We've all had that client that looked and looked and looked at houses until we began to think they were just lonely and enjoyed our company. A few years ago, I had three in a row. It makes me wonder if there isn't something about me that attracts that kind of buyer. I'm not a naturally patient person, so these three clients tested me royally.
The first one was the most unique. After nearly a year and around 50 houses, he bought. I never pried into his financial status other than to make sure he was pre-qualified to purchase any house. After that, I left the subject of financing alone. He gave me a $100K EMD check and then paid cash for the first $450K house. I was a little surprised, but I was excited that things ended that way. At least I thought that was the end. I learned that a little patience can pay off, even if you have to be pushed into it.
A year later he called me to manage that house as a rental. Which I did for the following four years. A few months after I starting managing his rental he called to have me sell another house I didn't even know he had. He allowed me to set the price and it sold in a week. Six months later he called and said he had found a piece of property that he wanted to look at that had a large tract of land with it.
Now, the funny thing about this client was that he picked every house apart. No matter how good it was, he could find a dozen defects. Some were real, and some were not. This particular property was loaded with the most defects of all the houses we had seen together. When I walked in I starting seeing issues right away. He didn't acknowledge a single defect. He wanted the property. There was a very nice elderly couple living there that needed to move closer to town for health reasons. They didn't have the money at that time to make the move. So, they had to sell the house.
My client made a good offer, and they accepted. He had me put a clause in the contract that they could stay in the house for up to six months, or until they found adequate housing. In that clause, it stated that it was at no expense to them. That clause almost caused them to reject the contract. They were so puzzled by his generosity that they were sure there was a catch. I took a long time explaining the clause, but they finally accepted. They stayed four months until they found a good house in a nearby community. My client still stays in touch with them.
What I learned from watching this guy really was the value of patience. Early on, I couldn't decide if he was really a buyer or just a shopper. I also couldn't decide if I actually liked him or wanted to choke him. I went back and forth on that one. He had been referred to me by another Realtor, and now I am so glad. The experience with him set me up to deal with the next two. Both of them took six months or more to find their homes, but when they did, it was perfect. Patience is a virtue. I am still cautious when a client takes forever to buy, but I always think of that first client. I still do business with him. He pays cash for everything, so I never have any questions when he wants to do something. I know it will be fine. I haven't wanted to choke him in years, and I really have come to love him and his family. They have become a part of mine. Patience really is a virtue.