Success Begins at Janet McAfee Real Estate

Categories: Our Stories

Ever since Janet McAfee Inc. was incorporated in 1975, one thing has remained constant: our philosophy.


Give the client better service than the competition and do it with personal integrity.


That is why Janet McAfee Inc. employs a team of talented managers to "work behind the scenes" and support agents through every aspect of home buying and selling.


Whether you are considering a career in real estate, a newly licensed agent, or a proven performer ready to take your practice to the next level, luxury-leader Janet McAfee Real Estate is the perfect fit. Your journey to personal and financial success begins here. Check out how Janet McAfee has worked for so many others, just like you!



Dani Lester

‘Janet McAfee is a great place to start your Real Estate career. I've received top-notch training from our knowledgeable brokers, and the experienced agents are always willing to offer guidance and support! Joining Janet McAfee Real Estate is the best decision I've made.’



Belle Rolfe

‘The training I have received at Janet McAfee is one of the driving reasons I chose to work here. With a team of veterans that are ready and willing to help me at any given time, my success is truly unlimited.’



Jody Johnson

‘Working at Janet McAfee is an absolute joy! Everyone here is so kind and helpful. I feel so supported by both the staff as well as other agents.’



Mac Scott

‘Janet McAfee Real Estate is a terrific place to work with an amazing support staff and agents who make their clients' lives easier.’





Lucy Goltermann

‘I have worked at Janet McAfee for over 30 years, and we have some of the most professional agents in the industry.’



Wayne Norwood & Ben Patton

‘Could not ask for a higher level of professionalism, service level or management vision. Consistent in every way, and more.’


‘Awesome company with great leadership and skilled agents!’



Julie Lane

‘Our customer service is second to none. Highly recommend Janet McAfee.’



Marc Sinclair

‘By far, this brokerage has the most knowledgeable agents and brokers in St. Louis... If you are involved in or considering a real estate transaction...You should consult with Janet McAfee!’


Our continued success is due to a consistent dedication for hiring the best and the brightest to create our unique, cooperative spirit — an ideology which could not be better explained than by Principal of Janet McAfee, Janet Horlacher:


"A real estate company is as good as the people who are involved in it. We're fortunate to have some of the best agents in our field. Our agents are successful because they are truly professional in demeanor and experienced in all aspects of a transaction, yet they are all team players. Everyone cares about another person's success, and that builds tremendous morale. It builds a family.

 

If you’re a professional who is enthusiastic, hardworking and also values honesty, integrity and is dedicated to expert customer experiences, we invite you to take the important next step to your personal and financial success by contacting Janet Horlacher for a confidential interview.

Groundhog Day

Categories: General Our Stories Selling Your Home

Today is Groundhog Day, a day which reminds us to change our strategies if we want to achieve different results.  Unless you are Bill Murray, you cannot keep doing the same thing over and over again and expect different results.    This principal could not be more true for listing and selling homes.   If your home has been on the market 60 or more days, we need to rethink our strategies and make some changes to appeal to prospective buyers in a more compelling way.

 There are things we cannot change and there are things we can change.   We cannot change the home’s location, the lot characteristics and the home construction.  It is futile to focus on things we cannot change.  There are many things we can change … and should change.

1.       Price – The price is your invitation to a specific set of buyers to come visit your home.  If no one has accepted your invitation, perhaps you are inviting the wrong group of buyers.  Perhaps the buyers in this price range expect a larger home, more bathrooms, new kitchen.  If other homes are selling in this price range, then perhaps you are being displayed among the wrong group.  You should ask your agent to update the Comparative Market Analysis and determine how your home compares to the others which have recently sold.  If you had showings, what did those prospects end up buying?

2.       Landscaping – The drive by is often the buyer’s first impression.  It is imperative that you continually freshen your landscaping.  Keep leaves raked, gum balls removed, flower beds trimmed and mulched.  The front walk should be swept clean.  Nothing says “this listing is stale” more than old, droopy landscaping. 

3.       Staging – Giving your home a fresh look can bring buyers back to take another look.  Have you completely decluttered?  Neutralized the colors? Rearranged or removed mismatched and overly large furniture?  Stripped wallpaper?  These small changes can help prospective buyers see your home in a different light.  I recommend consulting with a professional stager to get ideas on how to change the look of your home to appeal to more buyers. 

