Eric and his team recently closed the sale of my home of almost 40 years. There were several problematic issues regarding this sale and, I must say, Eric handled these matters masterfully. Eric is detail-oriented and is always on top of the copious paperwork demanded by his profession.
I would add that Eric is very personable and possesses a wry sense of humor. You can't go wrong if Eric Wong is working for you.
Bought a Single Family home in 2013 for approximately $650K in El Cerrito, CA.
As first time home buyers learning about how crazy the Bay area housing market is, he patiently guided us through our frustration with this cash rich buyer-sellers market. Being traditional buyers, we were shocked at the short bid dates and the over asking offers. Eric used real life examples of his sales and buys to demo to us what we needed to be comfortable with to find a home in either Alameda, Berkeley, Albany or El Cerrito - the same places EVERYONE seems to hope to live. He realistically predicted how much over asking we should bid, and was honest when homes were out of our reach. We were impressed by his ability to place our needs over his; a few times he advised us to walk away from offers and deals because he could tell we were too upset or could not afford to keep going. This is good - there are a lot of buyers throwing good money out there for location and we often wondered if we were being too conservative. Perhaps best of all, Eric is someone who will listen - really listen - and identify you and your partner's needs and will provide balanced, non-judgmental advice when disagreements go down - and they will go down, sometimes embarrassingly in front of your agent. Eric will observe your likes and dislikes and after viewing a few homes, he will pick up your style, watch the market, and send you frequent listings of homes you might like. He will do his best to work around your work schedule and meet you at 8am on weekdays and weekends to do home tours. He will advise you when the decisions are yours to make - so no pressure. When our offer was accepted on a home, we had a very challenging time negotiating with the sellers. Eric was very timely in his communications with the seller's agent and with us, and gave us the space to make rational decisions even though the sellers pressured us into waiving our contingencies. Eric is also very kind and will put his neck out there to help make your deal go through. He is the reason we are in the right home! We highly recommend Eric.
Bought a Single Family home in 2011 for approximately $175K in Richmond, CA.
Eric Wong found and sold us 4 properties in the last 3 years. If we had listened to him, we would have bought two more, at similarly truly excellent prices, and made a huge rise in value and an excellent rent while we waited. Pity, we didn't. Just as an example, one of them cost us around $170,000 after fix-up and rents for over $1,900/mo. The other two were similar. Dumb us. We recommend you listen to him more than we did.
Considering how many realtors there are our there, I had a really hard time finding mine. I did a ton a ton of research on yelp and got numerous recommendations but no one seemed quite right for us: too smarmy, too slick, too pushy, too, too, too...
Then, I met Eric at an open house he was hosting. I liked him immediately. We struck up a conversation and he really seemed to listen to what my husband and I were looking for in a home and was honest enough to agree that the house we met him in was not the right home for us. His honesty was both unexpected and refreshing, and over the next eight months would prove to be an invaluable component of our home buying process.
That's right - it took us eight months and four bids and many weekends spent trolling the open house circuit to find and purchase our first home. But we were picky and Berkeley/North Oakland is a tough market. Towards the end, we started feeling desperate and on a couple of occasions, considered bidding on homes that weren't quite right for us. Thankfully, Eric, in his quiet, unobtrusive way, intervened. In fact, at every turn, Eric put our interests first. And when we finally finally found the one home that was perfect for us, Eric worked tirelessly on our behalf. And it was a lot of of work: the house we ultimately bought was a foreclosure, with an unresponsive seller, a fixer upper, lots of inspections, a touch and go appraisal period, and a remote title company. He even negotiated a $20K price reduction, which in this market is a rare event.
But most importantly, Eric helped us get into the right home for us. We could not be happier with the way everything worked out and so grateful for the wholly positive experience of working with such a stand up guy.
Bought a Single Family home in 2010 for approximately $550K in Temescal, Oakland, CA.
I highly recommend Eric Wong, a fantastic realtor who helped my wife and I get our house for a great price. Eric's e-mail tagline says "calm clarity," and believe me, during the stress and uncertainty of buying a house, those qualities are invaluable.
Eric guided us through a very complicated purchase. At every step he made sure paperwork was submitted on time, or that other parties were meeting their deadlines, and he always explained everything to us clearly and patiently. He lined up inspectors in less than a week (he knows many contractors) also helped us negotiate a lower price when we didn't think it was possible.
Whenever we needed Eric, he was available immediately or soon thereafter by e-mail or cell phone.
