Profile picture for techladi

NINE realtors and no house

All -

I have been through at least 9 realtors and now I am through with them.  I am looking for ideas on how to view properties without a realtor.  I do plan on contacting a realtor once I locate a property, but for right now, I would just like to view houses on my own.

Thanks -
  • December 07 2009 - US
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Answers (17)

Profile picture for Blue Nile
And I might be willing to look at 150, if it only took 1/2 hr each, and if it wasn't so much time and trouble for the Realtor to schedule with the owner, and open the doors.

But having owned for so long, and having been in so many, and having gone on many "home tours", and having seen some of the world's most renound architecture, and having worked with hundreds of floor plans; I already have a good knowledge base of what is available, what I might want or need, what the maintenance requirements will be, and what conversions would be possible at what expense.

Yes, I might be unique in those aspects, but when it comes right down to it, if someone had already decided on a pitched roof, a Spanish style flat roof will probably not meet their desires no matter what the Realtor thinks.

And though a Realtor may have decades of experience "filtering" houses to review for a client; some clients don't want that service and have their own filtering methods.

I don't need to look at 20 to 40 suits to determine if it is a good buy or a good fit, or a style I like, in spite of keeping and wearing the suit for over 15 years.  The same is true for a house structure, and residential property, or a neighborhood.  If you know your criterion, and you know your prices; looking at a lot of extras may be fun, entertaining, interesting, etc; but it doesn't really help accomplish the task.

And if I was planning on looking at 100 houses, I would probably get a Realtor and Broker license just to be able to pay for the lock box access.

Besides, no matter what one buys; even if it was "perfect" for the initial search criterion, situations change and may require something different.  I remember one Ski instructor that lived across the street in a two story house with raised porches and back yard swimming pool; but there was a freak ski accident on the slopes and he came back parapalegic.  The house had to be retrofitted with an elevator.  Things happen.  Circumstances change.
  • December 16 2009
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Although.

You might eliminate a whole bunch of houses, but by refusing to see them - especially before they are sold - you miss the opportunity to evaluate them and see why the market valued them, the way they did.

If you narrow your viewing to a handful of houses, you've placed yourself in the position of evaluating - determining the market value of - the house you choose only in the context of the half-dozen or so rejects.

If I were planning to live in a house for, say five years, eighteen hundred nights, I might be willing to see twenty or forty houses just to see if, maybe, there was something I had been missing in the checklist phase of my search.


 
  • December 15 2009
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Profile picture for Blue Nile
Yes, a "good feel" is certainly not enough to make an offer; but it is sufficient to rule out the majority.  If you know what you want, you usually can tell if something is not it just by the details and a few photos.

Sure, I would like it if the floor plans were posted on line.  But even from the roof lines, one can get a reasonable idea of the floor plan, especially with the help of some interior photos.
  • December 15 2009
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Profile picture for hpvanc
In retrospect,  I would have to agree with this:

"Considering all the photos that are available on line, and the Google drive-by street views, and the Satellite aerial and Bird Eye views; I would think a "tech" person could get a good feel for a property without ever going inside.  And of course, for noise and ambiance, you can easily go and walk around the block."

I would have only needed to set foot in 5 houses, and I did make offers on 3 of those (2 of them are still on the market, plus the 1 I bought).  At the outset I wasted a lot of time researching houses that she was suggesting and actually allowed myself to be talked into looking at 12, that I should have known better.  She never did send me info on a single house I was interested in, I found all 5 houses I was actually interested in.  You do actually need to get inside and look at a house before you make an offer photos, street and satellite, and walks around the block don't tell the entire story hence the 2 I decided not to make offers on.  Hindsight is 20/20 and if I ever buy again I will definitely do it differently.
  • December 14 2009
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I've been in real estate a little over 15 years and my worst client was my husband!!!  Yes we were already married but he was tough to please and still is ;-).  I ended up "settling" on the 77th house we looked at.

How did you come across these 9 Realtors?  Did you interview them to see if you are a fit?  Are they familiar with the inventory and the market conditions of the area you are looking in?  It is very importatnt that you feel 100% comfortable with the agent that will represent you.  Ask for recommendations from friends and family members.  Don't just call the agents from the sign, they already represent the seller and will tell you wonderful stories about why that house is perfect for you.

Good luck,

Naima

  • December 14 2009
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Profile picture for Blue Nile
Considering all the photos that are available on line, and the Google drive-by street views, and the Satellite aerial and Bird Eye views; I would think a "tech" person could get a good feel for a property without ever going inside.  And of course, for noise and ambiance, you can easily go and walk around the block.

Yes, Realtors that try to convince anyone of anything are extremely annoying.  But if you tell them that you don't want their "opinion" up front, and that you want them to just keep their comments to themselves; and that you will cancel the contract and walk the moment they make any comment that sounds like a "suggestion"; I think most would try to accommodate your request.  But the longer they have been in the business, the more set they are in their ways, and they may fall back into old patterns.  There are several Realtors I see on a regular basis that only want to argue with me.  And then I have a number of really good Realtor friends that I can call up anytime with any Real Estate question and get a straight forward answer without any "marketing".  Those are the kinds of "friends" I would consider to represent me.

And if I get one of those cold calls from one of those Realtors that ask "have you considered selling your house?"; I tell them it is for sale, and that they can buy it from me when they are ready, and that the price is posted.  (I don't tell them it is a "make me move" set at 4 times the present market value).

