Let's face it, shopping for a new home is fun...for the buyer that is. For the agent, it starts out exciting too. We want to help find the best home within budget or given criteria. Then after many property criticisms and rejections, or not listening to our guidance, or presenting too many unrealistic low-ball offers...we deflate. Just like a sad balloon after a wonderful party, we are left exhausted and rolling around the dance floor just hoping someone will step on us and put us out of our misery.
I distinctly remember two different pseudo buyers over the years that brought me to this point. First was April and her husband Rob. I was a newly licensed agent with all the hope and stamina that perfectly matched their agent requirements. You could say we had a standing appointment every Saturday afternoon at 1 pm--almost like what one would arrange with a manicurist or physical therapist--no one takes that spot but them! We previewed every home that fell within their minimal criteria--price and school district. April rejected everything--too small, needs too much work, not enough backyard, closets not big enough. If by some crazy chance she actually liked it, Rob would be announcing in the background that she REALLY better like it because this will be their last house. Mind you, it was their first house--they were living in a rented condominium. April couldn't make a commitment knowing that she would be married to a house forever. The breaking point for me came when I found out that on Sundays, they would visit properties that were open to the public for preview. It wasn't their loyalty that concerned me. It was that the houses they chose to visit were in a much higher price range that they could afford. April was clearly falling in love with features that would never be available offered in properties of what she could afford. Although I explained this to the both of them repeatedly, it fell upon deaf ears.
It was time I stopped being fully available for their weekend hobby.
The second pseudo buyer was a young professional guy named Rick. The time was about 1998. Rick had the classic analytical personality. He shopped homes with a clip board, calculator and brief case. Once excited about a property, he would analyze data up, down and sideways. Rick ultimately would find a calculated reason to not pull the trigger. It was at a time that the market was active with buyers. Everything he rejected quickly went under deposit. New inventory always seemed to come on with a minor price increase. He kept holding on to the fact that the there would eventually be a bargain out there. Or, as he would ofter refer to as: correctly priced. His calculations eventually became correct--ten years later when real estate went bust. I didn't stick around to start that journey all over again with him.
I stayed working with both of these buyers merely because I was time-invested. I panicked with just the thought of another agent successfully completing a sale with them in the future. It wasn't until I recognized that by working endlessly with them, I was missing out on other opportunities BOTH business and personal. I finally got the backbone to end the relationships--politely and professionally. My departing words (of course said under my breath): It's not you, its me.
And it was me. It was ME finally figuring out that all along, we were just dating!