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Pak, Other/Just Looking in Walnut Creek, CA

My realtor told me "I am picky" after shown me 3 condos?!

Asked by Pak, Walnut Creek, CA Sun Nov 4, 2007

I am a first time homebuyer and am exciting to get in touch with a realtor. After showing me with 3 condos happened to be in the same building. He said, "don't be picky". and "you have what I called the coldfeet." I was upset and do I have the right to be picky? My questions are to any realtors on Trulia: "what is an average # of home you shown to a buyer until he/she decided to buy?" "what is the highest # of home you need to show and the buyer still make up his/her decision to buy or not"...

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Yes, these are all good answers. But I vote for Todd as having the best answer. Get another realtor. Call this guy up & tell him: "You know, you're right. I am picky. So I'm going to pick another realtor who can work with me on my schedule." (Not to mention, one who has some manners.)
YOU are the customer here. The realtor stands to make a commission off your purchase. Do not let this guy pace you. Talk to a couple more realtors and see with whom you are comfortable. Ask them what are the pros and cons of each condo. If they are not telling you the cons, as well as the pros, then they are just pushing you to buy and not adding value.
The suggestion to make a list of preferences and clarify what you DO want is a very good one. If you are not sure, tell the (new) realtor that, so you can discuss. They can help you narrow down your preferences to better target your viewngs.
10 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Hi Pak:

You know, I really think the "average" depends on the client and their situation.

I've worked with buyers who honestly had not a clue as to what they wanted, and we really had to thoroughly talk through their lifestyle, commuter needs, future goals, in order to help them define what it is they truly wanted. In some of these instances, I have shown more homes than I care to remember.

Then I've worked with buyers who absolutely had a vision of what they wanted, and we literally went out 1 or 2 times and they found their home.

While I'll admit that an expectation for a decision after only 3 properties, and all in the same building, is unrealistic, it could also be that you were giving off an energy of hesitation that you are not even aware of, and it set of "alarm bells" for your agent that you may not be a serious buyer.

From what you are saying, it sounds like you might feel a little pressured, and whether or not it's what your Realtor intended with his words (so maybe he doesn't have the best 'bedside manner'), the absolute best thing you can do is to communicate with your agent and tell him what it is you feel. Sit down together with him and see if you make a plan of action that makes you feel secure, and that also ensures your agent you will not just be window shopping.

Pak: You do have a right to be picky with what will likely be the biggest investment of your life. Just give your agent the chance to listen to your needs. If you are still not feeling heard, you can then reassess your working relationship.

Happy Home Hunting!
8 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Patti Pereyra, Real Estate Pro in Chicago, IL
MVP'08
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A story for the silent devils advocates....
I once had a client who lived in a subsidized housing project who miraculously, barely, by the skin on the skin of her teeth..qualified to purchase a home...she was qualified for a gov't loan for a meager amount and there were very few homes to chose from in her price range and she had a short window to find a property and close escrow. We looked at the 4-5 that were in her range,and that would fit her financing criteria, and found a great little home home, with a great price, but it had bad carpet. I flat out told her she was being way too picky and needed to overlook the carpet. Champagne tastes on a beer budget.

To this day, she lives in the projects and that home, today, is worth twice what shewould have paid for it. No one likes to hear it when the doctor says drop ten pounds and eat more vegetables....sometimes we are also trying to keep you from making poor life decisions. Ask yourself if you are being picky for what you can afford. If not, see below!
7 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2007
I have only one time had a buyer purchase a property on day 1, first property. More often than not, buyers need to view several properties before they are able to gain the knowledge and confidence needed to make a decision. Buyers make decisions by comparison. As consumers, none of us want to overpay. By comparing various properties, buyers draw conclusions about value. Buyers make decisions my drilling down on their list of priorities. Sometimes those priorities are not yet defined, and viewing available listings helps them determine what is most important. A good buyers agent can expedite this process.

The number of properties a buyer needs to view depends upon how many unknowns exist in the buyers mind. If a buyer is unsure of condo vs. single family home, there is an added layer to the process. If a buyer is considering more than one location, it adds another dimension.

Lastly, the motivation of the buyer impacts the time it will take for a buyer to make a decision. For some buyers, the process can take over a year.

For the serious and motivated buyer, a month may be a typical time frame and 12-15 properties may be a typical number.

As a buyer, it may be helpful for you to make a list of must haves, would like to haves, and don’t wants. It may bring clarity to you and aid in your discussions w/ your Realtor.

