Handling buyer feedback and objection for home sellers

by Dan Krell © 2013
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houseYou’ve spent months preparing your home by de-cluttering, painting, and maybe even making renovations; the last thing you want to hear are objections from home buyers why the home is not suitable for them. Obviously, you’ve had years of enjoyment and you’re thinking about all the benefits the home offers. However, getting honest feedback from home buyers and their agents who come through your home is invaluable information to help get your home sold.

Asking for feedback is one of the tasks that your agent performs throughout the listing period. However, soliciting feedback from agents who bring buyers to your home is often hit or miss; although many agents offer good and honest feedback, just as many don’t respond (for various reasons) to feedback requests unless their buyers are interested in the home. Additionally, feedback is asked of home buyers who visit during open houses and includes questions such as: “What do you find most appealing about the home?”; “What do you find least appealing about the home?”; and “Is the home priced right?”

Ok, it’s nice to hear the good things people have to say about your home; these are obvious benefits and what others find appealing. Buyers may list various home features, upgrades, and/or renovations as appealing or beneficial; but it is also important to put weight on the negative feedback too. All the de-cluttering and neutralizing can make a home look good, but it may not change home features that do not fit other’s needs. Likewise, making cosmetic and minor repairs also increases your home’s appeal; but may not make obsolete systems acceptable.

One of the most common pieces of feedback you might encounter is about the home’s price. Since home buyers typically view similar homes, you get perspective about how you priced your home compared to other similar homes. If there is overwhelming feedback that the home is overpriced, then you should consider reviewing additional comps with your agent and correct the price as needed. It is also not uncommon that buyers may feel that the home is priced well, but for various reasons they are not interested in making an offer.

Keep in mind that the feedback you will receive is subjective and offered from various points of view, so don’t be surprised with seemingly contradictory objections from different home buyers. Some objections can be addressed readily while others cannot.

For example, objections about the size and/or location of the home or yard are not easily overcome; and it may be that buyers offering such objections are looking at the wrong home. However, objections about shabby flooring or lack of updates can be addressed by either taking action or changing the list price to reflect the home’s condition.

Sometimes in pushing their client’s limits, home buyer’s objections may actually be a commentary on their limitations rather than the home’s attributes. In the hopes of getting a great deal, buyers are taken to view homes that are out of their price range and/or in need of updates they cannot make.

Buyer and agent feedback is the easiest way to gauge how your home is positioned in comparison to your competition on the market. Clearly, the home’s positive attributes and benefits should be highlighted as these items would be appealing to home buyers. However, buyer objections should also be considered and addressed if possible to help facilitate a sale.

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This article is not intended to provide nor should it be relied upon for legal and financial advice. This article was originally published the week of May 27, 2013. Using this article without permission is a violation of copyright laws. Copyright © 2013 Dan Krell.

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