4.       Photography – We know that almost all home buyers are searching the internet for homes.  Change your photography (especially after you have painted and decluttered).  Photograph your rooms from a different perspective and remove photos which captured negative aspects of your home. 

Happy Groundhog Day and Happy Selling!

Janet Horlacher

Principal, Janet McAfee Inc.

“To Stage or Not to Stage? That is the Question”

Categories: General Our Stories Selling Your Home St. Louis Luxury Homes Success Begins Here Staging Your Home

Sellers often ask me if there is a benefit to staging their home.  The answer is a resounding YES!  Research from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and our “real world” local experience is indisputable: staging adds value, reduces the time on market and produces a positive ROI.   Here are the 10 Reasons to Stage Your Home for selling:

1.       You will make more money.   A 2015 NAR survey found the majority of buyers were more likely to offer higher prices for a staged home compared to a similar home.

2.       Your home will sell faster.  Professionally staged homes spent 72% less time on the market, according to a survey from the Real Estate Staging Association.

3.       Buyers can visualize themselves in the home.  81% of buyers it was easier to visualize the staged property as their future home.   

4.       Your online photos will look better.  Over 95% of home buyers look online.  This is where you make your first impression and where potential buyers decide whether to make an appointment.  Professional staged homes stand out and generate more buyer interest. 

5.       Staging helps defuse other property flaws.  2015 NAR survey revealed 28% of buyers viewing a staged home overlook other property faults.  The eye is naturally drawn to clean, well-appointed furnishings and away from minor imperfections.

6.       Personal photos and memorability distract your buyer from viewing the home.  Remember, you are trying to help a buyer see themselves living in this property, not as a guest amidst your family’s personal life story.

7.       The cost of staging is less than your first price reduction.  Some sellers will say “I’ll give it a try without staging and then if it doesn’t sell, I’ll stage it.”  This is a huge mistake.  Days on market tick on.  By the time you have determined you need to stage, your best prospects have already seen your home and formed their opinion.   You are looking at a price reduction just to attract new interest.

8.       Sellers are not objective about their own homes.  The chinoiserie fabric you selected to match the floral chintz may be your pride and joy, but the buyer may not share your design style.  A professional stager will select a neutral pallet which appeals to a broad range of prospective buyers.

9.       You will save time and reduce your anxiety.  Selling your home can be stressful and time consuming.  A professional stager will manage the process for you so that you can devote your energy into your new home.

10.   Your Realtor will support you 100%.  Real estate professionals know that staged homes attract higher offers and faster sales.  We are delighted to help facilitate the process, make appointments for you, meet painters or handyman at your home and help you arrange an estate sale.

Janet Horlacher

Principal

Janet McAfee Inc.

(Property in photograph is 9044 Clayton Road, professionally staged by Property Enhancements LLC)

Perseverance and Passion

Categories: General Our Stories Selling Your Home St. Louis Luxury Homes Success Begins Here Top Agent Profiles

 

Have you ever heard a graduation speaker declare "follow your passion and you will be successful?"  What if you don't know your passion?  What if you are just starting out, trying to figure out your career path and you don't know your "passion?"  I think some things in life are not always "love at first sight."  And, I think selling real estate is not necessarily "love at first sight."  

If you speak with successful Realtors, many will tell you that it took time and perseverance to excel.  Moreover, they did not become passionate about selling real estate until they had stuck with it, worked really hard and begun to see the fruits of their labor.  The passion came after the hard work.  I believe the real estate profession is about perseverance.  Successful Realtors are committed every day; they keep abreast of market activity; they touch base with their clients regularly and they are passionate about helping their clients. These are the Realtors who succeed and love their job.  They become passionate about their job when they see the benefits of their hard work and the lives they have touched.

I believe real estate is one of the most rewarding careers you can choose.  It requires a great deal of perseverance.  Perseverance is the key ingredient to success and self fulfillment.

