How to Recognize the Signs of a Serious Home Buyer
As an agent, it can be very frustrating to spend time with a potential buyer, even speaking with them about an offer, only to find that they aren’t ready. Some are new to the market and are just testing the waters. Some seem serious but get cold feet when it’s time to make the commitment. And some are just window shoppers – they enjoy the process of shopping but aren’t motivated to make a move. Your time is valuable, and it’s frustrating when it seems like it’s been wasted. There are some signs of a serious home buyer to look for to assure that your time is well spent.
A Serious Home Buyer Will Have Financing in Place
Buyers who are serious about purchasing will have gone through the process of getting their financing. Some buyers only have their pre-qualified amount from a lender, which helps guide them toward houses in their budget, but doesn’t show that they are ready to put in an offer. A buyer who has their pre-approval letter is ready to put in an offer when they find the right house.
A Serious Home Buyer Will Be Working with a Realtor
While some sellers will try to save money by forgoing a realtor, there is no financial reason why a serious buyer would attempt to do so. Nearly 90% of buyers use an agent when they are ready to purchase a home. If a buyer appears to be acting on their own and hasn’t begun working with an agent, chances are they aren’t a serious buyer yet.
A Serious Home Buyer Asks the Right Questions
A good sign of a serious home buyer is one who is asking the right questions. They want to know about the neighborhood, the schools, property taxes, maintenance issues, utilities, and other important topics. Sometimes a buyer will speak out loud about how they’d arrange the living room, assign bedrooms to children, or what they could add to the backyard. When a buyer is speaking in a way that shows they are picturing themselves in the house, that’s a sign they are serious and ready to buy a home.
Other Signs of a Serious Home Buyer
Some signs of a serious home buyer may be more subtle. As an agent, watch how the buyer appears at an open house. Only about 50% of those who attend open houses are serious about purchasing a home. Sometimes they are looking to buy and want to get a sense of the process but aren’t ready to make an offer yet. Sometimes they’re just curious about looking around the house. A serious home buyer will often show interest and ask important questions, rather than being overly critical or evasive about their intent. Sometimes a serious home buyer is one who is a few weeks into their search. Any shorter than that may mean they won’t feel like they’re seen enough to offer, while those who drag out the process for many months may not be in the right mindset to purchase at all.
Not many buyers will come right out and tell you they’re only window shopping or testing out the waters, so sometimes you’ll need to use your conversation skills to draw that out. Once you’ve recognized the signs of a serious buyer, you’ll know the time you invest with them could be well worth it. We’re always looking for agents to add to our team. If you’re interested in becoming an agent with us, contact our office today!