As the hours wore on, I was beginning to believe I was having one of my rare days of being just a bit too outspoken with others. There were several phone calls I received early on that likely triggered my candor. What I’ll never get used to, is how some people look at a given problem and believe they know how to fix it, but in only a singular way. We all know many problems can be solved in various ways and usually after looking at all the options of “fixing them”, we can move forward with the solving the problem by choosing the most equitable and most drama-free way.
Every time an offer comes in on one of my listings from another agent that’s not even close to the asking price, I hear all the flimsy reasons why their buyer offered the amount they did. I’m convinced if a home were picture perfect and maintenance free, there’d be a buyer’s agent finding some obscure reason why their buyer’s offer was considerably less. This is where the “hero effect” comes in. A hero real estate agent is one who’ll be riding some imaginary steed and be fully armored going out and doing battle for their buyers just to prove their sales abilities.
As I see it, this form of real estate chivalry does nothing more than create additional problems from the time an offer is drawn, and all the way up to, and sometimes after closing. Buyers and sellers are nervous enough without having any additional dramas added to the mix. The knight-like buyers agents have no clue how much extra effort it takes to keep the sellers from telling their buyers to go fly a kite. As long as sellers are fully familiar with the estimated end-values of their homes as well as current market conditions, the final decision on what the property is to sell for is theirs, and only their decision. Learning to be a top drawer and honest to goodness facilitator is what real estate agents really must focus on becoming. I sometimes say, “I don’t ever want to be a hero, because a hero is usually the one that gets shot at first.”
It came as quite a surprise this afternoon when a new potential buyer asked me, “What kind of neighborhood is this?” I then replied, “It’s a general residential neighborhood.” I then added, “The owner said she liked it while living out here.” The shock was when he then asked, “What’s “out here” mean? Are there problems in this neighborhood I need to know about?” I almost laughed but didn’t when I replied, “I said “out here” because it’s normal for me to say that about any neighborhood that’s not in a close proximity of our Downtown.” I guess from now on I’ll have to be all the more careful about generalities I make about subdivisions.
My good laugh came later today when I was visiting with a seller about how real estate sales were a number of years ago by saying, “Back when I was young and exceptionally better looking, we didn’t have all these after-the-sale inspections. In those days, people would have a furnace, a roof, wiring, or anything else questionable checked out before they made an offer.” He smiled and said, “We all had our day.” I wasn’t sure if he was referring to those times being easier, or being young and better looking.” What do you think?