Jim Valentine on Real Estate
When you endeavor in most things of consequence or meaning there are rules to abide by. Sometimes they are written, codified, and even more than simply standards of practice, they are the law. Other times they serve to keep everyone operating within the boundaries of engagement to maintain the character and/or integrity of the endeavor.
Sports have many such practices, both written and principled practice, as did politics before the scorched earth method of campaigning took over. Real estate has them as well.
With the extreme competition experienced in the Northern Nevada real estate market this year we saw many people doing assorted things to get separation in the market. There is an old adage, “all’s fair in love and war,” but this is neither, it is a business venture that can have the business acumen of its participants overrun by emotion. That can be agents as well as buyers and sellers.
If you have a buyer that has her house sold to a cash buyer, all inspections are completed, and everything signed off, and her loan to buy your house is contingent on her old house selling … it is a contingent sale. No matter how safe you are told that it is, it is still contingent on the sale of that house and should be so disclosed and contracted for in any offer you write.
As the saying goes, “They could get hit by a truck!” Don’t try to compete better by eliminating such important information, call the other agent or detail the situation in an email and provide supporting documents of the sale transaction for them to review.
If you have a strong borrower that is putting half down and getting a loan that doesn’t need an appraisal, it is still a transaction that is contingent on the buyer getting a loan. No matter how strong they are as borrowers, things happen. Policies, practices and procedures change for lenders all of the time, sometimes they even run out of money to loan.
If you write a “cash” offer and it is really contingent on the buyer getting a loan you are not being truthful. Yes, the seller will get all cash at the close of escrow, but that doesn’t make it a cash sale. That is one of the oldest ruses in the book and is shameful when used.
Offering to list a home at an unrealistically high price to entice a seller to list their home is another sad practice of unscrupulous agents.
It is one thing to list at an “ambitious” price in a brisk market such as we have recently experienced in Northern Nevada, but there should be reasonable expectations to achieve the price, or close to it. The old practice of listing high and beating up the seller week after week to get reduction after reduction until it gets to a realistic price where it would sell just isn’t right. It builds unrealistic expectations in the seller and loses them time, and, if the market shifts, could lose the opportunity for them to sell in a favorable market.
There is no right way to do the wrong thing. No matter what your situation is, always, always maintain your integrity. Play it straight and your customers will benefit by the goodwill you generate in the field. When you are candid and forthright things go better and if anything goes wrong there is a healthy relationship in which to fix things rather than the doubts created by bad faith “bargaining.”
You don’t win if you take advantage of someone that is trusting you to do the right thing and you don’t. Who loses? Your customer first and foremost, and you, ultimately, for your real estate career will be abbreviated.
The system works. Trust that everyone will do the right thing and proceed accordingly.
The real estate industry has high standards, especially those affiliated with the National Association of Realtors, true Realtors, and most comply. There are a lot of new agents learning their chops and the good ones will learn the right thing and live by it. This is just a by-product of a brisk market when people think it is a good time to enter the business.
When it comes to choosing professionals to assist you with your Real Estate needs… Experience is Priceless! Jim Valentine, RE/MAX Realty Affiliates, 775-781-3704. firstname.lastname@example.org