimination that way, it's a parameter?
Thom Dallman: It's considered steering, steering people into a specific area for that reason. What I would respond with is, “oh, I don't know what the boundaries is, or how far away you want to be from that church. So, why don't you do ... I can give you the address of that church, why don't you do some research online and tell me what boarders you kind of want to reach out to. Tell me streets and stuff like that”. So, if it's the client requesting specific street areas and stuff like that, we can kind of limit it that way. But, we're not allowed to determine what that parameter is, if that makes sense?
Dave Burnett: No, totally get that.
Thom Dallman: Because that's considered steering and stuff like that. But, if you tell us an area, and say, “I want to live between State and Fairview, and you know, downtown, and you know, Eagle Road”.
Dave Burnett: Then, you can look and see what's there.
Thom Dallman: Then I can say, “oh I can show you what's in that area”.
Dave Burnett: Interesting.
Thom Dallman: So, it's so easy to violate these regulations without thinking about it and stuff like that. So, it's super, super important for everyone to really just be aware of that and stuff.
Dave Burnett: It's interesting.
Thom Dallman: So, familial stuff is one of those things that mostly gets impacted because people just don't think about it. The simple term of this is a great house for a family, that is kind of discrimination because now you're discriminating against single people, or couples that may not want to have-
Dave Burnett: Childless couples.
Thom Dallman: ... kids, yeah and stuff like that. So, you have to be super careful with that kind of wording.
Dave Burnett: Because that's easy to go, it's a five bedroom house, perfect for a family.
Thom Dallman: Great for a family, yeah. And if you've noticed, whenever I talk about things I never say things like that. I'm always like, it's great for anybody to be able to have room to move around. You know, and stuff like that. Or, have your own space. Never identify for specific families.
Age discrimination is another one that kind of falls in there as well.
Dave Burnett: But, see that would be easy to do. If you had a house that had stairs in it, say, really not good could for an older couple because there are stairs.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: You can't say that.
Thom Dallman: You can't say that.
Dave Burnett: That's my choice to decide if I'm gonna kill my knees going up and down the stairs.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. Or, even saying, a house is perfect for that millennial is now saying, oh the empty-nester, this isn't great for you.
Dave Burnett: Right.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, so age discrimination is another one that kinda get super tricky with people and we have to kind of follow those guidelines a lot.
Dave Burnett: Some people listening right now might say, we have gone crazy to the point of being so protective. But, I guess would say this, I'm as pasty a white guy as there is in a room. And, I have never ... well, I'll take that back, I've really never been discriminated against. If you've suffered discrimination because of who and or what you are, or where you're from, it's frustrating.
Thom Dallman: It's super frustrating.
Dave Burnett: And, I say this, I had a friend in school who's last name, I'll say it, his last name was Martinez. But, he was as white as it could it be. He was adopted by a Hispanic family. Took on their name. He was denied rent in an apartment complex because his name was Martinez.
Thom Dallman: Oh, wow.
Dave Burnett: He knows, this was back in the seventies. But, it's just because his application said Martinez and they told him, no, and then they wound up renting a few days later to somebody else.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, exactly.
Dave Burnett: If you've ever been discriminated against, you understand it. For me, I've never really been discriminated against.
Thom Dallman: Well, if you feel like you're being discriminated against and so forth, contact HUD. HUD.gov is a great resource to be able to go find out if you are being ... what's your recourse, what solutions are there for it and file a compliant if you truly feel like you're being discriminated against, file that complaint and make sure ... that's the only way we can fight it is if people are actually out there making a change and making the effort to, you know, to not let discrimination happen.
So along that lines, we gotta remember that if even though you feel like you're being discriminated against, make sure that you're double checking your credit score, make sure you're double checking your, you know, rental history, and making sure that there's no other reasons that might be happening because-
Dave Burnett: Don't run to the discrimination card immediately.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, there's a lot of false allegations that happen because landlords still have the right to base it off of your history, your credit history, your rent history, and stuff like that.
Dave Burnett: Your recommendations.
Thom Dallman: So, they still can deny you.
Dave Burnett: Your referrals.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, exactly. They can still deny you for renting it based off of the same criteria that they're basing everything else on. It's very easy for people to instantly go to the race card, or-
Dave Burnett: The discrimination card.
Thom Dallman: ... the discrimination card, whichever the case may be and say that that's the reason why they're being discriminated against. But, landlords still have the right to, you know, to do the credit checks, to do the history, and stuff and say no, and deny access due to those reasons and stuff.
Dave Burnett: But, if you are buying or selling a house, yet again another good reason to have a real estate agent, so you can make sure the verbiage, to make sure everything is in and that everybody's getting a fair shot.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: Perfect. Thom, thank you so much. Core Group Realty at eXp is the company. CoreGroupRealty.com is a website, one of the sponsors, along with the folks at Eagle Home Mortgage. Do this, call 208-933-7777. Find out why they say, you get more with Core.
