Frustrated by sellers who should be motivated - Posted by osirus

Posted by Mike K. on February 14, 2000 at 06:06:05:

Insert a clause in your offers that specifies the contract must be signed and returned to you within a certain time frame (48 hr., 72 hrs., 5 days) or it becomes null and void. This will tend to force action. If the seller does not return the contract within the specified time the deal may not necessarily be dead. If he calls you back sometime later you may be able to negotiate a better deal because now he is probably really getting desparate to sell. Hope this might be of some help

Frustrated by sellers who should be motivated - Posted by osirus

Posted by osirus on February 14, 2000 at 24:06:05:

I am hungry and anxiuos to complete my first flip deal. But latley I have become frustrated by two potential deals. This frustration stems from not comsumating the deal despite me making the right moves.

This is potential deal one:

This house is a 3/1 FSBO located in Florida. I called the number on the sign. The owner lives in New Mexico and inherited the property from his aunt. We spoke for about a hour and I established great rapport with the owner. In fact, he complimented me on my initiative in being a investor and evened offered me a scholarship to continue my college education. He expressed his deep desire to sell this property since he lives nearly on the other side of the country. The property needs cosmetics and is worth about $60k. Seller agrees to accept $45K all cash. I already have someone lined up who will buy it for $50k. I mail seller a contract. Two weeks past …nothing. I repeatedly called him and he never returns my calls. I can only reach him when I call 11:30pm EST. I finally reach him around the first of February and I was told he would come into town to personally give me the contract. Yet, I have not heard from him since.

I am completely jaded with this deal. This seller should be a classical MOTIVATED SELLER based on what the seller told me. This seller placed a FSBO sign on his property; yet, behaves like he could not care less if the property is sold.
I guess the only thing I could do is to keep calling him.

This is potential deal two:

The house is a vacant 4/1 located in a marginal but improving area. The owner is a burnt out landlord (that’s is how he refered to himself) who had tenants who trashed the inside several months ago. In addition, there is a balloon mortgage on the property with payments about $240/month and the balloon payment due in 2003. Plus, the owner works about 60 hours per week in a city 50 miles form where he lives. Thus, he does not have the time or the desire to repair the house himself. I met the owner to see to inside. I figure about $10k for repair. The house is worth $45k-$50k. Seller agrees to sell for $20k. I give him a contract right there spot. Seller was to give it back to me the next day. Again nothing. I call hime several times with no success. Finally, the Friday before Superbowl Sunday, the seller calls me and says he will me the next day and arrange a time for him to give me the contract. Now it is two weeks later and I have not heard from him.

This guy is paying a mortgage on a vacant run down rental property. Again this should be a classical MOTIVATED SELLER. Yet, he is not behaving like it.

Is it just me or do other investors have experiences like this?

Re: Frustrated by sellers who should be motivated - Posted by Rob FL

Posted by Rob FL on February 15, 2000 at 09:10:53:

Ain’t it amazing. I send out letters and knock on doors on preforeclosures. People who are going to lose their house very soon if they don’t do something right now.

I knocked on this old fellow’s door last night (I had already sent him about 4 letters). The foreclosure sale is a week from Thursday. He told me to go away. That he wasn’t going to let someone just buy his house from him. He has 10 days to do something and still won’t wake up. I popped him out another “urgent” letter last night.

Some people who have their pants on fire aren’t motivated and some people who stub their toe are ready to totally give up. Go figure.

Remember this is a numbers game. Make lots of offers. Send out lots of letters. Call or visit lots of motivated (or potentially motivated) sellers. The key is in the numbers.

Re: Frustrated by sellers who should be motivated - Posted by gio

Posted by gio on February 14, 2000 at 18:14:13:

how about getting someone you now and can confide in to call this fsbo and make a lower offer than yours - this may put a little fire in his .

Re: Frustrated by sellers who should be motivated - Posted by B.L.Renfrow

Posted by B.L.Renfrow on February 14, 2000 at 11:15:19:


One thing I would not do, if at all avoidable, is to send out your contracts with potential sellers. Once they get home and start reading through the thing, they invariably come across stuff they don’t fully understand. Then, they either procrastinate because they don’t understand, or worse yet, they get third parties involved, who also don’t understand. That’s where the concept that “a confused mind always says no” enters the picture.

If at all possible, the best solution is to sit down with the seller when you have reached a verbal understanding and go over the contract. Depending on the situation, this may consist of skimming through the thing and saying, “sign here,” to reading aloud each and every line and answering any questions as they arise. But I would NEVER allow a seller to leave with my unsigned contract. If they say they want to review it with their attorney, spouse, fairy godmother or whatever, I will arrange to meet together with the advisor and seller and personally answer any questions at that time, but I will not send the seller home with the contract, because if you do, the chance of actually completing the deal will plummet like a rock.

As for the seller across the country, it is, of course, more of a challenge. One thing you can do, as someone else mentioned, is to include a time limit for a response or the contract is voided. This will help - but not completely eliminate - the risk of inaction due to procrastination, and it will also cut down on sellers who will then frantically shop around for a better offer. Another option is to send the contract via fax and immediately get on the phone and review it with them, so you can answer any questions right then and there, and then ask them to sign and fax it back.

Finally, there’s an element of salesmanship involved. You have to know when and how to close, and how to ask for their signature. If you don’t ask, they may not volunteer!

Also, don’t forget that perhaps your self-described motivated sellers really aren’t so motivated as they claimed. In any event, don’t waste too much time if they clearly don’t intend to follow through. And don’t get too discouraged from these two situations. After all, most of us get many more deals rejected than accepted.

Brian (NY)

Re: Frustrated by sellers who should be motivated - Posted by Mark (SDCA)

Posted by Mark (SDCA) on February 14, 2000 at 11:13:19:

I see this too sometimes. Just go back and re-read your own post. You are seeing seller’s who should be motivated (BUT ARE NOT). Sometimes a seller just hasn’t reached that threshold of pain. Don’t try to judge them by yourself. “Should be motivated” is meaningless. Either they are or they are not. And believe me, you will know when they are… On to the next deal…