Beware of Deadline -Crazy Buyers

J Philip Faranda April 26, 2010

The crazies are out there. You might be working with one right now and not know it. But they are out there, and they aren’t going to be nice if things don’t go their way. The crazies are the last minute home buyers who want to qualify for the tax credit by April 30. If you have gotten a call or inquiry from a “last minute” buyer in the past week or two, be very careful. At best you may end up spinning your wheels, and at worst you could have a grievance or lawsuit brewing. 

Here’s what I mean: you are contacted by a buyer with the end of April right around the corner. They want to buy before the deadline on the 30th. They either want to see your listing or have you take them on tours. They want to look right now. They even have their pre-approval locked and loaded. They are legit. So you take them out, and lo and behold, you find something your first day out. It is a move-in condition place, great locale, and priced right. They love it. They want it. 

And they make a lowball offer. They are outbid. 

There is still time, so you keep looking and find another place. You admonish them to learn from their mistake and make an aggressive offer. This one has multiple bids! Highest and best! They offer 95% of asking. They lose the house. 

At some point, the people start to get embittered. They have read about the “buyer’s market” in the paper and they wonder aloud if the fix is in. Did you present their offers in person? Did you tell the seller they were good buyers? I thought you were a high-producing agent, why are we 0 for 2? 

The crazies don’t understand the dynamics of the local market. They want a “good deal” and would never think of paying full price. They actually hate deadlines and the stress of buying a home has them on edge. At some point, they start to blame you. Then, your energy is off finding them a home and on defending yourself against accusations from left field. 

 

  • Their friend called the listing agent on the first home they lost and was told it was still available for showing. 
  • They emailed the listing agent on the 2nd house and they were encouraged to come look. 
  • They found another house that supposedly had an accepted offer advertised on a website. 
If you had the time to research it, you might find that the crazies worked with 3 agents the past 4 months, none of whom could get them across the finish line. Their last agent actually “fired” them, not the other way around. 
Here in New York, attorneys prepare contracts so we are basically past the last weekend where anyone could conceivably sign a contract by the deadline. I just parted ways with some crazies today, and it was utterly ugly. We broke our rear ends for them the last 3 weeks, but to no avail. 4 offers, no deals. My advice was ignored. They weren’t realistic buyers, and they short-circuited on us this weekend. Buying real estate is stressful enough, but when you mix in a deadline and the loss of a large tax credit, some people lose their sanity, and that is exactly the sort of person I dealt with today. Crazy. 
If you are in a market area where there is still time to make the deadline, be very careful with the 11th hour “opportunities.” It may be fool’s gold, or worse. CYA. 

 

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