Talking trash about my house


Dear David,

We came home during a showing and overheard the seller’s agent trash-talking our house. Their agent is the one who booked the showing, shouldn’t they be trying to sell the house? – IRRITATED

DEAR IRRITATED: I’ve shown thousands of homes to hundreds of buyers over the last two decades. For my clients, the house-hunting process always starts with a buyer’s interview (and no, they don’t need to bring a resume).

By getting to know my clients right from the start, I can find the properties that align with their needs. I’ll often ask new buyers to make a “top ten” list of what they’d like to see in their next home. These lists can vary dramatically from one group to the next, and sometimes even between spouses. Budget tends to be the primary concern, followed closely by neighbourhood, commuting time, kitchens and/or bathrooms, yard size (whether big or small), and the ever-popular “freshly renovated”.

When I understand a buyers’ family dynamic, I can show them properties that suit them well, at least on paper. I typically spend several hours searching though listings to find the “best of the best”, with the goal of checking as many boxes off their wish list as possible. I often say if we find a house that’s an eight out of ten, it’s probably “the one”. A “ten out of ten” house will often land byers in a whole new price range, since they’ve likely built a wish list based on features from several different properties.

Before we can fully appreciate a home, we have to see it in person. When showing a house to clients, I’ll tell them what I like about the property, but also point out aspects of it that don’t align with the goals we set out early in the search. I suspect that this is what you may have overheard from the agent who was showing your house. Remember, it’s not an agent’s role to talk buyers into buying a house; instead, they should be helping their clients to find the right house. As a seller, overhearing this conversation may have hurt your feelings, but it’s important to keep in mind that the agent is working for the buyer, not for you.

I tell my buyers that the goal is to rule out every house we see. When they find a property that they can’t rule it out, they’re home!

Wants and needs are one thing, but if there’s something specific that the buyer’s agent misunderstood about your property (ie. where property lines are located), feel free to call your own agent and have them pass on the additional information to the buyer’s agent.

PRO TIP: Selling your house can be hard. I often remind sellers that while an agent may show a prospective buyer 10 or 15 homes, the buyer will only purchase one. Not every house is perfect for every buyer, and as a seller, it’s not productive to take everyone’s opinion to heart. #Advice #AskDavid #TheNegotiator

David is a top-selling Broker in Kitchener-Waterloo Region. He works personally with you when selling or buying your home. Call or text today for your free home evaluation! 519-577-1212.