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Unrealistic Buyer Expectations (Pt I)

As real estate professionals, we hear A LOT about about what’s happening in the market and how to do our job. Fortunately for us, most of this “advice” and “input” comes from individuals with no knowledge of real estate or how to truly evaluate it… They watch a couple commercials, read a few blog posts and think that they are the expert. No hard feelings, I smile and nod, then I have a real conversation. Many times its a matter of educating people on our current market and what is actually happening versus what they think is happening. This is pretty easy to do since I work with DATA and FACTS that I have access to, which allows me to track trends. Short of the story…  Listen to your Realtor!

Below are some misconceptions real estate professionals hear all the time. Please do not be offended by my honesty. It is this same honesty that will get you the right home at the right price at the right time.

1. Buyer: “It’s a Buyer’s market.  The Sellers need me more than I need them.  My neighbor’s boyfriend’s cousin who has his real estate license but works at Star Market told me so.”

Realtor:  I can understand why you might think that but the market has flipped the other way, inventory is low, and we are seeing multiple offers out there, often over asking price… i.e. Seller’s market. Boston, particularly Jamaica Plain, West Roxbury and Roslindale are seeing offers sometimes $50,000 over asking because of bidding wars. That screams SELLER’S MARKET to me.

Everyone and their brother has got a real estate license these days… go by the FACTS they present and not just their opinion. 

2. Buyer:  “I can get a mortgage with no problem. Let’s go see these 10 houses first, and then I will get a pre-approval letter once I have found the one.”

Realtor:  We are about efficiency and results! How will we know the price range of homes you can actually look at without a pre-approval? It’s also gotten tougher these days to get a mortgage if you have some flaws on your credit report or high debt-to-income ratios, so its best to find out what’s on your credit report by doing the mortgage pre-approval up front.  Then you’ll be able to make an offer on the spot if you find “the one”. You would be pretty upset if you drove around to 25 homes, finally found “the one” then realized you had to get pre-approved and someone else put in an offer before you that was accepted… or worse…you could not afford it. My job is to get you into homes you can buy now if you wanted to. EFFICIENCY AND RESULTS!

Sell My Problem Property Quickly

3. Buyer: “What do you mean there are closing costs on top of the down payment for my mortgage?!  Can’t the Seller pay that?  I have $1000 saved – that’s enough, right?”

Realtor: Yes, there are closing costs too!  No, $1,000 is not going to cover it!  You’ll want to talk to your mortgage professional about how much you have saved towards closing costs and down payment.  Sometimes the Seller can contribute a portion towards the closing costs, but it depends on what type of loan you are getting, and generally Buyers will up their offer if they expect the Seller to pay closing costs.  The lowest down payment option available is on an FHA loan – 3.5% of the purchase price, plus closing costs can be several thousand additional. (Currently, Mass Housing has a 3% down program)

4. Buyer: “I would like to make the Seller an offer 50% of the asking price and don’t plan to go up a whole lot.”  

Realtor: If this is your strategy for every home moving forward… I can refer you to another great agent. (code for… get the heck outta here! Time is money honey!!) Most Realtors will not waste their time with a buyer who wants to make such lowball offers. Boston is largely a sellers market. Your offer gets laughed at and immediately discarded! Don’t be “that” buyer… give competitive offers. (Unless it’s an “ugly house” in which case… game on)

5. Buyer: “I want a rent-to-own home in Hyde Park. Preferably in the Fairmount area. Can you help me find a Seller that won’t ask me to put much money down?”

Realtor:  Probably not.  Lease options and Rent-To-Own scenarios are, in this Realtor’s opinion, not really beneficial in this market to the tenant and generally require a sizable deposit.  It can work if you find a seller who is not completely aware of the process and charges less than the normal fee for such transactions. Typically you pay an “option” fee of between $5,000-$30,000 that is NOT REFUNDABLE. In a Seller’s Market, you are losing for sure… why would I sell my house to you on a rent to own basis (collect small monthly payments over time) when I could easily sell to a ready and willing buyer with cash or a pre-approved mortgage (Fat wad of cash within months vs years).

There are many more “reality check episodes” to come but these are a few that we hear regularly. Let The Mandrell Company help you get into the home that is right for you today.

Schedule your consultation with one of our real estate agents.