Thoughts on having agents show me a property with no intention to buy?

11 Replies

Hello,

I don’t know if there’s any sort of ethical issues with this but since I’m just starting out, I want start looking at properties in person. I wouldn’t have any intention to buy at the moment even though I will only look at properties which I could actually put a down payment right now (if that makes sense).

I’m trying to ramp up for when I actually am ready to buy. I’m focusing on doing the up front analysis and number crunching and now want to see properties. Should I disclose I don’t have any intention to buy or that I’m a newbie (they can probably tell)? What happens after I see the property, will the agent keep following up with me asking if I want it (I don’t want to deal with that)?

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with asking to see the properties b/c I will build a rapport with the agents who may very well get my money one day. Would love to get your thoughts…

Tell the agent you don't have any money, and see if they are still willing to show you a property. (I personally wouldn't bother after the 2nd or 3rd property once it became clear you are not in a position to buy. But I'm not a realtor.) Why not go after open houses instead? What are you hoping to see in a tour of the home that you can't see in pictures online?

Hi Mark...

As someone who manages a large team of agents, I can tell you that nothing annoys agents more than people who completely waste their time (especially if it's knowingly).  The reality is that agents don't earn a nickel, if they don't sell you something, and driving all over the place to show you properties costs them money.  I can tell you that most of the good agents won't even show you properties, unless you have a preapproval from a reputable lending institution stating that you are a pre-qualified buyer.  Obviously, being pre-qualified doesn't mean that you have any intention of actually buying, but it's really all most agents can do to ensure that they are working with legitimate buyers.  Ultimately, I think wasting ANYONE'S time, just because you can, is a bad practice.

Originally posted by @Mark K. :

Hello,

I don’t know if there’s any sort of ethical issues with this but since I’m just starting out, I want start looking at properties in person. I wouldn’t have any intention to buy at the moment even though I will only look at properties which I could actually put a down payment right now (if that makes sense).

I’m trying to ramp up for when I actually am ready to buy. I’m focusing on doing the up front analysis and number crunching and now want to see properties. Should I disclose I don’t have any intention to buy or that I’m a newbie (they can probably tell)? What happens after I see the property, will the agent keep following up with me asking if I want it (I don’t want to deal with that)?

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with asking to see the properties b/c I will build a rapport with the agents who may very well get my money one day. Would love to get your thoughts…

I've built up a reputation and rapport with agents, and they'll sometimes just give me the lockbox code.  See if you can do the same.  Obvs requires trust.  Good luck.

You can try to find new agents in your area and be up front with them. Sometimes new agents will appreciate the practice, but John White is correct. It was very annoying when a prospective buyer decided to waste my time when they knew they were not going to buy a home. Not only are you wasting their time and money, there is the opportunity cost involved where they could be doing actual money making activities if they were not showing homes to someone not buying.

Solutions: approach new agents, attend open houses, call the listing agent, or run analysis on friends/families houses.

Joe Gutmann, Munoz Homes Northwest | [email protected] | 360.485.9382 | http://www.southsoundhomesonline.com/joe | WA Agent # 113353

I wouldn't start looking (walking properties) until I am ready to buy. On the other hand, you aren't expected to buy the first day you look! So don't waste someone time if you aren't interested. On the other hand, if you are just getting started and need help finding the "right" property for you. There is no harm it getting someone to help you "find" that property as long as you are truly interested in "buying". 

Does that make sense?

I like your idea of getting the numbers figured out. That is the best way to find the right deal. I know in this area we have alot of information available without having to go to the property (inspections/reports). This is available through our MLS attachments or by talking to the listing agent.

You should start talking to agents and see who will get this information for you.  It will take some time to get the report but not as much as going to see the properties.  Start building the relationship with the right agent, so that you have your "team" established when the other pieces are in place.

Aaron Hall, Empire Appraisal | [email protected]

@Mark K.   Only absolutely green and dumb agents would show someone around that has no money.. so it would be the blind leading the blind and your both deserve each other.

that said.. An agent who does not properly qualify a buyer is a fool just as much as you as a buyer with no means is trying to fool them.  bottom line is that how you want to be treated how would you like it if someone totally wasted your time and blew smoke up their skirt how do you like to be lied to .. ( probably would not like it )

I like

@Deshan Kennedy 

 suggestion simply go to open houses.. agents are board they will talk with you but you don't waste their time or yours..

@David Hoang  Agents that give out codes can lose their license in a heartbeat do not repeat that on an open forum if you have stupid agents that will do that for you please keep it to yourself.. Last thing honest folks want to hear is their RE agent is giving someone like you the lock box code .. they don't know who you are or what you are.. there is a reason there is lock box codes in the first place and a reason you have agents that are licensed all you wanna be investors who think agents owe you something and have some idea that your owed this service, well your something is all I can say..

Medium ksqoekox 400x400Jay Hinrichs, TurnKey-Reviews.com | Podcast Guest on Show #222

If you tell them upfront and they're ok with it I don't see the problem with it. If you're leading them on and knowingly wasting their time then that would be pretty crappy. 

I understand you're learning how to do the numbers but whats the purpose of going to look at homes that you know you won't be attempting to purchase? 

@Chris K.  

  simple answer as suggested is go to open houses that is open to the public and looky loos are welcomed anything other than that in my mind is devious and or unethical behavoiro

Medium ksqoekox 400x400Jay Hinrichs, TurnKey-Reviews.com | Podcast Guest on Show #222

@Mark K.  

Listen, a few people held back on you to some degree and that was the right way to do it. But yes, if you are a busy person and even if you're not, speaking of agents here, it's a bad deal to waste their time. I can't stand it when people waste mine - really pisses me off!

Having said that, I think if you were up front and asked to see some properties then you will end up doing just fine. I think the best way to go about that would be to find an agent or two who you like and you have been up front with about not being able to buy right now but wanting/needing/and curious to see some property that would be in your price range in the semi near future, and asking them to let them know when they have a showing and tag along so that they are showing to buyers and you get to see property at the same time. Maybe you would have to meet them there and maybe have a chance to speak with an agent after they have showed the house and others have left. A few minutes here and there a handful of times and you would gather some good information to put to use in investing.

I had a lady show me a property or two when I started out and fully intended to purchase something but couldn't actually, I later found out, so I had jumped the gun a little bit. She was starting her own office and paid for a burger while we were out. I still remember that and feel bad that nothing came of her effort for me.

So don't do that. Not a good move.

But ask to get in on some showings and do as suggested and attend some open houses when possible.

Talk to a few agents here and there and gain some info, maybe gain a relationship :)

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