My favorite Realtor on Zillow is the one that used to go by the user name "Elv!s".  "Marci" is also a good choice.
  • December 14 2009
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Profile picture for hpvanc
 Might I suggest that part of the issue is apparent in the username of "Techladi" 

I too work in tech and the only person I know in my workplace that was satisfied with there agent was one who used an agent that has a full time job as an electrical engineer (wish he was licensed in the state I was looking in).  Several of them switched several times before finding a home.  I personally found one that had been a computer programmer in an earlier career, and though I slogged through based on obligation for time invested and better the devil you know than the one you don't, but we were barely speaking by the time I closed, due to the lying and half truths that are standard industry practice (I even told her up front that I have 0 tolerence for such things, and that emotion will be kept out of my decision as much as humanly possible).

Part of the issue is that most real estate agents only seem to be capable of communicating with other people that work in sales.  I see some agents posting on here regularly that I agree with most of the time like Tiffany, Hamp, JDConstant and a few others, but even they have irked me as being to salesy on occasion (I'm assuming I would be able to work with them in reasonable but not perfect harmony).  The only one I have never had that issue with would be AZRob, and maybe I have just never caught it.

Hopefully Techladi will chime back in and enlighten us what some of his/her (is Techladi cute for Tech Lady or Tech Laddie?) issues have been.  I don't expect it to be useful for NAR bots on here, but maybe some of the agents that opted not to have the lobotomy can benefit.
  • December 13 2009
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wow nine realtors. there are ways

open houses
and fsbo's

I am curious why so many realtors are you not setting you expectations up front.. are they not finding you any homes? That just seems like alot of realtors to be something there doing?

best of luck
  • December 13 2009
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That is quite a few realtors to have worked with.  I believe Jason provides a pretty good answer below.  If you are just wanting to view houses on your own you have a couple of options in my eyes:

- FSBOs
- Open Houses

Neither would 'commit' you or the realtor at this point.  Many realtors will not show a home without a pre-qual and a buyer's representation contract.  This makes sense in that the realtor does not want to take you to a home which you may not qualify to buy and the buyer's representation lets the realtor know that you are sincere in your search for a new home as well as to allow them to work in your best interest.

Best of luck to you.
  • December 13 2009
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Jason! So funny, except that if you're switching every six weeks, none of those "others" can be truly "significant." Perhaps they're "Insignificant Others."

Anyway, tethladi, thanks for sharing your story, although, I'm not sure what your point is. I'm going to go and watch Bon Jovi now.
  • December 13 2009
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Viewing properties listed by realtors is going to be next to impossible without one being present. Despite all the exaggerated reasons to have a realtor, there is one reason that stands above all that makes them valuable. Access.

Since you don't state why you have been through so many or what the problems might be, we can only make assumptions. Some of the advice given has been excellent and should be considered.
  • December 08 2009
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Profile picture for sunnyview
9 realtors sounds like a lot, but you may be targeting the wrong kinds of realtors for what you want. I have gotten better at selecting agents over time that fit my buying style. Speaking personally, I like to look at a lot of property especially in areas that are new to me. I'm talking every listing in a certain price range my top 3 zip codes. I would be a very difficult client to deal with if I was expecting my realtor to preview all those houses or to show me each one individually. Instead, I find an agent that is honest, professional and willing to let me look for myself. I ask for a daily/weekly email update of all houses that fit my criteria and only ask to see the inside of a small handful of houses. That system works for me, is respectful of my realtor's professional time and allows me to research properties more throughly on my own so I can decide if I really need a showing at all. As long as they keep their professional commitment to me, I am extremely loyal to my realtor. I would never go around them to the listing agent to try to cut the commission or buy a house that they gave me on the MLS without compensating them.

My advice is to make a list of the things you are looking for in a realtor. Don't get danced by the sales pitch. Listen to what they have to say and make sure that they listen to what your needs as a client are. Good agents listen and take their cues from you, bad agents don't. There are good agents out there. Maybe consider talking to a few agents here or posting your local area to see if any reply. There are some excellent agents on Zillow. I am very picky about realtors, but I have been lucky enough to meet agents here that I would be pleased to use myself. Give it a try, you might be surprised.
  • December 07 2009
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most realiable -> most reliable
  • December 07 2009
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Search on www.realtor.com , most realiable real estate website with MLS
  • December 07 2009
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Profile picture for SeattleHome.com
Go sit down with an agent in their office and talk with them.  If you're comfortable working with them, then call that same agent every time you want to see a home.  If not, go sit down with another agent.  You would like an agent to be loyal and hardworking for you, so you're going to have to be loyal to that agent. 

Clearly you're not happy with the results of your agent-swapping thus far, so continuing that system of home searching won't work.  You'll find that your agent will work much harder for you when he/she knows you're not calling 3 other agents.
  • December 07 2009
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not to point the blame... but, if you were on your 9th significant other in a year would you consider it a problem with the people you date or something you are not doing right..?..

my first suggestion would be
-Stop calling the numbers on every sign in front of a home you like.

After that

- decide if you really want to buy a home (I meet lots of people in love with the idea of say "I am looking for a new home" but aren't really, it is just nice conversation for friends... Buying a home is a process but, if you are seriously searching it doesn't require looking at 50 homes)
-Find 1 agent who you are comfortable with and sign a buyers agency agreement
-help that agent to determine what you are looking for (if you haven't already done so, then you yourself should figure out what, where, when, why and how you want to buy)
-Have realistic expectations of prices, the market, and location

keep in mind that not every agent was meant to work with every buyer... so look for your agent carefully and if you meet a good agent he/she will just as carefully be assessing whether they want to work with you also
  • December 07 2009
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Profile picture for Gracesellhomes

Why did you go thru with so many agents but no one can find you a home?
Which area you are looking for a home?

Grace Keng
RE/MAX RES
Northern Calf
DRE 00919545

  • December 07 2009
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