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‘Mr. Seller, Tear Down That Wall!’

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Brandon Rodriguez

By Brandon Rodriguez

Barriers are never good when selling a house.  I know that all the good agents know this and have instructed to their clients the harm this can cause.  However, the barriers are still up.

One weekend, I scheduled property to show for a client.  The list was ready and the phone calls to our Centralized Showing System were being made.  Mind you, I had at least 11 to show at the request of the client.  These are real scenarios and my personal thoughts behind them.

House 1 – “Can only show between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. with a one-hour notice.”

My Thought: This is a four-hour window.  You might think to yourself, “Brandon, there is a good reason for this.” The seller (insert your reason here).  In a buyers market, this four-hour window will not get the seller many showings.  Buyers are working people who usually have jobs between these hours.  Buyers will only see homes when it is convenient for them. “Well, if they love the house, they will make time.”  Not so. They will move on to the next house and forget “the home they loved.”

House 2 – Day one listed the property for $400,000 and day three listed property for $415,000.

My Thought:  Yes, you read that correct after three days the seller raised the list price.  The reason was because they had multiple showings in one day.  My clients saw that house on day one.  I did ask if they sellers would honor the original price the response was, “No, they put so much work in the property and we had so many showings they feel it was priced below market value.”  I see the shock on your face, because I had the same look. Agents, please be mindful of what the market is doing and price it accordingly.  Buyers do not like a price hike within three days of the property being listed.  I tried my hardest to get them to the original price especially since there was no refrigerator. My clients of course walked. Did I mention the seller was also the agent?

House 3 – “House needs 24-hour notice, with a 1-hour window and approval.”

My Thought:  Another barrier with time constraints, we followed the rules it was approved to show. Great, right? I got a call 30 minutes before showing,
“Mr. Rodriguez, House 3 has canceled; they were showing but did not give a reason.”  Since this was the second time we scheduled, the buyers were not thrilled.  It is ultimately the seller’s decision, which we can respect, but they just turned away a potential sale.

House 4 – “Two hour notice.”

We pull up to the house and there are items on the drive way with signs that say, “free, take them.”  My communication to my clients was to overlook that since they are in the process of moving.  I walk up to the door and there is a note on the doorbell “Please knock, babies are sleeping.”  I knock and the sellers with children are still in the home.  This was an uncomfortable situation with the buyers.  In order to sell a home a buyer must feel comfortable in the house and not be distracted or feel they are invading someone’s space.  That will be the only impression they will have of the home.

I can go on with the other homes, most of which declined a showing for one reason or another.

There are times where it is impossible for the sellers not to have barriers, and that is understandable.  The take-away from my blog is simple: Our job as REALTORS(R) and fiduciary duties to our client is to advise them the quickest and most efficient way to sell their home.  Barriers will only prolong a potential sell.  So I say, “Mr. Seller, Tear Down That Wall!”

Brandon Rodriguez is the principal broker of BrandonMichael & Associates located in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Visit his Web site: www.bmatexas.com.

Comments
  1. I was most amazed one time when a seller actually slammed a door in mine and my client’s face and yelled “Come back later!” after we had made an appointment to show the home.

    As if she expected that my client would actually want to see the home after that, let alone deal with her through the negotiation of a home sale!

    Often times these barriers that sellers put up when it comes to showing their home is a good indication of how the rest of the sales process will go.

    If you really want to sell your home, you need to let it be shown without having to make buyers and their agents jump through an obstacle course of hoops. Of course, there are some legitimate impediments such as a mean dog, sleeping children, or days when the seller is sick at home and doesn’t want visitors.

  2. I had this problem with one home that I tried to show for MONTHS. The seller had health problems and so would never allow us in to show the home. My thoughts were, You’re in a short sale situation so you have limited time to sell before you default, we don’t need you to show us the home just answer the door, and the buyers were already talking about writing an offer on it just by looking at the outside! No lockbox and no showings when they weren’t home either. No listing agent showing it to us. I would call almost every week to try to show this home to multiple buyers and we could never get in. Finally we were able to make an appointment that was good for both parties but the seller informed me that they had an offer on the property! It turns out my buyers cancelled because there was talk of layoffs at their company so it worked out for them that they couldn’t get in since they’re holding off on their search. This property is also still active, a month later. I believe the owners were in denial big time, since most of those weekends they were never there.

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