My Best Advice and My Hardest Job

I hope that as a reader of the Property Blotter you are getting a sense of what makes real estate happen. Linda and I really strive to provide you with data, and also with tips, pointers, and useful information. This week I thought I’d give you just two quick tid bits.

Let’s start with my best advice. In a word, chill. There are so many factors that contribute to the purchase or sale of a home. There is the buyer and the buyer’s Realtor, the seller and the seller’s Realtor, the mortgage broker, the mortgage underwriter, the title company and the escrow officer that represents the title company, the home inspector, and more. In other words, there are lots of people all doing their job to coordinate and come together to make the sale happen. With so many people involved, it doesn’t take much to create a snag. If the underwriter wants an updated tax statement, if the title company discovers an unexpected lien, if the buyer is in transit and air born on a flight to New York, all of these elements are completely normal and can cause a delay. Going into the purchase or sale of a home, know that everyone is doing their best to meet deadlines, but be prepared to be flexible. It simply is the nature of the business that things come up, so my best advice is to take a deep breath and try to remain calm. It will all come together and stressing over it accomplishes nothing useful.

As for my hardest job, it is working on behalf of my client even when it is not intuitively what I think is the best course of action. I work for my client. I know this. Occasionally, not very often mind you but occasionally, I have a client who feels the best course of action is to make a request or exercise an idea that is not something I agree with. This will never, ever happen in regards to something dishonest or illegal, absolutely not, and this is not what I am referring to here. What I am referring to is something perfectly legal and honest, but still something that I would not normally advise. Here is my example. A few years ago I represented a very particular client. It was strong seller’s market where offers were competitive and houses were selling quickly. To buy in this environment requires making the best offer possible. My buyer just did not want to pay one dollar more than necessary. That is understandable, but there are also times when a buyer must step up or they will not get into a home. This buyer simply would not do it. She made offer after offer without success.

I can give advice, and I do, but ultimately my clients decide the best course of action for themselves. My job is to LISTEN and then act upon their desires. And so, with this client, we went through the process of her learning. It took two years. By the time she came to realize that she really did have to make a competitive offer, and not try to negotiate the price, a good deal of time had gone by. Ultimately she ended up spending about 15% more for a house that had gone up in value during the time she was learning about the market. That is just really hard to experience.

So those are my two insights that I wanted to share with you this week. I think it can be summed up by saying that you will benefit by not stressing out during the course of buying or selling, and also by hiring a Realtor who will really listen to you and act on your desires, but also by listening to your Realtor and realizing that they too are offering you good advice that can help your experience go more smoothly and to your benefit.

Enjoy the sunshine!

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