Realtors – Pros and Cons to Working With Second Home Buyers

Pros of working with second home buyers

  • Second home buyers are usually in a higher price range. People looking to buy second homes tend to be wealthier individuals and are typically looking for higher priced real estate. This is great since we are compensated more for higher priced properties.
  • Since they live out of town they usually don’t have a previous relationship with a Realtor. You may still have to compete with other Realtors in getting the second home buyers as a client but they usually aren’t loyal to any agent because they don’t know any. It is much harder to hook a prospect that already is tied in with an agent. This is where a good follow up plan, your professionalism and market knowledge can shine. Since out of town buyers may contact more than one agent you need to be prepared. Many second home prospects buy on the second trip to town so it is important to have a great follow up program. Most agents give up if they don’t buy right away.
  • Usually they are in town for a short time. So, if they are educated on the real estate market and are ready, willing and able to buy all you have to do is find a suitable property. A short time frame can work to your benefit. It requires the buyers to be efficient in their home search. No long lunches, driving through neighborhoods you know they are going to hate or looking at homes that just aren’t going to work.

Cons of working with second home buyers

  • Most second home buyers don’t know the real estate market like the locals do. This requires a longer time to educate them on the market. Sometimes, it takes 2 or 3 trips to your area to learn the market. Realtors need perseverance with these types of buyers.
  • Many of these buyers want the Realtor to give them a “tour” of the city. This is very tiring. Some clients require this of the Realtor. If they don’t get it they will move on to the next agent who will.
  • I get a lot of web site inquiries like this, “I am thinking of buying a vacation home in Florida. We are looking in Sarasota, Boca Raton, Naples and Palm Beach. We will be there for 3 days next month and want to see what we can get in our price range.” So what do you do? On one hand, they may buy in Sarasota. On the other hand, you could spend 3 days showing them property only to find out later that they purchased in Naples.
  • Since these buyers don’t know the real estate market Realtors can spend a lot of time on the telephone and typing emails describing the market. I get a lot of website inquiries from people who want a condo on the beach with a view of the water under $500,000. That is not going to happen in Sarasota, Florida.

In conclusion, I think working with second home buyers is great if you handle them properly. With a little experience and expertise you can eliminate the people wasting your time and focus on the more serious prospects.

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