- Janet

Principal, Janet McAfee Real Estate

Emily Oliver and Jody Johnson Join Janet McAfee Real Estate

Categories: General Interviews Our Stories

 

ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI (June 26, 2015) – Jody Johnson and Emily Oliver have joined Janet McAfee Real Estate as Sales Associates.

Emily Oliver
Emily Oliver is a St. Louis native with an impressive 18 years of professional experience. For the past eight years, she held key financial and human resource management positions for a privately held Saint Louis company. To build her real estate practice, Emily will rely upon her advanced interpersonal, communication, and analytic skills together with her extensive community and civic activities.

Emily, her husband, and three children are residents of Webster Groves. For more information, visit her website at www.janetmcafee.com/emilyoliver.

Jody Johnson
To build her residential real estate practice, Jody Johnson relies on twelve years of achievement and business acumen in public relations and the financial services industry where she served as a corporate bond trader, portfolio manager, and money manager. Her illustrious resume features regional and national industry leaders like the Edelman Group, Rodman & Renshaw, Linnfield Capital, Prudential Securities, and Paine Webber.

Jody is a St. Louis native. She attended MICDS and SMU where she earned her B.A. in Public Relations. She lives with her husband and two children in Ladue. For more information, visit her website at www.janetmcafee.com/jodyjohnson.

Lisa Coulter and Linda Benoist: A Town & Style Feature

Categories: General Our Stories Top Agent Profiles

[real talk]


lisa coulter  & linda benoist
janet mcafee real estate


by tony di martino
Town & Style Magazine

The law’s loss is real estate’s gain. Lisa Coulter was finishing her law degree at Washington University when she had the first of her four children. “I was a stay-at-home mom for a few years, and when I decided to go back to work, I figured real estate might be more flexible than a legal career,” she recalls.  She has been at Janet McAfee more than 25 years, and she and partner Linda Benoist are consistently named among the firm’s top producers.  Coulter and Benoist both live in Ladue.

 

THE BEGINNING OF A BEAUTIFUL FRIENDSHIP
Linda Benoist and I, both Mary Institute grads, began our partnership in 2000. We started by covering for each other when one of us was out of town. We really enjoyed working together, so we decided to make it official.


STRENGTHS
We both love meeting new people and making connections. Linda’s strong point is social interaction and her ability to relate well to all ages. I’m very detail-oriented and love negotiating deals. We make a great team!

FIRST SALE
My first sale on my own was a gorgeous house on Moydalgan Road in Ladue. I was so excited!

BIGGEST SALE

Linda and I represented both the buyer and seller of a beautiful house on a fabulous lot. It wasn’t on the market, but we knew the seller was considering moving and we knew our buyer would love it. The property sold for $3.5 million—a $7 million deal for us.

THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UGLY
I love finding the perfect house for a buyer, selling a house quickly, putting together a successful deal and making long-term connections with clients. But my least favorite part of the job is negotiating the building inspections.

RECESSION BLUES
That was a difficult time, with many wonderful listings that just weren’t selling. Our strategy was to take things one issue at a time, and to find creative ways to set our properties apart from the rest.
MOVIN’ ON UP
The market is definitely on the upswing. We’re even seeing multiple contracts again!

CAREER ADVICE
This is a great job. But if you’re thinking of getting your license, be prepared to work long hours for little pay until you get established. Learn the market, and go to lots of open houses so you can familiarize yourself with different neighborhoods. Hold open houses for other agents so you can meet potential buyers.

STRESS-BUSTER
I love to take Bailey, my lab, out for a walk.

LOVE STORY
Even after all these years, I’m still excited about every deal, and I love coming into the office.

To contact these two professionals:

Lisa Coulter
314.983.2224
www.janetmcafee.com/lisacoulter 

Linda Benoist
314.983.2119
www.janetmcafee.com/lindabenoist 

Getting To Know You: Christy Thompson

Categories: General Our Stories Top Agent Profiles

Everyone’s got a past. But, of course, some are just naturally more interesting than others. Three area realtors opened up to Ladue News Magazine about how they got to where they are today, and how they transfer the skills they gained in previous careers to give them an edge in the real estate industry.

