When you find a property that you absolutely love that’s also absolutely loved by many others, or when you’re working on finding a place in a hot market where everything seems to get snapped up before you can even get your offer together, it can be tempting to pull out all the stops to land your ideal home. But you should know what not to do when buying a home.
There are instances where aggressive behavior is smart, like when you’re considering things you can do to help sweeten your offer to sway the buyer to your side… but then there are things you can do that will jeopardize the deal and create home buying blunders.
For example, don’t spend all your free time hanging out in front of the house you want. Don’t disturb the owner, knocking on their door without an appointment or without your Realtor, looking over the fence to the back yard as you imagine the gorgeous patio set you’re going to put back there, or pressing your face against the window like a kid in a candy store. You may think it makes you look eager, interested and a motivated buyer… but the seller will think you’re bonkers and a borderline stalker. Just don’t do this – it adds nothing of value to your process.
Next up, if you’ve made it to the offer stage and you find yourself up against other bidders, don’t give sellers your life story. Sure, you want to do things that will help them see you as a responsible future owner of their current home, and sometimes writing a personal letter of intent can be very helpful when you’re making an offer. But telling them a grand sob story, detailing heartaches and heartbreaks that date back to your teenage years, intimate stories of your parents and family… it’s too much. Instead, be forthright and honest with the seller about your desire for and intentions with their home. Keep it simple.
Lastly, though you may be tempted to humanize yourself to the seller this way, don’t bypass your realtor. This means any questions or concerns you may have should and can be addressed with your realtor, who can then relay them to the seller and get the answers you seek. Going around your realtor to talk with the sellers directly can hurt you in the negotiation stages – and show you to be a desperate buyer.
Sellers, like lenders, want to be sure they’re selling to someone who’s stable and ready to take on the responsibilities of home ownership – and they don’t want to feel pressured into the transaction. Stay cool, calm and collected, and you’ll find the house of your dreams in no time.