Hiding Highlighting Potential Dealbreakers

OK, so the listing agent (representing the Seller) didn’t tell prospective Buyers that they may want to skip her client’s “For Sale” Edina home.

She told Buyers’ agents.

Specifically, the listing agent used an MLS section only visible to Realtors, “Agent Remarks,” to highlight a potential deal breaker:

If your clients are looking for a home with an open floor plan or the possibility of opening upwalls to create an open floor plan, then this home probably will not work for them. The main level is not conducive to being opened up due to the location of the stairs to both the basement and the second floor. With the Covid-19 health concerns they are trying to eliminate showings to potential buyers that the home will not work for.”

–Excerpt, MLS “Agent Remarks”

Quality > Quantity

Why discourage (some) Buyers?

Far better to have fewer but higher quality showings, which are more likely to progress to a second showing and ultimately, an offer (or two!).

Which, after all, is kind of the whole point of going to the considerable trouble of listing a home in the first place.

Meanwhile, failing to disclose a potential deal breaker — especially if it’s not obvious in the photos — not only wastes many Buyers’ time and their agents’, but Sellers’ time, too (at least, ones who are diligently prepping in advance of each showing, as they should).

Of course, during a pandemic, it’s not just everyone’s time — it’s their safety, too . . .

See also, “Not “Fessing to a Tandem Garage“; “Bait-and-DON’T Switch”: Should Home Sellers Disclose That There’s No Basement?“; “Attention Rehabbers: Not For the Timid!”; “Ignoring “Agent Remarks” at Your Peril (Literally)“; and “Real Estate Marketing 101: When to Acknowledge a Home Needs Updating ” & When Not To.”

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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