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I Want What I Want When I Want It

March 10, 2020


You’re playing on Zillow or Realtor.com, and up pops your dream home! The logical next step would be to contact your Realtor asking for an appointment to see the home in person before it sells out from under you, right? The reality is, your Realtor would be doing you a disservice to accommodate your request without any pushback. Because when you do actually find your dream home, there are a number of things we all want to work in your favor.

 

I WANT my current home to sell quickly, once I’m ready to list it.

I WANT to sell my current home “as-is” for top dollar.

I WANT to get a good deal on my new home.

I WANT a convenient, same-day move from my old home to my new one. 

I WANT to choose my close date.

I WANT all of these things in the order of my choosing.

 

Wanting all of these things does not make them realistic, especially with that last I want in play. This is why setting realistic expectations with our clients on the process of buying and selling real estate is one of the most important parts of our job. From a customer service perspective, we naturally want to tell clients everything they want to hear, but we also pride ourselves in preserving the value of our clients’ investments on both sides of the transaction.

 

Here’s what happens when the cart is put before the horse. Let’s say you find your dream home and want to write an offer BEFORE preparing and listing your current home for sale. Unless you are lender-approved to float two mortgages (and personally comfortable with the idea), the offer on your new home must be written as contingent upon the sale of your current home. In other words, your home loan won’t be approved on the new home without the proceeds from the sale of your current home. Trying to get a seller to accept an offer with a contingency included for a home that has not yet been listed is extremely difficult, so to sweeten the pot, the offer price must be inflated in order to be taken seriously. Sellers assume a huge risk by agreeing to take their home off the open market while they wait for your current home to hit the market and eventually close, which could require weeks or even months. Realtors do not have a crystal ball to say exactly when your current home will sell. 

 

What happens next? If you get this far and go under contract on your dream home, then you are officially under the gun to sell your current home quickly. This means you may have to price it under value in order to move it fast. The contractual date by which you must try to sell creates a great deal of pressure, as the seller on the other side of the deal is not obligated to extend that date indefinitely. Welcome to Stress-ville!!

 

So you can see where this is going. Adding unnecessary stress and giving up what could amount to tens of thousands of dollars during negotiations makes many buyers rethink their decision to buy before they list. And it all starts with the lure of that one beautiful home popping up in your online search results! 

 

To get the BEST deal on both the buying and selling sides, I recommend this strategy:

  1. Get your current home staged, photographed, and on the market for a price that is in line with recent comps. 
  2. After about a week, we will have a good feel for how quickly it will sell (based on showing traffic and feedback). 
  3. Once you go under contract to sell, you are ready to make an offer on a new home. This will make your negotiating position much stronger now that you have a buyer and a set close date for your current home. 

 

If you NEED to buy before listing, here are the 2 main steps I recommend:

  1. Have The Wistrick Team out for a listing/staging consultation to get your home “list ready.” 
  2. Once your home is ready to go, we will have it professionally photographed and pre-loaded into MLS (ready to pull the trigger).
  3. Once you find your new home and go under contract, we’ll immediately list your current home on the open market. 

Be careful! There are investment companies out there that prey on all of the “I Wants.” They will offer to buy your home for cash, but in the end you will not sell your current home to these gimmicks for what it’s worth. Stay smart and stick with The Wistrick Team … we will be your consultants and help strategize the best move for your family.

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