Dave Burnett: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. He is Thom Dallman, the co-owner also one of the associate brokers of Core Group at eXp. Core Group at eXp and of course on their website is CoreGroupRealty.com. Call 208-933-7777 and that's the phone number for you to call.
Thom Dallman: Give us a call anytime. We're here. We are standing by ready to answer any questions you have, help you with any needs that you have out there real estate related. We can help.
Dave Burnett: Absolutely. You know one of the things that we have talked about from time to time but I don't think we can talk enough about it and that is when it comes to your credit and your credit score-
Thom Dallman: So important.
Dave Burnett: It is. To get prequalified and you always advise to all your people to get prequalified and the credit score is part of that.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, the prequalification process, they will reach out to the credit unions, not credit unions, sorry, the credit TransUnion, Experian, to find out what your credit score is because credit score is a huge part of getting your loan. You have to have a decent credit score in order to be able to get it and I think a majority of people out there don't even think about their credit score. They never think to look at it, they never think to keep a check on it and I always advise people check it every six months or so just to make sure where you are at with it and stuff like that. So credit score is super important. Super important to getting that loan and to actually get any loan out there so something you need to look into, just keeping track of it. Just keeping track of what's out there and what's available.
Kind of one of the big myths that people have is, if they don't have any loans or if they don't have any credit cards out there and stuff like that, and they're perfect, they have a perfect credit score.
Dave Burnett: uh-huh.
Thom Dallman: There is such thing as having no credit score. For those people who don't have any of those things, you have to have that stuff to kind of build your credit up and get a credit score.
Dave Burnett: I had one of my kids. They were trying to buy a car and they went in and they said, "Well, you don't even register. You don't even have a number." Because they had no debt whatsoever and we're not advocating going out and opening a million credit cards-
Thom Dallman: No.
Dave Burnett: And going into debt.
Thom Dallman: No.
Dave Burnett: But so, we had to cosign and what we did with her, we encouraged her to get a credit card-
Thom Dallman: Yep.
Dave Burnett: Get a $500 limit on it. So up a third on it and then pay it off.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. I think that third is super important part. When you start going above that 30% on your credit cards, when it comes time for the statement to be released, that's when it hits your credit score negatively. They look at that, how much credit you have available to you versus what you use and so there is a fine line of that. 30% is what they recommend, the lenders will recommend to you is get your credit cards about 30% and kind of maintain that 30% every time the cycle comes around. So beware of your credit cards. A lot of people just go out there and use their credit card and don't really realize how much they are spending and stuff and so.
Dave Burnett: If you are trying to figure out, okay, I've got a hundred bucks left on my credit, that's probably not helping your credit score.
Thom Dallman: Correct. You don't want to go zero it out. You don't want to get too low. Usually maintaining that 30% is what they recommend to keep that credit score. Obviously paying the credit card, paying all your bills on time, not being late is the biggest tip out there to everybody. Pay your bills. You've got bills for a reason so make sure you are paying them on time and stuff to eliminate any reports to the credit bureau. Any report like that will hit you down.
Dave Burnett: And I do know your credit score is available to you for free once a year. You go online to a website and be able to get your credit score. And I say that because, like I know on one of our credit cards and I think on one of bank account, they offer us for free.
Thom Dallman: For checking?
Dave Burnett: To check our credit score.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: It's not detailed. It just gives a number every month so it's not detailed. I don't know why but if suddenly that started crashing down-
Thom Dallman: Yeah, that's one of the signs of ... if that starts coming down and you haven't really changed anything, that could be a sign that someone has stolen your identity. That's another factor that a lot of people don't think about. Identity theft is still prevalent out there. There is so many people stealing people's identity and using their information to get credit cards, to get things, to purchase things.
I, myself, last summer, I guess it was two summers ago, had someone steal my identity and get a credit card, went out a bought a bunch of stuff at some store in Michigan or some odd area like that and all of the sudden, I started getting collection calls and it was a hassle, it was a fiasco to go through that.
Dave Burnett: It is.
Thom Dallman: People need to be aware that that happens out there and to be checking their stuff. Checking your bank account once a month, just check your statement when it comes in to make sure that there is no surprise withdrawals from your bank account and stuff like that. If you start getting a bill, check your bills, check your mail. Some people throw things away thinking it's junk mail but it could be a bill that, a credit card bill from someone-[crosstalk 00:05:31]
Dave Burnett: That you don't know about.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, exactly.
