The Emotional Cost of Buying and Selling Real Estate

A few months ago I reviewed a book that chronicled the story of a young family who, despite all odds, succeeded in making a run down, ramshackle house a home.  The point being that buying a house is about so much more than getting a good deal or making a wise investment.

Yesterday in the Washington Post, staff writer Ylan Q. Mui made a similar point in an article that chronicled her and her husband’s own hunt for a house during the past six months.

Mui notes that “Sellers become depressed as homes stagnate on the market.  They get insulted when they receive lowball offers.  Buyers feel entitled to a deal and fret about finding the bottom of the curve.  The process has become so emotional on both sides that psychologists rank it on par with divorce and even death.”

She also quotes Ruth Peters, a psychologist who has worked with us at Coldwell Banker.  “People have a preconceived notion that it’s like walking into a store and and you’re going to see something and pick it out . . . Those are expectations that are generally not met.  It’s going to take emotional work and physical work.”

I couldn’t agree more.  I’m currently working with a couple who first came to me over a year ago as renters.  Now they are ready to buy.  We have looked at a lot of property.  We have lost one contract on a short sale.  We are writing another contract today.  It’s been emotional and physical work on both sides.

I understand it but I don’t think my clients bargained on it being this tough.  They have been real troopers though – they have stuck to their budget, they continue to trust the relationship we have built and, perhaps best of all, they have remained calm and optimistic.

They are not looking for a castle, they are not trying to gauge the ‘next hot neighborhood’ or where the military might relocate a large facility.  Instead they are looking for a house that is within their means; a house that feels right, a house that will become home.

We’ve got more work to do but when we do find that house, all that work will become a distant memory.

What about you?  Are you ready to dig in and do some work?  Give me a call at 703.927.4554 and I’ll be right there with you.