Good Luck….and keep us posted.

Deborah
7 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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Hi Pak and All,

I still stand on my earlier post where I stated I didn’t have enough info to condemn the agent, nor suggest that you fire the person. I wanted to clarify for you, Pak, that does not mean that I think you, as a buyer should work w/ a Realtor who is not meeting your needs. Neither do I think any buyer should feel pressured into buying a property at any time, not after 3 showings or after 30. Helping a buyer prioritize their needs, and helping a buyer formulate reasonable expectations is part of our jobs as Realtors. Sometimes it is hard for a buyer (or seller) to hear, but that doesn’t justify rudeness on the part of the Realtor.

On this thread, I heard “fire this Realtor” and I don’t agree. Instead, I suggest to Pak the following: If you think the Realtor can do a good job for you, pursue a straightforward honest communication about your expectations and hear what and why the Realtor assesses you are picky. Perhaps the delivery of the message was offensive, and no you don’t have to work w/ someone you find offensive. Is there any possibility that your expectations do need an adjustment? I don’t know the answer to that. I am simply pointing this out, because if you are holding unrealistic expectations, you will find yourself traveling a road of frustration.

I saw some posts on this thread that said no buyer should feel obligated or pressured to buy after three (3) showings. I couldn’t agree more! I didn’t see anything in your post, Pak, that indicated the Realtor was expecting you to write an offer. I didn’t want to unleash on a Realtor for pressuring you into writing an offer, if indeed, the Realtor never did such thing. If the Realtor did pressure you, then, Pak, no I don’t think that is right. But, if that didn’t happen, and our participants on the board are reading into the situation beyond what it is, perhaps we need to be more careful.

Pak, I won’t outright tell you, “Fire Your Realtor!” I will tell you that you come first, this is an important decision, and you need to have confidence and trust in the Realtor representing you. You are entitled to look at many properties before making any decisions. For each person, that number is different. You have the right to be picky, but you must also be realistic. If you place expectations too high or unrealistic, it will only bring you grief and frustration. Perhaps your expectations are very realistic, and indeed, your Realtor was just impulsive and rude. If so, then, the right answer might be to move on. It’s simply impossible to ascertain from the limited info so instead I tried to play devil’s advocate in an attempt to help you best come to terms with the best next action for you.

All the best.
Deborah Madey - Broker
New Jersey
6 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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Deborah, I agree with your post 100%.

I read too many times on these boards "fire your realtor" or "get another realtor", from Realtors, no less.
5 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
It's hard to say you were being picky only after 3 showings, especially all in the same complex. On average I would say I show about 8-10 homes before an offer has been made. Some have been 1 or 2 and others up in the 30s. I would suggest you sit down and make a list of what you want and need. Then get back with your Realtor and get on the same page so they can do a proper search for you. You may not find the "Perfect Home" there is always some comprimise involved, but don't just settle on any house. Your going to be there for a long time.
5 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Unfortunately for me, Jim Walker is correct. I should not have advised you to seek another Realtor. Let me amend my response to state that I personally feel that you should not have been treated with, what I consider to be, disrespect. I work hard to serve my clients and customers in the best manor possible. I hope that others do the same. However, if you ever have concern about the way that a particular Realtor is operating, contact the local Association of Realtors or that Realtor's Broker.
5 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
For Todd, Linda, Lisa, and Ginger: You flat out advised Pak to "get another Realtor" You were wrong to give that advice. Pak did not ask you if he should change Realtors. I respectfully request that you read Articles 15 and 16 of the Realtors standards of practice, before you answer a consumers question with this type of advice, in order to assure yourselves that you adhere to those standards.

Pak created a survey to ask agents a numerical question about how many homes a buyer sees on average, before making a purchase decision.
His other question was "Do I have the right to be picky?" - There was plenty for you to answer right there.

My answers: Average 8 to 10 with homebuyers that actually wrote offers. Several needed to see only one house. The maximum for a homebuyer for me has probably been in the thirties or forties.

Re: Picky. - You have the right to be discerning. It will be your money that pays for the property.
You do not want to deprive yourself of homeownership due to unrealistic expectations. Most buyers and most sellers start with high expectations. Most sellers expect to be paid higher prices than market value.
Most buyers expect more home for their money.