Dave Burnett: I'll share this story. We had this, it was about five years ago, we had, went to go buy a car and it came up that we owed, I'll go ahead and say the name because it is true. We owed AT&T Cellular $119 that we had just walked out on. Which, I looked at my wife and I said, "We don't even have AT&T, how is that possible?" And it was in her name. And it turned out that there was another woman with her name in California that somehow they tied it onto our account and gave us the ding. It took four months-
Thom Dallman: Oh my gosh.
Dave Burnett: ... four months to get this straightened out to prove to them, we've never had service with them. But we finally got it taken care of but for that four months, it was showing that we had walked out on an AT&T bill and never paid it.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. It's super difficult to prove and to get rid of those issues out of your credit report and you have to be diligent about it if you have those issues pop up. You have to be diligent about it and make sure that you are following up and doing the necessary thing to get it removed because it won't remove itself. It does not.
So just along that lines, too, it's not just identity theft, it's just errors.
Dave Burnett: That's what this was. It was just an error but-
Thom Dallman: Exactly. My brother and my father, many, many years ago had issues because their names are almost the same and their social security numbers were super similar too and so there was a little bout of some my brother's stuff was showing up in my dad's credit report.
Dave Burnett: Ooh, that [crosstalk 00:07:17]
Thom Dallman: Yeah. So we went through a little process there of getting that stuff removed and having to prove that it wasn't my dad, it was my brother and so forth. Especially if you are a junior, a senior, whatever, if you have the same names as your kids, be on the lookout because sometimes they can go and put that on your name and stuff as well.
Dave Burnett: And speaking of kids, not a bad idea, once a year because everybody at birth now, you have to have a social security number issued. Not a bad idea to get your kids checked with that free credit check because sometimes credit thieves will come in and hit a kids number and they're not going to know until they are seventeen, eighteen years old and apply for that first loan and suddenly they've got a mess on their hands.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. Some of the, one of the other things that I tell people too, is to make sure you're checking card for, or your credit for bills that you have paid that may not be showing as paid, yet.
If you have gone delinquent on an account back when you were in your twenties or thirties or whenever, make sure you have checked that that has cleared since then because that's another thing that pops up every once in a while. Someone will pull credit after a couple of years and all of the sudden they see that there is this reported not, or this bill that never got paid, a credit that has been on their credit report for years. And they are like, "That was a credit card I owned way back when and I paid that off. I know that I paid that off but it's still showing that they never paid it off." So you need to make sure that those kind of things are not on your credit report too, especially for first time home buyers that have never checked their credit. If you have had delinquencies in the past, to make sure that they have been removed because that does take a little while to fight as well to prove that you have paid it off, to contact that credit card company to show that they have paid it so that it will go through and get removed from your credit card.
So I think the main point that I am trying to say, is check card, or credit information. Pull your credit, see what your score is, make sure that you are checking to see what's on there. Make sure it's yours and that it is valid.
Dave Burnett: I think the thing I hear you saying, too, is if you have a name similar to somebody else in the family. If you have recently gone through a divorce-
Thom Dallman: That's another thing.
Dave Burnett: ... you might want to make sure your spouse, your former spouse hasn't run something up on there. And just, in general, make sure that everything that's on there belongs to you or belongs on there.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: It doesn't take much to drop you from 700 score to a 550 score.
Thom Dallman: Not much at all and it's super important for lending, for anything that you do to make sure that that score is best that it can be.
Dave Burnett: Mm-hmm (affirmative). And of course, Ron joins us from Eagle Home Mortgage each and every week and if you want to talk to Ron, he's got ways to help you walk through that to improve that score.
Thom Dallman: And I believe they have an in house credit repair company to help out with that stuff too. They actually will help you right there in Eagle Home Mortgage if you have repair that needs to be done.
Dave Burnett: Yeah, if you plan on buying a house a year from now, now is the time to start planning.
Thom Dallman: Oh, yeah, for sure.
Dave Burnett: You don't want to walk in the last second and go, we're going to buy a house this month. No you need to plan ahead and Eagle Home Mortgage can help you do that and of course, Core Group at eXp can help you get a hold of those folks and do that as well so, guard it carefully, keep an eye on it. Don't live in fear but know that it is something that you can control, watch and take care of.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: Coregrouprealty.com is the website to go to if you want to find out what the Eagle Home Mortgage's website is. Our phone number, you can find that information along with all the providers on the show that joins us each and every week on our mind people, CoreGroupRealty.com is the website where these podcasts are posted up there about a week after we do them, we'll post them there along with some helpful blogs and information.
Thom Dallman: All kinds of useful stuff on there.
Dave Burnett: Check it out, CoreGroupRealty.com. It's all being brought to you, this program, by Eagle Home Mortgage and the folks at Core Group at eXP. Find out why they say, you get more with Core.