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Author Topic: Home Buying Etiquette  (Read 21914 times)

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bridalviolet

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #75 on: March 22, 2014, 05:06:05 PM »
We just sold our house. We had a number of showings and one thing I did every single time was to put out fresh-baked cookies and fresh-perked coffee on the counter with a note saying "Please help yourself." They always did, of course!  :) Our agent loved it, the prospective buyers loved it, and one agent who came through said, "In fourteen years selling homes this is the first time I've ever been offered treats!" We got a ton of positive feedback and our house sold in about three months (starting in the winter, the worst time for showings!).

lofty

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #76 on: March 28, 2014, 12:19:24 PM »
It may have been mentioned before, but it bears repeating; buyers, when you schedule a showing, please show up. If you cannot show up, please call. If you cannot call that moment because something horrible has happened, please at least respond to the message we sent asking if you were still coming so we know we didn't dream the entire appointment!

Grrrrr... >:(
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MrTango

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #77 on: March 29, 2014, 07:38:41 PM »
It may have been mentioned before, but it bears repeating; buyers, when you schedule a showing, please show up. If you cannot show up, please call. If you cannot call that moment because something horrible has happened, please at least respond to the message we sent asking if you were still coming so we know we didn't dream the entire appointment!

Grrrrr... >:(

Same thing goes for Realtors.

We had a showing scheduled for a house, and apparently the seller accepted an offer the evening before our showing was to happen.  I never got a phone call from the Realtor that was supposed to show me the house.

We waited around for 15 minutes after our showing was to happen, and then I went and checked my email.  10 minutes after the appointment time, he sent me an email letting me know the situation and that since an offer had been accepted, he couldn't show us the house.

shortstuff

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #78 on: March 30, 2014, 08:40:34 AM »
If you are not planning on moving, don't put your house on the market...or at least let the buyer's agent know that you are not taking offers.

My fiance and I put an offer on a house on Sunday. It turns out that the man who was selling the house refused to sign the contract because he didn't want to move.  Thank you, sir, for wasting my time, my fiance's time, my agent's time, your agent's time, and your wife's time. It's nice that you are retired, but some of us still work and would rather not spend our weekends looking at and making offers on houses that the owners have no intention of selling.

 >:(


They might not want to move, but sometimes they have to.  Did the owner realize that he had to move but figured that the offer was not high enough?

The first house that Dh bought (before we were married) had had really weird selling-conditions.  The wife and her husband had separated/divorced years earlier but she was still living in it with three kids - older teens through early 20s.  Apparently the separation agreement stated that she could stay in the house till the youngest kid reached age 19 - that's the age-of-majority here - or, moved out.  Then the house would have to be sold.

What ended up happening was that the youngest kid, at 18, was ready to move out.  Then, the mother was stuck having to move herself and the two older kids out.  To put it mildly, she had absolutely no motivation in encouraging a sale.  The carpets were absolutely filthy, the house had many places where painting had been started and suddenly stopped - etc. - you get the idea.  Never mind the shoddy maintenance and sometimes scary DIY repairs - even I could see the absolutely dangerous electrical "repairs" the previous owner had done.

Not wanting to get into legal issues here, but is it possible that it's an "ordered sale" and the owner just doesn't want to face it?  Or perhaps he's figuring that his home is worth way more $$$  than the evaluated value and is insisting on more?

I encountered something similar when trying to view a house for sale.  The owner was upside down on his mortgage (owed more to the bank than the house could sell for) and was somehow forced by the bank negotiations to have the house for sale.  But when we tried to view it, he stayed home during the appointment and dead-bolted the inside door, so even with our buyer's agent having the key from the lock box, we couldn't get in. 

When our agent caller the seller's agent to complain, the seller's agent was very confused and tried to tell us we had the wrong time.  After some Realtor back and forth snark, they told us that, yes, we had an appointment, but no, the owner didn't want to sell so wasn't going to let us in.  It was such a waste of a day.  I felt bad for the poor owner, he obviously wanted to keep his home, but don't take it out on us.

Mopsy428

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #79 on: April 10, 2014, 09:05:34 PM »
If you are not planning on moving, don't put your house on the market...or at least let the buyer's agent know that you are not taking offers.

My fiance and I put an offer on a house on Sunday. It turns out that the man who was selling the house refused to sign the contract because he didn't want to move.  Thank you, sir, for wasting my time, my fiance's time, my agent's time, your agent's time, and your wife's time. It's nice that you are retired, but some of us still work and would rather not spend our weekends looking at and making offers on houses that the owners have no intention of selling.

 >:(


They might not want to move, but sometimes they have to.  Did the owner realize that he had to move but figured that the offer was not high enough?