Most of the "sales" part of a Realtor's job is to "manage expectations" For most of us, managing expectations involves educating our consumers on the inventory that is available, what the market value of that inventory is, and to explain how the real estate process works. We also have to explain that, in the immortal words of Mr. Jagger " You can't always get what you want, but if you try, sometimes, you'll get what you need!"
5 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Jim Walker, Real Estate Pro in Carmichael, CA
MVP'08
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HI Todd and Pak,

Todd, you could be right, but I tried to allow for some benefit of the doubt. I know that the stronger the relationship that I have with a client, the more apt I am to be 'bruatly honest" vs. searching gentle words for diplomacy. When I do not know my clients well, I tend to be a lot more cuatious. It takes time to hear enough feedback from a client in order to get a solid read. Yes, Todd, I agree with you that we need to overcome negative press and I, too, become frustrated when I hear of conduct or treatment that is quesitonable. So, clearly, I am not saying Todd is incorrect. I am just being a bit of a fence sitter. It's certainly something Pak should evalutate.

I have previously put one of my clients in tears, literally, when I told them what they didn't want to hear. Yes, the client stuck with me. And I didn't do it in a mean way. They really were in tears because of 'facing the situaiton', not because I was being disrespectful. (Yes, they stuck with me!)

Perhaps the Realtor was showing a property that met every criteria the buyer wanted and the buyer really is nervous about buying. That is a very real situation that we, as Realtors, do face.

Pak, Try to take a step back and look at the situation. If you really are uncomfortable w/ the Realtor, yes, by all means, you should hire someone you trust and with whom you have a comfort level. I am sitting on the fence on suggesting that you do or do not seek alternate representation.

Best of luck and keep us posted.

Regards
Deborah
5 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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Good advice here. Let me just add my opinion, find another Realtor. This is a serious purchase, do not let yourself be intimidated by someone that is not professional enough to help you. You might even write a note to the agent's Broker about this. We Realtors strive to overcome a lot of negative press. There are those of us out there who treat our customers and clients with respect. You are the decision-maker. We offer advice and experience. We are here to help you through what can be a pretty scary process. Good luck. Wishing you the best!
5 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Hi Pak,

Any agent who treated you like this after 3 viewings is not competent. I just finished up working with a couple who took a year and a half to find their dream home. They were fun to work with and they worked as hard as I did to make it all happen.

Find another agent immediately, very few of us are like the unfortunate agent you accidentally stumbled upon.

Most people look at 20-50 properties to find the right one.

Good luck Pak!

-Marc
Web Reference: http://www.marcpaolella.com
4 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2007
Short and sweet . . . I'd look for another agent.

You are the customer, you deserve respect and you shouldn't have to be asking the questions you've asked above. If it takes 30 condos, so be it. It's all about you, and don't forget that.
Web Reference: http://www.PatrizioRE.com
4 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2007
All great answers!

Pak - absolutely don't let that realtor bully you. I have worked with realtors with the same type of attitude ... but not for long. This is your money and your investment, you need to work with someone who is going to find the absolute best opportunity for you, not rush you into a decision and intimidate you.

Another good reason to never sign buyers agent contract - leave yourself the flexibility to shop for other realtors if the one you started working with isn't right. There are plenty of GREAT realtors who will do a fantastic job for you and not employ these types of tactics.
4 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Pak - I have shown anywhere from 4 homes to 72. They are both the extremes for me, but every buyer is different. I think my real average is about 12 -15.

I don't mind showing a lot of homes, because before I take my buyers out, we sit down and discuss what they expect of me, I tell them that I am a full time Realtor and only take on a few buyers at a time - - -so I expect some loyalty and consideration and they will get the same from me in return.

I ask many questions about what they like and do not like and we sit and select homes together then we go look. Once buyers get out there and actually stand in the homes - they themselves get a better idea of what they want and can tweak their criteria a bit. IMO there is no way a first time home buyer can find the home they are going to be happy in after looking at only 3 - all in the same building.

Take your time, but make sure you respect your agent's time as well. Do some homeowrk online, go to some open houses etc., but your buyer's agent is there to work for you. Find one that wants to help you.
Good luck.
Jodi Strober
4 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
I agree with Ute and Ruth. Those were pretty crass remarks by your agent. All buyers are different. A few times this year I have shown exactly ONE property to a client and made an offer. I am working with a first time buyer currently who I showed 8 different properties in one morning and she made an offer. I had another client early this year who I showed at least 40 properties to over about 2 months before he made an offer. Other clients I have worked with on and off over a year or two, shown them many properties, and they have not yet made any offers..

