My Top 10 Funniest Moments In Fort Wayne Real Estate. So Far.

July 18, 2011

10.  The window.  My buyers were very excited to see this particular house.  When we got there the lock box was missing.  I called the listing agent and she said that she thinks the back window might not lock and that if we wanted we could try to get in that way.  Well duh, of course we crawled in the window!  While the neighbors laughed at us I hoisted Corey up, he got in, and we saw the house.

9.  The cat.  I was doing an agent preview for an investor in Fort Wayne because he was out of town.  The house was a foreclosure and vacant.  If you have never been in a vacant house with no power…  it can be kinda creepy.  I slowly opened the attic door and out jumped a screeching cat!  I almost crapped my pants.

8.  The truck.  A few years ago we had a bad snow storm, but that didn’t stop my buyer from wanting to see a foreclosure.  We both had 4 X 4s at the time so off we went.  Since the home was a foreclosure the very steep driveway wasn’t plowed.  That didn’t stop my buyer.  He built up speed and away he went!  He made it about halfway up before the tires started spinning.  Dude was stuck. 

7.  The little old lady.  We had just listed a house in Copper Hill in South West Fort Wayne.  I went back the second day to put some fliers in the box when the sweet little old lady from across the street walked over.  I said hello and we chatted for a few minutes.  She quietly looked at me and said, “I’m glad this family is moving.  They are real son’s a bitches!!”  I think I laughed for 10 minutes.

6.  The dog.  A few years ago I was doing an open house in New Haven when the neighbor’s dog walked over to say hello.  I love dogs and of course I wanted to pet him!  I took one step towards him and he went nuts barking and started lunging at me and he tried to bite my leg.  I jumped back, kicked at him, and then turn and ran like a little girl.  Thankfully I made it into the house.  Then I started laughing.  🙂

5.  The poop.  I was out showing houses to Patti and Ashlee.  We walked into a house and I smelled poop.  I knew it wasn’t Patti or Ashlee and I was hoping it wasn’t me!  I looked down at my shoe and saw that it was smeared in poop.  My buyers thought it was hilarious.

4.  The screaming agent.  I called John the agent to schedule a showing for one of his listings for 6:00 that night.  He said that he would meet me there to unlock it.  We got there at 5:55 and he wasn’t there.  I waited until 6:05 to call him.  When I did he got huffy and puffy and said “You told me 6:30 damn it!!  I’m just around the corner, I’ll be there in 5 minutes.”  6:20 rolls around and he still isn’t there.  I called again and told him we would re-schedule because we had 5 more houses to see.  He exploded!  “I’M JUST AROUND THE CORNER YOU STUPID MOTHER ****ER!  YOU BETTER WAIT FOR ME OR I’LL KICK YOUR ASS!!!” I’m not kidding, he said that.  I laughed and hung up and we never saw the house.  Oh, and he didn’t kick my ass either.

3.  The second screaming agent.  I was having a conversation with the listing agent on a deal we had going.  He was as nice as can be until something didn’t go his way.  He called me and was screaming at the top of his lungs.  I hung up.  He called back screaming and asked my why I hung up.  I told him because he was screaming.  He started screaming again and I hung up again.  It was a fun game that lasted about 5 minutes and had 5 hang ups.

2.  The ashes.  We listed and sold an estate for three sisters.  Their mother had lived there for most of her adult life and they were all very attached to the home.  At closing they walked in, sat down, and pulled out their mother’s ashes and put the urn in the middle of the table.  Talk about awkward silence…

1.  The lovers.  There is a real estate company in town that lists a lot of foreclosures.  They are known to leave all of the front doors unlocked.  We pulled up to the house and saw a couple of bicycles in the driveway.  I cautiously walked up to the front door, opened it, and announced that I was a Realtor and that I was showing the house to my buyers.  I yelled again with no response.

We walked through the kitchen dining room and started to head towards the bedroom when my buyer said “Holy crap!  They are having sex!!” 

