Should I interfere?

joslin99September 29, 2011

Down the street is a cute (from the outside) house that has been for sale for 85 days. That's pretty long around here (inner suburb Boston) but not unheard of, and the lot is steeply pitched and price is a little high. However I just went to check it out on Ziprealty and there were only 3 pics of the house and those were taken from the outside. Thinking that was weird for something that wasn�t a teardown I probed further and the listing agency is this unheard-of crew with a DIY website and they only have one picture of the house (outside curb shot) on their website.

I checked the registry and these are older home owners who own their home outright. So they may (or may not) be aware of the lack of internet presence their home has. And given the marginal-ness of the listing agency�s website I assume that the listing agent is a referral or relative or something or else they would've landed with Coldwell Banker like everyone else.

This being Boston and most homebuyers being technically savvy I think that this is a big hindrance to selling their house, but maybe it isn't. Maybe if the buyers agents felt it was a good fit for their buyer they would've been all over it, internet presence or not.

No pictures says to me that it is a dog and would deter me from touring, but it could be a hidden gem with a bad agent.

Should I walk down there and tell them what I think or get involved?

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What concern is it of yours? If you want to help out the sellers, hire a buyers agent and take a tour of the place.
Sellers have choices of who to hire when selling their home. You get what you pay for, and I am sure the sellers realize this.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 6:27AM
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"Should I interfere?"

The answer to that question is almost always "No".

Unless someone is in physical danger, nobody wants unsolicited advice from strangers.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 8:25AM
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I guess the question is, are you a stanger or do you know these people? from the sound of it, you don't know them.

I disagree with NCRealestateguy's comments. I don't think people get what they pay for, or in a lot of cases know the difference. Especially with older people they have a tendency to be taken advantage of and get less than they are paying for.

If I knew them I might strike up a conversation and comment about the internet presence, lack of pictures etc. Pricing is always a touchy subject and I'd steer clear of that.

If I didn't know them, its really none of my business, its unsolicited advice from a stanger, which is almost never a positive in someone's eyes.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 12:07PM
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If you're really that concerned about them, I would write them an anonymous letter pointing out some of the flaws that you have seen, some suggestions for improvement, etc. I would also stress that I was simply a concerned neighbor, and not a realtor or anyone else who could have financial gain because of any changes they made. Some people are right in saying this is none of your business - but it is also not really hurting anything by making it your business. You have good intentions, and there is nothing wrong with that. I commend you for having the ability to think of others.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 1:48PM
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I think I live in a different world than some previous posters because I give and receive unsolicited and solicited opinions all day. I interact with my community. However this is not really an interaction thing, they are strangers to me and definitely not soliciting my opinion. I guess I just feel bad, as if it were my parents. What if they really need the money and think that their house won't ever sell . . .

Anyway, I would never discuss price as that is their personal business, but the marketing failure may be something they are unaware of.

I may leave a note. Thanks for your input.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 3:26PM
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I'd leave a note.

Sometimes what you pay is divorced from what you get. Our agent on our home did the deal for 4.2% because we used her to purchase the new house. She was amazing. Excellent marketing, competent, responsive. The agent on the house we bought had horrible brohures, horrible on line pics, and was sort of a buffoon. He got 6.5% and it took them 16 months to sell.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 3:43PM
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Fori is not pleased

For goodness' sakes! Tell them! (Or send a note.)

It's just being neighborly and if they get offended, so what? They're moving! :)

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 4:00PM
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Do you know anyone who DOES know the sellers?

Perhaps a promotional mailing from a credible realtor might make its' way to your neighborhood, including the house in question... (I don't know if it would be ethical for an agent to mail to just that house, outlining the agency's marketing plan.)

I commend you for being concerned. I wouldn't call them or knock on their door, but I would try to speak to them on the street and work this into the conversation.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 5:36PM
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I think MYOB is the answer here.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 10:39PM
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I'm for a carefully written, thoughtful, anonymous letter.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 11:55PM
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"Older home owners" may not understand the internet and it's impact on selling their home at all. If this is the case, they may not understand how or why you have used the internet to learn so much about them and this sale. I get it, but some people are just paranoid or scared of the "invasiveness" of the internet. They might feel you are being a nosey neighbor. I don't -- but they might.

Having said that, I would probably try to engage in some kind of careful, "educational" diaglogue with them. They are truly at a disadvantage if the listing is not getting really good internet coverage.

As for the listing agent...well it could be a relative or financial choice so tread carefully with that.

You sound like you are trying to help. I would want to help also.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2011 at 7:43AM
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If you do write a letter, send one to the listing agents Broker In Charge too.
Keep in mind that every listing I take, the sellers have to give me permission to put a sign in the yard, to advertise their home on third party IDX sites, and permission to post their address. Maybe these folks opted out.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2011 at 8:16AM
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Are you a realtor? Are you a Real Estate investor?
You sound like one.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 9:08AM
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