You know this buyer. They meet you and it turns out they're well qualified, know what they want, and have a price range in mind. At first you're excited at the prospect but then you come to realize that your new "opportunity buyer" isn't like other buyers. In fact, they're going to be the most work you've ever done. Why? Because they'll only buy a home that happens to be a spectacular deal - a once in a lifetime sort of thing. What's their profile? Easy...
- They want 4000 square feet for the price of 3000
- They want the best location at the same price as the worst location
- They want more, more, more for less, less, less
You'll spend days, weeks, or months explaining to them that what they want doesn't exist. The deals are gone and they should simply find what they want and buy now. Here's the frustrating part - they don't have to buy now. You see, the opportunity buyer is usually...
- An all-cash or large deposit buyer
- Living where they want to live
- Been looking for years - literally
and the worst characteristic is they claim to know the market and yet, can't seem to understand why a property they might have bought sold for more than it was worth - in their opinion. The opportunity buyer will complain and quote statistics of all sorts to explain why a home they thought was worth one price sold for 10% more. In their eyes, prices everywhere either are going down or will go down - no matter what. Their perception is their reality and facts have no place in their home hunting game.
What you need to know as an agent is this: the opportunity buyer...isn't really a buyer. They're a tire kicker of the worst sort. They could buy, someday. I've seen buyers like this spend years - literally - wasting time of agents who write offers only to see them cancelled when the "opportunity buyer" decides the deal isn't good enough. They'll waste hours of your time looking at homes they won't buy and talking about plans they'll never act on. They will buy, but not before passing up a ton of good deals by not realizing how good they were.
If you have an opportunity buyer, either keep them on the back burner until they're serious or walk away.