Buyers in control? Think again

If you are in the market to buy a Miami Beach home or condo, I think it is important for you to understand the amount of trouble and preparation sellers go through to make their homes available. I know it’s a buyer’s market, and buyers are “in control”, but this doesn’t mean that we should forget courtesy and common rules of respect.

Please note that as of August 2007, when this article was originally published, some areas in Miami have done a 360 degree turn and can even be considered a “seller’s market” – depends on location and price range.  Your Miami and Miami Beach Realtor will be able to advise you on a strategy depending on your particular buying criteria.

Most sellers, before showing their home, will clean, pick up and have it in perfect showing condition – that’s expected, since they ARE selling their home and it’s a commitment every seller needs to make before putting their home on the market.

But then, there are additional things some sellers have to do depending on their particular circumstances.  These are some of the things our sellers do to show their homes:
  • change their schedules to accommodate buyers
  • find a baby sitter so their kids are not at the property
  • wake up babies from naps
  • crate their pets or take them to a different location
  • take elderly or loved ones out of the house
  • not cook before the showing so the home does not smell like food
  • drive around the neighborhood so they are not at the showing
  • interrupt family get togethers
  • re-schedule birthday parties

So what does this mean if you are a buyer? It means that it is common courtesy to advise the listing agent or home owner if you are running late. 

Showing up 10 minutes late is acceptable, but any longer than that is not. 

We have encountered sellers getting angry and getting a sour taste from a buyer being 30 minutes late without prior notice. It may seem trivial to some, but this can affect a transaction and create animosity between the parties even before any negotiations have started. 

As a Realtor, I am accustomed to dealing with tardiness, so this post is not about Realtors complaining about professionalism. 

The purpose is to let people know that it is not just about buying a house; it is not only about a real estate transaction, there are real people involved, real lives and families and we should always take that into consideration.

**originally published August 12, 2007**

4 thoughts on “Buyers in control? Think again

  1. Nice post Ines – I’m interested to hear that you have a ‘sellers market’ in places right now.

    This is something I think agents should be reminding viewers when setting up the visit as part of the process of managing both parties.

    You list some good ideas on preparing for a viewing too, all too often we find home owners are not prepared to ‘interrupt their lives’ for the sake of giving the viewing the best possible chance of turning into and offer, even when we are in a buyers market!

  2. Ben – it’s happening here more than we like to, but when a house is in “move in condition”, sellers have the upper hand and buyers get frustrated. In many cases, we even deal with a multiple offer scenario.

    As for showing preparation, I think it’s up to the listing agent to educate their client on how things need to be done for their home to even compete in today’s market. Simple rules as sellers not being present during showings, having a decluttered, well lit and neat space are a MUST.

    What did you think of the UK post I did a couple of days ago?

  3. Do you give the client a guide or anything as a leave behind to outline “these are the things you need to do to present your property”?

    I’ve mised the UK post so will look now..

  4. Do you give the client a guide or anything as a leave behind to outline “these are the things you need to do to present your property”?

    I’ve missed the UK post so will look now..

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