By Blaise Hart-Schmidt
Ladue News Staff Writer 

Christy Thompson
Janet McAfee Real Estate


IN HER ILLUSTRIOUS CAREER, Janet McAfee Real Estate agent Christy Thompson has done everything from FBI weapons-training to health care public relations to selling houses.

Thompson grew up in St. Louis, and received her bachelors in political science from Vanderbilt University. After graduating, she moved to Washington, D.C., where she worked in the FBI’s Office of Congressional and Public Affairs, helping with press conferences and announcements.

The position came with plenty of unique opportunities, Thompson says. She stood on the White House lawn as president Ronald Reagan landed in Marine One, helped with press conferences related to Mafia sting operations, and even sat in on a meeting with Oliver North about the Iran-Contra.
  Eventually, she went on to work as a legislative assistant for California Rep.  Norman Shumway, but home was calling.

Thompson returned to St. Louis to get her law degree, and received her juris doctor in 1992 from Saint Louis University. “After law school, I was very involved in real-estate law,” she says. “Then I segued. My father is a physician, and I became interested in malpractice defense work. I wound up working for about eight years for SSM Healthcare, where I combined my press work and legal background in their public relations office.”
 

Thompson craved a career that would give her a more flexible schedule with her husband and son.  Again, her career took a turn—this time, back to real estate. She joined Janet McAfee as an agent in 2006, and specializes in the central corridor.  In addition to being full-time sales at the agency, Thompson still is a practicing attorney in contract negotiation; she works on a contract basis as in-house legal counsel for a St. Louis based software-as-a-service company.  “The two have worked together beautifully,” she says. “I wouldn’t be nearly as informed and proactive of an agent as I am if it weren’t for my legal training. It teaches you to think on your feet, and be analytical and persuasive...What I enjoy most is negotiations and helping my clients know that they got a deal. A lot of that is due to my training and my analytical way of looking at a problem. And I’m pretty darn persuasive when I want to be.”

To reach Christy:

Christy Thompson
314.974.6140
cthompson@janetmcafee.com
www.janetmcafee.com/christythompson 

 

Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

Categories: Our Stories

 

PROBLEM:

My buyers fell in love with a home which contained high radon levels.

SOLUTION:
During the inspection and environmental testing phase of their purchase, we received a radon test indicating radon levels of 37.4 pCi /L (picocuries per liter).

We thought it must be an error as the EPA has an action level of 4.0 pCi/L. Further research indicated that radon levels were unusually high in this particular area due to rock formations.

We asked the Seller to immediately install a radon mitigation system to reduce levels. Within days, the new mitigation system did its job and follow-up tests showed radon levels had gone from 37.4 pCi/ L to 0.6pCi/L, well below EPA standards.

 

Cindy Lee Gladney   I   314.503.4234

Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

Categories: Our Stories

 


PROBLEM:

A filthy, dirty oven is discovered at the final walk-through.

SOLUTION:
Make sure all built-in kitchen appliances, especially the oven and the refrigerator, are thoroughly cleaned before the property goes on the market. Why, you ask?

First, potential buyers will be inspecting them during listing appointments. Their cleanliness will reflect on the condition and quality of your home. Second, once the home is sold and you are in the midst of a hectic move, it is easier to simply wipe them down if they have already been deep-cleaned.

 

Tricia Kolbrener I 314.504.5564

Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

Categories: Our Stories


PROBLEM:
Our client was a bachelor living in a great house that needed some updating and TLC.

SOLUTION:
The client wished to sell his home "as-is." The home languished on the market for seven months without selling. After getting married, he took the house off the market to do some updating. With our guidance on resources, the client commissioned the painting of the exterior of the home and all the interior rooms. They installed new doors, removed carpeting, refinished hardwood floors and added accent millwork. The kitchen was updated with new granite counters and new stainless appliances. Additionally, the old tile floor was replaced and some of the cabinets were removed to create a dining nook. The remaining cabinets were painted in a fresh neutral color. Bathrooms were also updated with bead board wainscoting, new vanities and granite tops. The final key step in the turnaround was to hire a trusted stager to give the home a young fresh décor.

The home returned to the market and sold the first week.

 

Linda Benoist 314.504.5495
www.janetmcafee.com/lindabenoist