Making a good impression on sellers and agents is a great way to gain an edge over the competition. Unfortunately, many buyers engage in habits that really annoy homeowners, rather than attract them.
In addition to simply being rude, these behaviors can also reduce the likelihood the seller will be willing to work with the seller during the offer process, potentially costing the buyer more in the long run. Here are ways that a buyer can unintentionally hurt themselves:
Don’t Show Up: When you schedule a showing, multiple people get involved. First the sellers take the time to make the house spotless, as well as rearranging their schedules to ensure they aren’t home when you arrive. Then the agent makes a point to be at the home at the designated time, potentially turning down other appointments. Your late show or last-minute cancellation impacts multiple people who would be justified in refusing to show you the home a second time.
Don’t Get Pre-Approved: After weeks of traipsing through houses, nothing can be more frustrating than putting an offer on a home, only to be denied. This frustrates you, the sellers, and all involved real estate agents at once. Before you begin your home search, save everyone some time by getting pre-approved by a mortgage lender. This will not only give you a guideline for your home’s price range, it will also give you an edge over the competition.
Disrespect the Home: This may be your future house, but until you sign the papers at closing, you remain a guest in someone else’s home. This means you should show the same respect that you’d show if you were at a respected friend’s home. If you were selling a home and a buyer came through, changing the thermostat and opening restricted areas, how would you feel? Respect the seller’s space as you’d expect them to respect yours.
Lowball the Owner: Everyone likes a bargain, but excessive nickel-and-diming during the buying process can send you directly out of the running. When it comes time to make an offer, understand the negotiation process. Don’t give up something without offering something else. If you want the washer and dryer, offer less than you’re willing to pay. When the buyer comes back with a higher amount, say you’ll take it but only if the washer and dryer stay with the house. By giving yourself a small amount of wiggle room, you’ll be more likely to get a great deal.
Purchasing a home can be a pleasant experience for everyone involved, provided buyers adhere to a few simple courtesies. If the buyer has a real estate agent, that agent will likely help him through the process, but many buyers search for homes without agents. Someday every buyer will be a seller himself, and he’ll appreciate the same considerations from prospective buyers, as well. For more information, check out this article on How Buyers Can Irk Sellers.