They both jumped up and scrambled to put their clothes on while explaining that they were interested in the house and wanted to buy it, but the listing agent wouldn’t return their calls.  Yeah.  Right.  There you have it, there is my list.  🙂

Whether you are buying, selling, downsizing, or relocating to Fort Wayne…


*  We were very nervous about trying to sell our home in the current market.  We met with The Christiansen Team and they showed us what the market was doing and assured us that they could sell our home quickly and for the right price.  Then they did. – Chris and Audrey

*  The Christiansen Team totally put me at ease.  They are very down to earth people that were looking out for me and what I wanted.  It didn’t take us long to find that “perfect” home! – Patti

*  The Christiansen Team treated me like a million dollar client!  After meeting with them a few times they knew exactly what I was looking for in a home.  They knew what I was looking for better than I did!  I loved their laid back personality and really enjoyed working with them.  You will too! – Tabitha and Andrew

*  Our biggest concern was finding the right home at a price we could afford.  The Christiansen Team did their homework, knew their stuff, and found us the perfect home for a great price.  I would recommend if you are in the market to buy a home! – Resa and J.P.



Just Stick A Sign In The Yard And Put That Bad Boy On The MLS. What Else Can You Do?

December 23, 2010

I had a meeting the other day with a fellow agent. We were discussing which side of the business we liked better, working with buyers or sellers.

She said “I prefer working with sellers, it’s SO MUCH EASIER. There is hardly any work to it!!”

I chuckled and asked her to elaborate more on her statement.

“When I first started in real estate my Broker told me the key to listings.  Stick a sign in the yard, put that bad boy on the MLS and let it be. If it doesn’t sell in the first 3 months tell them to reduce the price.  Remember to call them a few weeks before it expires and ask for an extension and another price reduction.

I couldn’t tell if she was serious or just yanking my chain!!!

“What else can you do?  Houses sell themselves.  It’s like that Rotiserie you see on late night tv.  SET IT AND FORGET IT!”

At this point I was laughing. Could this agent really be that disconnected?  Does she really not get that this is a personal business and a personal touch is needed and expected?? She currently has 2 listings and has only sold 1 listing in 2 years.  Maybe she just doesn’t get it.

Her jaw dropped when I told her how much interaction our team has with our sellers and how much work we put in to our listings.  Our sellers can expect a weekly traffic report, a weekly phone call from the team member that is handling the listing, exposure on over 20 real estate related websites including blogging and Facebook, prompt feedback on all showings, a monthly market report, and a hug at closing!!! (Yup, we are huggers!)

Her jaw dropped again when I told her how many referrals we get from both our buyers and sellers because of our personal touch. She quietly said that she hadn’t received 1 referral this year.  Very quietly.

I hope our meeting helped her to see that yes, this is a business, but it’s also very personal.  What are your thoughts?

Whether you are buying, selling, downsizing, or relocating to Fort Wayne…


The Christiansen Team is…

* We  were voted Fort Wayne’s Best Real Estate Agent/Team in the FortWayne.com and Fort Wayne Newspapers Readers Pick for 2010.  Thank you to everybody that voted!!

*  Our sales INCREASED from 2009 to 2010 in both number of sales and volume.

*  We were top producers in 2010 for RE/MAX Home Connection.


How Many Showings Are TOO MANY In One Day? How about 15…

September 17, 2010

Tony and Sue got pre-qualified and we found 15 homes that they wanted to see. I recommended seeing 8 today and the other 7 tomorrow.  I’m not opposed to showing houses from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, but in my experience I think 15 with 1 client in 1 day is too many.  Even though I take notes in each home, they will start to run together.  Oh, and there is always fatigue…  especially since it was 90 + and humid that day.  I believe that if you are fatigued, sweaty, tired, and grumpy your vision will be different than if you were fresh and wide awake.  So here is how it went.

10:00 AM, Showing 1: All smiles!  🙂  Great house, awesome lay out, but it wasn’t quite the one.

10:30 Showing 2: Another nice one, but it had a funky smell.  The bedrooms weren’t big enough either.

11:00 Showing 3: Too much wall paper and the kitchen lay out was bad.  Tony liked the wall paper but Sue didn’t.

