"Why are they moving ?" Asked the Buyer

Real Estate Agent with EXP Realty 414-525-0563 57026-90 Broker

Why movingare the Moving ????  If you have been a licensed Real Estate agent for more than a week and taken a buyer to a house...you are apt to be asked this question. There are lots of reasons for moving...job relocation, upsize, downsize, divorce, etc.

   Unless and until an agent has the permission of the Seller to disclose the reason for moving...OR it is required...because it is being handled by a relocation company which will require additional forms to be completed by the buyers.  OR if the house is a short sale and there may be a waiting period...the buyers cannot have a home sale contingency...or require repairs to be made. There may be other unusual circumstances...we had a Seller once who had a spouse who was receiving intensive medical care in another state...as a result sometimes the house was not as well cleaned and ready to show and carpeting that could have been replaced was taking a back seat to the needs of the family.  The complaints from buyers....and their agents were profuse...until, with the Seller's permission we were able to explain the circumstances of the sale.  An offer followed shortly thereafter.luggage

  The WHY of the move should have nothing to do with the amount of the offer....whatever the reason...the house is for sale and if you as a buyer, want to call it home, work with your agent in putting together an offer that will enable you to do just that.

Posted by

Sally K. & David L. Hanson, ABR, CDPE, CSS, e-Pro,ILHM, REDS

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Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Debbie Reynolds 06/20/2012 03:21 AM
Home Buying
buying a home
reason for moving

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Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

When I was a fairly new agent, I was in an office where we would often chuckle on tour day.  A fist hole in a master bedroom door, was always a clue about the reason for selling:-)  I learned quickly that if the listing was mine, to have the seller(s) fix that right away!

May 28, 2012 03:12 AM #28
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

there is the key...seller permission....and who is permitted to know what...

May 28, 2012 03:12 AM #29
Angela St. John
Classic Properties - Gainesville, FL
REALTOR Classic , Properties ~ Gainesville, FL Re

Very interesting post.  More often than not, buyers will ask this very question of me!  As it happens, I typically am showing whatever shows up on the  MLS and fits their needs and not my own listings so I usually know about as much as the buyers do! 

Myrl Jeffcoat - I had a listing with a fist hole in the master bedroom door!  I think that is definitely an indication.

May 28, 2012 03:51 AM #30
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Yes, buyers always ask this....probably to get a sense of urgency (and desperation) the owners may have that may help buyers determine price and terms of their offer.

The easiest answer for me is that they are moving on to bigger and better things (whatever their circumstancs are).

May 28, 2012 04:19 AM #31
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

Sally and David - I have to say that I like Broker Bryant's answer the best.

May 28, 2012 04:31 AM #32
Janna Scharf
Keller Williams Realty Coeur d'Alene - Coeur d'Alene, ID
Coeur d'Alene Idaho Real Estate Expert

Loose lips sink ships!  I am always amazed at how much information listing agents freely share with me that they have no business disclosing!

May 28, 2012 05:31 AM #33
Bill Reddington
Re/max Southern Realty - Destin, FL
Destin Florida Real Estate

Guess my first thought would be to determime motivation to sell. Most times don't know the answer.

May 28, 2012 06:43 AM #34
Mel Ahrens, MBA, Kelly Right Real Estate
Kelly Right Real Estate - Hood River, OR
Customized Choices for your Real Estate Needs

Love Bryant's answer (#6) to this all too common question!


May 28, 2012 06:55 AM #35
Morgan Evans
Douglas Elliman Real Estate - Manhattan, NY

It's one of those questions that is asked with various intentions behind it, I find a simple answer is best and then it's often not brought up again.


May 28, 2012 09:52 AM #36
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA - Lovettsville, VA
Full Service Full Time Realtor

I think some buyers aren't really searching for a competitive edge, they think it's just a innocent question and want to make sure there is nothing seriously wrong with the house like: It's haunted, We're tired of the basement flooding everytime it rains, the house is going to need a new roof and new hvac system soon and we don't want to have to come up with $30,000.00 to pay for it, The noise from traffic and the airport is so loud that we can't sleep at night, etc, etc. But really, who cares why they are selling it? If your there looking at it, then it must fit your criteria, so look at it, and if you like it, make an offer on it. Otherwise, someone else will come aslong and buy it, while you're wasting your time worrying about why they're selling it. Plus, if I'm the buyers agent, how the hell do I know why they are selling it?


May 28, 2012 10:01 AM #37
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

It's really none of the buyer's business why the seller is moving.  Sometimes I want to make up a smart a&& answer to a question like this just to point out how little it matters.

May 28, 2012 11:38 AM #38
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR

I think that if the answer isn't forthcoming it will create some distrust on the side of the buyer.  Perhaps it is none of the buyer's business but we want to sell the house. 

May 28, 2012 11:52 AM #39
Paula McDonald
Beam & Branch Realty - Granbury, TX
Granbury, TX 936-203-0279

This always stumps me as well?  Why on earth does it matter.  If you ike the house, buy it.  Does not matter a hill of beans of the why they are moving.

May 28, 2012 12:11 PM #40
Nancy Milton Holtzscher
RE/MAX Alliance in St.Louis' Illinois suburbs - Edwardsville, IL
Edwardsville/Glen Carbon, Illinois Broker, REALTOR

I always tell them it's one of the great mysteries of life -- where is Amelia Earhart and why are these people moving?

May 28, 2012 02:12 PM #41
Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

I hate this question. It has absolutely no relevance to the purchase. Obviously, the buyer's are looking for some type of advantage. But I don't usually know why a seller is selling until I contact the listing agent to tell them an offer is coming. If they reveal something that may give us an advantage, I will use it. More times than not, agents are ever mindful of their fiduciary responsibility to their clients.

May 28, 2012 03:11 PM #42
Lisa Hickling
Brampton, ON
Love Broker B's (#6) and Nancy's (#45) responses. Actually there is no ambiguity about the sellers' rights to Privacy on this question. In these parts you will need sellers' written permission to disclose this info especially in a dual agency situation.
May 28, 2012 04:39 PM #43
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents

Good Morning Sally and David, I think this question is asked by every buyer or their agent during every showing I have on one of my listings. I have this conversation with every home owner after listing with what to expect and this question is 2nd on the list, Congratulations on the feaured blog.

May 28, 2012 10:47 PM #44
Susan Neal
RE/MAX Gold, Fair Oaks - Fair Oaks, CA
Fair Oaks CA & Sacramento Area Real Estate Broker

HI Sally and David - I usually think it is the buyer hoping that it is a desperation sale, but occasionally, it is simply the buyer wanting to know if the seller is moving away from a neighborhood nuisance - one that they would want to know about.  Some things, such as nasty neighbors, constantly barking dogs, etc are not usually included in the disclosure forms but the buyer might still hope that the seller might warn him. So I guess it's worth asking.

May 29, 2012 05:15 AM #45
Karen Feltman
Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group - Cedar Rapids, IA
Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa
I cringe when I hear seller "motivations" at the weekly sales meetings. It is unfair to the seller and gives an advantage to the buyers agent. There are definitely reasons that need to be shared with a buyer, such as relocation or estate paperwork, but otherwise, the buyer needs to decide if it is the house they want to make their home. It doesn't much matter anymore why someone is leaving.
May 29, 2012 12:09 PM #46
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

The less said the better....motivated...show them the money !

Jun 01, 2012 04:28 AM #47
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Sally K. & David L. Hanson

WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce
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