Sellers - Is YOUR Home Sale Slip-Sliding Away? My 6 Top Boo Boos

Real Estate Agent with Solutions Real Estate CA DRE #01490977

Is YOUR home sale slip-sliding away? 


In light of all the rain this week in California you might think I'm talking about mudslides. And granted, there are some of those, unfortunately, with more likely to come unless the rain stops. 

Is YOUR Home REALLY for Sale?But this post is really about home sales losing their potential to become a reality...for a host of reasons. Some may be YOUR fault, deliberate or not. Others, quite frankly, are the result of your agent's actions. Maybe you aren't aware. Maybe you are and don't care. 

As an agent who is, at the moment, working with lots of buyers who are anxious to buy, I thought I'd pass along some feedback that could help. Listen up! If you really do want and need to sell. If you are testing the market (come on, you KNOW if you are), you can simply ignore this. 

So this is what we (me and my buyers) think are a few signs of a seller's faux pas: 



OK, the price is not in line with the local market: nuff said. Buyers know this right away, so you aren't fooling anyone. If the agent took the listing with a price that is out of whack you are both responsible.



Scheduling a showing is too hard - the hours are really limited, you or the agent do not return calls or emails, you have to call too far in advance (48 hours? Forget it). Do we even need to talk about keys that don't work?  Or how about when we do call you say it's not a good time? Hmmm, you DO need to sell, don't you?



The information is limited, missing, inaccurate, or contradictory (e.g., it says MOVE IN condition and it looks like a junkyard with more cosmetics needed than most buyers would consider even remotely reasonable). That's your agent's fault, in most cases Are you getting the opportunity to review the listing to make sure it is accurate? Many folks make decisions about showing based on what they read. You CANNOT afford to ignore this. And as the client YOU deserve to have your home's information on the Internet presented in the best light.



OK, so there's one crummy photo. Your agent is simply NOT doing the job. Buyers DEMAND photos. Like it or not they DO make decisions based on photos. No photos, no showings from some buyers. What a loss. This is your agent's job - you need to hold them accountable.



This is solely the job of your agent. I can't tell you how many times I have encountered NO lockbox when the MLS says there is one. Or the key does not work. Or the agent doesn't bother to state in the MLS that the lockbox is a combo instead of one we can access with our Sentrilock card. Or the key does not get returned.  



Is YOUR Home REALLY for Sale?If you think buyers are not paying attention to the curb appeal, and the home's condition, you are not being told the reality of today's market (in many areas). Buyers LOOK for signs of a home that needs help, or means more work for them IF they should decide to buy. And they immediately start thinking there are other hidden issues if the home does not show well or clearly has lots of deferred maintenance.  

If this is sounding a little testy, it's meant to. Quite frankly, in the last few weeks I have had far more issues showing property than I would have expected in this market where many sellers presumably NEED to sell. And my buyers have asked me outright...."DO these home owners WANT to sell or not?" 

Some of this is due to the fact that SOME agents are NOT doing their job of educating sellers about the local market conditions, and what is essential in order to get the home sold. 

Thankfully there are also a good number of sellers who are doing all they need to do - the house looks great, they are accommodating reasonable showing times, and they seem genuinely interested that we are coming by to tour their home. And their care and concern about their home shows. 


So give it some thought. Are there things you are doing, or your agent is doing, or not doing, that is causing YOUR home to not be a viable candidate for being sold in this market?


All content copyright © 2010 Jeff Dowler "The California Relocation Dude" Carlsbad Homes and Real Estate Tidbits


Re-Blogged 11 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Judy Greenberg 01/24/2010 11:27 PM
  2. Nevin Williams 01/25/2010 01:36 AM
  3. Mark Hall 01/25/2010 02:06 AM
  4. Barbara Martino-Sliva, Top Producer 01/25/2010 02:10 AM
  5. Lee & Pamela St. Peter 01/25/2010 02:59 AM
  6. Joseph J. Chang 01/25/2010 07:08 AM
  7. Cheryl Ritchie 01/25/2010 08:34 AM
  8. Cindy Jones 01/27/2010 08:27 AM
  9. Renée Donohue~Home Photography 01/27/2010 01:33 PM
  10. Ritu Desai 01/28/2010 01:55 AM
  11. Praful Thakkar 04/28/2017 05:00 AM
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Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth
Jeff, all bullseye reasons why homes sit!
Jan 25, 2010 07:18 AM #41
Patricia Aulson
Realtor - Portsmouth NH Homes-Hampton NH Homes

Hi's all about price these days, then location (it used to be location, location, location,) not anymore. Lastly it's condition!

Patricia/Seacoast NH

Jan 25, 2010 07:34 AM #42
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566

Jeff, this is short and sweet...really neat...and already reblogged in Southern Maryland

Jan 25, 2010 08:35 AM #43
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

On target as usual.  It is amazing how many sellers don't do the basics of checking on how well an agent can market their home before they list with them.

