Every house is unique and special. Even in apartments or identical units, there will be some differentiating factors that make it unique. It could be the décor, the color, the view, or simply the way the house is styled. If your product is so special and unique, shouldn’t the buyer also appreciate its uniqueness?
Only a particular kind of buyer will be interested in your house. The buyer must have certain characteristics. He/she must be interested in buying a house. He/she must be willing to put in enough money to make an attractive offer. He/she must be looking for the kind of house you are selling.
Matching a home with the right buyer is very difficult. Your home/house is a unique product, enticing enough for only a few, so how do we make sure it attracts the right buyer? There are thousands and millions of sellers in the real estate market at any given time. How do you cut through the noise and sell your home? It is straightforward to sell a home, but it is tough to sell a home for more than the estimated selling price. That’s why we are here to help you.
Today we will get into a buyer’s mindset and understand what a buyer wants. By familiarizing yourself with the buyer and his needs, you can provide the complete experience and right home to them as a seller. This article will be useful whether you are a home seller or home buyer.
This is something we have mentioned before in our blog, understanding the buyer. You must relate to the buyer’s point of view (POV) so you can know what he/she wants. Knowing how they will buy and what they will buy can make a huge difference in your sales method.
What will a buyer want?
*A house in his budget range (preferably) lower- A buyer who has a budget of $300,000 will not look at a house that costs $450,000. For the right house though, he may be willing to go up to $310,000. That’s why you must KNOW HIS BUDGET RANGE
*A house in his preferred location- We have discussed that buyers may give a premium price for a location so if you have one that is prime or convenient, you are already in a superior position to sell. YOU CAN CHARGE A PREMIUM if your buyer wants that location badly
There are other things that a buyer may want or consider, but price and location remain the top things he desires. You can’t take actions such as changing your structure or renovating it, but you can target the RIGHT buyer once you know their POV.
A buyer will have clarity about his requirements. He will be specific about his desires and also what he isn’t willing to pay for. This clarity is encouraged by realtors as it saves them the time or hassle of wasting time looking for houses that a buyer will never buy.
Buyers today have a wealth of knowledge on their hands. In this age of information, they can research prices, locations, and homes sitting right in their own houses. They can even compare a home while checking out another. This makes it complicated and tedious because it also confuses the indecisive buyer.
Should you buy now or buy later? You like that house, but what if it something better comes up at a cheaper price? These questions can stress a buyer out and leave them hanging.
At the first stage of looking for a home, a buyer will establish a price and other non-negotiable features. They will zero down on a location. They will find a good neighborhood or community. Its access to public transport and convenience will be judged. They will dismiss certain houses on external factors only. For example, a young upwardly mobile couple will not buy an old townhouse, however prime the location is. But a family could purchase it since it would mean a lower price and they could do the renovation when they are ready.
These are all first-stage decisions, and they lead to the buyers finalizing a shortlist or selecting top picks.
Through their online and personal research, buyers will create a shortlist. This list will include the specifications they have managed to limit themselves to. A buyer can now state his home needs to have a garden or yard for his kids or a maximum 20-minute commute to the city or in a good school district. Websites and apps now have filters that can let them do the search on their phones, thus simplifying things. So as a seller, you should be using these tags or filters when you list your home.
No buyer will ever decide on one house. After his shortlist is created, he/she will have to start comparing the homes. Is the garden well maintained? Is the neighborhood tolerant and welcoming? Has the house been painted recently? These are the kind of questions a buyer will ask to gain more information. He will try to dismiss homes using this data and shorten his list. After his questions are answered, the buyer is now left with the houses that he will personally view.
Visiting a property or home is always a big step. A buyer is now armed with all the information he needs to make a choice. Viewing the home will be the cherry on top that can tilt the decision in a seller’s favor. But coordinating a visit and viewing is also complicated. You need to find a time that works for everyone. They will also need to view the neighborhood if they aren’t familiar with it. On average, a buyer will see anywhere between 10-12 homes before making an offer. That’s a lot of homes! They may tend to get muddled or even confused about the houses they have seen.
To stand out, prepare a list of common answers to any questions the buyer may have. The agent or realtor will be around to act as a mediator but having the seller anticipate questions provides a morale boost for most buyers. It is also a gesture of good faith.
A buyer will always worry about making a poor decision or paying a higher price for a house that isn’t worth it. There will always be a disadvantage for the buyer as he/she may not be privy to all the information the seller has on the property.
A seller will know the noisiest neighbor, the dog who barks late at night, the peak traffic times, or the loose outlet which needs to be fixed. He will be aware which step creaks, which door is jammed or the fastest way to the city during peak hours. A buyer would respect getting complete information and transparency from the seller.
If a buyer has made you an offer then it means you have already cut through the noise and made an impression. Yet, what you DON’T DISCLOSE can also affect your sales. A home that provides total due diligence, surveys, home inspection, and helpful information can make the choice really easy for a buyer. It can also lead to you getting a better offer. Let us give you an example:
You have 2 similar homes and you have made the offer for one particular home. The seller replies to questions with a vague ‘Unknown’ or ‘No Representation, which basically translates to their hesitation to let the buyer know. A buyer will then do his/her research and if satisfied, submit a LOWER offer than the asking price. This is considered acceptable when a seller withholds information. The buyer may also completely change his mind and withdraw the offer on the basis of their reluctance to supply answers. You have lost a valuable sale and you are back to square one.
In another scenario, after receiving the offer and inspection forms, the seller decides to be honest. He gives detailed, complete, and true information about the pitfalls or areas when asked by the buyer. He supports his home by assuring that the investment would be worth it when you weigh the pros and cons. A buyer will be impressed by his commitment and transparency. They may consider meeting the asking price or even offering a higher price if they love the home.
You should also consider a home warranty. A home warranty allows buyers some coverage should something go wrong during the sale or after it. Home warranties are available with variations for homeowners. If the home warranty is paid for by the seller, it could reassure the buyer about his decision. It moves the significant cost of repair to the warranty company and soothes the anxious buyer. Common home warranty programs cover things such as heating systems, leaky roofs, pipes, pool equipment, washer dryers, plumbing, electricity, and appliances. These programs will make maintaining the house easier and simpler.
Simply put, a buyer wants these things to help him find the right home. Knowing the steps he will undertake before selecting a home is so helpful.
How can you, as a seller meet his demands while also making your sale? You can start creating trust right from the beginning. Give a personal touch to your sales and methods. The buyer will have already gone through too much research or paperwork before they meet you. As a seller, you should focus on making him/her comfortable and easing the process for them. Be honest, upfront, market your features, guide the buyer through all contingencies and project the best possible future for them in the home.