About a month ago, I got a call from a friend of a friend. He asked if I could show him a house that caught his attention. I asked him if he was in the market for a new home and he told me that he was just starting his search. He said that he was looking to buy a new house in six months. I was really surprised with what actually happened.
The Home Showing
I agreed to show him a house in an area of town I am familiar with, but not one where I do a lot of business. When we went through the home, I could tell that this house wasn’t going to work for him. Because we’d just met, I asked him a few standard questions as a real estate agent.
What is your budget? He didn’t exactly have one
Are you pre-approved for a mortgage? He said that he wasn’t
Is this an area where you want to live? He explained that his wife worked about 20 minutes away, and he worked about 20 minutes away in the other direction, so they were trying to shorten the commute as much as possible. Ideally, this would be the perfect area.
What is your time frame? About 6 months…things were too hectic right now to begin a new home search.
At the end of the home showing, and the second time, I heard that the buyer was interested in buying a new home 6 months out. This made perfect sense.
The Next Day
The next day I got a call from the fellow I’d shown the house to the night before. He wanted to know if I could recommend a lender to him. I gave him the names of a few people I tend to work with and let him get on with his day. After all, I thought, he’s six months out.
I got a call later in the afternoon that my 6 month out buyer had put in a mortgage application with one of the lenders I recommended. His finances were ok, but it was going to take a few days to get a pre-approval letter. When the letter came in, I gave him a call. I said, “Hey, did you want me to set up a search for you so you can start looking at homes in your price range?” He said that he wasn’t ready yet, and I didn’t want to push so I left him alone.
Can You Show Us This House?
On Friday night, I got a call from my 6 month out buyer. He said he saw a house online and was wondering if I would show it to him and his wife. Because they were now pre-approved for a mortgage, and the home was definitely in their price range, I agreed. We looked at the second house, and it wasn’t a fit. I did ask if he wanted me to set up a search. He agreed this time, but he did say that he was still 6 months out as far as making a purchase.
We Want Your Opinion On This House
On Sunday afternoon, I got a call from my buyers. They’d happened to be driving along and noticed an open house so they stopped in. They really liked the house when they saw it, and wanted me to go take a look. I told them I’d be happy to take a look, but between the time they told me they were interested to the time I was able to set an appointment, the house had gone under contract. They were crushed when I told them the news. I asked them again what their time frame was, and they said that they weren’t really interested in buying for another 6 months.
The Following Week
The next week, I got a phone call from my long term buyer. He said that he saw a house and would like to take a look at the inside. We went to the house that night, and they said that they were ready to make an offer. When I called the agent for the seller, she explained that the house had gone under contract from the time we saw the house to the time we got back home. My long term buyers were crushed. Again. I offered to show them a home similar to the one we’d seen but one block over. They said that they weren’t interested and were just going to wait.
Maybe They Aren’t Looking To Buy A New Home 6 Months Out?
I know, I know. The actions these buyers are taking are not in line with what they are saying. As we live in the show me state, even I could figure out that they wanted to buy a new house, and they were interested in doing so today, not 6 months out.
Three Days Later
Three days later I get a call from my long term buyer. He asked if I could show him and his wife the house just one block away. I agreed, and there was a lot going for this particular home. I asked them if they wanted to write an offer, and they said yes. Our offer was accepted the following day.
What Happened To Looking To Buy A House In Six Months?
That’s what I want to know but probably won’t ever get the answer to. I can’t figure out if my buyers were trying to negotiate with me to some end I’m not sure of, or if they were serious about the six month timeframe. My only thought is that perhaps they were being respectful or courteous to the people they were staying with before they had a home of their own. If they’d have come out and said, “Hey, we’re miserable living where we are, get us out of here!” I could see how that might come across badly.
I’m positive that many real estate agents would have just waited six months before they got serious about calling and following up with these buyers. I would have done the same thing, but, they went and got pre-approved, and they really never stopped looking once they got they mortgage pre-approval. This was an indication to me that if the right house for them came along, they might purchase. I very seldom ever turn down requests to show property. My thought is that if the buyer is willing and able to buy a new home, it’s not for me to be the one who keeps them from buying the home of their dreams. If there’s anything to be learned, it’s to pay attention to someone’s actions versus what they say. Their behavior provided quite an insight into what they were really interested in….buying a home! And, it wasn’t six months! Agents, have you ever had something like this happen to you? Drop me a line in the comments section.