Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A not-so-open letter to potential buyers

My buyer clients recently had a disappointing experience with a deliberately under-priced home in Burbank.  It was originally on the market for $600's+ and had a $100,000 (!!!!) price reduction after 30 days.  That's really a big drop for a home in great condition and it immediately drew four offers. Yes, even in this market, some underpriced houses are drawing multiple offers.  Here's the heavily edited post-mortem email that I wrote them.

"[Buyers] I know the [street name] house was a disappointing situation.  But here's some "back story": ...[Some Realtors] are known for deliberately underpricing their properties in order to attract multiple bids and sell them quickly...The strategy is very controversial, but [some agents] and their sellers find it successful. My experience has been that properties sell just as quickly when they're priced correctly, but that's me. 

Additionally, [some agents] often have their own buyers for their properties -- who they then have bid against each other for the under-priced houses.
  The [street name] house was really under-priced for that many square feet in Magnolia Park, so I wasn't surprised that it drew so many offers so quickly, even in this market.

So the take-away is that if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Here's what you can do so you're ready to rock next time:

- Follow through with [buyers' lender] and obtain a full pre-approval.  Those mean more to listing agents and sellers than a pre-qualification.  Also, be able to show proof of funds to close in a liquid form.  In other words, your entire down payment, plus about 2%-3% for closing costs, should be readily available on a page or two from a bank or financial institution.

- Most listings are added to the mls Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.  We can check every day, and if something is appealing, get in before the open house.  [Of course, this requires that you use a Realtor in your home search.  Just saying - ed.] And also, not all homes are open every weekend.  This way, you won't miss anything.

 - ...[Adjacent areas] to your [dream location]...may be worth considering.  [They may]...have great housing stock, and prices might be coming down.  It might be worth considering.  Perhaps you'll let me give you a tour sometime...

Anyway, please call me with any questions and know that I'm here to help."

No comments:

Post a Comment