Real Estate Lessons from Lisa Orme, Realtor®

Methinks He Dost Protest TOO Much! Get That Buyer Pre-Qualified!

Well, we've all had them. Here in Windsor, CT, or where ever you are, we've all had them. Those "buyers" who call us and want to see a at least VERY soon.  My policy is to ask first if they are either

Questions - 1.  working with an agent

2.  pre-qualified or pre-approved by a lender

Of course, those are the same two questions I know most of us ask first. And then we will get into a conversation about the property they called on, what they are looking for, time frame to buy, wants, needs, price range, etc. etc.

Still, they want to see that house...but they've already told you they don't have that pre-qual letter. Well as nice as I can be, and I know how to pour on the honey, I really try to encourage them to call a lender or their own banker and get that done before I'll set the appointment to see that house.  Truth is, it's my office policy NOT to show houses (which I believe is Step 2) until after they've accomplished Step 1.

And yet, once in a while I break my own rules. Maybe I'm going to be in the neighborhood of the property that day anyway.  Or I really am not busy that day and figure I need to get my eyes on the home again anyway, and I'll have an opportunity to meet a new potential client. Or they just said SOMETHING to convince me to go ahead and meet them.

So I get the sign call, and talk to this new "buyer" about our new listing. He wants to see it. Is he working with an agent?  No.  Okay, has he been pre-qualified?  Not yet. But he knows he can afford it.  Well I'd be glad to set an appointment to show him the house, but I can't do it today anyway, because I'm booked, and it would really be in his best interests to get pre-qualified, before I start showing him houses that are not in the correct price range, or suitable condition for the mortgage program he is using.

One of those new listingsWell, this call was from a guy renting a similar house a few doors down from our new listing so he's probably paying a rent somewhere within a reasonable amount of the typical payment for this home. And one of my agents literally lived across the street, so I called her and gave her the information. Now she works the same way I do (because I trained her, of course!), but after talking to this guy, she has decided to show the property. He doesn't have a pre-qual yet, but he says he and his wife can afford the property.

Fast forward a week later. My agent has handed the buyer back off to me as she heads out on vacation. The buyer is interested but didn't write an offer right away because we're waiting for a call from the lender about his pre-qualification letter for the home before we sit down to write the offer. (See, they DID have to get it done anyway!) 

Today I got the call back from the mortgage broker. The prospect has a bankruptcy AND a foreclosure within the last five years. His wife's credit - not the slightest bit redeeming.

So WHY do I have an office policy to not show homes until the buyer is pre-qualified?  Just for "buyers" like this.  Note to self:  You have that policy for a reason. Stick to your own rules. YOUR time IS valuable!



Serving the North Central Connecticut region, Hartford County, and the communities of Windsor, Bloomfield, Hartford, East Hartford, South Windsor, Manchester, Windsor Locks, Suffield, Enfield, East Windsor, Somers and the Granbys...

Opening Doors to Home Ownership . . . The Master's Key . . .

Residential Sales, Short Sales and Foreclosure Prevention, Multi-Family and Investment Properties, Condominium and Property Management

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Licensed in the State of Connecticut, ABR, CRS, GRI, PSCS, SFR, Notary Public, Lic. #REB.755648

 Broker/Owner of The Master's Key Realty LLC, 340 Broad Street, #320, Windsor, Connecticut 06095

To contact Lisa, call 860-688-1400 or send an e-mail to

Copyright, Lisa Orme, 2010.  All rights reserved.

Comment balloon 45 commentsLisa Orme • November 08 2010 10:51PM
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