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How Smart Home Sellers Have the Edge

by Gwen Holloway and Elena Sanwick, REALTORS®, LUXE Real Estate Group – Luxury Prescott

You’ve been searching for the home of your dreams for months. Several options you’ve toured came close, but you still haven’t found the home that will make you happy. You may be starting to feel a bit discouraged, and then it happens. You found THE ONE!

From the moment you stepped through the front door (or even from the front porch), you knew you were, at long last, home.

As real estate agents, there is nothing more satisfying than this moment, particularly if we’ve been working with our buyer clients for a long stretch. Typically, when the perfect match is made, buyers tend to do one or more of the following:

  • Exclaim, “This is it!”
  • Turn to their significant other and say, “Do you love it as much as I do?”
  • Start sharing where they’d place their furniture and/or Christmas tree.

These reactions are all heartwarming, for sure. Prolonged periods of house hunting can often be stressful and exhausting, so when the perfect home appears, it’s an exciting time.

Before the advent of smart home technology, as long as the sellers weren’t present, the buyers’ celebration in their potential new home was a welcomed highlight. But thanks to current technology, homes for sale (especially luxury homes) are frequently wired for audio and video surveillance, eavesdropping on the buyers’ enthusiasm and tipping their hands considerably.

Sellers who know that “This is it!” will have a clear advantage when it comes to negotiations. Conversely, Sellers overhearing perceived criticisms of their home often get defensive, and may make putting a deal together much more difficult.

Legally (and ethically), sellers who employ audio and/or video surveillance are required to disclose this fact in the MLS listing. Occasionally, that fact is not shared, which, again, can greatly hurt the buyers’ chances for a fair negotiation.

To that end, we advise all of our buyer clients to assume we are being watched, and/or listened to, from the moment we pull into the driveway, especially when “This is it!”

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