Every client is a new experience all in its own.
Web Reference: http://www.erinattardi.com
4 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Erin Stumpf, Real Estate Pro in Sacramento, CA
MVP'08
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Hi Pak. There's no set # of properties that needs to be shown. Whether you can be picky or not depends on what you can afford. If there is not a lot of inventory in your price range, the comment that you can't be picky may be justified. It may not be the most elegant way of expressing the concept. I personally don't count the # of properties that I show to buyers. I guess sometimes it can be one house and other times it can be 50 times. I have worked with some buyer for 2 years, but obviously I could not afford to do that with everybody. Buying a first home can be a scary thing and maybe your agent picked up on some fear and maybe that's why the agent mentioned "cold feet." Talk to the agent and tell him what you expect and it's alright to tell him that you did not appreciate those remarks after having only seen 3 condos.
Good luck to you.
Ute Ferdig
Web Reference: http://www.theMLShub.com
4 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 4, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
MVP'08
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Change agents. This is a life changing decision you are making, and you must be happy with the home you choose.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2007
Fence Sitter,

I recently managed a deal for a buyer went like this: We went out 2 times and found the perfect place. I wrote up the offer, it was accepted after only 1 counter and we had structured a quick 30-day close. In short: It was a total breeze.

Then? The problems began. I won't get into all the details, but due to unforeseen problems with the association, we were in escrow for nearly 90 days. I have never in my life spent so much time on the phone doing research, putting out fires, and trying to get this deal to close FOR MY CLIENTS because it's what they wanted.

When it all seemed to go swimmingly in the beginning, my clients never once said, "Um, all you really did was show us a few houses and fill in a contract.... can we get part of your paycheck?"

And when it all went south, during all of the uncertainty, my clients actually worried for ME that after all the work I was doing that I wouldn't get paid if we couldn't close (because I wouldn't, and it did seem for a while that we wouldn't close). I honestly never considered my paycheck; I was more concerned that my clients would have no place to live.

They are all moved in now, and just the other day I received a thank-you card from my clients, as well as a glowing testimonial letter.

Thank goodness there are some people that see the value in what we do; that realize it is just so much more than unlocking doors and filling in the blanks.

Hallelujah to that.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 7, 2007
Patti Pereyra, Real Estate Pro in Chicago, IL
MVP'08
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SUMMARY:

YES - BE PICKY
No average #
Highest #100

Ute: "Whether you can be picky or not depends on what you can afford. If there is not a lot of inventory in your price range, the comment that you can't be picky may be justified. It may not be the most elegant way of expressing the concept."

Ruth: "you keep looking until YOU think you are being too picky"

Brian: average 18 hours, 10-12 homes

Carrie: "Let your agent know how you feel."

Ginger: "tell him: "You know, you're right. I am picky. So I'm going to pick another realtor who can work with me on my schedule."

Linda: educate and pull comps

Ian: "write a list of what you really want "

Erin: "Those were pretty crass remarks by your agent."

Deborah: "Buyers make decisions by comparison. As consumers, none of us want to overpay. By comparing various properties, buyers draw conclusions about value."

Todd: "do not let yourself be intimidated by someone"

Dave & Lisa: "If you have a written buyers agreement with the agent, look over how it is written to see if it will be easy to get out of. "

Linda: "You are purchasing for the first time and there are bound to be emotional and sensitive times and you NEED someone to work with that is not only trustworthy but someone you are comfortable with."

Ruth: "benefit of doubt...if he spent hours with you explaining the process and limitations and educating you on various options and alternatives and said, "These are the only options for you." Then the choice might be to pick from those three or wait until you have more options. "

Jodi: "Take your time, but make sure you respect your agent's time as well."

William: "don't let that realtor bully you."

Michael: "as many as necessary"

Nancy: "your biggest investment to date"

JR: "unless they were insisting they had to move NOW and those were the only 3 available"

And my personal favorite...
drum role please...

Jim: "managing expectations involves educating our consumers...in the immortal words of Mr. Jagger " You can't always get what you want, but if you try, sometimes, you'll get what you need!"

I do think G should get a little more credit for what the Realtor "meant" to say and JR if you agree with someone 100% then give them a thumbs up.

Pak: Please let us know what you think of these 33 answers and what you end up doing. Obviously, everyone wants to know because this many responses without tangents in just a couple days is amazing.

