There is an interesting phenomenon happening in our local Boise real estate market that I believe is most likely happening elsewhere. The few available listings are creating a buying frenzy. There are agents showing homes with offers written before they even step foot into the home.
This happened to me last week. I received a written signed offer before the agent had even opened the lockbox. I am speculating a bit here and have no idea what transpired between the agent and his buyer but I can’t help but wonder if there are some agents out there advising their clients to just ‘get something in writing – if you don’t like the house I will get you out of the deal.’ And indeed it is now very easy for buyers to walk away; perhaps too easy. This past year our inspection contingency form was updated to add a check box whereby a buyer can simply say I didn’t like the home inspection I’m out.a.here. So for a couple hundred bucks a buyer with cold feet can walk. And walking they are. Every week I notice more and more homes back-on-market, a week to 10 day after a home went pending after being listed for only a day or two.
In my case the wannabe buyer did provide the inspection report which had a few handyman-type repairs. Nothing major, nothing out of the ordinary for a 30+ year old home, nothing insurmountable. I believe, especially at the lower and hot price points, buyers are making purchasing decisions more quickly then they are prepared for. The media has hyped up the multiple offer situation and is fueling the competitive market, listing agents boast of incoming offers, buyers agents and their buyers have often missed out on several earlier homes and sellers are left scratching their heads and loosing valuable marketing time. I am not the only agent noticing this trend, nor the only agent frustrated by it. Hopefully as more homes become available buyers will settle down and take time to make rational decisions.