4 Big Real Estate Fibs!
Here’s a list of 5 lies to look out for when speaking to a suspect real estate agent! But thats not all! Consumer’s lie as well!
1.puff·er·y: (noun) undue or exaggerated praise.
I think we all saw this one coming. When an agent says, “This home is beautiful!” what’s the first thing you think? “Uh huh, sure it is.”
There is a challenge however. The listing agent’s job is to promote the home they have under contract. No one is going to want to see, “This mildly attractive rambler with a decent sized family room and almost no updates in the kitchen. Schedule your showing today!”
What then follows can be, A) highlighting the home’s best features, B) stretching the truth to unbelievable lengths, or C) claims that warrant legal reprimands.
(The correct answer is A.)
Recommendation: Today’s home buyers are better equipped to combat this lie because of all the online photos. Also, I don’t think it’s out of order for other real estate professionals to kindly correct outrageous puffery when they find it.
2. “I actually have a buyer client that would be interested in your home. You should list with me!”
There are a million and one ways to bend words in order to take advantage of people. We’ve all heard them.
Here’s one that I don’t think, in the history of real estate, has ever worked out.
Recommendation: If you are interviewing listing agents and one brings this one out, reply quickly with, “Oh great! What is his name?” If you experience even the slightest pause, that’s the agent’s brain on speed-dial trying to pull up a name that might fit the bill.
3. “There’s a great deal of interest in this property.”
Not all real estate agent lies are told to clients. Here’s one that Realtors tell to other Realtors.
The hope is that the Realtor will share this fiction with their clients to pique their interest. Their thoughts become, “If other people want to buy this house, it must really be great.”
The agent that tells this lie might have an even greater lie on deck. “We have an offer coming, so you tell your clients to hurry!”
If only were there was an instant replay that we could all refer to, in order to chronicle which agents lie and how much.
Recommendation: Be very skeptical of this one, unless another real estate professional can confirm the claim.
4. “It’s a great time to buy a house!”
Without transactions, agents have zero earning potential. The market somewhat self-regulates but there is an inherent push for more.
The truth is that selling your home and buying your next home are two separate deals that are likely at opposite ends of the financial see-saw. So, if it is truly a great time to be selling, odds are it’s not the best time to buying… and vice versa.
Recommendation: Also take into consideration whether you’re moving from a lower priced home into a higher one and weigh that with what the market is doing. Each deal should be evaluated on it’s own merit. Then, take both outcomes and combine them.
Not so fast, consumers lie too
Want to know something scary? Home sellers lie too. “Has your basement ever leaked?” a diligent agent asks, only to hear a quick, “No.”
When the buyer’s home inspector invalidates that response the home owners feign ignorance. I’ve seen it more than once, and it’s actually against the law when it comes to truthfully completing the required Seller’s Disclosure.
As it turns out, so do home buyers. There’s a famous industry saying, “All buyers are liars.”
Try a few of these on for size.
- “I have no interest in new construction, definitely want to purchase an existing home.”
- “Oh sure, we can afford this home. Our loan officer is my uncle and he says we’re good.”
- “$XXX,XXX is the highest I can go.”
- “We appreciate all you’ve done to help us in our home search, we’ll definitely use you to buy our home once we find it.”
Hopefully this discussion will lead to a more enlightened marketplace where agents, buyers and sellers can all interact with more integrity.