Memphis Daily News Chandler Reports Nashville Ledger
» Subscribe Today!
The Power of Information
The Ledger - EST. 1978 - Nashville Edition
Skip Navigation LinksHome > Article
VOL. 43 | NO. 50 | Friday, December 13, 2019

More homes on market portend record January

Print | Front Page | Email this story

1311 McKenzie

’Tis the season to be jolly, and one of the means to that jolly end seems to be selling houses.

Those buyers who have placed themselves on automatic searches via any of the various real estate websites are surprised at the number of homes appearing on the market.

Some might feel the selling process during the holiday season might rate a “Bah Humbug” award, although buyers delight in the homeowners’ sales of their properties, seeing them as early Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or December gifts.

If things continue as they are, January will be the biggest month for sales of all time since December deals close in January. The only possible market derailment could be Old Man Winter, and that might not matter this year with the flock of Northeasterners stirring up their own Nor’easter with their migration to Nashville.

Barring an unusually bad cold weather event, the region might have no slow months, even though January and February have historically been the slowest months of the year.

But the favorite question of buyers as they view a house is always, “Why are they selling?” That question is more interesting than ever, as even veterans of real estate wars are shocked by the listings coming on the market.

One reason might be the uncertainty of the market. Another might be the certainty of mortality. Many homeowners are aging and applying for the scant openings in various retirement communities. Often, vacancies only occur when the current occupant experiences a change in health and moves to a facility that offers different services.

Interestingly, some studies show that the most common day during which most people die is Jan. 1, while British studies have concluded that more people die in December than any other month.

So be careful out there.

One situation that seems to arise often pertaining to real estate and death is the question of how to handle a real estate transaction in which the seller dies before closing. When real property is under contract at the time of the seller’s death, the property should transfer on the closing date and the funds go into the estate. The sale does not have to await probate.

Happy Holidays.

Sale of the Week

East Nashville remains a hotbed of real estate activity, as it has for the past 22 years. The house at 1311 McKennie is exemplary of the architecture of the area, as it was rebuilt following the fire of 1916 that destroyed more than 500 houses and left nearly 3,000 residents without their homes.

In 1916, East Nashville was the most affluent area in Nashville. A small child playing with a ball of yarn changed all of that when the yarn went into the fireplace and was engulfed in flames.

Worried of losing the yarn, the child grabbed it from the fire and cast it into the yard where it lit the dried grass. Flames spread quickly. Most of the area was destroyed.

Built in 1920, the home at 1311 recently sold for $715,000, a number eclipsing most of the new construction in the area. This renovated structure commanded $269 per square for its 2,659 square feet, while comparable new construction consistently ranges from $220 to $250 per square foot with sales prices in the $500,000 to $650,000 range.

Listing agent Allyson Lyons Edwards, one of Main Street Real Estate’s brilliant brokers, listed the house and noted it has six fireplaces, reclaimed balusters, maple flooring and a master bedroom on the main level.

Edwards also mentioned that the home is located within the “Lockeland GPZ.” For those unfamiliar with the term GPZ, it refers to a geographic priority zone, a zoning that means residents nearby the school will have priority over those students who do not reside in the vicinity.

Let the parents beware that there are many cases in which families relocate in order to attend certain schools only to learn that the move did not result in the schools they had hoped their children would attend.

In cases of zoning for Metro Nashville Public Schools, parents should be diligent in their research and rely only on sources in the MNPS system, not friends, not family or anyone who is not in a position of authority at MPNS.

Every year, it seems, there is a family that moved across town only to be zoned into an entirely different school and left with no recourse. Things can change from year to year. Hearsay was not their friend.

Robert Drimmer of the now-established Compass TN represented the buyer and did so in sterling fashion. His client purchased the $699,000 listing for $715,000. Pricing lower rather than higher worked well for Edward’s seller, as the house could have suffered additional days on the market and eventually sold for a lower price had it been priced originally at $715,000.

Contrary to the age-old adage of “You can always come down, but you can’t go up,” lower list prices result in higher sales prices. Especially if the house has “an oasis with a double fish pond,” as does 1311 McKennie.

Richard Courtney is a licensed real estate broker with Fridrich and Clark Realty and can be reached at

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & RSS:
Sign-Up For Our FREE email edition
Get the news first with our free weekly email
Email Knoxville Editon