11:30 Showing 4: Tony asked if it was okay if he used the restroom.  I told him okay as long as it wasn’t a “twosie“.  Basement stunk and smelled damp, big turn off.

11:45 Showing 5: Sue’s turn to use the bathroom.  While she was in there she noticed that there was some mold in the ceiling of the bathroom from a roof leaking.  We ran out of that one.

12:00 Showing 6: I heard the first sign of things to come.  Tony said “Man, I just want to find a house.  It’s hot, I’m tired, and I just wish she would pick 1.  Damn.”  Home 6 goes to the top of our list.  Great lay out and it has almost everything they wanted.  The master suite didn’t have a jetted tub and there wasn’t much storage space.

12:30 Showing 7: Tony’s stomach starts grumbling.  I hear him mumble something about chicken McNuggets.  He starts to complain and Sue rolls her eyes and tells him to “suck it up”  Tony barks back “But I’M HUNGRY!!!”  Bad home, smelled like dog urine and the counter tops were terrible.

12:45 Showing 8: (This is where I would have stopped)  Tony asks if we can stop by McDonalds and get some food.  Sue gets mad and says that we can’t because we are on a schedule.  I told her we had time to stop for 15 minutes or hit the drive through.  At this point Tony couldn’t care less about houses, he just wanted food.  Home 8 was extremely dated, no go.

1:00 McDonald’s stop: We went in and sat down for a quick lunch.  I asked them what they remember about the 1st home that we saw.  They didn’t remember much.

1:15 Showing 9: I was walking behind Tony and every time he burped I smelled the chicken McNuggets.  It was not ideal.  The home was awesome!  The only thing wrong was that it was right by train tracks and a train happened to go by while we were in there.  No go.  Those suckers are LOUD!  Sue was very disappointed and was starting to get cranky.

1:45 Showing 10: Fatigue is setting in.  Tony is dragging his feet and his shoulders and slumped.  When Sue asked him what he thought of the kitchen he mumbled “I don’t give a sh*t.  It’s hot.  I want to go home.”  The kitchen was terrible in this one.

2:15 Showing 11: Tony’s back is drenched in sweat.  Sue is not talking anymore.  I make a few jokes to lighten things up a bit and nothing.  Crickets.  No, it’s not because the jokes were bad, I’m a very funny man 🙂.  They are both tired.  I offer to get them ice cream on the way to the next showing and nothing…  yeah, they said no to ice cream.  No go on the house.  I can’t remember why.

2:45 Showing 12: Couldn’t get in.  The lock box battery was dead.  I stood out there for 10 minutes trying to figure out what was wrong.  Now my back is drenched in sweat and I’m getting cranky.

3:15 Showing 13: They were both dragging now… and sweating, and arguing.  Sue barely made it up the stairs.  She looked around, shrugged her shoulders, and said “This one is okay.  It’s my favorite so far.”  I told her she didn’t seem to enthusiastic and she just shot me the look. Her and Tony were really getting on each other’s nerves now.

3:45 Showing 14: We were in and out on this one.  The rooms were colored pink and Tony and Sue aren’t visionaries, especially after 14 showings.

4:15 Showing 15: By this time Tony and Sue were arguing.  I don’t even remember what it was about, but they were arguing.  The house wasn’t one, again, I can’t remember why.

6 hours, 15 houses, McNuggets, potty breaks, sweat, fatigue, and arguments. We ended up going out again the following week (only 5 houses that time) and found the perfect house.  Again, I don’t mind working hard and showing a lot of houses, I just don’t think that a client should see any more than 8 at one time.  What are your thoughts?

Whether you are buying, selling, downsizing, or relocating to Fort Wayne…


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* The Christiansen Team was voted Fort Wayne’s Best Realtors in the FortWayne.com and Fort Wayne Newspapers Readers Poll.  Give us a call and find out for yourself.


