Something I see happening a lot with first time homebuyers is mind-changing and not knowing what you want. You think you know, but then I show you what you want and you don’t like it. We’ve all seen home shopping on HGTV and think that we’ll look at 3 houses and we’ll find the perfect one on our first day out. We’ve also seen so many million dollar homes on television that we are sometimes surprised (disappointed) to see what our 200k will get us. Mind’s get changed and agents get frustrated, then comes the pressure to choose. It’s not cool and when it’s all said and done, you reflect back on your experience negatively.
When I bought my first house I was under a lot of pressure. Realistically, I probably shouldn’t have been buying a house, but I decided it was what I wanted to do, so dammit I was going to buy a house. I think I went through 3 or 4 agents before I finally landed with the one I bought a house with. Not because I particularly liked him, in fact, I strongly DISLIKED him, but I had been house shopping for too long and I had a baby on the way and I needed to get in and get settled. The whole process was TERRIBLE. No fun. No excitement. No explanation or education about the process. I had no idea what to expect, and I got phone calls every few hours from somebody wanting something from me yesterday. Closing was delayed again and again. I found myself pregnant and homeless for a few months, and once I finally closed on the house, I couldn’t move in for a month because of the horrible contractor he’d recommended. Bad experience. I’ll spare you any more of the details.
Yesterday I was in a camera shop looking for a digicam. I know a fair amount about them, but I haven’t owned one for years. I thought I knew what I wanted when I walked in, but when I actually held it in my hands I knew it wasn’t right. I expressed this to the sales guy and he handed me a few other cameras which I also didn’t like. Then I told him I wanted to look at the super expensive top of the line cameras and he about flipped his lid, because I had originally told him I didn’t want to spend that much. He got frustrated with me. I pulled away. I couldn’t articulate the feeling exactly or explain what I wanted because I hadn’t felt it yet. This guy got irritated and pushy and I left the store empty-handed. I will not purchase a camera at that store and most certainly not that guy. While I know, a digiam is no equivalent to a home, it’s certainly not a small purchase for me and I want to make sure I get something that will do what I need it to do and feel right.
Here’s why my camera store experience is like buying a house. You may have some idea of what you want. Maybe you’ve been looking online or going to open houses. But when I take you to see a house that matches exactly what you told me you wanted, it’s not right. The house you saw online is nothing like it was in the pictures. It’s not as lovely as it was in your mind. It doesn’t feel right. You can’t see yourself living there. It’s bigger/smaller/stinkier/darker/uglier/weirder/etc. than you thought it would be.
Thats OKAY! Part of finding the right house is finding LOTS of wrong houses. It helps you figure out what your dollar will get you. What you need. What you want. What you are willing to compromise on. This is a totally normal part of the process. But in so many situations with first time homebuyers, the agent showing the 10th or 15th house has lost patience and interest. They want you to pick one so they can be done driving all over town for you. And you might be frustrated and tired of house shopping and decide to settle.
Here’s where I’m different. I use this time to get to know you. I want to learn how to read your body language and understand your communication style while you’re getting a feel for what you like and what you can afford. This way, when we walk into the one, I can see it.
So if you’re ready to go take a look at some houses. Give me a call =)