Good Rule of Thumb in Real Estate: Be Prepared

Posted by: Mike Farmer on June 2nd, 2008

If I am showing homes to a buyer and have plenty of notice—this is usually with out-of-town home buyers—I preview the homes I haven’t already seen. This has saved me from many embarrassing situations.

Working with buyers entails knowing the area and having an idea of what the house is about, but more importantly, you discover all the quirks about getting into the home, surprise dogs, surprise odors, surprise messes, and so forth.

At times I have gotten busy and didn’t preview and invariably there were surprises—wrong showing instructions being one, alarms not noted in the listing info being another—one time it was four Great Danes in the master bedroom. I thought the buyer was going to have a heart attack.

Stumbling on these surprises with the home buyer is not a good idea, because it causes the buyer to start having doubts. When you preview and take notes and you inform the buyer ahead of time of what to expect, it makes you look prepared, which you should be.

It takes time but a quick run through the route and getting a good idea of what to expect is a smart practice.

Home buyers love good information and it’s the buyer agent’s responsibility to know the product and the area. Sometimes you might be showing in an area you are only partially familiar with and driving around looking for property makes you appear incompetent.

If you don’t know the roads well, it can be confusing driving to a property cold and unprepared, so previewing is also good for knowing the best route and knowing what’s around the property in case the buyer has questions—like “what is that huge pile of junk at the end of the street?”—or “Is that a chemical plant across the street?” :)

You get the point. Like a good scout, be prepared!

To read more from Mike, click here.

Mike Farmer is the owner/broker of Mike Farmer Realty in Savannah, Georgia.

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2 Comments on “Good Rule of Thumb in Real Estate: Be Prepared”

Ken in Chicago

While it’s nice to know the home and exact location before viewing with a client it really isn’t possible most of the time.

Wayne Long

“If you don’t know the roads well, it can be confusing driving to a property cold and unprepared”

LOL – One of the places we show property is in Lee County AL. All the roads are named Lee Rd. something like an address may be 122 Lee Rd. 2097. To make it even more fun the roads are not in order so Lee Rd. 2097 may come after Lee Rd 487. (My wife says they had a drunken bingo game where the rd. #s were picked). Then just to keep you on your toes they set the road sign back about 50 feet so that you have to be beside the road before you can see the sign that tells you what road it is.

Needless to say if you don’t KNOW where the road is – you will be doing a lot of U-Turns to find the road.

So – I agree it pays to be prepared. :)

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