There’s a psychological phenomenon well known in the Real Estate business (as it is with every major purchase in life) called buyer’s remorse. That’s where a buyer purchases a home, all excited and after the ink dries on the offer, he is seen holding his head in his hands and lamenting on what he has done with his life. It’s certainly all ruined for at least three days after the said purchase. Then reality slowly begins to set in that maybe the purchase wasn’t as bad as it first seemed. Gradually over the next three weeks the deal keeps improving in the buyer’s mind until it becomes the best thing he/she ever did. That’s just part of how the mind works (even mine from time to time).
Given that introductory premise, I remember a particular incident of buyer’s remorse, both by the buyers of one of my properties in Tyndall Park, as well as of the selling agent. It happened that he was relatively new in the real estate business. Basically he was an insurance broker who was introduced to me by one of my sons. The real estate business was added to his portfolio as a way to expand his business. It was a perfect fit.
The agent was a gregarious person with the gift of the gab and I could see how he could talk anybody into just about anything. He was indeed personable and it was easy to be engaged by him. Well, that was the problem. He had found a house that I’d listed in Tyndall Park and according to him it was perfect for his clients. He eagerly made an appointment and took them to see it. It wasn’t long before he’d written up an offer, sent them on their way and phoned me about it. It was really a pretty good offer and I managed to have it accepted on the phone. But I had a funny feeling about the whole business and dragged my feet a little in tying up all the loose ends.
Sure enough at seven o’clock the next morning, I got a frantic call from an apologetic agent. It seemed his client had called him about an hour ago wanting to cancel the deal. Normally, when that happens, the purchaser is apt to lose his deposit as a penalty for not proceeding without just cause. But in this case, I had an inkling of what was coming so I delivered the deposit cheque and the offer (still in my possession) back to the agent within twenty minutes of his phone call and told him not to worry about it. Mind you, I had to do a little stick handling with my vendor to smooth it over, but I managed somehow by promising an open house on Sunday next.
I told the other agent not to worry about it because I’d hold an open house on the week end and have my vendor well satisfied. It was a tight race to organize the open house in time for the week end but I managed. It was a reasonable open house, although there were no immediate buyers. But low and behold, my Insurance Broker friend showed up again the next morning with a new offer now removing all conditions and a new cheque for the same property. He was grinning like a Cheshire cat, as though he had convinced his buyers to do the right thing.
As I said at the outset, buyer’s remorse takes about three days to reverse itself and let reality into the brain, which is exactly what happened here. I had allowed for that in returning the original offer and waiting for the other shoe to drop. This time I didn’t hesitate and did my work to slam the thing shut.
Sure enough, about three weeks later the buyers were crowing about the marvelous bargain they had stumbled upon in this house. And there you have it; buyer’s remorse in full bloom. Lesson learned.