Jan 25, 2010 09:12 AM #44
Sheldon Neal
Bergen County, NJ - RE/MAX Real Estate Limited - Maywood, NJ
That British Agent Bergen County NJ

All terrific poionts Jeff - and while more sellers seem to be getting it, there are still an alarming amount who still seem to think that such effort need not be made to sell their home !!!  They are usually the ones complaining after 6 months.

Jan 25, 2010 09:28 AM #45
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

You make all good points.  THe pricing issue is one I argue about with almost every seller.  They just find it hard to face the reality.

Jan 25, 2010 09:29 AM #46
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Jeff, a slow market is blamed for house not selling most of the time, when many times as you pointed out, the Sellers and their Realtors a a contributing factor many of the times.

Jan 25, 2010 11:48 AM #47
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Great list! Availability and ease of showing are important.  Sometimes a property is accessible all day, but the Realtor must walk to to the rear of the house in the rain and mud to access a key box hidden among leaves on the branch of a tree!

Jan 25, 2010 01:14 PM #48
Regina P. Brown
MBA Broker Consultants - Carlsbad, CA
M.B.A., Broker, Instructor

Jeff, you're right.  It doesn't matter how great the home is priced if the listing agent is UNAVAILABLE and refuses to return your calls.... that is a disservice to his seller client!

Regina Brown

Jan 25, 2010 02:32 PM #49
Terry & Bonnie Westbrook
Westbrook Realty Broker-Owner - Grand Rapids, MI
Westbrook Realty - Grand Rapids Forest Hills MI Re

Great list each seller needs to assist their agent so they don't miss the perfect buyer.

Jan 25, 2010 03:22 PM #50
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

These are definitely issues that will make it difficult to sell a home and make a potential buyer and buyer's agent unwilling to make the effort to see it another time.

Jan 25, 2010 03:31 PM #51
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Hi Jeff!  EXCELLENT list!  I've got one for you--how about a short sale that is 'move-in ready?!'  They don't say that it could take 6-9 months for it to be ready!  LOL

Congrats on the well-deserved feature!

Debe in Charlotte

Jan 25, 2010 04:16 PM #52
William Johnson
Retired - La Jolla, CA
Retired Real Estate Professional

Hi Jeff, A very well written post and one I can really identify with. I hope things improve.

Jan 25, 2010 07:33 PM #53
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Jeff, this is one of those posts that we can all print out and give out at listing appointments.  Great points.

Jan 27, 2010 11:08 AM #54
Renée Donohue~Home Photography
Savvy Home Pix - Allegan, MI
Western Michigan Real Estate Photographer

I APPRECIATE those of us who deal with this C to the R to the ** to the P and WRITE ABOUT IT!  Rock on Jeff!  BTW, Since the moratorium, I have seen a WHOLE HOST of new faces, er names, who do care about their listings.  Seems that some may have lost some vendors from piss poor service!

Jan 27, 2010 01:31 PM #55
Sharon Alters
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308 - Fleming Island, FL
Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL

Jeff, one of my pet peeves is lack of concern about lockboxes. Last week we had a key that wouldn't work. I called the agent and left a voicemail. It was hours before I heard back. We were long gone and the buyer wrote on another house even though she really liked the one we couldn't see, from the outside.

Jan 27, 2010 02:19 PM #56
Sharon Alters
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308 - Fleming Island, FL
Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL

Jeff, one of my pet peeves is lack of concern about lockboxes. Last week we had a key that wouldn't work. I called the agent and left a voicemail. It was hours before I heard back. We were long gone and the buyer wrote on another house even though she really liked the one we couldn't see, from the outside.

Jan 27, 2010 02:19 PM #57
Stephen Kappre
KW Hometown - Mantua, NJ
Helping You Home

Almost commical how common sense some of this is. Makes you wonder what the heck some agents even think they are doing ... certainly they are not agents, more like participants.

Jan 27, 2010 02:20 PM #58
Kate Elim
Dockside Realty - Spotsylvania, VA
Realtor 540-226-1964, Selling Homes & Land a

Hi Jeff...There are sellers that do not recognize the importance of making their homes appealing to buyers and the need to price it where it is marketable.  If agents do not encourage their sellers in these areas and do not do the best they can to get the house sold they should move on.  There are plenty of responsible agents ready, willing, and able to do the job we get paid to do.

Very important feature.  Congratulations.


Jan 27, 2010 03:39 PM #59
Jennifer Fivelsdal
JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571 - Rhinebeck, NY
Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection

Jeff this is an excellent post,  you really touched all the hot buttons.  The worst are the sellers who make getting an appointment so difficult, it is like pulling teeth.

Jan 27, 2010 11:55 PM #60
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Jeff Dowler, CRS

The Southern California Relocation Dude
What's my Carlsbad CA Area Home Worth??
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