While the end of the transaction may seem within reach, there are often events that occur after an offer is accepted that lead to cancellation or—at a minimum—a very turbulent transaction.
Transaction Terror – Do you impede your closings?
Here are 6 ways that agents often sabotage their own pending transactions.
- Writing Offers for Buyers Who Are Not Qualified. Sometimes agents get so excited about a new homebuyer lead that they scoot around town showing properties and writing offers, only to learn that the buyer isn’t well-qualified. Always communicate with the buyer’s lender to confirm that the lender has completed a full pre-qualification, and not just a cursory phone interview. Make sure that the lender has checked credit and completed income verification. No agents should write offers for buyers who aren’t ready to buy; that’s a sure way to end up at cancellation not closing.
- Neglecting Due Diligence Activities. You’ve heard the adage, “Slow and steady wins the race.” It applies real estate and your due diligence. Always take time to properly investigate a property before putting a buyer into a pending transaction. Specifically, if you have not provided buyers with information about HOA fees, local schools, or the items that they indicated were crucial to their buying decisions prior to writing the offer, you may be the cart before the horse. Buyers need all of the necessary information before making an offer. Surprises (such as high HOA fees) can be deal breakers, and you don’t want to be responsible for breaking the deal.
- Making Atypical Requests. Pending transactions often fall through after the buyer conducts the home inspection. To assure that this doesn’t happen to you, agents need to carefully manage any repair requests or issues that arise after the property inspection. If a buyer wants all new flooring and paint, for example, this could be the death of the transaction. Make sure to work with clients and set appropriate expectations before you make irrational or extreme requests that could send the transaction down a bad path.
- Generating Inappropriate Communication. Agents also frequently wreak havoc on their own transactions by communicating inappropriately with other agents. Always keep all emails short and professional. If you have something more significant to share, try to handle it over the phone. If you are angry, perhaps you should keep that anger to yourself. Unprofessional email and text messages are not conducive to a smooth and efficient transaction.
- Relying on Email to Deliver Bad News. Agents often act as saboteurs when they deliver bad news via email. Almost any sort of news—from a delayed closing to an additional buyer or seller cost—is best delivered over the telephone since written communication can often be misinterpreted. When you run your business solely via email and text messages, you run the risk of creating problems instead of resolving them.
- Allowing Emotion to Reign Supreme. Arguably one of the most challenging aspects of a real estate transaction is keeping personal feelings and emotions at bay. Buyers may have an overly strong attachment to a repair request or piece of personal property that they want included. Sellers likely have strong emotions because they are disconnecting from their property. The best way to assure a smooth transaction is to avoid getting embroiled in this emotional drama. Always act as the voice of wisdom and remind your client that he or she hired you in order to be objective.
Agents are like pilots; they control turbulence. Transactions are stressful, and they involve a lot of ups and downs. It is your job to mitigate that stress by solving problems, anticipating difficulties and averting them before the transaction becomes an all-out failure. While you cannot guarantee that the real estate transaction will have no ups and downs, through your expertise, you can work to make the ride as smooth and efficient as possible.