Ways To Say Goodbye To A Home Buyer

Say goodbye to a buyer

An agent who needs to say goodbye to a home buyer when the relationship becomes strained might find that getting creative softens the blow. You don’t have to feel the need to punch them in the face, I’m speaking metaphorically of course.

To be fair, there are likely a certain number of buyers and sellers who feel like saying goodbye to their agents as well, and I’m thankful that doesn’t happen to me. Fortunately, there are easier ways to say goodbye to a home buyer rather than sprinkling the laxative powder into your buyer’s coffee before you go out to show property; just kidding, of course, I saw that in a movie.

That’s because when I’m in the groove and working, I am very focused on the job at hand. I shoot straight from the hip and don’t mince words. Part of the reason I’m so straightforward with people is if I made up stuff, I’d have to remember what I said and, at my age, I’m lucky to remember where I left my cell phone. The other part is I see no reason to be dishonest or untruthful with anybody, whether they are my clients or my sister asking me if she looks fat in those jeans.

But not everybody wants to hear the truth. Some people prefer to skirt around issues and ignore the white elephant in the room. Confrontation makes them uneasy. There is a tactful way to deliver even the worst types of news. Back in the day, when I was a Deputy Sheriff Coroner for Yolo County, I had to knock on people’s doors to tell them a loved one died. Talk about tough conversations. I asked them if I could come in and then asked them to sit down as I had some very unfortunate news. Of course, I had to tell them the bad news. Then I would go to the phone on the kitchen wall and call someone to come over, so they were not left alone. This was in the 1980s and we had rotary dial-up phones on the wall. After delivering this kind of news, learning to say goodbye to a buyer, easy.

I don’t tell people what they want to hear. I tell my buyers the truth in the way I see it. So, when buyers called me during the dinner hour, demanding that I drop my fork and dash over to show them a home they were standing in front of, I declined. I explained a particular house may not fit their needs because it was a fixer. It was not an updated, turnkey dream home they desired. I suggested they stand in the street and listen to the roar of traffic whizzing by. Did they want to buy a fixer on a busy street? No, it turned out, they did not. I sometimes sense buyers were irritated that I was right.

Nevertheless, I have shown buyers homes for months: during rainstorms, early mornings, holidays, weekends, late evenings and over lunch. During that time, I may write many offers, none of which flew because they were in high-demand neighborhoods or our buyers have low down payments. The buyers sometimes do not want to hear that sellers weren’t going to bend or that comparable sales supported the list price. Because, after all, now that they may be living in a rental, so they have time to delay. Ultimately, another lucky buyer ready to pay list price or more with a high down payment may swoop in and buy the house right out from under our buyers.

I tell buyers if they are interested in a home to write an offer. Especially in desirable, hot neighborhoods. Because in California, purchase contracts aren’t binding until the 17-day inspection period has passed and the contingencies have been removed. If it’s a hot new listing, it will sell to somebody else while buyers are taking their time weighing pros and cons. I explained this concept to the buyers, who implied I must be smoking crack because none of their friends ever had a real estate agent tell them they could cancel a contract. Which makes sense. Most agents won’t tell a buyer this because they want the deal to close. Agents want to get their commission and use it to buy tropical drinks on the beach in Hawaii. What a joke, ha-ha. Who has time for a vacation, not this busy Sacramento top producer?

In the end, we can decide to part ways. I may often suggest buyers work with another agent because we were not seeing eye-to-eye and were not communicating well. At first, they are sometimes shocked and refuse to end our agency relationship. My best line, ” I would rather turn you down than let you down.” That can stop the back and forth and clearly I say goodbye to a home buyer. I just fall down on my sword take the blame and wish them well.

The one thing we have sacred is time. I choose to spend time with people who value my time. They don’t know the sacrifices I make to my life, to my health, to my sleep, when working on their behalf. I give all or nothing. So sometimes when a buyer or seller snaps my head off I tend to immediately question, ” Do I really want to continue to work with someone who expresses this type of behavior? I may let it go one time as maybe they had a migraine, I suffer from those. If rudeness happens once, ok, but with me twice and you’re out. I don’t need three strikes to know what comes next.

Finding the house is only half the battle, however. That’s when the real fun begins and an agent’s expertise pays off in spades. I say more power to them. Rather than argue and call them on the carpet, I cut them loose., I say goodbye to a home buyer. Because sometimes you just gotta let ‘em go, nip your losses in the bud and get on with helping other clients find their dream home.

If you would like to work with one of our exclusive buyer’s agents, call Weintraub & Wallace Realtors today at RE/MAX Gold, 916-233-6759.

–JaCi Wallace

say goodbye to a buyer
Weintraub & Wallace


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