Tips for Home Buyers: Sizing Up the Seller

What You Could Learn When Looking at Real Estate in Kitsilano

As your realtor, I want to view Kitsilano properties with you – not only to give you information on the property/building/neighbourhood while it’s in front of you, but to also get a sense of your style and to size up the Seller and the Listing Realtor. Knowing who you could be dealing with in an offer situation can help lead to a successful transaction.

Thanks to years in the business, I’ve gotten to know many other Realtors working in the city. Often good relationships with other Realtors can help secure deals and get things done quicker. Think about it – if I’m selling your home and we get two identical offers, one from a realtor I’m confident can close the deal on their end, and another from a realtor I don’t know, I’m more likely to suggest you accept the offer from the former. In a busy market and possibly a multiple offer situation, the offer with the highest bid will win almost every time. In any other market, where time is one your side, due diligence can come in handy.

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Some things I’ll find out when you’re really interested in a buying a home in Kitsilano:

  • Why the Seller is Selling: The Listing realtor doesn’t have to tell us why the Seller wants to sell but if they are truly motivated, they want us to know! The Listing Realtor might slip a piece of information that could work to our advantage (i.e. the Sellers are getting a divorce and want to sell as soon as possible). You’ll often notice in Vancouver condos the presence of a crib in a den or bedroom (maybe even two kids beds!) – you wouldn’t even have to ask in that situation – they are moving because they need more room for their youngsters. Maybe the Seller have already bought and their closing date is fast approaching, and they’ll need to sell in order to finance the new purchase. Knowing the Sellers motivation is useful when it comes to the offer and negotiation side of buying Real Estate in Kitsilano.


  • Building Issues: Does the condo building/unit/house needs extensive work that the Sellers don’t want to do themselves? Many condos in Kitsilano are older, and will need ongoing maintenance – what that maintenance is and when it will need to be done is important. Is a large condo building being development next door, that will block the amazing view of the Mountains you currently have now? Did the building just undergo a lot of renovation work and the Sellers waited until it was done and paid for to sell? We’ll make sure to find out as much as possible about the future of the area and the building.


  • Investment Properties: Though a property doesn’t have to be disclosed as an “investment”, a Seller must disclose if the unit is being lived in by a tenant. You can find out what the investor is getting in rent, and maybe why they’re selling.

I’ll be able to tell you the history of the condos recently sold (or listed and not sold) in the building, or the number of times the home has been on the market and dropped their price. Just because a home has been sitting on the market for a long time doesn’t necessarily mean there’s something wrong with it – there’s just more to the story (and often just needs the right Buyer).

Sometimes the Listing Realtor will tell us that their client won’t listen to logic or comparable sales, they just want a certain number. Sometimes we’ll learn that the Seller can be convinced (with the right argument) to accept a deal that they initially may not have.

Sometimes you’ll learn that Sellers need to be pushed a few times before anything happens. We’ve approached Sellers who have closed the door on us multiple times saying they won’t even consider our offer – it’s not even close to what they want – then two weeks later we present a slightly higher offer than our original and they accept because they realize it’s the best they’ll get.

Realtors are required by law to disclose when they are selling their own home, so you’ll always know if you’re putting in an offer on a Realtors house, or if a Realtor wants to buy your house.

When I view properties with you, I’ll be sizing up the Seller, offering my professional opinion and getting to know you and what you’re drawn to when it comes to Kitsilano Real Estate. Check out our page on Buying Real Estate in Kitsilano, search for Kitsilano Real Estate or give us a call to talk over what you want in your next property and set up a property tour.