It’s not uncommon for real estate professionals to negotiate the wants and needs of two different people when trying to sell a home. If you’re hoping to succeed as a real estate professional, you must have a cool approach to dealing with tandem clients. The best philosophy is to operate as a mediator between each person. Here are a few tips for navigating the homebuying process when dealing with couples.
Establish a Budget First
Money is often thought of as “the root of all evil.” The accuracy of this statement might be up for debate, but what is for certain is that many arguments can and will be had over money. The best way to curb any potential conflicts between your clients is to establish their combined budget early on. If your couple starts off considering homes that are just above what they can reasonably afford, then you can expect that tensions will rise much more quickly when discussing the nuances of each home. Establish a price that each person feels good about, one that not only falls in their combined budget, but one that makes sense for the income that each partner has at their disposal. By establishing a budget early on, the couple will feel more comfortable negotiating what each property has to offer, instead of the price tag alone.
Highlight Similarities Instead of Differences
No matter how in-sync a couple may appear to be on the surface, it’s important to understand that they are each their own unique individual, with their own personality and set of styles and tastes. As you begin looking at what each home has to offer, you’ll begin to notice that the duo has conflicting ideas as to what they want in their shared property. For instance, one person may want a finished basement, while the other values having an extra bathroom as the number one priority for their next home.
There will always be differences in tastes. Your job as realtor is to help them find common ground and reach a decision they both can be happy with together. When picking out different homes to present to the couple, focus on the aspects they both agree upon. For example, one home you show may not have a finished basement or an extra bathroom, but it does have a spacious living room and kitchen with laminate flooring. By focusing in on what they both like, you give them a strong base to build toward their final decision.
Be Honest and Upfront
As a realtor, you may find yourself in the middle of a few arguments between the couple. This should be expected to happen in some way, sometimes over big financial issues, or even something as small as the color of the countertops in the kitchen. In many of these instances, you will be called upon as the natural voice of reason. This isn’t a time to let the couple duke it out, but instead to be a mediator that helps both sides reach a conclusion. Remember that your ultimate goal is to get the couple to buy a home they both love. They’ll expect you to provide an objective outsider view on whatever their disagreements maybe. Instead of shrugging your shoulders, step up and provide them with all the facts they need to know to make an informed decision.
Buying a home together is a big deal for any couple. It’s a moment that can push couples into new territories, which can be just as scary as it is exciting. Your job as a realtor is to be the steady hand that guides them to making a decision they’ll cherish together forever. By following these tips, you should have a better idea on how to handle your next coupled clientele.
by Natalie Jones, founder of Homeownerbliss
Natalie Jones, together with her husband, created Homeownerbliss. They try to help others learn from their experiences (applying for a mortgage, pulling together the funds for a down payment, and finding a home within their budget). She’s passionate about making the process of buying a home less scary for first-timers, as well as inspiring homeowners of all stages enjoy the perks of home ownership!