We worked with Eric for more than six months, and on the weekends and during the week, he'd meet us to look at houses. Eric quickly developed a good sense of what we liked, and gave us a lot of insight into the Bay Area housing market.
What I grew to appreciate most is how personable, polite, and funny Eric is. You end up spending a lot of time with a realtor, and we really enjoyed being around Eric.
Sold a Single Family home in 2012 for approximately $625K in Berkeley, CA.
Actions speak louder than words, and it says a lot that after our first experience with Eric Wong in buying a house, my wife and I then sold our condo through him, later sold that house and bought another, Eric handled all of these transactions expertly, from advice about remodeling to a successful pricing strategy and the final negotiations. Eric has been a delight to work with throughout, getting optimal results with a minimum of anxiety. He will certainly be the one we turn to next time around!
Bought a Condo home in 2012 in Temescal, Oakland, CA.
My partner and I first met Eric at a 2010 Berkeley open house. From meeting many agents in the prior 5 years of open houses, Eric is the most approachable real estate agent and hones in on his client's housing tastes. From other agents, we hated dealing with disgusting and sleazy sales-talk, re-adjusting our glasses to make sure we could recalibrate their inflated ego with their desperation, or simply rolling our eyes at their client pre-conceptions and judgements. These agents kept sending spammy MLS listings based on price range, bedrooms, bathrooms, parking, and neighborhood criteria. Eric actually sorted through those checklist preferences and further filtered them towards modern aesthetic, recently built, and notable local architect involvement. With many clients to meet and hook, Eric actually noted our non-checklist preferences that inspired us to work with him exclusively for the East Bay.
This real estate agent-client relationship went on for 2 years until my partner and I finally bought a place in 2012. I was surprised that Eric kept me on his rolodex for 2 YEARS! Most real estate agents would have abandoned me and most did. During the 2 years, we searched from Berkeley to San Mateo, then to SF, then to Marin, and then back to the East Bay. This guy has zen-honed patience with fickle clients like us. He was honest and upfront that his expertise was the East Bay and quickly gave us references to other agents in the other areas. Eric knows to keep his laser-focus on the client by not spreading himself too thin.
So what was the process like? We actually went through with an offer, then backed out. Then we submitted a low-ball offer on another home during the trough of the recession to gamble our chances, and then got outbid only for us to rebid. Then we watched the seller's banks drag their feet, and we ripped a direct (translate: mean) email.
So what was Eric like?
When we went sheepish, Eric patiently waited for my partner and I to debate it out, 2 hours in Eric's office. Eric gave us useful comps on the spot and gave us a few hypothetical scenarios to think about. We submitted the offer. The next morning, we called and rescinded the offer. Eric's reaction? He had a good feeling that this was going to happen. He pulled the offer and still wanted to help us find our suitable starter home. He did not produce an ounce of anger or lay on any guilt-trip. He quickly moved on.
When we went aggressive, Eric facilitated our message to the listing agent. When time was of the essence, Eric hustled for us. When we became unpleasant, Eric coached us. Nothing surprises Eric, and he is on his A-game.
During the offer, inspection, and move-in, Eric quickly provided references for home inspectors, cleaners, painters, mortgage lenders, locksmith, contractors, etc. For everything we needed, he would send three referrals so we could start our review to vet who we wanted to take our business to. We rarely just lean on the agent that much, but Eric's recommendations typically turned out to be the best in the area. When I passed on these referrals to friends, they would mention how their extensive research or agent turned up the same top-notch referrals.
We would normally recommend Redfin for all other areas, but for the East Bay, you have to go with Eric. He was born and raised in SF and spent the last few decades in the East Bay. Since moving from SF to our East Bay home, we have actually run into Eric at several local places like Homeroom Mac+Cheese and Berkeley Bowl West. How often do clients actually see their agents walk the talk in terms of touting how much they love the East Bay? Eric does!
Without a doubt I recommend Eric as your real estate agent for his unparalleled East Bay knowledge, laser-focus on the client, and ability to tease out how the client emotionally connects to the buyer's process and home itself. Eric was the one who wanted us to love our starter home and not settle, and he never wants buyer's remorse. More than a year living here and finally feeling like East Bay is home, we have no buyer's remorse. Hence fulfilling Eric's wishes and promises, we felt compelled to finally vouch for him. That and we got a Chinese New Year card and nice red envelope from him. Yup, still on his rolodex after 4 years.