The first house that Dh bought (before we were married) had had really weird selling-conditions.  The wife and her husband had separated/divorced years earlier but she was still living in it with three kids - older teens through early 20s.  Apparently the separation agreement stated that she could stay in the house till the youngest kid reached age 19 - that's the age-of-majority here - or, moved out.  Then the house would have to be sold.

What ended up happening was that the youngest kid, at 18, was ready to move out.  Then, the mother was stuck having to move herself and the two older kids out.  To put it mildly, she had absolutely no motivation in encouraging a sale.  The carpets were absolutely filthy, the house had many places where painting had been started and suddenly stopped - etc. - you get the idea.  Never mind the shoddy maintenance and sometimes scary DIY repairs - even I could see the absolutely dangerous electrical "repairs" the previous owner had done.

Not wanting to get into legal issues here, but is it possible that it's an "ordered sale" and the owner just doesn't want to face it?  Or perhaps he's figuring that his home is worth way more $$$  than the evaluated value and is insisting on more?
No. The comps were right within what they were asking for, and we offered full asking price plus a few thousand in closing costs. The male owner was 89 years old, and refused to move. His 83 year old wife was his caretaker, and she wanted to sell the house and move into something smaller. (Neither can go upstairs.)

The seller's agent was "assisting" in showing another house we looked at a few days ago and mentioned that the man had previously signed a contract, but then he backed out of it because he "wanted to die in that house". I wanted to say, "OK. After that fiasco, why did they put it back on the market? I'm sure the almost-homeowners were as pleased as punch with this guy's antics."

katycoo

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #80 on: April 10, 2014, 09:42:11 PM »

So as a buyer you have an agent yourself who takes you to properties for sale?  That's a new concept to me, does the buyer's agent make a commission from the sale?  Is it the same agent you're using to sell? 

Here, an estate agent sells properties, or manages rented ones, they work entirely for sellers or landlords never for buyers or renters.

Yes, in the U.S., most buyers would have their own agent.  The agent's job is to sort through the multiple listing service to pick out the best prospects, make appointments for showing, escort the buyers (this may or may not include driving the buyers), then help with buying the home.  For this, the buyer's agent gets between 1% and 3% of the home price as commission.  Some agents specialize in buyers only; others handle both buying and selling.

By law, real estate agents for the seller are required to work in the seller's interests.  If you find the house on your own, for instance by driving by a for-sale sign, you can probably skip having your own agent, but it is still recommended that you have your own real estate attorney or other professional to double check the fine print.

There's a feeling that it's unethical for one agent to represent both both the buyer and the seller. You can't be looking out for my best interests if you are also looking out for their's, kinda thing.

Its definitely unethical for a conveyancer or lawyer to act for both parties, but not agents.  I suspect Larrabee is Australian too.  We do our own research (there are 2 major housing sales/rental websites pretty much everyone use) and when you find a place you like you can contact the seller's agent about it.  Public open homes are the norm, so you just turn up at the advertised time if you want to see the house.  Private inspections can be arranged if you cannot make the open home.

DoubleTrouble

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #81 on: June 01, 2014, 06:31:41 PM »
Selling our house right now, it's been fairly smooth with the showings (our agent uses an app called ShowingTime to schedule appts, love that app!) but we had one last week that rubbed me the wrong way.

- Scheduled an appt for 6-6:30 which is right during dinner for us but OK I can deal.

- Loaded the car up with two 5 yr olds & a dog & went to McD's drive through as it was raining. We ate in the car & managed to kill a 1/2 hour that way.

- Came back at 6:40 ish & found that the people were just going into the house :o  Fine I can wait. Find a spot on the street where I can watch the front door. Remember 2 kids, one dog & it's getting near bedtime.

- Wait for the next 30 minutes for the people to get through the house & then they decided to take a walk through the neighborhood. Which would have been fine except they were parked in the driveway & I couldn't get into the garage.

By this time they actually left, the boys were climbing all over the car like ants (remember it was raining, can't go to the park!) & the dog was getting really irritated & barking at every one that walked by. I was *thisclose* to getting out of the car to ask them to move their car but I really need this house to sell so I sucked it up as much as I could.

So please be on time & if you are late, try to make it quick especially if you can tell someone is still living there with small children!

Morty'sCleaningLady

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #82 on: June 03, 2014, 10:02:57 AM »
Selling our house right now, it's been fairly smooth with the showings (our agent uses an app called ShowingTime to schedule appts, love that app!) but we had one last week that rubbed me the wrong way.

So please be on time & if you are late, try to make it quick especially if you can tell someone is still living there with small children!

