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Client Success Story: Christy and Tara

Following their experience with the team, we caught up with Christy and Tara, clients who worked with Andrew to buy a West Madison home. Check out the interview below to hear about their experience.

Who are Christy and Tara?

From Andrew: "Working with Christy and Tara was such a great experience for me! They reached out to us through our website and I learned that they were relocating to the Madison area from California, which can make buying a physical home much, much more difficult. I made sure to be super extra diligent while Zooming them through homes remotely and really appreciated their trust in me to help guide them on which homes were good options and which ones weren't. We found a gorgeous home that checked off all their boxes and then some and because of the trust we had established, we were able to move quickly and navigate the rest of the process without any issues. What made working with Christy and Tara even more special was that we never met each other in person until the day before closing, and when we did, it felt like we were old friends. I'm so excited to have them in our community and also selfishly to use their pool on occasion ;) 

If you know someone who is relocating to Madison that I could help in a similar way, don't hesitate to have them reach out!"

Why did you decide to buy in Madison? How did you know it was the right time?

"I had just been offered a position as a professor at UW-Madison so we knew we were going to move. We also had just gotten married and we had been dreaming of getting a house for a long time but affordability is really hard in California. So when I got the job in Madison, Wisconsin we were super excited to finally own our own home and have a backyard and everything that comes with it!"

What were you most nervous or concerned about in the process?

"We found out that it's a very hot market in Madison so houses were getting multiple offers in the first week that they were  listed. So we knew that there was a good possibility that we'd have to make a decision without actually seeing the house in person. Working with Andrew was really great because he was very responsive and would show us houses right away once we would let him know 'we're very interested in this property' and he would do a virtual walk through with us. He would show every part of the house from multiple angles and zoom in on little defects. He's very knowledgeable about houses so he was able to tell us 'the floor is a little uneven' or 'this is woodpecker damage' . . .  things like that. That really made it a better experience of buying without being there person. 

Tara had never even been to Madison, I [Christy] grew up near there so I was familiar with the area but it was completely unknown for Tara so we really relied on Andrew a lot to help us."

Have you come to see the house yet?

"Yeah we did! It was our first time seeing it in person at closing and we loved it!"

You mentioned that Andrew was really helpful with doing all the virtual showings, was that something you were looking for in a real estate agent? What were some of the things that you were looking for?

"More than anything we really wanted somebody that we could trust because we were buying remote and we weren't very familiar with the Madison housing market. So we really wanted somebody who we knew was going to be there for us and be reliable, get back to us quickly, and be able to get out there really quick to help show the houses since we couldn't go out there on our own and visit the houses. So Andrew needed to be there to guide us through it."

"Like Tara was saying we wanted somebody who was knowledgeable about the Madison housing market and also just about houses in general. Andrew was able to get in there and show us things like 'Oh this window won't open' or 'There's damage here or there' and then he was also able to give us a ballpark, 'Oh this would probably be around this cost to fix that or this doesn't look like that big of a deal' versus something that was a really big deal. That was really helpful for us especially it was virtual and we couldn't go and test out these things on our own. Checking out outlets and stuff like that can be really hard to do just from a camera so Andrew really helped us out there."

Why did you ultimately choose Andrew to be your real estate agent?

"We first found Andrew online – we first liked that he had good reviews online. Then once we talked more with him we found him very responsive, he would respond to us right away and he just seemed very knowledgeable."

What stood out to you during the process of buying a home and buying a home remotely?

"I think the intensity of it really stood out to me. I've been living in California for the past 10 years so I'm aware of how expensive houses are here but I thought in the Midwest (at least in the area I grew up) it was fairly easy to buy at home and pretty affordable. I was surprised by how hot the Madison housing market was. Also just how many offers this house had received – the house that we ended up with had four offers and they were only open for tours one day. So it was intense but Andrew really helped us through that and was working in the evening to write the offers and even on Easter! 

Also I was really happy with just how the house looked when we saw it in person so it really did reflect what we saw through Zoom and we were super pleased with that."

Do you have any advice for someone who's thinking about buying a home in this market?

"Something we did was a lot of research. We we did hours and hours of just looking at different neighborhoods, different properties, and I think that helped us decide where exactly in Madison we wanted to live.  As far as the market I would say – you know sometimes you have to be ready to make a tough decision because if you wait too long that house might be gone so it can be tough. You just had to be ready to to make a decision and we just trusted Andrew that like this was a good thing to make an offer right away."

"I think also knowing what you want but also being open to other things – because the house we got was actually in an area we hadn't even thought about but we fell in love with it and we are going to be super happy there. Knowing what you want but also being flexible is something and advice I give to first-time home buyers."

Where did you end up buying?

"We ended up buying in Orchard Ridge. Initially, we were sold on the Isthmus and we really wanted to be there but then after going on a few tours of houses there we realized that you would have to spend a lot of money for an older home. We also thought maybe we don't want to be quite so close to all the action. In Long Beach we live near a very busy street so it's noisy. So I fell in love with the nature out there in Orchard Ridge and the huge backyard. Especially after not having a backyard for the past 10 years or so because of apartment living.

The bike trails are amazing, Orchard Ridge has a bike trail going right right next to our house so it makes it pretty easy to just get on our electric bikes and go places!"

Would you hire Matt Winzenried Real Estate Partners and Andrew again (if you needed to)?

"Definitely! 100%! We had a wonderful experience so we’d definitely hire him again and also recommend him to friends and family."

Thank you, Christy and Tara, it was such a pleasure working with you!

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