Some Common Misconceptions About Buying and Selling a Home… Part 2

July 24, 2010

Last week I blogged about some common misconceptions about buying and selling a home.  You can view that post HERE.  Here is part 2:

We listed Henry HomeSeller’s 5 bedroom 3.5 bath, $235,000 SPLIT LEVEL home 6 weeks ago. He called me last week and started to chew me out.  He was very upset that even though we have had quite a few showings from other Realtors and a couple of parties interested, WE haven’t personally showed it once.  “As my Realtor I expect you to show it to all of your Buyers.  Isn’t that YOUR JOB???” Henry said.

My response: “Henry, I understand your thoughts.  Right now I am working with 10 Buyers, most of them are in the $120,000-$200,000 price range, and NOT 1 OF THEM is looking for anything REMOTELY close to a home like yours.  If I were to show my Buyer YOUR HOME when they are looking for a 3 bedroom 2 bath ranch on a slab in the $140,000 price range… they wouldn’t be my Buyer very long, and I would be wasting your time.”  Thankfully Henry understood and we are all a BIG HAPPY FAMILY AGAIN!

A good Buyers agent (like all of us are on The Christiansen Team) will not show a Buyer homes that don’t fit their criteria. If I have a listing that fits one of my Buyers criteria YOU BETTER BELIEVE THAT THEY WILL SEE THAT HOUSE!!


Holly HouseHunter called me and said:  “Hey Jared, I know you told me to call YOU if I had ANY questions about ANY HOMES out there, but I got really excited when I drove by the home on Elm St and I, um, well, called the Realtor on the sign.  He is going to show it to me tonight and then if I like it I’ll call you back and we can write the offer.  Is that okay?”

My response: “No Holly HouseHunter, that isn’t okay.  I have been working with you for quite a while and I explained that if you contact another Realtor and have them show you the house, you are roped into working with them on that particular house.  It’s called PROCURING CAUSE“.

Holly was concerned that she was wasting my time by calling me so much. She wasn’t, that’s my job.  If you become one of our Buyers or Sellers you will never waste our time with questions, concerns, or anything of the sort.  IT’S OUR JOB TO HELP YOU!


Chandra Cheapskate was convinced that since it is a Buyer’s market (and she listened to her friends at work) she should make a low ball offer. We found her a beautiful home that fit EVERYTHING she wanted priced at $199,900.  She asked me to write an offer for $110,000 and ask for closing costs (3% of purchase price), a carpet allowance of $5,000, and that the Seller pays for all other costs (around $1,000 more).  Once it’s all said and done, the offer is going to look like an offer of LESS THAN 50% OF LIST PRICE!!!!

I tried to convince her that the offer was INSANE and to put herself in the Seller’s shoes. After a half an hour of me trying to convince her that she is wasting everybody’s time, she INSISTED that I write the offer and present it to the other Realtor.  I’m pretty sure I gave her the MOST DRAMATIC EYE ROLL IN HISTORY before I quickly wrote up the offer.  When I called the listing agent I told her the price and conditions and she started cussing and told me that her Sellers won’t even look at the paper.  Obviously I fired that Buyer.  I still don’t think she has bought a house…

Just because it is a Buyer’s market does not mean that you should offer less than 50% of the list price. Well, unless it’s a $10,000 piece of junk fixer upper and you are paying cash.  If Chandra and that Seller were to come to some kind of agreement (say $185,000 purchase price), I can all but GUARANTEE that Seller and the listing agent won’t soon forget the low ball offer we made at the beginning.  My guess is that the Seller will be a BEAR to deal with through the transaction.


That closes Part 2 of what should be a very fun series of blog posts.  Come back next week for more or let me know if you have any ideas or questions for me!

If you would like to buy or sell a home  in Fort Wayne, Indiana or in the surrounding communities, please call Jared, Amanda, Deb, or Alisha of The Christiansen Team at 260-704-0842, email us at ChristiansenTeam@gmail.com, or you may want to visit ChristiansenTeam.com for more specific information on the communities we serve.

Relocating or moving to Fort Wayne? Contact us to see how we can help!

Want to know a little more about us?  Check out our Facebook fan page HERE or GOOGLE US!!

