John-Michael helped us to purchase our first home in Alameda. Even though we had a smallish budget and very specific criteria, he persisted in looking for us until we were able to move in. We have since recommended him to multiple friends who he has also helped successfully purchase homes in the bay area..
We will be calling John-Michael when it’s time to sell this house and look for a new one for sure!
John-Michael helped a couple of budget-minded newbies (us) get a super deal on their first home. He also answered endless questions and gave invaluable advice, leading to a really great deal and a perfect match for us. He was consistently patient and made the seemingly impossible happen. I’d recommend his services to anyone.
Before I can talk about John-Michael, I need to talk about me, so you can get some context for what I’m about to write.
As a kid, I watched home ownership become the millstone around the neck of my family – financially, it totally sunk us. In retrospect, it was because we couldn’t afford it and should have bailed out earlier, but even knowing rationally that Mistakes Were Made, it instilled a lifelong pants-wetting terror of home ownership. For years, my wife patiently dealt with my home-owning-phobia, until we relocated to Alameda, and we knew we wanted to put down permanent roots here.
Because I didn’t think I’d ever own a house, I hadn’t even soaked in much of the basics. But several of our friends had worked with John-Michael, and we decided to give it a shot. And I am so happy we did.
He understood immediately my concerns (both rational and non-rational), discussed them with us frequently, calmly addressed all of our questions, and explained each step of the process to us. He was keenly aware of what we were looking for, and helped us refine our process to get the home that fit us. He was always friendly, always available, always positive, and absolutely straightforward and forthright with us on everything.
Quite simply, if it wasn’t for John-Michael, we wouldn’t own a home. But he was on our side, and moved mountains for us. I can’t recommend him enough – his attitude, skills, and expertise are top-notch.
If you need a home, John Michael of Alameda Victorians is the person to talk to. We were looking for our first home, and after going through another online resource, and being less than thrilled with their idea of customer service (very generic, impersonal, and more interested in our financial status and preapprovals than in helping us find a real home for our family), we decided to get a real realtor.
Some friends recommended John Michael as being the best they’d ever seen, and what do you know, they were right. John Michael has been everything we could have wished for. Responsive, interested, determined, and best of all, perfectly willing to say when something is a Bad Deal. He will help you find the home that is right for you, not just the one that’s is the quickest sale.
Additionally, if, like us, you’re a first time homebuyer, then you couldn’t ask for a better guy than JMK. Probably one of the nicest things about him was his ability to translate the minutia and technicalities of the process into something that we, inexperienced new homeowners-to-be that we were, could understand and make use of. That skill alone makes him invaluable, but when you add it to his determination to get a good deal, his negotiation skills, his vast wealth of knowledge about homes, construction, and market trends, and his affable nature, well, it’s pure win.
My husband and I really cannot recommend him enough, and, if we ever find ourselves in the real estate market again, for any reason, we know exactly who we’re calling. John Michael really is the greatest.
John-Michael was extremely helpful in getting our offer accepted in a very tight market and helping us find a property that was a good fit at the right price (something that seemed nearly impossible to accomplish). He kept us informed of the procedures of home-buying as it was our first house purchase. He did all of this outside of his normal service area, going out of his way on numerous occasions to make sure we got the service we needed.
John-Michael successfully guided us as first-time home-buyers through the uncertain and sometimes complicated process of buying a foreclosure. We are very happy with our home and feel fortunate to have had John-Michael’s help to make buying it possible.
When we started the search for a home, the market in Alameda was full of lots of buyers and not a lot of properties. So we realized we needed a realtor who would really hit the ground running in the search for a home for us. We needed someone tenacious, professional, and reachable. We found all of that and more in John-Michael. Within two months of working with him, he helped us get our dream home on at a price we felt was a deal in the Alameda market. Overall, he went above and beyond with all of the details. We highly recommend him!
John-Michael not only found us the house of our dreams, and negotiated the price down (and credits up) once we were in contract – he also walked us through the offer process, ensured that we didn’t get dinged for any $ when we pulled out on a house we decided against, and really showed up for us at every turn when we had a question or needed him. From the first meeting to post ownership he was awesome and we’ve recommended him to everyone we know looking for a home.
JMK bought a house with me. He came recommended by friends. I’d never done this before and it was terrifying in unconscious ways I did not expect. Who can you trust in this strange business with a lot of obfuscated information, shortly after a huge economic catastrophe based on bad dealings throughout the realty business? Here is where I should say that it’s been over a year and everything is perfect. Nothing went wrong. No one died. There is a chance that JMK helped me in ways that he didn’t even reveal. I am pretty sure I texted him at midnight once or twice with “really important” questions. He should probably charge double as a real estate therapist. Now I have a perfect (for me) house in a GREAT neighborhood. Once you say yes to working with JMK — it’s going to happen. You will drive around and tell each other bad jokes and talk ___ about the houses you hate and also the houses you love. In a few months you will be signing a million papers and wondering how the ___ you got yourself into this. And then it will be over. And then it will be magically awesome.
I laughed when I read another review describe John-Michael as a “real estate therapist,” because that is an apt description. He’ll amuse you with wisecracks as he drives with you to a half-dozen different properties in an afternoon. But he’s also patient enough to answer zillions of anxious newbie questions and then take a walk to show you around a neighborhood. I thought I’d never be able to navigate, or even buy within the Bay Area market, and truly appreciated him while wading through the daunting process of being a first-time buyer. Due to decades in the business and a healthy obsession with local history, he is an excellent resource on properties, construction, neighborhoods, and those less obvious insights, both flaws and potential that buyers might overlook. As his business name would suggest, he is an expert in both Alameda and Victorians, but also quite knowledgeable in searching for what I ultimately wanted, a modern space in Oakland. He was prompt, responsive, and on top of all the details through multiple offers (and rejections), and when an offer was finally accepted, he was just as excited as I was. I’m fortunate to have found someone as forthright and frequently entertaining as John-Michael to assist me as a buyer, and I’m sitting in my first home in Oakland as proof of it.
One afternoon, I was “just browsing” an open house and the realtor that was showing it completely freaked me out. I was a first time home buyer, doing it on my own, and this other realtor made me feel like I would never be able to make a purchase in the Alameda housing market. I then decided to reach out to JMK. From the first time I met him, I knew I met my realtor – and friend – for life. He really listened to all of my wish list and found me the PERFECT little home. He wasn’t pushy and his calm, funny demeanor helped to soothe my nerves during such a huge step in my life. When I did have my freak out moments from friends saying “have you had this checked?” to coworkers saying “what about this?” I knew I could call, text, or email JMK at ANYTIME. He really advocated on my behalf when the seller tried to back out of the deal. He got me in touch with everyone from the loan officer to a handy man to a tax accountant – the whole shebang. Throughout the whole process, I felt taken care, supported, and looked out for. I can’t recommend JMK enough!!