Home Buying and Selling in Sacramento
The longer I’m in the real estate business in this town, the more I see why selling Sacramento homes to neighbors can be difficult. For starters, let’s say the neighbors already own a home. They want to sell and buy a bigger home in the same neighborhood. Of course, when their home goes on the market, it’s worth a lot of money, so much money that even Trump would have a hard time describing how much money that home is worth, and if he isn’t the worst liar in the world I don’t know who is. I got a big kick out of Jack Ohman’s editorial cartoon yesterday: excuse me, I have to take this call from Winston Churchill, heh, heh.
Everybody in the world has their own way of perfecting communication skills. For some, it involves sticking their head in the sand and hoping someday it will all go away. Avoidance isn’t the best solution in most situations. Certainly not in Sacramento real estate, which is whipping by at a fast pace today. For myself, I try to include a bit of humor when I’m working on my communication skills. The trouble with that, though, is not everybody shares the same sense of humor.
A buyer called yesterday to say he was obtaining a preapproval letter to get a $100,000 loan. I asked how much was he putting down? $300,000? Well, that got a big laugh, but unfortunately, it’s also pretty close to reality.
Some of the conversations I’ve been having lately with buyer’s agents in Sacramento seem as bizarre as the actual weirdness of quantum entanglement. For those of you who haven’t spent much time pondering quantum entanglement, this is an instant thing that happens in the universe. No, I’m not talking about the life-on-a-blade-of-grass theory, derived from dropping acid in the ’60s; this is not that foo-foo stuff. This is science. It’s a real phenomenon.
It’s what happens when two particles mirror each other after an interaction. You’ve got this one particle, which could be a Sacramento buyer’s agent, and another particle, which could be, say, a San Diego buyer’s agent. These two agents meet and become entangled to the extent that if the Sacramento buyer’s agent skins her knee, the agent in San Diego feels the burn. You think this sounds like craziness, a movie plot, but it’s real.
If I’m gonna take an overpriced listing, I have to really like the seller. Because I know that I will be in a long-term relationship with that seller as we work toward price reductions, pulling the home off the market, putting it back as a new listing, and fielding unending agent comments about the crazy price after showings that go nowhere. Yet, little messes up that relationship more quickly than when a seller demands I discount my fee for no good reason.
Sellers like this are basically saying, hey, we want you to work like a dog trying to get a price for our home that is impossible to obtain, and we don’t want to pay your going rate. That’s three strikes, the third being brain damage. Rottsaruck there, buddy. You deserve to work with a discount agent, yes, sirree. Go hire a discount agent who will shoot pictures with a cellphone and throw you under the bus after the buyer’s home inspection. See how happy that makes you.
Unless the buyer’s agent changes the terms in a purchase contract, or we negotiate different dates, many Sacramento listing agents expect buyers to conform to the contract. Well, we don’t actually expect the buyer to know this because it’s up to the buyer’s agent to explain timeframes and duties to the buyer. So often, though, it’s click, click, click in DocuSign, what I can’t call press hard, third copy is yours anymore, but same principle. Some agents do not explain this stuff to the buyer until it’s too late, and then emotions escalate.