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Pamela Howell's Blog

By PH | Agent in Griffith, IN

Who Picks Which Homes Buyers See?

  • Why would your REALTOR(R) show you a home with NO bedrooms?
  • Why would you see a home that doesn't have central air when you specifically said you want it?
  • Why would you see a home with no fenced yard and no garage when you specifically said that's what you need (and under $130) to your REALTOR(R)

Here are your answers about who picks which homes for a Buyer client to see, and a little about your helpful and well meaning friends who aren't REALTORS(R)

Multiple (Mulitple Listing Service) entries are THE most up-to-date and accurate listings available. Period. Yes, eventually almost every MLS listing is pulled by REALTOR.com unless...
  1. the client said "do not put it on REALTOR.com"
  2. or more frequently when the Listing Agent fails to check the box that says "Export to REALTOR.com"
Yup, all it takes is a missing check mark. So, if REALTOR.com pulls the listings from the MLS then where are the latest most up-to-date listings? On the MLS.  PERSONALLY I have a database of 107 sites on which I can put your home if you list it with me but it can't go on ANY of them until it's in the MLS. Conversely, long after something is SOLD and off the market, or has simply gone pending or contingent SOME of these web sites might say it's still available. Two reasons why.
  1. Some sites pull from others every 4 hours,or every day, or every so many days
  2. Some sites require the person who put them in also take them out and that takes time
But with the MLS you are required by your board, and often by law, to have changes made within 72 hours. Some boards in some parts of the country may require the changes even quicker then that. So I'll ask again, where are the most up-to-date listings? (Say it with me) On the MLS!

The Buyer client picks the ones they want to see first and as the REALTOR gets to know their Buyer Client the REALTOR will pick some additional ones BECAUSE we know stuff! (That's supposed to sound spooky and eerie but it's hard to get the right inflection in writing something) We really do. If someone wanted to see any of the 100 houses for sale in our town right now, I've been in at least 60 of them. When I'm not even working with a Buyer Client I go to vacant houses and open  houses to preview them. Maybe I saw the house when it was on the market the last time, maybe before it was listed I was trying to get them to list it with me and so I had been inside. If you don't TRUST your agent, LEAVE your agent  (and feel free to call me)

Q. You pass a house with a sign in front that says "for sale". Your REALTOR(R) says it's not.
A. #1  Most REALTORS(R) do not use SOLD signs until the day of close in case anything goes wrong with the deal. Me included! I want people to continue to see it until keys are exchanged as the closing table. So just because it has a sign does NOT mean it's still for sale. It is possible it may go BACK up for sale.
A. # 2 It just went on the market and your REALTOR(R) needs to call the other REALTOR(R) to get the information. Let your REALTOR(R) make that call, remember the person whose name is on the sign out front REPRESENTS the SELLER!

Q. The MLS says this home has NO bedrooms, why is my agent taking me there???
A. Certain requirements (and they may vary) exist for something to be called a bedroom. In our neck of the woods you must have a closet, and a window to get out. Some old houses may not have that but have 3 rooms (lets call them 12x12 in dimension) on the second floor, to the sides of a bathroom. What do YOU think they are? They are bedrooms! So maybe the "rules" don't  prevail where common sense does. Homes have not always been built the way they are today. People in the past have used wardrobes and bureaus. (IKEA has great wardrobes)

Q. I wanted central air! Why are you taking me to a home that says in the MLS that it doesn't have central air.
A. #1  Because it's the listing agent/office that puts in the information and they make mistakes.       (see this previous blog post)
A. #2 This reason I've encountered twice in 10 years...My client expressed concern over taking window units in and out each year, making it easy for someone to break in that way, or losing the ability to open and close the windows. Well, a home that met all her other criteria existed where the owner had installed multiple WINDOW units in the WALL!  While this home did not meet her criteria on paper, it did actually address her concerns. She had a primitive version of zoned air conditioning. She was "ahead of her time". 
A. #3. Clients drove by the house, as they often do, and did not see a central air unit outside.  Then unit outside was stolen! Everything else was in place for the home to have central air (as it already had had a few days ago) and the sellers homeowner's insurance would be installing a BRAND NEW unit. Not only did they get central air, it was BRAND NEW and under warranty. Had they had a different REALTOR(R) who was not confident enough to take them anyway, the clients would have missed out. I'm not trying to be a bully, I'm trying to do my job to work in THEIR BEST INTEREST. Seriously, we know stuff!

AND THE LAST REAL LIFE EXAMPLE of why we might take you to see something OTHER then your original requests.

Q   In Griffith, IN I had a client who wanted a home with a certain number of bedrooms and baths, a certain type of kitchen, in a certain elementary school area, etc. She also wanted a fenced in yard and a garage and she could spend up to $130,000. I found her one without the fenced yard and the garage (and those are pretty big things) but it was only $112,000.
A   For the $18,000 she would NOT spend on the house she could put up her OWN fence (4ft or 6ft, chain link, wood or vinyl, white or brown, pieces close together for privacy or spaced for a more open feel)
    Using that same $18,000 she could choose if her garage had a service door (or not) a single big door (or two individual) if she wanted in with a street entrance (or alley) if she wanted it attached (or detached) and on which side of the home it would be located.
    I didn't take her there to make her crazy. I took her there because it was the BEST home she could get.

The client picks the houses they see. Not convinced of that? Ask a few REALTORS(R) who have set appointments to see homes and then just had the client not show up AT ALL.
But give us some leeway since we see homes for a living. We know stuff!

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