Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before. This week, we spoke with Tina Brickhouse, a Realtor, team leader and relocation director with Keller Williams The Woodlands.
Houston Agent (HA): Trulia’s latest Price Monitor found asking prices in Houston are on the rise, which bodes well for the local market. Have you noticed this trend, and if so, what do you think is driving the healthy growth?
Tina Brickhouse (TB): Yes. Home prices are on the rise, and what’s influencing that is all the corporations and businesses moving into the area. Right now, we have three Fortune 500 companies just in The Woodlands alone – and even more looking to relocate here, including a huge campus that’s going to attract several thousand new people. Growth right now is exploding.
HA: Earlier this week, we reported on a budding trend of brokerages pulling their listings from major syndication sites like Trulia, Zillow and realtor.com. Do you advertise your listings on any of the major sites, why or why not?
TB: We do advertise our listings on those sites, and the reason is buyers go to the Internet. When they want to look for a new home, the Internet is always their first stop. To us, it seems foolish not to advertise where people are going, which is why we made the decision to post our listings through the major portals.
Our results, so far, have been good. We generate listings from each of the sites we advertise through. And while we do see things like competitors advertising on our listings, we recognize that these listing sites are just as much a business as we are. As of now, we’ve yet to experience any real problems from posting our listings.
HA: While Houston isn’t known for its international buyers and sellers, the city does still attract a fair amount of foreign interest. Have you worked with foreign clients, and if so, how is it different from your local buyers and sellers?
TB: First and foremost, Houston is actually a huge international city. Both my fellow agents and I have worked with international clients, and the truth of it is most are no different than our local buyers – at least not in the way we treat them. We try to satisfy every one of our client’s needs, whether they were born and raised in Houston or just flew in from overseas. All cultures lend to different likes and dislikes, and it’s just a matter of spending time with the client and figuring out what those things are.