The Legend of Dan the Man

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Austin Texas Homes, LLC 453249

 

I have been selling homes in and around Austin, Texas since I was 26 years old.  For those keeping track at home, that was over 11 years ago.  During my time selling, I have worked with hundreds of buyers, the majority of whom were married couples. 

When working with first-time buyers (and sometimes with buyers who have been around the block a few times), I consider it part of my service to "counsel" husbands on what to expect during the process.  In other words, it is likely that we will have a conversation along these lines at some point (for our purposes, we will use Mike and Susan as the names for this happy couple):

 

 

SUSAN: I don't like this house.  The living room is too small and the kitchen is kinda cramped.

MIKE: But look at all of the room for the big screen TV!  Also, the bedroom has hardwood floors.

ME: Mike, it really doesn't matter what you say at this point.  I can assure you that you won't be buying this house.  Susan is not sold on it, and it's really her decision, believe me.

MIKE: But it has...

ME: Mike, seriously.  You are not really part of this process as much as you might think.

MIKE: Okay.  I hear you.

 

Perhaps I am not quite that harsh, but this is not very far from the truth.  In my experience, I have seen precisely ONE MAN who was able to "win" the debate on which house to purchase, and I still remember it like it was yesterday.  It was Dan the Man.

I use Dan the Man as a cautionary tale for men who think that they are going to control the purchase process.

 Dan and Marie (not their real names) were part of a relocation account that I handled several years ago.  They made a few visits to the area to look around with me.  Marie seemed to want a newer home, while Dan leaned toward older places, like their previous home in Houston.

So, in the end, it came down to two very different properties.  One was about two or three years old, with all of the expected neighborhood amenities, and it was in great condition.  Clearly, this one was Marie's choice. 

The other home was about 30 years old, with shag carpet, sunken living room, and a dark hallway leading to the (admittedly large) bedrooms.  It also had some giant shade trees in the backyard.  This was Dan's choice.

I watched Dan wear Marie down at every turn, singing the praises of "his" choice.  In the end, he prevailed, but at a cost.  He had to promise to do a LOT of updating along with some minor remodeling in order to get the house he wanted. 

 

Although they had been together for many years, I don't actually know if they stayed married. 

So, what's my point here anyway?  Well, I have used Dan as an example, both because of his singular success being the only male to win a home choice debate (it was exhausting to watch), and because of the ridiculous amount of additional money that he had to pour into the home in order to please his wife. 

Ultimately, I suppose the jury is still out on that one.  Even though Marie didn't get the house she originally wanted, she made the older house into one that she could tolerate.

Thanks for reading!

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If you're looking for a home in the Austin area, you can also visit my primary website at www.austintexashomes.com.  Thanks!

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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)

GARY - Here in Austin, it's always been very easy to determine.  Just find the female in the couple, and you have located the ultimate decision maker.  We have worked with a few same sex couples (mainly women for some reason), so those are trickier.

BRIAN - I agree wholeheartedly with your experience on this.  In fact, when I bought my personal home, my wife was the catalyst to even begin looking for a new place to live.  I handled the financing in our case, but she was the one who said, "We need to move."

Apr 25, 2008 05:23 AM #7
Rainer
3,634
Brad Taylor, REALTOR® for Toledo, Ohio
DiSalle Real Estate Co. - Toledo, OH
Thanks for sharing your story.  This info helps everyday.
Apr 25, 2008 06:14 AM #8
Rainer
350,724
* Rate A Home
Rate A Home - Saugatuck, MI

Jason, 1st of all, nice new mug shot! Secondly, EXCELLENT way to put the process in layman terms. That is exactly how majority of the deals go. Choosing the right home to meet both the spouse's needs is the way to go. That's why we developed the program we did, for this exact scenario. We hear it every day how bickering between the couple can take the fun out of the transaction. Having equal say in the home buying process should be like a marriage. The stronger person shouldn't make the final choice, it should be done as they would, when making any investment or family decisions. Until the buyers (and Real Estate Professionals) understand that buying real estate shouldn't be approached as our grand parents did, this exact problem will continue and the Professional will continue to be the marriage counselor.

GREAT JOB!