My sister had something similar.  She's got a 3 1/2 year old and a 1 year old.  The house was under agreement and the buyers wanted to check on a small furnace repair and measure the rooms.  So, Sis budgeted an hour at 6 PM.  She returned home after about 60 minutes to find them still there.  The buyers were there for over 3 hours!  The buyers brought a handy man who took his time going up in the attic, doing stuff in the basement, etc.  This wasn't measuring for furniture layout and paint purchase estimates.  It was a second home inspection!  (The first inspection had lasted 8 hours, which is pretty intense.)  The 1 year old was in a full on tizzy, since it was after his bedtime.
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GreenEyedHawk

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #83 on: June 03, 2014, 10:57:28 AM »
I had the reverse problem...when I bought my home. we emphasised to all involved that this was time-sensitive.  I was living in a house owned by my room-mate, who was unexpectedly given custody of his ten-year-old daughter, so I had to be out of the house before she moved in.  We had to make it happen within a month.

Everyone was great except the listing agent for the house I bought, who hardly EVER returned our calls...it usually took several calls over two or three days to get hold of him.  My theory is because the house was a foreclosure and he was a listing agent for the bank that we were not his highest priority.

The second person who dragged his feet was the lawyer i used...my parents' laywer...who put us off, rescheduled on us and just generally jerked us around until my mother and I showed up and his office first thing in the morning and she very politely but firmly told him that he would indeed be seeing us today.  The entire thing took probably less than an hour, I have no idea what the holdup was.
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chocolatemoose

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #84 on: January 04, 2015, 07:28:00 AM »
I am very sensitive to a brand of popular bar soap that a lot of women use. I get a whiff of it and my throat starts to close up. I was unable to look at about a dozen homes when I was looking for a house because of the soap. I know it's my problem, and this is something rare, but sellers please keep in mind artificial scents can be very irritating.

catgal

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #85 on: January 25, 2015, 07:25:47 PM »
Well, this should be common sense, but....

Friends are selling their apartment.  They had an open home last Saturday.  They left when the real estate agent arrived and planned to return as soon as the home open finished.  When they returned, they found the real estate agent, one of their neighbours and a couple that had come to the open home sitting at their dining table drinking coffee.  My friends were taken aback because someone would have had to open all of their cupboards to find the coffee, cups, kettle etc.  The neighbour is one that they try to avoid as she is little strange so they were not impressed to find her at the table.  No-one rushed to leave, they just continued chatting (not even about the apartment, neighbourhood or anything related to the property) while my friends stood there. They didn't want to rush the couple out the door in case their were serious about buying the apartment, but they certainly spoke to the agent about their unhappiness when everyone else (eventually ) left.  Seriously, who does that?
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Syfygeek

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #86 on: January 26, 2015, 11:07:28 AM »
Just starting the looking process for a new house.

Went yesterday to look at what might be perfect. It's a short sale, so I understand the previous owners may have been under a deadline to vacate. If I was the listing agent, I would probably have removed the DVD's left in the house. When you open a closet and find a box set of 5 horror movies, it's creepy. When you go into the den and find a stack of horror movies almost 2 feet tall, it's way past creepy.

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Margo

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #87 on: January 26, 2015, 12:22:16 PM »
Quote
I also think homeowners should either retreat to one room or leave the house when potential buyers come by.  It is awkward to discuss the house with DH if the homeowner is right there.
I don't trust complete strangers in my home. If they're in my home, I'm at least going to be in the same vicinity as they are. The last thing I want is to find things missing after showing them my home.

In the UK, the showing is normally done by the homeowners, most estate agents will do it for you if you ask but its very rare that they're even present.

I think this varies a lot. I'm in the UK -  I moved house last year. My estate agents did all the viewings, I didn't meet any of the people who viewed my house. I viewed 2 houses where the homeowners were present and the agents weren't, but the vast majority the estate agents did the viewing. This was my experience the last twice I moved house, too. (buying and selling in Manchester, then moving to the South West)

I'd have said that this was the norm, and that homeowners doing viewings was the exception!

Maybe it's very regional?
« Last Edit: January 26, 2015, 12:32:08 PM by Margo »

Margo

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Re: Home Buying Etiquette
« Reply #88 on: January 26, 2015, 12:38:15 PM »
on an etiquette front - if you know there are people coming to view the house, check your teenagers rooms.

I looked round one house, and most of it was nice enough - neat tidy, clean,... then there was one bedroom which very, very clearly belonged to a teenage boy. It was smelly, the bed was unmade, there were dirty clothes and used paper tissues all over the floor. I can understand that if you work, your teen might be leaving after you so may forget to make the bed, but this was clearly far more than one day's accumulation of old clothes etc!