Alexandria VA Homes for Sale

No, I'm Not a Butler But Some Days I Would Love to Be One

I was inspired this morning by a post I read about NOT being a butler - i.e., a door opener for home buyers.   Someone whose only job was to grant access to homes buyers wanted to see.  

Oh, if only that were true...some days, I would love to be a butler.  It seems so much...simpler.

Rarely have I ever sold a home someone found online - oh, wait, I really need to give this some more thought because I cannot remember one single time when I have a sold a house someone found online. If I do think of that instance, I'll come back and update this post.  But for now, let's just say it's never happened. Ever. 

I have had clients call and say "call the listing agent and let them know we are making an offer!" after they have found the "perfect" house online - only to see it (and sometimes smell it!) in person and say, "meh, no, this isn't it.

Often, in response to my sending a list of properties for consideration, I get back a list from the Buyer, asking, "but what about these properties I found online." 

Sold. Sold. Sold. Sold 3 years ago. Under contract.  Short sale.  Short sale.  Cash only, no financing. 

The sad thing is, until Buyers actually see some of these "perfect homes" they are going to spend their time wishing for the house that never existed in the first place.  The "perfect house" that got away.

It never existed.  Oh, sure, the photos were nice but you couldn't hear the Parkway behind the house which rendered the back deck unusable during rush hour.  Or the storm drain that ran alongside the property.  Or the highway sound barrier that was at the back of the yard.  

Photos can artfully hide a lot of flaws - and I'm not suggesting they are intentionally hiding anything, I'm just saying there is a lot of detail that don't show in photos.  Not to mention you cannot see the neighbors' yards, the street, the location or the nearby roadways, although some of that certainly you can see on Google earth.  

You also cannot smell the house to realize the cats missed the litter boxes a few times or see the woodwork has been knawed on or smell the owner is a chain smoker. 

When I am working with Buyers, I ask not so much about what type of granite they want in their kitchen, but rather, about how they live, to get an idea of what layouts, what HOA amenities, what neighborhoods may work best for them.  All those things that Buyers cannot really get a sense of online, no matter how many photos they peruse.

All those things good Buyer Agents already know. 

Yes, there is a lot more to finding a house than looking at online photographs and of course, savvy buyers know this, which is why they seek out a good Buyer's Agent to help them understand and navigate the process, from mortgage lending to home inspections, protecting their best interests every step of the way.  

And, of course, along the way, look at a few houses. 



From Northern Virginia to the Northern Neck, we provide you with stellar service (just read what some of our former clients have to say about it) and top notch market knowledge to help you sell your current home or buy your next dream home.

 Visit our website to search homes for sale or for more information on how we can work together to reach your real estate goals.

Comment balloon 7 commentsSusan Haughton • July 16 2014 06:58AM
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