Good luck,
Ruth
3 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
MVP'08
Ha ha..aren't we allowed to be picky when we are making such a HUGE important choice? I don't think there is an average number it is all based on what you are looking for.

What would be VERY helpful is to know what you want personally from a condo or home, down to the details. Let your agent know exactly what you are looking for and what you absolutely do NOT want. That makes it easier to weed through the listings.

You should definitely not be made to feel "picky" during your purchasing time because this should be an enjoyable experience for you!

Call or write me if you have any more questions or if I can be of assistance to you in any way.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 6, 2007
There is no rule of thumb for how many properties you need to show your clients before they are ready to buy. This truly depends on the client / clients, how well they know the area, and how well informed they are in the market conditions. If he/she is a first time condo buyer the agent should at the least be giving them the pros and cons of each complex in their price range, a good idea of market conditions, whether prices are going up, down or flat in the area. Moreover they shoud explain market customs, who pays for what (Escrow, Title, Transfer Tax, etc) and what should the buyers expect to pay in closing costs.
Our team has had clients who have felt comfortable writing an offer after seeing one house, but they were past homeowners and knew what they were looking for in a house. With that said, it is still the agents responsibility to at the least provide the buyer with a comparative market analysis so they can have a good understanding of the underlying value.
On the other hand we have worked with a multitude of clients who need to see plenty of homes before they felt comfortable making an offer. Depending on the client we may take them out first on a "power tour" looking at 15-25 homes/condos/townhomes which will take a good 5 -6 hours, we have found this to be very useful if the client is unfamiliar with the area. Also with all the online access to listings it can be very useful in helping narrow your search parameters, as well as giving you a good pulse on the market.

Good luck, make sure the agent you choose is giving you all your options, and most importantly looking out for your best interest!
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
You have the wrong realtor. Many people do not understand why we get paid the commissions we do. We have an obligation to show our clients as many condos or other potential homes as our clients want to see.

Please choose another agent. Interview your next agent by asking the question "How many homes do you typically show your clients before they purchase." A REALTOR will show as many homes as the client feels necessary. There are many ways to show a client properties.

State what time frame you feel is reasonable and find a REALTOR who can meet your needs.

Consider using a Certified Residential Specialist. A CRS is trained with education and has to meet a specific performance level to achieve that designation. Fewer than 3% of all REALTORS carry that designation. I would be happy to refer you to one in your area.

Good luck!
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
It sounds like you and your Realtor may not be on the same page about finding a home. Realtors, like buyers, can have different perspectives about the home search process. Did you sit down with your Realtor before you started looking to iron out what you are looking for, your price range, and your time frame for finding a home? Purchasing a home is a bid deal. It costs a lot of money and it iswhere you are going to live so you should feel like you are not rushed into a decision. I will also tell you that there are "buyers" who take a lot of time to look at homes and never can make a decision. Potentially the Realtor you are working with just dealt with a buyer who had them spend every Saturday for the last 5 months looking at homes without making a decision.

You can also ask your Realtor why they think you are picky. It is okay for you to ask questions of the Realtor to make sure you are on the same page. And yes, if you really feel like the person you are working with does not have your best interest at heart, you can choose to work with another Realtor. Before you take that step I would try and have a heart to heart with the Realtor you are working with so you can let them know where you are coming from and give the Realtor a chance to give his/her perspective. You may find that you really are on the same page and can move on from your current frustrations.

Good luck in your home search!
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
I certainly wouldn't expect someone to make their decision after seeing only 3 condos unless they were insisting they had to move NOW and those were the only 3 available, but I would have to ask if there were any other reason your realtor said you were "picky". I just showed some folks a few homes and, as I said, didn't expect them to pull out thier checkbook, but by their comments I did find them very picky. "I would have put the walkway over that way." "Why would you make this the TV room?" "I don't like that the bushes are so close to the house". These are all things that can be changed, and the only reason they were making these statements, IMO, was because they had picky personalities.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
This is a first for me. I agree with EVERY SINGLE ANSWER here. But I want to defend Ute and Deborah's benefit of doubt scenario and clarify my own buying habits. Three of the homes I have bought I worked extensively with a Realtor and saw at least 24 properties with each, some on my own at open houses but many days with them. Another three properties I bought after only seeing one home. One of those three properties was because it was all we could afford. We knew the neighborhood we wanted to live in and we knew the style of home we wanted. Only one house was cheap enough for us and after we had a contract, the village inspector asked if we wanted him to "condemn" the house so that we could get out of the contract.

