Posted on

Baby Boomer Buyers

Baby Boomers are a
different breed of buyer:
One of Discernment.

Truth be told.
I can thoroughly relate.
Because I AM a ‘Boomer’!

So shared here is
MY straight scoop.

Here are the top reasons to move after polling many same bracket buyers. Interesting enough, what I found was my thinking was on par with these other boomer buyers.

A change of environment. Weather is a BIG factor in moving. Thus, boomers seek warmer climates. However, many also want a renewal that comes from the excitement of new places to explore. It’s not that the familiar farmer’s markets, wineries, and festivals mean less. It is just energizing, perhaps even enchanting to discover the novelty of elsewhere. It’s enticing to live in a new culture, and become part of that community.

Closer to family. As time progresses, family ties become more important. Particularly when there are children and grandchildren living elsewhere. And they are entrenched in their jobs, established in schools, and not likely to move. This is my situation.

I moved to southern Oregon seeking the sun region. Yet, I did not think living in a next door state was akin to moving to another continent. And this became apparent within short order. The driving distance to visit family and friends is a day each way. Not an easy trek for a weekend visit.

Outrageous real estate taxes are driving seniors from their homes. The home I bought years ago started out at $200/year in King County, WA. Paying real estate taxes were never a concern. That same property today is taxed at $7500 per year! This is not uncommon in many areas nowadays. Boomers have worked their butts off to live a well deserved retirement. We don’t want to worry about keeping our homes. Thus, many look to other states with more reasonable taxation rates.

Not that the reasons above are unusual for any age to move. However, these are dominant reasons that drive boomers to relocate. Now what is not atypical is the attitudes and habits of Boomer Buyers.

Boomers: We do not have to move. We want to.

Boomers are typically comfortable where they currently live. They need to be highly motivated to move. Because of this fact, boomer buyers take their time to buy elsewhere. As well, age and experience makes one get pickier. Therefore, boomers are discerning, discriminating -and intentional in their purchasing decisions.

Lifestyle preference predominate. As a lifelong horse lover I relate to special buying needs. Horse properties, are not like buying a tract home. I searched over a year to find my now home on 5 acres. And then the horse property construction commenced. It was an emotional investment. However, after 9 years the reasons above compel me to sell. I have been scrutinizing northern properties for over 3 years now. Have a few preferences noted. It’s been a slow process sifting through ideal locations.

My close friends looked for over 6 years to find their dream spot. Their special need: to find suitable land for their 20+ llamas. They were on the brink of giving up. Said they decided to remodel their home instead. Then their dream materialized; a true storybook farm tucked way by a creek in a serene spot. And, gorgeous it is!

Often, boomers reveal they want to move as long as it’s not too overwhelming to do so. It’s easier to stay in place knowing the familiar. In other words, the resistance to moving must be less than the perils of staying in the status quo.

I have my home for sale now. It’s been off and on the market for 3 years. (Another blog will cover this adventure.) I have compared moving notes with out of state boomer buyers. Interesting to note, we have parallel stories. We’ve looked for a few years. We’ve finally targeted an area. Now it’s either make the change, or forget about it. And it is unanimous that moving farm animals presents triple concerns for their welfare.

Out of state buying is challenging enough. Add boomer buyers who do not have to move—with discerning preferences and this equals a tougher sale for agents and sellers. As for myself, I will wait for my house to sell first. Then figure it out from there. I trust the universe has a wonderful place picked out for me when that time comes.

Copyright 2020. All Rights Reserved. Permission ONLY Reprints from Patty

Posted on

7 Tips to Tell if Your Buyer is Serious

How do you evaluate

As a Realtor or an Owner-Seller
(of which I’ve been both)
Here are my TOP TiPs
for discerning between
REAL Buyers and Tire-kickers.

This article is also written for BUYERS! Educate yourself to real estate practices with these step actions, and you will expedite your property purchase!

