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Everyone has a list of “must haves’’ when buying, but could you miss out on the perfect property?

By Holly Darwon

BEFORE the introduction of web portals like buyers would meet agents, quite often face-to-face at their window, and discuss their long list of expectations.

Then over time this list would be chiselled down to two or three non-negotiables.

It can be funny to see what the end up buying when you compare it to their list of ‘non-negotiables’ just a few weeks earlier.

Most buyers will end up holding firm on things like school catchments/area, price range or size of block.

Someone can start looking in one area for a brick house with views and end up buying in another area, in a Queenslander with no views, but it’s in their budget.

Some do hold firm though and we’ve had some quite specific requests over the years, that no amount of negotiation can change it.

I clearly remember a number of buyers over the years who bought properties to accommodate furniture, pets and people.

They’d reject property after property, most ticking every other box, before they found one that would fit that one thing often at the cost of another item on the list.

When I’d visit years later it was heartbreaking to see the furniture, pet or person long gone and usually storage boxes stacked in their place.

I once had a buyer who turned up at an auction, for quite an expensive property and they had never shown an interest before.

They bid and bid and bid and eventually bought the property for $1 million above the reserve!

When I asked why, it was because they thought they could move the house to the side and make a spare block. That was true, but they never did.

When agents were so hands on with prospective buyers driving them from house to house on a Saturday we got to know them and their peculiarities really well.

I met celebrities and heads of industry but the best was the bikies.

I remember taking the president of a prominent bikie gang out to buy a property. The bikie was dressed in plain clothes and truth is it took me ages to realise he was a bikie.

It was only when I took him through a house where the tenant always gave me a hard time that I realised something was going on.

The house was in an industrial estate and the tenant would cancel inspections, go out of his way to dress the property down and give me unbridled feedback about my choice of profession.

But not on this day. He started to give me his normal snarl, until he saw my purchaser.

At which point he dropped his head, looked at the ground and nervously said hello like he was a teenager face-to-face with his idol.

My client acknowledged him asking “staying out of trouble?” and continued with his tour. Needless to say, inspections were a breeze after that.

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