Again, from the information provided by Pak, the easy answer is get a new agent - especially if you don't have a comfort level with him. However, if he spent hours with you explaining the process and limitations and educating you on various options and alternatives and said, "These are the only options for you." Then the choice might be to pick from those three or wait until you have more options.

I believe many Realtors here have a list of questions for interviewing a buyers agent on their websites. Search for other posts about home buying and buyers agents. Take a look at some of those questions.

Good luck,
Ruth
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
MVP'08
Pak,

You may have had an inexperienced realtor. Not that it is an excuse because there is no excuse for that behavior towards a client. Especially in this market. Realtors should be falling over themselves to make the buyer happy. And, if you are able to purchase a home you deserve the treatment. Let me tell you as a first time home buyer you are in a great position. You are able to purchase much more for much less with very good interest rates and even 100% financing for first time home buyers that is offered through many banks right now. Find yourself a realtor that you are comfortable with. You are purchasing for the first time and there are bound to be emotional and sensative times and you NEED someone to work with that is not only trustworthy but someone you are comfortable with. If you are out with a reator that you do not click with....break the appointment and try again.

When you are out looking at properties try to be specific on what you like and what you do not like about every property you are looking at. When I am showing properties. I start with what the client wants to see. While we are in the properties I ask them what they like and what they don't like. If I am not clear on what they mean we discuss it. By the time we are at the 2nd or 3rd property I have a good idea of what they want that they may not have realized. Example: They may have said I want an open floor plan. But after looking at a few homes I have discovered that what they wanted was a large great room with high cathedral ceilings but that they actually like the kitchen closed off and not visible. What I am saying is to make sure you are conveying what you like and do not like. It does make the realtors life much easier....assuming they are listening!!!

Best of Luck,
Linda J Sears
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
1) What is your lifestyle? Do you need space for an office? Need to be close to work?
2) Now write a list of what you really want in a home
3) Now with criteria in hand, have the realtor show you homes with the # of rooms, etc you desire.

Are you preapproved? This is what needs to be done so you know what you can afford.
First time homebuyers tend to drift...being indecisive and get upset when others, (Realtors and mortgage folks, etc.) wonder if they are wasting time with a person who does not have a clear cut understanding of what they want.

Some people make a decision on the 1st showing, others on the 20th. Just remember, a house is but four walls on a piece of land. In it are some holes and pipes so you can bring in water, dirty it, and send it back out, and 3 wires that bring in electricity. Add some paint, and trim and you have a house.

To avoid coldfeet, and questioning yourself, do 1 - 3 and revise in wrting to yourself at least once a week.
Web Reference: http://www.iansellsnola.com
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
A Buyers Agent job is to educate you in the market you are shopping in. And, showing you three properties does not qualify as such. Get a new Realtor who is willing to work with you and educate you in the area you are purchasing in. When you do find the home that you think you want to purchase make sure they pull comps of other solds and pull tax records. This is to make sure you are not overpaying for your new home. There is no exact number of homes a realtor needs to show you. It is when the Buyer feels comfortable with the market and finds the right home. Then they can make an educated decision.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
That was very rude of your agent. My agent has been awesome and if someone would ask me for a reference, I would recommend him hands down. In my market, we have alot of short-sales and foreclosures in my price range and he has been SUPER SUPER patient with me and the processes. We have been working together for over 2 months now and he has shown me 10-15 properties. This is a huge decision to make and you want to make sure that you make the right choice and don't regret it. I imagine that if you ended up picking out something you didn't like because you felt pressured, you wouldn't want to recommend him to anyone else either or go looking to him when you want to sell.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2007
Pak
The answer to your question lies in the available inventory within the buyer's parameters in any given market.
As a buyer you would want to see all the properties that fit your parameters so you can choose the best.
A buyer looking at property is a learning process for the buyer.
If a buyer's ideal parameters do not fit the market, the buyer can then redefine their parameters.
Best of luck
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2007
You need to get a new broker! It has been said a few times here, this person is looking for a quick sale, not serving you as a client. It take a few showings for me just to get an understanding of what a clients wants, even after they have sat down and told me what they think they want.
During my first three to five showing, I spend most of my time listening to what a buyer is saying, and reacting about every feature of the home. This way not only has he told me in an interview, he has told me by his or her actions, responses, and comments. And while I have sold a buyer the first home we walked into, it is by far not a normal sale.
Web Reference: http://www.altadenver.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2007
Your agents job is to ask thought provoking questions so you can find out what is inportant to you about buying your property. Once you have all that clear it will be easy for you to pick exactly what need.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 19, 2007
I think your Realtor really meant to tell you you have to be "realistic"
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
I'm not a realtor but I buy condos. As you know, the realtor gets money from the sellor - and my experience is that many of them are not very supportive of investors and they are pretty short with new homebuyers in a condescending manner. Mu gt feeling is simple: if you don't like the realtor, dump them and find someone who wants to make a sale. On the other hand, due diligent searches on your own, I haven't found a realtor in the past ten years that know as much about the properties as I do. To answer your questions specifically: 1) We usually look at about 20-30 condos before we actually buy one. 2) If you're buying a home then you should look at as many as you want to - especially if you are going to live there. If your realtor doesn't understand your needs, you have the wrong realtor.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Pak,
All good answers so far. The numbers vary by buyer. Each buyer is a diverse as the property bought. Let your agent know how you feel. Make sure you are on the right page. Let him know more specifically what it is you are looking for. Sounds like communication may not be great in this relationship.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Pak: To directly answer your question, my average from first meeting a buyer and going to an offer is 18 hours. On average, I show my buyers 10-12 homes before they make a decision.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 4, 2007
I'm glad Ute answered first because I would have made a rude comment about your agent.

