In this two-minute read, we look at ways sellers can identify genuine buyers.

With demand currently outstripping supply in the housing market, sellers are in the driver’s seat, but there is still one hazard that could derail a sale: the flaky buyer.

In a hot market, it’s not uncommon for panicky buyers to make an impulsive offer or go beyond their financial limits.

A buyer might do this because they fear that prices are rising and the market is getting away from them. Or perhaps they’ve been outbid in the past and don’t want to lose out again.

Whatever the motivation, the result is the same: the buyer isn’t committed and drops out weeks or months into the sales process.

Not only is it frustrating for the seller but it could also cost them financially if they’re part of a chain which then collapses because the parties involved grow impatient.

Here are some tips to help you identify genuine buyers.

-         Arrange a second viewing. If the buyer makes an offer after the first viewing, your agent should quiz the buyer about their plans for the property to see if they’ve thought through the purchase. Buying a property is an incredibly emotive decision and often a buyer will get excited and make an offer in the moment only to sleep on it and change their mind a few days later.  

-         Do the admin. Ensure your agent gets the buyers full details including details about their mortgage provider and solicitor, their buying position (first time buyer, sold subject to contract etc) and whether they are in a chain. It’s preferable to go with a buyer who already has their ducks in a row. a buyer with their property on the market who needs to sell their property in order to buy yours isnt in a position to make a proceedable offer. 

-         What’s the story? Chat to the buyer about why they are moving. If they’re expecting a baby and have family in the same street, it’s a fair bet that they’re the real deal. If they know little about the area or their story keeps changing, question if they are committed to the sale.

-         Ensure the lines of communication are open. Ideally, your buyer will keep you informed of their progress on the survey, searches, and chasing solicitors. Things can and do go quiet from time to time - the process of offer to completed sale takes around 12 weeks on average, but be wary if things go quiet quickly.

-         Work with an experienced agent. Even though it’s a buyer’s market, a good agent can streamline the process for you. They’ll be good at spotting the genuine buyers from the chancers.

For more advice about selling your home, contact us here at Alison George.