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Small paragraph, but big deal to your clients! by Brad Pearson

Click for Concierge Service

Click for Concierge Service

With so many important paragraphs in our Residential Purchase Agreement, it’s one of the smallest that seems to create the most stress for our home sellers and buyers.  Unfortunately, many agents don’t often put enough thought into the impact of it.  “Page 3, Paragraph 5. Closing and Possession:” addresses what is widely recognized as one of the top most stressful life events.  In many surveys I found simply google’ing “moving home stress”, moving ranks ahead of even bereavement and far ahead of even selling the home when it comes to stress.  Having been a real estate agent for over 21 years and in leadership positions for nearly 15 years,  I have seen the best and the worst in people involved in the stress of moving out or even into a home and I can honestly speak for myself that I would rather do almost anything instead of moving to or from a home.  Arranging movers, packing boxes, scheduling utilities, changing schools for the kids, etc. etc. etc. and then the chaos of the actual moving day.  I’ve watched spouses battle with each other, neighbors complain about moving trucks blocking the street, movers arriving late, kids crying because their favorite toy was packed up, and more.  But the biggest and most preventable hiccup is when the real estate agent forgot to properly fill out Para 5 or they didn’t allow enough days for the sellers to move, and the buyers are pushing to move in before the sellers are out, or have had a chance to clean the home up after the move.   Add it all together, and you have a living nightmare before you that could have been prevented.   Some of the tips below can help you as a professional real estate agent, avoid being the cause of additional stress during your clients move.

– ALWAYS discuss Para 5 with your clients.  Make sure they understand that this is a completely negotiable time frame and the time to ask for more time is during the initial negotiations and not after the acceptance.

-Plan for the worst, expect the best!  Consider how long the sellers have lived in the home, the amount of occupants, size of the home, and your past experience in the real estate business, to properly counsel your clients and establish legitimate expectations for the time it will take to move.

-Have your buyers and or sellers consult with movers EARLIER than later.  At Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, we have a personal Concierge Service that will personally discuss and assist in making moving arrangements, hiring movers, etc.

-Don’t trust that the co-op agent knows what they were doing when they left Para 5 blank or wrote a short time frame in.  Double check, and ask to be sure.

-Be  careful on Contingent transactions!  Remember, if the buyer is closing escrow first, and then sending their money to escrow to close on their new home, there could be a day or even two that the next transaction is delayed depending on escrow and title, loans, etc.  And if that buyer had 3 days after the close to move, and the seller on their purchase only has 3 days to move, then they are going to intersect right in the middle and you will have a conflict that you will remember the rest of your career.   I’ve always recommended that the buyers as for up to 5-6 days to move from their home to plan for any delay in their purchase/sellers move time frames.  It can get confusing, but once you experience this mistake it will become very clear and you won’t ever make it again.  🙂

-Be very careful with tenant occupied homes.  The seller should work to have the tenants moved prior to the close of escrow at all times.  They need to commit to selling their home and just accept that this is the safest decision.  If the tenants decide not to move out, or delay their move after the close of escrow, this could be disastrous and now we have a landlord tenant law situation in the mix.

-Short Sales should be carefully considered based on each individual sellers situation. While most sellers will abide by the time frames, it is important to ensure that all of the parties in the transaction understand the agreement they make.  In some cases, it may be best for the sellers to move prior to the close, and in others, it may not.  Either way, everyone should be aware of the risks involved.

-ALWAYS stop by on moving day to offer to make calls, answer questions, help create calmness, show support, etc.  This will go a long way in establishing a great referral relationship.  Just being there for people in times of stress is a big and memorable deal.  Bring by some cold sodas, snacks, order them some pizzas at lunch, drop by some breakfast burritos, donuts, and they will remember you forever!  If you give closing gifts, deliver it on moving day to make the biggest impact and give them a moment of joy in a time of stress!

I hope these tips and suggestions can help you avoid a nightmare after the close and help you lower the stress to your clients during this difficult yet exciting time in their lives.

As always, I am here to answer any questions and support you in the growth of your business!  No challenge is too big for me to assist you with so don’t hesitate to reach out!


Click to see how to make your clients moves easier!

Click to see how to make your clients moves easier!

Click to download PDF!

Click to download PDF!