Questions Buyers Ask
Selling your home by owner requires preparation. You have to be prepared to show your home, prepared to negotiate an offer and prepared to answer potential buyers’ questions. Many times, house hunters’ questions will be focused on three main areas: asking price, condition of the property and location of the property. Read on to ensure that there are no surprises when you are asked these questions and to gain an understanding of the motivations behind them.
- How long has the home been on the market? This question may be asked to try to discover how motivated the owner is to sell the home in regards to pricing flexibility. Many home buyers assume that if a property has been on the market for many months that the owners will be more willing to negotiate.
- How much did you pay for the home? House hunters may inquire what the seller paid for the home because they want to know if the property has gone up or down in value.
- Remember, buyers can easily use public records to find out how much you paid.
- How many offers have you received? Potential buyers may ask if the property has received other offers, so they can analyze the current competition and know how aggressive their initial offer should be.
- What is included in the sale? It may not be immediately obvious to house hunters which items are fixtures – personal property that has been permanently attached to the home or land – and what is personal property. This can include things such as light fixtures, a microwave oven and window treatments.
- Are there any major structural, electrical or appliance issues? In asking if the property has any defects with the foundation, plumbing, roof, insulation, electrical system, etc… the potential home buyer wants to know the condition of the property in advance of making an offer.
- Do you have a real estate disclosure form? Not all states require this form. A real estate disclosure form supplies interested buyers with known defects or issues that may be present in the property. But, many savvy buyers will ask for this form upfront, before they make an offer, so there are no surprises during the home inspection or once they have purchased the property.
- How is the school district? Home owners can suggest interested parents research the local school district online and visit helpful sites such as the National Center for Education Statistics.
- Is there crime in the neighborhood? Home sellers can direct house hunters to find crime statistics and other related information from their local police department.
- Are there any noise disturbances? House hunters will want to know if there any general noise issues with local traffic, barking dogs, playgrounds, emergency vehicles, etc… If the property is in a condo or townhouse that shares common areas such as walls, house hunters will want to know if there are any noise issues with loud neighbors. Sellers should recommend that interested parties tour the neighborhood at various times throughout the day and week to get a personal evaluation of any potential noise annoyances.