For Sale By Owner! Hard to miss that sign when an agent is out and about showing property in a neighborhood. Immediately the client asks if they can add that home to the list! Most real estate professionals have a buyer agency agreement with their clients. This allows the agent to represent their client during the home buying process and it would normally cover any home the buyer purchases.
As an agent who has been selling homes for 23 years, I can share this with you. Most buyer clients do not want to enter a home when the seller is present. When I list a home, I strongly but tactfully encourage my seller clients to leave the home during all showings. Buyers feel most comfortable when they can preview the property without the seller following them around pointing out features and benefits. Buyers feel uncomfortable looking in closets, pantries, cabinets and under area rugs when the homeowner is accompanying them from room to room.
A trained real estate salesperson knows what their buyer client is seeking in a home. Hopefully agent and buyer have had a preliminary meeting to go over the "must have list" and the homes they are previewing either meet the criteria or come very close. Seeing a "For Sale By Owner" in a neighborhood does not mean that the home will meet the buyer's needs. It may have only 3 bedrooms when the buyer specifically needs 4 bedrooms. The square footage may be too small or the property may have an inground pool when the buyer specifically was trying to avoid that feature. The home may be overpriced. Serious motivated buyers look at properties that are priced correctly as they reflect a informed, motivated seller.
It is a great idea to let an agent preview a For Sale by Owner first. The agent is qualified to determine if the home is priced right; shows well and meets the criteria set forth by the buyer client. The agent can then discuss the home with the client and together they can make a decision if the home would be on the list as a possible purchase. An appointment would be set forth and means of access provided.
It is very important to show homes to a client that he or she can afford. Showing above their price range hoping that a seller may come down significantly in price is not beneficial to the client. Buyers can become emotionally attached to a house they will never own. It prevents them from bidding on a house they can afford. Overpriced homes show lack of motivation on the seller's part. The buyer may continue to wait for the seller to make a price reduction or counter an offer. In the meantime, the buyer may lose out on another home that has come on the market or interest rates may rise. A knowledgeable agent will know how much below or above the list price correctly priced homes are selling in that area. Real estate is not a science. Homes can sell above the average and in some markets, homes are in multiple bid situations.
It is important to be honest with the real estate agent. Time frames, housing requirements and of course, a pre-qualification or pre-approval letter are crucial to a successful home buying experience.
Coldwell Banker Prime Properties