Yes, I understand that the seller and his listing agent want to get as much traffic as possible to the home for sale but, come on, there is nothing more damaging than a buyer who is really disappointed when he/she gets to a home.
During the past few days I've had the pleasure to view homes with several buyers, one who was looking for top of the line homes, to another who is looking at the low end.
The "damage" done in a few cases, was that the buyers had no interest in looking at other properties in a certain neighborhood.
So what went wrong with many of the homes?
1. Top of the list was a lot of deferred maintenance that was not apparent in the photos or the MLS text.
2. Second was where the seller had bought low fairly recently, did a lot of remodeling, but the outcome came way short. What's the sentence, "buying a pig with lipstick"?
3. Location: you just can't get away from being in an inferior location with a home that looks dynamite.
4. Pricing, where the sellers were trying to get as much for their homes in an inferior neighborhood as those in a more desirable one.
How do you convey the differences in photographs?
You really can't.
It is the job of the listing agent to put the home's best foot forward. And, you, the buyers agent, can't talk about stuff like the neighbors or the neighborhood; buyers have to find this out by themselves.
So what to do if you are buyer's agent?
Show the buyers what they want to see and let them make up their own minds.
However, before showing them the homes, counsel them about price in various neighborhoods on what has actually sold. Also, commute, schools, closeness to services.
During the showing? Here are some lines that I had to use because they are true:
1. "That is a two million dollar view right there" - and that, besides the LOCATION, made it so much more expensive than its neighbors.
2. "No one can ever build on that meadow right in front of the home for sale" - and that's why it's more expensive.
3. "The water rights still need to be established" to a home that was way under priced.
4. "No short term rentals are allowed in this area" and that is why you need to reconsider your options.
5. "Lots of deferred maintenance on this property, although the views are dynamite."
6. "No views whatsoever of the ocean even though it's only a block or so from the ocean as the crow flies" at a home that showed the aerial of the closeness of the ocean but when we got inside it was right up against neighbors from 3 sides and not a view of anything to be found.
And I can go on and on...
If you are looking for your DREAM HOME and are confused by all the wonderful photos on the Internet, call me. They are often not what they seem to be.