Please help me with your communicating tips to First Time Home Buyers?

Lately I have had First Time Home Buyer's that seem to have unbelievable expectations.  Advised by friends, co workers and family members which causes huge problems....
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November 08 2011 - US
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Answers (7)

Profile picture for talk2tlb
John, great response! I had initially written a similar one which Zillow I guess determined was too long. You are so right though, having that initial meeting to establish a rapport and gain a buyer's confidence makes all the difference, first time buyer or otherwise. They need to feel that your priority is to help THEM first and foremost.
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November 09 2011
Too broad of a question to give a good answer to.

With my First Time Buyers, especially on the first meet, I get them to the office for a sit down, and have a prepared package that I go through with them.  We talk about what they need and what they want.

Often, this conversation negates the home they wanted to see in the first place.  We can find some homes online in the office, get them scheduled, and head out.  Saves a LOT of time this way.

At first, I thought they would object to coming 'all the way in to the office' and just want to meet at the property. 

What I have found over the years, is that at the house, they are too distracted to hear what you are saying.  If you try to talk upfront, they can't wait to see the house.  If you talk at the end, they have seen the house and are ready to leave.  Now you are 'selling them something'.  They are not paying attention to the 'Important Part'.

So I actually address 'friends and relatives' at the first consultation.

I do this every day of the week, even on Sundays.  Your friends and family, though trying to be helpful, do this a few times in a life time. You cannot please everyone, and this has to be a decision made by you, for you.

So at your first meeting, they have to trust you and see your confidence, as well as be confident that you are there to "HELP THEM", not neccesarily make a living.

The old addage holds true, do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life.  Do the right thing, and the money will follow.

Even my buyer rep ageement states that.....we'll accept the co-op fee offered as payment in full.  If they want a FSBO, that will be x% or [insert flat fee here]. 
Hope this helps.
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November 09 2011
Profile picture for sunnyview
First time buyers that have unreasonable expectations need to have a sit down and be told the truth. If they expect a house in pristine condition, they will pay more. If they expect a short sale at a reduced price, they will have to wait. If they are putting the minimum FHA down, they will be at a disadvantage against cash buyers. Most FTB houses will not have a gold plated toilet and imported marble.

Friends and family have varying degrees of insight into the market ranging from none to a lot. Asking the FTB about the off site advisors background can help tell an agent where the advice is coming from. The market is different and people are weary of agent advice in general right now. Being honest and explaining the market information arms the FTB with real information that tends to shut down the informal gossip form well meaning friends/family.
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November 09 2011
Patience and honesty about the market.  They are new to this home buying process and all they know is what friends/family have told them and of course, what they have read on the internet or heard on TV.  All markets are different, so what they are hearing on TV may not be what is going on in your market.  So just educate them about the realities of the process and what you can do to help them with it.
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November 09 2011
Profile picture for talk2tlb
Hi Patty,

I try to address expectations in my Buyer's Agency consultation. I also offer that if they'd be comfortable with bring those same people along to look at all the homes, so that they can be informed as well and know what's reasonable and what's not, I am happy for them to tag along, while cautioning the buyer that this could make them privy to information that they may not have shared, such as price range they're looking in, financing plans, and the like. I tell them I will do whatever makes them, my clients, most comfortable but the one thing that I won't do is allow my clients to do all of the leg work for their well intended friends and family and then have them expect to show up on their white horses at the last minute and knock or verbally trash a house that they and I have picked out as being the cream of the crop for their price range and needs. That if they want that privilege, they have to run around and see all the lemons too. You'd be surprised at how many of my clients and their well intended friends will decide that they're in good hands and that they are smart people, who truly can think for themselves. By asking up front in the buyers consultation, it has allowed me to in almost all cases nip it in the bud before it becomes an issue for the buyer or myself.

Good Luck ;) hope this helps, feel free to message me if you'd like any additional input, as I have always thoroughly loved working with buyers, once I put a system into place to help them and myself reach their goals.
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November 08 2011
Profile picture for the_country_hick
Patti, what kind of expectations are you talking about?

Are you referring to buyers with poor credit and no down payment wanting 100% financing and seller concessions?

Are you referring to buyers who expect you to tell them about the various school districts?

Are you referring to buyers who are looking for pre-bubble pricing? If so that could easily happen due to bubble dynamics.

If you explain the unbelievable expectations more help could be given.
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November 08 2011
Profile picture for SoCal_Engr
If you want to know what the weather is like, stick your head out the window.

If you want to know what the local market looks like, take a walkthrough on some local listings. "Show" tends to work much better than "tell" or "explain". After "show", then maybe "explain" will make more sense.
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November 08 2011
 
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