Viewpoints: John Marshall, Realtor, Roger Martin Properties, Houston

by Natalie Terchek


John Marshall is a Realtor for Roger Martin Properties in Houston.

Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before.

This week, we talked with Realtor John Marshall of Roger Martin Properties in Houston. He has been in the real estate industry for one-and-a-half years and sells homes in Willow Meadows, Meyerland, Westbury and West University Place. Prior to his career in real estate, Marshall spent 30 years in public education. He was the magnet coordinator at Longfellow Elementary and Johnston Middle School in Houston for eight years, and says the experience helped him understand how to market and promote properties. Recently, Marshall was named “Realtor of the Week” in the Houston Chronicle.

Houston Agent (HA): Have you noticed an increase in asking prices in your area this month? Why do you think that is?

John Marshall (JM): I have not noticed an increase. It has pretty much leveled off, and I would say that’s probably because there are fewer lookers out there who are better prospects. As we are approaching the holiday season, people know what they want, and they’re out there looking – they don’t mind to have to move during the holidays. There’s also a bit of trepidation with money and the new health law, as far as how it’s going to affect people. So because of these factors in the market, I have not seen an increase of asking prices in the area.

HA: Even though housing inventory is at an all-time low, some are starting to see it pick up in their areas across the nation. Are you noticing this in your area as well? Why do you think that is?

JM: Our inventory is not picking up right now. It remains low, and that is due to several factors. The main reason for this shortage of inventory is due to the large amount of growth that is happening here in Houston – our medical center and energy corridor are providing an abundance of jobs. Because of that, we have a lot more potential buyers moving to Houston, but we don’t have enough inventory. It has gotten to the point where empty nesters are delaying selling their big huge homes (which they would normally sell years in the past) because they don’t have anywhere to go.

HA: What sorts of characteristics are you noticing with today’s homebuyers?

JM: One thing I’ve noticed is that homebuyers now want “moved-in ready” property. A lot of homebuyers are two-income families who don’t have a lot of time to do remodeling. If a home does need remodeling, I think it would be great for home flippers to fix them up and resell them for people to move into them.

Homebuyers nowadays are very educated and sophisticated. They have an idea of what they want before even calling an agent. They’re good decision makers and they know what they want. In a few of the closings I did last month, the homebuyers found the houses before I did! A lot of this has to do with homes being accessible online – homebuyers are able to do all sorts of research without ever setting a foot in the house.

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