Are you married? How many people did you date before you knew "this is the one'? Some people marry their high school sweethearts. Other people date 10 people a year for 20 years. But I think it is rare that someone never marries. Everyone gets cold feet but it doesn't mean you aren't serious about buying.

I've looked at dozens (24-36) of homes before each of them that I bought. But when I walked in, I knew right away. Some were possibilities that I could make compromises for, but you keep looking until YOU think you are being too picky and have to settle for as good as you can get. Once you decide that this could be the place, that's when you need to be even more picky. Open cabinets, take measurements, draw plans, take pictures, study the comps, and get lots of advice.

Good luck it will be worth it. Patrick on this forum clued me into the reference video.
Ruth
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 4, 2007
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
MVP'08
I would change agents NOW. Interview other agents in your area until you find one you "click" with. This is too big of a purchase to suffer through the process with someone you don't work well with. Personally speaking I would not consider my buyer being picky after only 3 units in ONE building. Not sure what the average number of homes I show my clients before they buy but I would say that after a dozen homes we may sit down for a reality check. That reality check consists of what does the buyer now consider the must haves and are there any features that in the beginning they thought they couldn't live without and after looking those featrues move into the nice to have category. Good luck!!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 8, 2008
Ah yes, here comes the "you need to DROP YOUR AGENT (and pick ME!)" parade.
The only customers I worked with for over a year and showed I-don't-even-want-to-count-how-many properties to walked into an open house and bought it from the listing agent.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2007
Find an agent who will take the time to work with you. Showing you 3 condos is not being picky!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2007
Seems like that agent is not doing his job. When I work with my buyers. It can take one to 100 houses to look at . My job is to satisfy my buyers and get them the house they are looking for and get them the best deal.
you should definately look for different agent !!
Good Luck !!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 19, 2007
You have agents and you have Professionals. A professional will sit down with you and get an idea of exactly what you are seeking in a condo. The Professional will then attempt to narrow down for you a list of condos that meet your criteria. You could walk into the first one and say Hallelujah! This is it. You may need to look at 10. I have shown 30 houses to clients in the past and when they walked into the one they wanted the bells and whistles went off and they wrote up an offer and closed escrow.
Look for another Realtor that is Professional and will take the time with you to obtain the most information needed to assist you in locating that special home.
I became a Realtor when I was out looking to purchase and the Realtor at that time yelled at me because I would not write up an offer on any of the 3 I looked over. Hmmm, wonder if it is the same person.........???
YES, you have the right to be picky. YOU will be paying the mortgage not the agent.
Web Reference: http://www.TerryOsburn.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2007
"being picky" means that he or she has no clue what you want. Maybe neither do you, but it is our job to work through questions after seeing multiple properties and work it out to your advantage.

