“Matchmaker, Matchmaker, make me a match! Find me a find, catch me a catch.”
That’s me. I’m a matchmaker. Buyers come to me, looking for love. They want a home that speaks to them, hugs them, makes them feel safe and happy and proud — in their location and price range! They share their vision with me and off we go
Taking buyers out to look at houses is like dating. I introduce them to a series of potential matches — sometimes a few but sometimes twenty houses or more. The process is like a series of first dates. The buyers are excited and hopeful. Is this the one? Good points and issues are carefully noted and weighed, but the emotional connection really matters more. If buyers don’t feel the love, it’s over. We move on. That connection happens — or doesn’t happen — usually in the first 30 seconds.
Eventually our search is rewarded. The buyers step across the threshold for the first time and say, “Oh yes! This feels like home.” It’s a match!
That doesn’t mean it’s a perfect match. Houses are like people — none of them are perfect. At some point the buyers have to decide what flaws they can live with, and which ones are deal-breakers.
Meanwhile, for the seller, the love affair is over. Once, the seller loved his home, and he may still have some affection for it. However, the house is now like an old girlfriend he wants to get rid of. He certainly doesn’t want to spend any more time or money on her! The seller would like to wave a magic wand, and poof! be done. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works. This old girlfriend can’t just be sent away — somebody else has to want her!
The buyer is looking for love, so the seller has to think in terms of seducing the buyer. Any objections that buyers see will interfere with the emotional response that will entice the buyer to buy. A broken doorbell, for example, would be an objection. (“This house has not been well maintained!”) Dirty dishes in the sink would be an objection. (“This house isn’t kept clean!”) Wallpaper almost anywhere is an objection. (“Needs updating! Next?”)
Picture the model home in a new subdivision. The builder spends tens of thousands of dollars to furnish and decorate the model home, because he knows those touches will help his homes sell. Of course, the buyers realize they aren’t really going to get the upgrades and the designer touches — but they buy the illusion anyway.
The sellers of a resale home need to get as close as possible to the model home ideal. That means investing time, effort, and money to prepare their home for the dance. Presentation is crucial, and details matter. Think of a sagging gutter as spinach between the teeth.
Even if they aren’t in love with this house any longer, the sellers must painstakingly doll it up as though they were.
Because that’s the only way they can be buyers again, and move forward to a new relationship.