Working with Mark Shear and Berman Property Solutions was hands down the best decision I made when I administered my parents’ estate. He helped me to maximize the value of my parents’ home as quickly as possible and with little direct effort from me. Mark took charge and made it all happen. I could not have been happier with the outcome and would highly recommend Mark and his company as a great partner when you find yourself in a challenging situation.
This past year, both my parents died within six months of each other. In March, I was named Personal Representative of the estate and became responsible for cleaning out and selling their house. The heirs (my siblings and I) were spread across the country and I wasn’t local to the home. Although the house is well situated in Shrewsbury near Route 9, the age and condition led me to believe that it could be challenging to sell quickly at a price that I felt was reasonable. My parents had lived in their house for over fifty years, and there weren’t many modern updates or touches. Lots had to be cleaned out to prepare to sell it. Further, I was unsure of the condition of major systems like electric, plumbing, heating, A/C, etc. I decided that I wanted to sell the house AS IS and before the end of the summer but was quite overwhelmed at how to make it all happen so quickly.
My attorney recommended that I contact Mark Shear about a potential auction and, frankly, I was dubious at first. I’d only ever worked with “traditional” real estate agents, and the thought of an “auction” option made me skeptical. However, after meeting with Mark, it became obvious that an auction solution was the best one for my situation. From my very first meeting in April, it was clear to me that Mark understood my objectives, knew how to make them a reality, and was willing to become a partner with me to make it all happen. It was also clear that he was very sensitive to the family dynamics and ensuring the process was handled in a way that eased the process of selling our childhood home.
Soon after that first meeting, I contracted with Mark and Berman Property Solutions. From there, he took over. He recommended a strategy that included a home inspection, a clean-out, and an auction by choice with a minimum starting price of my choosing. Mark took his fee as a buyer’s premium on top of the gaveled price at the auction, so there was no commission cutting into the sales price of the home.
To help make things easier on me, Mark recommended a home inspector, clean out service, a service to update the smoke detectors and generally led the process of preparing the house for sale. His recommended support people were all top notch, and Mark handled all of the coordination with them so that I did not have to travel to do it myself.
When the house was ready, he set a sale date, took pictures and marketed the home aggressively. He conducted an open house for interested parties that was well attended. He provided all the documentation up front to potential bidders, so they could understand the property and process well, in advance of the sale. With everything available prior to bidding, people know what they are getting and there is no “negotiation” once the gavel is struck at the auction.
The auction was held at the end of June and, on the auction day, there was pretty good attendance. The house sold quickly at above the minimum bid that I’d set. More importantly, it sold for a number larger than what I had reasonably expected at the outset of the process.
Mark then kept track of the after-auction process to make sure that the closing happened as scheduled and without a hitch. It all did, and we closed on the sale of the house in mid-August, less than four months from my first meeting with Mark.
I went from feeling overwhelmed to having my every objective met or exceeded. As I said before, working with Mark Shear and Berman Property Solutions was hands down the best decision I made while dealing with my parents’ estate.
– Cathy V., Danvers, MA