You have every right to be picky - this is a lot of money!
If your agent isn't willing to get on the same page with you, then I have no problem in saying dump them....you need good communication with each other! This is a LOT of money for you to spend, and as I tell buyers... I may not figure out what you want right out of the gate, YOU may not even know what you want, BUT.......by the time its all said and done, one of these house will reach out to you and YOU will feel it!

Having said that, there are no number of houses you can show someone before this happens, but that is why communication, questions, etc are so important - as the agent can narrow down the field.

The most important thing is to know that you have someone on your side, that will do whatever it takes, no matter how long or how many houses you have to look at.

If you don't have that feeling, then work with someone else til you do. This is a big investment for you and you need a team player who doesn't expect a quick buck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 8, 2007
Fence Sitter asked:
Isn't that what a buyers agent is supposed to do is show properties and then tailor future showings as you learn about your client's taste.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I haven't determined whether or not Pak's agent was a buyer's agent yet. So it's hard to say what the realtor who told them they were too picky should have done. It seems we agents are more interested in this thread than the person who asked the question. I think perhaps Pak's mother told him he was "picky" when he was a kid, and this pushed some sort of button. I'm with G, I think maybe Pak was being unrealistic.

And personally, I wouldn't negotiate 50% of my commission to be credited back under any circumstances, unless my mother was buying the house.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 7, 2007
Ditch that agent, do the research on your own (use Trulia, Movoto, Realtor.com.) go to open houses, see FSBO listings and then find an agent to write the offer to get the deal done. Make sure you negoiate at least 50% of your commission to be credited back when you close. You will not be hard pressed to find someone to help you. Agents any responses?? Isn't that what a buyers agent is supposed to do is show properties and then tailor future showings as you learn about your client's taste. I remember what a pain in the $%# I was when I bought my first loft in Chicago.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 7, 2007
Pak,

I never said yo get a new Realtor what I said was "Find yourself a realtor that you are comfortable with." You may very well be comfortable with this realtor. At no time did I say "to get a new Realtor". Please do not put words into my mouth. I did tell Pak to be clear as to what you are looking for and what you like and dislike to make sure that the realtor is clear as th what you are looking for and what you really want. That will make the communication more clear. I feel that the problem was the the realtor did not either listen or understand what Pak was actually saying about the 3 that were seen.

I hope this clears up my answer.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 7, 2007
Unless your Realtor is planning to buy the home for you there was no need for a comment such as you say. There are also no average amount of showings to a buyer either a first timer such as you or an experienced buyer. Period.. It takes what it takes until YOU are happy putting an offer in on a home.
Web Reference: http://bianchis.biz
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
Some Realtors pride themselves in showing the fewest properties thinking they can pinpoint exactly what a buyer wants. As a Realtor looking for my own home, I know this is not true. Find an agent who will work with you as long as necessary. This may be your biggest investment to date, do not allow someone else to pressure you into a quick decision. If you need help finding a patient realtor in your area, just let me know.
Web Reference: http://www.TheOCExperts.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
You have had some great answers Pak. I agree with Todd and the others who said you need to find another Realtor. On your first "date" for him to tell you that you should have chosen one of the 3 is ridiculous. Sometimes a buyer will go out and choose one of the 3 that they see first, but more often than not in this market since there are so many choices available, buyers will want to see more before making their decision. Dave will typically take out a buyer to see 5 houses at a time (too many and they start blending together), and if the buyer isn't sure about those 5, they'll find 5 more and go out again. This will be repeated until the buyer finds the one that they feel is best for them. Relocating buyers are different of course, then we'll do more than 4 or 5 at a time because of timing. Last month Dave took a buyer out to a neighborhood to see 2 homes, they only wanted to live in that particular neighborhood, and they chose one, wrote the contract and are moved in. Last year we were working with a very choosy move-up family who looked at close to 100 homes, no kidding. At crunch time when we got a contract on their house, they insisted on seeing 16 houses in one day and that day they made their decision about one of the houses they saw. Talk about a long day!

In any event, unfortunately there are agents like this guy out there. I know this as we have worked with buyers and are working with one now who had a similar experience, the agent trying to force them to buy a house and that is not good at all. You want more of a consultant who is looking out for your best interest and not a quick paycheck.

If you have a written buyers agreement with the agent, look over how it is written to see if it will be easy to get out of. Worst case if you have a written agreement and it looks like you may be stuck, go to the agents broker, who owns the office and tell them what happened and ask them to give you another Realtor to work with who will take their time with you. Good luck to you!
Web Reference: http://www.webberteam.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 5, 2007
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