fastest way to buy a house is for the buyer to first sit with
the REALTOR in the office and answer questions. The slowest way
to buy a house is for the Realtor to pick up his/her car keys
as soon as a buyer wants to look looking at property. Every
20 minutes invested in qualifying in the real estate office will
save about an hour's worth of seeing property (that is, trial
and error takes at least three times as long!)
even getting to financial qualifiers (where they work, how much
they earn, what their debts are), here are 56 important
qualifying questions to ask before ever getting the car to go
see property. It never hurts you to have a printed checklist.
But at a minimum, why not record these questions in your own
voice onto a digital recorder or an audio tape and listen to
them over and over in the car on any day you expect to have an
initial meeting with a home buyer?
(at least 8 questions):
are you buying?
are you buying now?
long have you been thinking about making a purchase?
soon do you need to be in your new home?
would happen if you couldn't make a decision in that much time?
you seen anything so far that you liked?
you did, why didn't you buy it?
by some chance that home were still available, would you like
to see it again?
& Ability (at least 4 questions):
much time do you have to look at property today?
you have any other appointments to look at property today?
] This is important - we may run over the time you have
before that other appointment. Why don't you tell me who the
other agent is and we'll call to let them know you might be late?
Really, I don't mind
you found what you wanted today, are you in a position to proceed
with making an offer on it?
(at least 8 questions):
much cash do you have to work with?
that cash include your closing costs?
we found you the right home and it was pretty much everything
you were hoping to find, but it was going to take another 10%
more cash than you have now. Is there any point in showing it
to you - knowing that - or should we sell that one to our other
is the maximum house payment you can imagine paying?
that payment include your property taxes and insurance?
suppose we found you the right home and it was as close as you
were going to get to what you are hoping to find. But given your
down payment, suppose the only way it was going to work is if
you could come up with a monthly payment about 10% larger than
the payment you just named for me. Is there any point in showing
you that house - knowing the numbers you have in mind won't work
- or should we sell your house to one of our other buyers?
understand it makes no difference to me. I will work within whatever
financial arrangements you lay out for me, and that's fine with
me. I'm just thinking, wouldn't be a shame if I found your house
and didn't even show it to you because I didn't think to ask
if you were flexible anywhere. That's always your decision to
make, not mine.]
you bring your checkbook with you?
(at least 2 questions):
many properties have you bought in the past?
you own any property now?
Questions (at least 22 questions):
are all the things you will want in the home you are going to
of the home?
or design of the home?
of the lot?
story or two?
location in town?
important are school locations?
you familiar with the different school districts in this area?
you have any opinions about schools I should know about?
important is your distance from the highway, downtown, workplace,
do you prefer to finance the purchase?
you spoken with a lender yet?
you have a lender in mind that you have decided to work with?
like to put a lender in touch with you right away. He/She will
ask you some questions about your work, your income and debts.
It will only take about five minutes and he/she will be able
to give you a quick idea of exactly what price range you should
be looking in. May I give them your name?
you are paying cash - where is the cash right now and how long
will it take you to get your hands on it?
of those features could you do without if you had no choice?
mean if you really had no choice?
mean if you REALLY had no choice? I'll do the best that
I can to get you as much of this as I can but I have to know
what is more important to you than other things.
pre-meeting qualifiers (at least 7 questions):
we meet, please bring the measurements of the largest pieces
of furniture in your house [couch and love seat, entertainment
center, dining room table collapsed and fully extended, hutch
& side bar, master bedroom bed, etc. How many times have
you had a buyer unable to make a decision on a house because
they didn't know if their couch would fit on one wall?]
you please bring your checkbook with you when you come in? If
you don't like what you see, you don't have to buy it. But this
market moves so fast that if you do see what you want, you need
to be in a position to make a decision on the spot.
anyone else need to see the home you choose before you can make
a decision? If so, how do we get them in the car with us?
you have our address?
I give you directions?
the way, why don't you give me your phone number just in case?
will have this time set aside just for you. So if for any reason
you aren't able to be here, would you please let me know that
as soon as you do?
Before Selling (at least 5 questions):
you need to sell something else in order to make this purchase?
[Residence, a second home or rental property.]
you have that property on the market now?
you have a figure in mind for which you expect to sell it?
did you arrive at that figure?
unlisted:] It is most likely that you will be in a much stronger
negotiating position on your purchase if you at least have your
present home on the market before you try to buy your next home.
It's the difference between saying "I'll buy yours if I
can sell mine first" or saying "I'll buy yours as soon
as mine sells - and mine is already on the market." Do you
see the difference? Since yours is not on the market now, why
don't I at least come by to see yours first so we'll all know
how to proceed?
2013. Steve Stewart Seminars
Stewart is an international speaker and expert on the subject
of real estate sales making 100+ presentations each year throughout
North America and beyond. Best known for his signature presentation
Buy From Me or Get Out of My Car, he can be contacted
directly about scheduling a topic and presentation for your organization
in 2013. For information, click on www.Steve-Stewart.com or email
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