The Most Popular Questions Asked in Real Estate
What are some of the most popular questions buyers and sellers ask during the home buying and selling process and WHY do they ask them? Read on so you can be prepared no matter what side of the “For Sale” sign you may be on.
QUESTIONS, QUESTIONS, QUESTIONS. Every buyer and seller has them – in fact A LOT of them. Curiosity is at an all time high during the home search as buyers and sellers try to size up each other and their motivations. What are some of the most popular questions buyers and sellers ask during the home buying and selling process and WHY do they ask them? Read on so you can be prepared no matter what side of the “For Sale” sign you may be on.
How long has the property been on the market?
This question is used to assess the seller’s motivation or to try to find out if something is “wrong” as to why the property is still on the market. The longer the marketing time usually means it lags as a result of price in relation to its condition and competition.
Why is the seller selling?
Every buyer wants to know this and is another question used to try to determine motivation. However, as a buyer you can’t assume that the seller’s reason for selling is going to make them any more motivated to sell the home for less than market value.
How long have they owned it? How much did they pay for it? What do they owe?
Buyers always want to figure out how much equity sellers have in the property and how much room there may be on the price or asking for concessions like closing costs or repairs.
Is someone living here now?
Buyers are always curious – especially on furnished homes that may not look lived in. They love trying to figure out if the property is just sitting, potentially costing the seller money every month or if it is actually being used.
An array of maintenance, home improvement and cost questions:
– how old is the roof, the air conditioning system , can a pool be added, how much is insurance on the home, how much are utility bills, etc.
Answers to these questions may affect how much a buyer is willing to pay for the property or whether they will make an offer at all. They are trying to figure out if they are going to be taking on the money pit and can they do what they want to as far as possible future expansion to the property, even if they have no intention of doing so in the future.
What type of financing are they doing – want to know so they can anticipate with handling an offer and how that could affect their obligations in the transaction with respect to any required repairs, appraisal, asking for closing costs, etc.
How much of a down payment will they be putting? – Sellers want to assess the buyer’s financial viability i.e., how much skin in the game will they have with this?
What other properties are they considering? Want to know what their competition is and perhaps where they stand in relation to it.
Are they local or from out of the area? This may give an idea as to their timeframe – relocation buyers typically make decisions in a shorter timeframe
What is their timeframe – when will they be deciding? Sellers get nervous once a buyer returns multiple times for a showing and are anticipating a decision.
Do they have a house to sell first – the proverbial question – sellers always want to know the answer to this one. That may be less of an issue today than a few years ago when the market had experienced a slow down.