There are so many buyers looking to buy right now and not enough supply. We have multiple offers on multiple properties – from properties not yet on the market to properties on the market for several months. Fixers and houses that are move-in ready. The most frequent question we get these days is if we know of more houses coming to market. For those wanting to sell, there is currently opportunity because of high demand and low supply.
On a listing where we recently represented the seller, the buyer was notified by his lender that the bank could fund and close two weeks earlier than the contract close of escrow date. The buyer very badly wanted to take advantage and to close two weeks early. Being a very strong personality, and in an effort to get where he wanted to go in a bold way, the buyer bypassed his agent and he called directly to say that if we don’t get the staged furniture out of the house by the next day so his lender could fund and close immediately, then he would take action. We jumped through hoops and the sale closed immediately.
But it didn’t need to happen that way. The buyer’s dad has terminal cancer and his motivation for buying a new house is to house his mom and dad in order to care for his dad at the end of his life. Obviously, this purchase is so laden with emotion – the feelings that always come with making a big purchase, the extraordinarily trying experience of caring for a terminally ill parent, the life change of co-living with parents as adults and the role reversals that come with it. Add to that the pandemic (that’s a threat to the immunocompromised and elderly parent) and the current political events around us, and of course the buyer is feeling all the feelings. Had the phone call come from a place of a human asking another human to jump through hoops for a guy and his dying dad, the answer would have been a resounding overwhelming compassionate yes too.
I explained all of that to the buyer and there was an audible sigh of relief and gratitude. And just a little bit of that fear and sadness went away.
This week at company meetings, our team talked about responding with empathy and validation when we’re at the receiving end of intense human emotion. When humans buy or sell a home, sometimes a buyer or a seller will experience intense emotion and it’s okay. If we listen and make space with compassion for the person struggling through their feelings, then we can dive deeper to get past the emotion in order to understand what we can truly do to help.
At the end of the day, the buyer is a successful respected surgeon and in his mind he needed to do everything in his power to get his immunocompromised dying dad into a safe new space the instant the lender could fund his loan. His intention was to care for and to love his dad for the precious little time he has left with him. The instant he learned that his request would be granted, everything changed and it all turned so peaceful and grateful.
I believe we accomplish more in life not with protests or violence or threats or confrontation, but with love and generosity and compassion and white glove service. Even in trying times with tension around us, our company philosophy is to do our best to respond with empathy and kindness. I believe that through kindness we ultimately live happily ever after.
Have a good weekend!