Pig in a Poke??!! Yep I searched it-now I'm pissed. What I learned.

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Lisa Glowacki - Rhode Island & Massachusetts

Pig in a Poke???!!! Call me ignorant however still not quite sure I understood the meaning or what was being implied by the statement after questioning the user multiple times, yep I searched it – now I'm pissed! However what I learned is priceless!!!  

 Just so we are clear here are a couple of meaning for the phrase:

The English colloquialisms such as turn out to be a pig in a poke or buy a pig in a poke mean that something is sold or bought without the buyer knowing its true nature or value, especially when buying without inspecting the item beforehand. The phrase can also be applied to accepting an idea or plan without a full understanding of its basis.

An object offered in a manner that conceals its true value, especially its lack of value. This expression alludes to the practice of substituting a worthless object, such as a cat, for the costly suckling pig a customer has bought and wrapping it in a poke , or sack.


Today was a very unproductive showing in my opinion. So I really don't know what to say except I'm sorry that you were robbed from getting to learn about all your options or the chance of being educated on the benefits of buying a custom remodeled or a fixer-upper home.


Let's understand the difference:

A Custom Remodel: Property owned by an investor or flipper who is renovating/remodeling the home for resale offering the buyer the opportunity with options of finishes i.e. Kitchen cabinets, counter tops, flooring, paint colors etc. when the buyer gets into contract before the project is completed. The investor has a budget and materials picked for the project however if the buyer's choice is for more costly materials there could be an up cost. End of day you are buying a like new home done to your style and budget. Who does that?! We do!

A Fixer-upper: Property purchased from other than an investor/flipper i.e. traditional home seller, bank owned, short sale which needs repairs and/or upgrades. Again end of day like new home your way to your style and budget with equity in your pocket! These are another story for another time in this article I am referring to Custom Remodels.


Why the showing was unproductive:

Instead of repeatedly requesting data which I've told you was not available, most likely would not be available, and arguing about how easily it is obtainable, i.e. a 3-d rending of the home finished, why not provide your client with the information that is available so they can make a knowledgeable decision? If I am showing you a listing offered as a Custom Remodel here is the information that is available to you and/or your agent:

MLS Listing: Description of the property as is, updated according to status of project right through completion including pictures.

Property Specification Sheet (Spec Sheet): Contractor's remodel specifications for the property including room by room upgrades/renovations, electrical, plumbing, & mechanical upgrades/repairs/replacements.

Disclosures & More Disclosures: Sellers Disclosure of property condition, Lead Disclosure, Flood Quotes or Flood Determination Document, Disclosure of personal interest. Anything and everything that we could reasonable know without having lived at the property.

Videos of Past Projects: Including before & after pictures.

Showings: I show our properties from the time of purchase, during construction, and when they are completed. I can't get anymore transparent than that. Any day of the week you can see one of our properties at any stage of construction unless the home is under contract or purchased which happens more often than you think.

Rewrite of the Specification Sheet: When a property is purchased before completed as a custom remodel we rewrite the specifications according to the buyer's customization. There is not a question of what will be done and at what purchase price.


Now let's Myth-Bust that Pig in a Poke thing:

Buyer is purchasing knowing its true nature & value – (there are appraisals).

Buyer showings & inspections are available before, during, and after the property is complete.

Buyers will fully understand the idea or plan (some may never and that is okay. It's not the property for you or it may be when completed).

A property is never sold concealing its true value (why would I do that? For one sale?!).

As for lack of value (we add more value!).


What I learned that is priceless:

I don't like the implication that I am deceitful, dishonest, or a hustler (well I never liked that).

The implication that the home is hacked before it is even done (I watch the contractors they have pride in what they do).

Most Importantly:

I am not educating agents or buyers enough about purchasing custom remodeled homes and the benefits of doing so (guess I don't talk loudly enough although I am told otherwise).

The wealth of information provided is not getting to the right eyes.

There is always something to learn and something to improve on. I will be focusing on improving on education, getting you the information and getting you excited about custom remodeled homes! Start here http://lisaglowacki.relocationality.com

Comments (3)

William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

WE see a lot of this in our business.  Many people still operating under the old thought process

Feb 02, 2016 07:52 AM
Lisa Glowacki

True, frustrating but true.

Feb 02, 2016 08:41 AM
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I have some clients who will be withdrawing their offer on a pig in poke tomorrow. It had a little cosmetic window dressing, but some serious problems beneath that the inspection turned up.

Feb 02, 2016 12:32 PM
Lisa Glowacki
Lisa Glowacki - Rhode Island & Massachusetts - Tiverton, RI
Real Estate Broker - RI & MA

Hi Tammy, that is unfortunate to hear. Serious problems as you have mentioned are best off to be addressed and corrected. They will come up time & again through a home inspection. And if the buyer is not confident that the problems would be properly repaired they made the right decision. They would never be happy with the home. I hope once being made aware of the problems they are corrected.

Feb 03, 2016 03:10 AM