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I’ve had the pleasure and the opportunity write this column for about 15 years.  My goal was to inform and enlighten you about housing and real estate issues.  And over the years, recurring themes emerged.  Some are dynamic, while others seem to be unchanging.

Through my many columns I wrote about the dynamic nature of the real estate industry.  Although you may be thinking about the economic aspect of housing, you’re partially correct.  The industry itself has also been rapidly evolving.

Real estate markets move in cycles, but conditions are always changing.  Through my column, I covered the “go-go” market of the early 2000s, the foreclosure crisis and housing crash, the great recession, and housing recovery.  From a macro perspective, these were the highs and lows of extreme housing markets.  However, what was also evident was that micro aspects of ups and downs within the broader housing trends are at work.  These micro and macro cycles will indeed continue.

The real estate industry is also dynamic.  More change has occurred in the last 20 years than in the prior century.  Post-recession regulatory changes aside, the industry has been under pressure to change how business is conducted.  And like other service industries, the internet has been a major catalyst in its change.  The internet has provided the vehicle for a number of industry disruptors.  Additionally, residential real estate professionals were no longer the information keepers, and have been forced to be increasingly transparent in the home buying/selling process.  As a result, the role of the real estate agent has evolved (and will continue to evolve) from “expert” to facilitator.

While the real estate market and industry is dynamic, aspects of the buying and selling a home will always be the same.  One thing that must be said is that no matter how much the industry changes, the human element will always be a part of the home buying and selling process.  The attitudes and expectations of homebuyers, sellers and their agents will always affect the buying/selling process.

Home sellers will always have to contend with prepping and pricing their home. There’s no getting around it, but preparing for a home sale requires decluttering, staging and attention to curb appeal.  However, without pricing a home correctly, the sale can become a languishing experience.  Getting an appropriate list price will always entail a market analysis and strategy.

Home maintenance will always be a concern for homeowners.  Home owners who defer maintenance for a later time don’t always understand “the cost of doing nothing.”  Deferred maintenance erodes the value of the home owner’s most precious asset.  Regardless of maintenance habits, home owners will always be thinking about updating their homes.

First-time and repeat homebuyers will always be affected by the dynamic nature of the housing market, such that they will seek assistance from a trusted real estate agent.  Even though technology will undoubtedly make future real estate transactions easier, most home buyers will look for guidance from their real estate agent.  An experienced real estate professional can help negotiate through the home buying process. Besides being able to identify and resolve potential issues that can interfere with the transaction, a real estate agent can provide guidance on negotiating a sale price.

Although this is my last column in the Sentinel, I’ll continue providing real estate info and insight. Look for future podcasts on my website (dankrell.com).

Dan Krell is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Platinum Realty in Bethesda, MD. You can access more information at www.DanKrell.com.

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