Beware of Serial Buyers

real estate buyersBeware of serial buyers killing home purchase deals!

Frantic buyers outbid on homes and a day or two later have buyers remorse.  Sound familiar?  It’s happening to lots of sellers in the greater Cincinnati area.

You’re thinking everybody is entitled to one mistake.  But serial buyers have written and backed out of multiple purchase contracts.

The story goes like this.  A home hits the market, several offers come in and the sellers select the best offer.  The buyer has so many days to hand over earnest money, go for financing and get an inspection.  Regular buyers are hustling to meet the date requirements.

Sometimes the first indication your buyer is a serial buyer is when they miss the earnest money date.  And then everything goes downhill from there.

Not all buyers who miss dates are bad.  However buyers and sellers signed a legally binding contract and it spells out, in detail, what needs to happen.  Serial buyers have figured out a way to get under contract and then take a few days to ponder before they really commit.  This takes the property off the market and other interested buyers move on.  Serial buyers are taking a gamble the sellers won’t sue and desperately want to get the property advertised to other buyers.  


How do you know potential buyers are serial buyers who have written and walked on several homes?  The questions could start during initial negotiations with your Realtor® asking their agent details about search time and any problems with other contracts.  Not all agents know the details and some buyers skip from agent to agent- so asking is just one way to get information.

Unfortunately, there isn’t the perfect way to detect serial buyers.  And not all buyers who back out are doing it because they have buyer’s remorse.  Home Inspection results are still the number one reason for buyers walking away.

The home buying and selling process are stressful enough without adding buyers trying to game the system.