The Christiansen Team

HIGH Tech, HIGH Touch


My very first showing seemed like SOOOO long ago…

July 24, 2010

I started selling real estate with RE/MAX Home Connection back in January of 2009. I remember sitting at my desk in early February when the phone rang.  I was so green I was nervous to even pick it up.  What if I say something stupid?  What if I don’t have the answer to their question?  GOD FORBID…  what if they want to see a house???? I took a breath, answered the phone and guess what?  I did okay!  And they wanted to see a house!

On the way to the showing I had to take a few deep breaths to calm my nerves a bit. Nothing in my teeth, no boogers hanging out of my nose…  HERE WE GO!

G and his wife were VERY pleasant people!! We walked through the house, shared a few laughs, and I think I did rather well.  Unfortunately the house was not for them.  We hung out in the kitchen and chatted for a while about what they want in their new home.  I walked away feeling confident and thankful that my first showing was under my belt.

I followed up with G and after a few conversations he told me that they were going to go ahead and stay in their current home right now and do some improvements. He also told me that he would get back with me when they are ready to buy.  A few months later he called me and said that after the all the work they did to their home they decided they wanted to stay put for a while.

I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t disappointed to make a sale (I get paid straight commission and a brother needs to eat!), but if they aren’t ready then they aren’t ready. I thanked him for the opportunity and told him I would keep in touch from time to time.  I sent him a thank you card, followed up with a phone call a little later, and then I found him on Facebook and we became “friends”.  I got to learn a little more about him and his EXTREMELY DRY sense of humor.  🙂  I also learned that he and my younger brother were friends at college.

Fast forward to 3 weeks ago. G emails me and says he wants to see an investment property.  It was a lower dollar home but I’ll take it!  We showed him the house and again, it was a no go.  It needed way too much work.  Then he started talking about he and his bride and that they were back in the market to buy.

The first house we looked at had a pool in the basement. Yeah, a pool in the basement.  Too weird.  The worst part of it was that the entire basement had drywall in it and there was not much ventilation.  On the upside…  the house came with a pet!

Yes, that is a dead mouse and NO, he is not doing the side stroke. We didn’t go for that house but went out 2 more times and found them the PERFECT HOUSE! We got it under contract earlier this week and will be closing in 3-4 weeks.  How awesome is that??

It only took a year and a half, but I finally helped my very 1st client find their beautiful new home! Oh, and we are listing their current home soon as well.  Thank you persistance and thank you Facebook!

If you would like to buy or sell a home  in Fort Wayne, Indiana or in the surrounding communities, please call Jared, Amanda, Deb, or Alisha of The Christiansen Team at 260-704-0842, email us at ChristiansenTeam@gmail.com, or you may want to visit ChristiansenTeam.com for more specific information on the communities we service.

Relocating or moving to Fort Wayne? Contact us to see how we can help!

Want to know a little more about us?  Check out our Facebook fan page HERE or GOOGLE US or visit our YouTube Channel

The Christiansen Team

HIGH Tech, HIGH Touch


So… You want to make a TON OF MONEY by NEXT FRIDAY by investing in the Fort Wayne real estate market???

July 24, 2010

This actually happened to me lately. Johnny isn’t his real name and I honestly don’t know if he likes Snuggies or not, but the conversation following my ridiculous story is a true one.  Hope you get a chuckle out of it like I did.  🙂

No matter how hard he tried, Johnny couldn’t sleep last night. He tossed and turned for hours before deciding to head to the fridge, grab some ice cream and turn on the old boob tube.  There isn’t much on tv at 2:00 am so he started clicking through infomercial after infomercial.

“Okay… if I buy a Snuggie and cut the sleeves off of it (so I can still look bad ass) it might work right?  Naah…”  CLICK

“Hmm…  this looks interesting.  This thing SUCKS and CUTS at the same time?  Still wish they were in production.”  CLICK

“Who the hell is this guy and why is he yelling at me??”  CLICK

“Hmm…  they could have used a giant one of these to soak up all that oil.  Sham Wow… Sham no”  CLICK

“Holy CRAP what the HELL is that thing???  I need to turn this before my wife walks in!”  CLICK

“Okay, this looks interesting.  Make a million dollars in real estate investing by next Friday.  All I have to do is give them my credit card and they will share their secrets and within weeks I will be joining them on the beach sharing my success story?  Wow!  I am ordering this book and cd set RIGHT NOW!!!  I also need to call that Realtor I saw in the bed race at Three Rivers Festival the other night.  I bet he can help me!”

