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John Souerbry's Blog

By John Souerbry | Broker in Palo Alto, CA

Home Buying Strategy #1 – Patience

The beachSeveral years ago, a corporate executive was sharing his company’s strategic business plan with an audience of university graduate students.  The students were surprised to learn that the plan included activities that would take place over the next 200 years.  At the conclusion of the presentation, a student asked the executive what primary resource the company would need to execute a plan with such a long duration.  The executive replied without hesitation, “patience!”

Although most home purchases don’t take more than a couple months, practicing patience during normal turn-around times and when unanticipated delays arise is often both a good stress management tool and a good business strategy.

Waiting for normal tasks to be completed, such as appraisals, inspections, and loan approval, keeps most buyers on the edge of their seats.  However, there is usually little to be done to hurry these things along, and as most appraisers, inspectors and loan officers will tell you – taking time to answer repetitive phone calls about their status only detracts from completion of these tasks.  As one appraiser told me long ago, “every time I got a nasty phone call from the buyer’s agent telling me to deliver before the due date because the buyer was impatient and wanted to close early, their appraisal went to the bottom of the priority list.”  By being patient, at least until the scheduled due date, home buyers allow everyone to focus on getting the work done as quickly as possible.

I’ve never worked on a transaction that did not have a hiccup of some kind.  They are almost guaranteed to happen, regardless of the experience or skill of the agents involved.  Some are minor and get fixed within hours, others can take longer.  For example, during the sale of a condo a couple years ago, a problem with the original deed filed by the builder more than 20 years ago caused a 6 month delay in our sale as the problem eventually had to be ruled on by a judge to be fixed.  During this time, buyer and seller both displayed exceptional patience as the problem was identified and worked its way through various administrative and legal processes.  Once the title problem was solved, the sale closed very quickly and everyone got what they wanted.  Had either side displayed impatience, the deal might never have happened.

Being patient doesn’t mean putting up with an incompetent service provider who doesn’t deliver on time or allowing someone else in the process to take advantage of a buyer or seller’s good nature.  But displaying patience is a sign of good faith to those who are working hard to complete your transaction to your satisfaction.  In most cases the courtesy will be returned and may even help to close the transaction faster.



John Souerbry is a Northern California real estate broker who works with buyers and sellers of residential properties and investments, including single family homes, luxury homes and estates, multi-family complexes, properties held by estates in probate and trusts, and residential lots & land.  (DRE 01370983)

Visit www.jsrealproperty.com  to find information about the California real estate market and to search online for homes and investment properties. Just click on these search buttons:

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Questions?  Drop me a line at john@jsrealproperty.com .


Tags: Silicon Valley homes, Napa Valley homes, Silicon Valley investment properties, Napa Valley investment properties, Silicon Valley real estate agents, Napa Valley real estate agents, Occupy Silicon Valley, Occupy Wine Country


By David Chiles,  Thu Dec 1 2011, 15:01
Patience is a necessity in today's home buying market because there are so many "deal breakers" when purchasing home. Thanks for sharing.

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