The unlisted property: can you find me a buyer?

I have run into situations several times where someone wants to sell their property, but they don’t want to list it. There can be different reasons for this.

Sometimes they aren’t quite ready to sell but would consider it if the right buyer came  along. Sometimes they don’t want the aggravation, in most instances, of having strangers go through their house, and having their neighbors know their property is for sale.  Or they don’t want to pay a full commission, and assume that if I can find them a buyer, they won’t have to. They’ll say to me something like, “find me a buyer and we’ll pay your commission.”

The problem is, it’s pretty hard to find them a buyer in those circumstances. And it’s certainly not very efficient.

Most of us have clients who are looking for specific homes. We may have several hundred people in our database but only a few are looking to buy a property at any given time. It might be months or years before I come across one who might be interested in seeing your property, and even then, there are no guarantees.

The way we attract buyers is through  listings. If I’m a listing agent for a property, I will get lots of calls from prospective buyers. They may have seen it on MLS or Realtor.ca or Kijiji or one of the other websites where we advertise properties, or perhaps  they’ve driven by the “for sale” sign and want to see the inside. The point is that the property is out there, where it can be seen. The fact it’s for sale is not reliant on me having a particular prospect and mentioning it to them. Having the property listed lets the seller reach out to thousands of them.

A listing draws prospects from a variety of sources. Some are not represented, but many are already working with realtors. There are thousands of realtors in Ottawa. If each of them  has a database of several hundred or more prospects to draw from, your chances of finding a buyer are multiplied exponentially. Why limit your shot at selling by asking one realtor to  find you a buyer from his or her relatively small pool of contacts?

So the answer to the question, can you find me a buyer? is probably not, unless you list with me.

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