Johnny got his cds, his books, and all the “secrets” to making a million dollars by next Friday. He read through them quickly, joined a few real estate investing websites, went to a local real estate investing club, then he called me.  Here is how the conversation went.

Johnny: “Hey Jared, how are you?   Here is my deal.  I have ZERO money, TERRIBLE credit, and I haven’t had a job in 6 months.”

Jared: “Okay, and you want to do what??”

Johnny: I am going to make a million bucks by next Friday.  Here is how.  I am going to have you write up offers on 50 REO properties in Fort Wayne.  I want you to offer 15 cents on the dollar.  I also want you to submit those offers every single day until they accept my offer or accept somebody else’s.  Oh, and once I get that $100,000 REO property under contract for $15,000, I am going to wholesale it to a cash buyer.  I plan to have 15 under contract and sold by next Friday.  ARE YOU WITH ME JARED????

Jared: (Trying not to chuckle out loud) “No Johnny, I am not with you.  Not one bit.  I know some very successful investors and they would all tell you the same things.  Keep your job, save your money, learn your market.  Success doesn’t come easy and it surely doesn’t happen overnight.”

Johnny: “Whatever dude.  I guess you don’t want to be successful do you?  Fine, I’ll go find a Realtor that wants to win!”  CLICK.

It’s been a few months since I talked to Johnny, but as of a few days ago he still hadn’t completed 1 deal. I work with a hanful of buy and hold investors that have found many great deals in Fort Wayne, but nothing for 15 cents on the dollar. I welcome the chance to work with investors, but only those that are realistic.

Thanks for reading!  I have to go use my Slender Shaper.  Have a good day!

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Me, a sign, and the old lady across the street (with her shotgun and bat). I love my job.

July 23, 2010

This afternoon I headed over to one of our new listings to drop off fliers and put up some sign riders. As I was putting up a rider a little old lady from across the street wandered over.  She was about 4’10” tall, had on a big sweater, over sized sun glasses, and a baseball  hat that made the bottom half of her gray hair poof out afro style.

How much are they asking for that house???

I talk briefly about the house and then tell her how beautiful her home was and that I really liked her landscaping (they were working in the yard when I pulled up).

Why thank you!  We are working very hard to keep the neighborhood beautiful but YOU KNOW WHAT??  My neighbors two houses down have been stealing my lilies!  Can you believe that?  Stealing my lilies!!  I planted some last week and GONE!  I know it’s them too, they are always stealing things out of people’s yards.  Can you believe that??

I tell her that I think that just stinks and then offer to stand guard for her so they can’t steal anymore.

I don’t need YOU to protect me!  I lived in the country my whole life, on 77 acres near Wabash!!  I can take care of myself!!

We talked about her old farm for the next 20 minutes.  We covered farming, taking care of horses, corn, her husband that passed, and how she misses the privacy and space.  When I say WE I mean mostly HER, but I love to hear about how things used to be and loved hearing about her life.  Suddenly she remembered that she was talking about her lily stealing neighbors…

They steal all kinds of things from me!  It’s just not right.  When I was in the country I would fend for myself.  If I thought somebody was going to steal from me I would hide under the porch with a shotgun!  NOBODY STEALS FROM ME!!

I asked her if she had ever shot anybody that was on her property.

NOT YET!!!!  God says that vengeance will be His but NOT ON MY PROPERTY!  I’LL SHOOT EM!  If I can’t shoot em then by God I will hit them with my weapon of choice… you know what that is Jared?  A BASEBALL BAT!!

After a good laugh I  redirect the conversation back to her flowers.  We chat for 10 more minutes, share some laughs, then she asks me for my business card because her son is looking for a home and needs a Realtor and she thinks he will “like me fine”. I left feeling like that was the best 30 minutes I have had in a long long time.  I love my job.  🙂