The market is slower than in times past. Yup.
There are fewer people buying now than they were in other years. Yeah-bob!
There are more properties to choose from than ever before. You betcha!
It's a buyer's market right? Well...that depends....
I can take my time with this contract...no big rush...I'll get it to you one day this week. Uh, well...no.
I try to explain to people that if you like a property well enough to make an offer on it, chances are, someone else does too. Let's not take any chances and get this taken care of right away.
Yes, even if the property has been on the market a long time. Yes, even in this challenging market!
Cases in point:
- My buyers found a home for sale that was not like the typical homes that sell in that particular community. It had been on the market for several months before they decided to come see it. It was a good price. The very weekend they decided to make an offer on it, another buyer swooped in from out of nowhere, made a cash offer, and got it away from us practically before we could even get back to the office! (That client lucked out; we ended up hooking up with a builder who was able to build their dream home for them within their budget.)
- One of my listings had been on the market a while. We lowered the price twice. Finally got an offer. My seller countered, we got a verbal acceptance. ALMOST TWO WEEKS LATER we still had no contract from the buyer. No contract, no check. Then we got another offer, which my seller accepted. Oh boy...now the first buyer is frustrated. Hello...? Please do not get upset - had you gotten the paperwork to us in a timely fashion we never would have been able to even entertain the other offer.
- Almost had another deal fall apart because it was several days past the "acceptance deadline" and the seller still did not sign the contract and get it back. Buyers actually started to get cold feet and were ]this close[ to terminating the contract because the seller hadn't signed it yet and they took it as a bad sign. Thank goodness, it all worked out....BUT it could easily have gone down the tubes.
- One of my colleagues lost out on a contract because her client hemmed and hawed around arguing that the market isn't that good, he refused to believe someone else was interested in the same house he was...and he said he wasn't going to respond to the seller's counter offer just yet...let him stew a while.... oh well, guess what? Someone else felt the home was worth it and it's now going to be THEIR home.
Many people who are left out seem shocked that someone else got the property they wanted.
Yes, even in this market...I'll say it again: If you like the property well enough to make an offer, chances are someone else does too.
The concept of time is of the essence is not just some game real estate agents play to force you into doing something you don't want to do - the fact is, someone else may very well be quicker on the draw and get the deal done while you're still dawdling.
This message is not just for consumers. ATTN: REAL ESTATE AGENTS! You need to educate your clients on the importance of "time is of the essence." You don't want them blaming YOU for not impressing upon them the urgency of the matter. We all have clients who do what they want regardless of what you advise - but at least tell them they could lose the deal if they don't move quickly.