(1) First, ALL buyers should be prequalified. As a Realtor, or FSBO Seller, it is HIGHLY recommended to get buyers prequalified, prior to showing appointments.

What does “Prequalified” mean? Simply put, it’s written proof to show the buyer can afford to purchase realty property up to a set amount. A lender will write a pre-approval letter for a buyer, stating they are able to get a loan, or has the funds, to purchase.

The bottom line for getting prequalified, is to show a buyer is ready, able, and serious to purchase a property. It also gives a seller confidence, knowing their sale will most likely succeed. If a buyer is not viable, much precious time can be wasted. Realty Agents need to know a buyer’s spending limits. They can screen out prospective buyers from lookers. Also, savvy sellers may not allow showings without proof of funds.

(2) Serious buyers know what they want and are proactive. They scour the MLS listings and pick their favorites. Often these buyers direct their agent to set up a showing. Many fall in love with their future property on the internet right off.

(3) Serious buyers should not bring children, friends or pets to a showing. Children will distract parents. That’s just what kids do. Particularly when it’s important. Trust me on this. I have grown-up children. Been there, tried that, doesn’t work. Realtors and sellers have every right to request that children are not to attend showings.

Friends of the buyer(s) should not attend showings. Well meaning buddies are a big distraction. Namely, because they influence. Their opinions often sway and undermine the buyer’s own decision making and processing.

A heads up! Generally, pets should not be left in the car unattended on a seller’s property. This is a courtesy to property owners that have their own pets… and who may investigate who else is in the car! Therefore, it’s suggested to leave Fido home.

(4) ALL buyers should attend showings. When a buying partner does not attend a showing, this can be a caveat that one may not be on board. Of course there are exceptions, such as for out of state buyers. Serious buyers make the time to consider available properties > TOGETHER.

(5) Listen to a buyer. And encourage them to talk freely. For you will learn where they are at in the buying process. They may be pre-qualified, but still not mentally ready to commit. Perhaps, the buyers are still evaluating all their options. For instance, what type of home style; where to buy; or school districts to live in. A good agent can help educate and influence, but often cannot get the uncommitted to sign.

A ready buyer often takes the lead. Has done their homework and has pointed questions. Their language turns positive and their tone of voice energetic. Particularly when they visit a property that checks their boxes. They tell their agent or the seller right then, “Let’s make this happen!”

(6) When buyers present low offers and a house is on par with sold comps, this can indicate several things. 1) The buyer cannot afford the listed price. Thus the reason pre-qualified exists. 2) The buyer wants a super deal. This is how flippers operate. It means more profit in their pocket. 3) Many buyers (and agents) think FSBO Sellers should slash their price because they are not paying a commission. But the fact is, FSBO Sellers must execute a closing the exact same as a Realtor. A seller’s time is worth no less. Oddly, this stigma still lives on in many minds. So a note to sellers: If you want your listed price, verbalize it upfront to the buyer and/or their agent. It will save everyone time.

7) Serious buyers are motivated. Is there a job relocation involved? If so, an immediate need to purchase a house may be at the forefront. Life changes are typical times for upgrading or downgrading real estate properties. New marriages with combined families often need a larger home. Empty-nesters typically want to down size.

Lifestyles motivate property purchases. As a forever horse owner I’ve seen one such scenario repeat often. People buy one horse. And board it out. They become captivated by the lifestyle. They buy another horse- or two. Thus more money spent on boarding. These horsey home owners start adding it up; their 3 horses boarded, plus their own mortgage. Purchasing acreage starts to make sense. That is the path of serious equestrians. The point here is: lifestyles not only motivate, but dictate how, when, and where a person purchases property.

In my opinion and experience, a serious buyer offers full price, or close to it, when they see value. They know intrinsically what’s in in for them, emotionally, mentally and otherwise. Serious buyers make the sale happen.

Copyright 2020. All Rights Reserved. Permission ONLY Reprints from Patty

Real Estate Education for Buyers, Sellers & Realtors