Apr 25, 2008 06:26 AM #9
Rainmaker
661,696
JL Boney, III
Coldwell Banker - Columbia, SC
Columbia, SC Real Estate
I gave up on mutual decisions a long time ago. I am now very happily married.
Apr 25, 2008 06:49 AM #10
Rainer
109,059
Linda Tremblay
Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc, PA License #AB065488 - Doylestown, PA
Associate Broker - Bucks County, PA Real Estate Services
I totally agree.  The wife has to like the home.  Usually in this area, the husband is happy if he can get a garage and basement so he has somewhere for his tools or what ever.  The rest of the house is up to the wife.
Apr 25, 2008 07:19 AM #11
Rainmaker
1,106,744
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR
I was told early in my career to sell the wife on the house and then she'd sell the husband.  But I also blogged about the decision maker getting in the front seat with you when shopping.  Fun post.
Apr 25, 2008 07:38 AM #12
Rainer
139,927
Kelly Sibilsky
Licensed Through Referral Connection, LTD. - Lake Zurich, IL
"If mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy"
Apr 25, 2008 08:34 AM #13
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)

BRAD - Glad to hear that you find it helpful.  Thanks!

DUANE - Thanks for your great comments.  I couldn't agree more.  I am happy that you like the new profile picture.  Have a great weekend!

JL - You are wise.

LINDA - That has been my experience as well. 

BARBARA - That sounds like an interesting post.  It would also explain why the wife ALWAYS takes the front seat when I am working with buyers.

KELLY - Nicely put.

 

Apr 25, 2008 10:12 AM #14
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Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth
Jason, my philosophy on this is "both" should decide on a house. But that's me. I can't get into people's relationship and play marriage counselor too. But I know where you are coming from with your Dan story.
Apr 25, 2008 10:20 AM #15
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
GARY - I would love to hold that philosophy, but I have never seen it play out that way in my experience.  I don't mind the counseling aspect - makes it more fun to me.  Have a great weekend!
Apr 25, 2008 10:23 AM #16
Rainmaker
279,013
Don Eichler
Eichler Properties - Granbury, TX

 

Jason, In my real estate life the men always get to make the important choices and decisions, like who will run for president, what dress shop will he get to pay the monthly bills to, when to wash his car, what day he gets to cut the grass, which pants she tells him to wear; well you get the message.  I did win one time with Ricki, well, well, oh I can't remember when

 

Apr 25, 2008 10:53 AM #17
Rainmaker
631,202
Don Rogers
Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield - O'Fallon, MO
Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes
Why can't us guys just learn?
Apr 25, 2008 11:56 AM #18
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
DON - It sounds like you have a lot more choices than I do. 
Apr 25, 2008 12:06 PM #19
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
OTHER DON - I agree completely.
Apr 25, 2008 12:07 PM #20
Rainer
39,589
Edward W. Lui
Mars Hill Realty Group - Georgetown, TX
Georgetown Texas Real Estate

Yeah, not too many Dan the Man's in my experience, but there have been some that have "won"


Nice update picture  by the way...it looks more like you!

Apr 25, 2008 04:41 PM #21
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Missy Caulk
Missy Caulk TEAM - Ann Arbor, MI
Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate
Jason, I will have to add to that, that clearly most of the time, the woman decides. Sometimes if a man has already moved here, he will look and eliminate, but it never fails, she wants to see most of them again when she comes.
Apr 26, 2008 01:28 AM #22
Rainmaker
338,264
Paul Slaybaugh
Realty Executives - Scottsdale, AZ
Scottsdale, AZ Real Estate

Jason.  I am a Realtor.  Have been for almost 9 years now.  I was raised in a Real Estate household.  I have lived in Scottsdale all of my life.  I know every builder, every neighborhood, every nook and every cranny. 

My wife made me buy our house.

Apr 26, 2008 09:03 AM #23
Rainmaker
661,696
JL Boney, III
Coldwell Banker - Columbia, SC
Columbia, SC Real Estate
The house my wife and I live in now my wife and I had built almost a year ago. There is nothing about it that I picked out.
Apr 26, 2008 03:49 PM #24
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

My story is worse. I have been working with this couple for over a year now. He would like condos, she wants a house, then he needs first a place for business (he is a great vet doctor) and then the place to live, and she wants an income producing property first...

They were not arguing... it just did not go anywhere. They would see something and ask to write the offer, and then delay, and then cancel... Long story short I insisted that they tell me that they are not buyers.

He was crying that he needed to move his family out of a two bedroom rental apartment, and this and that, but THEY CAN'T MAKE A DECISION. And he does not need financing, he has enough cash to buy both a house, a place for the vet clinic and plus a small retail plaza, and all this for cash.

It is a very weird story and I look stupid that it took me so long to figure it out. I simply did not believe this could happen. Logic does not always work.

 

Apr 26, 2008 04:38 PM #25
Rainmaker
1,266,823
Alan Kirkpatrick
Austin Texas Homes - Round Rock, TX
Alan in Austin

Jason:

Dan is the MAN. Hey new picture, it makes it hard for me to find you. Hope you had a great weekend.

Apr 27, 2008 08:45 AM #26
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