Deal killers are always out there no matter the current market condition. The single best thing an agent can do is set expectations and be upfront. Surprises are what kills deals. In general, there's 2 sources of danger when it comes to deals and whether it's intentional or not it's from the appraiser and the inspector.
For example, we now have a process where we explain what happens with the most powerful people in real estate, the appraiser.
We explain how they look at the past values in the neighborhood (not whether there was 20 offers or actual market demand). This is nothing new. What is new, is that appraisers are now being asked to be defacto inspectors and making comments like, "the door doesn't close properly - suggest structural inspection." So we prepare our sellers and our buyer clients alike for this potential threat to the deal.
Another example is where we are now going over the worst possible scenario that could happen and trying to place contingencies in the contract that would protect the client's earnest money. It's now just part of the process to actually engage in the what-if game.
Inspections are often a source of deal killings, but that's nothing new. If your inspector ends his speech about mold in the bathroom with... "and it can kill you" then you're dealing with a professional deal killer. Some inspectors do a great job informing and educating while others like to dramatize everything.
In the Atlanta market we are doing a few of these things to avoid deal killers.
- have a strong relationship with a local lender that's willing to cater to the clients and run the process a bit differently then other lenders.
- have a strong relationship with the attorney that is more flexible in case things go wrong
- have reliable vendors should things arise that need to be taken care of.
In general the two biggest deal killer situations out there are during the inspection process and the appraisal process. The only place where neither of these 2 big deal killers are really present is the Atlanta condo market. The units are similar enough to be in price brackets and small enough to to have some of the hefty items that an inspection could turn up.
New construction also avoids these pitfalls as well.