Hello dearest real estate friend. Glad you could make it today. What I want to do here is simple – convince you to be yourself.
Reasons It’s OK to Be Late for an Appointment with Your Real Estate Agent, Ranked on a Scale of 1-10
Running late for an appointment can happen to even the most timely person. For instance, who hasn’t gotten stuck in traffic at some point in their life?! Something like that is a legitimate excuse that you can’t predict or avoid, unless you always leave ridiculously early just to make sure you don’t!
Which is why real estate agents totally understand if you’re running a few minutes behind to meet them. Just give them the heads up so they know you’re on your way. Of course, some reasons for running late are more acceptable than others to an agent…
So let’s take a tongue-in-cheek look at 10 reasons for running late to meet your agent, and rank them from 1-10 (1 being the lowest, and 10 being the highest), so you can gauge on your own:
1. You were with another agent
Coming in on the low end of the acceptability spectrum is running late because you went to see a house with another agent. If you’re going to work with more than one agent to look for a house (which you shouldn’t), at least make sure not to keep the other one waiting because you got caught up in conversation with another one.
2. You stopped to see a FSBO
Don’t be pulling up a half hour late because you came across a house that was being sold by the owner. If you see a “FSBO” sign on your way to an appointment, jot down the address and phone number, but don’t go knocking on the door for an impromptu showing! It’ll still be there after you see the house you were already on your way to see. (Heck, it’ll probably still be there weeks later!)
Better yet, when you get to your scheduled appointment with your agent, give him or her the info so they can call and arrange with the owner to show you the house, and negotiate on your behalf if you like it.
3. You were busy running up some new debt
The last thing you should do if you’re in the process of buying a house is open up new lines of credit, or buy big-ticket items like a car! It can totally affect how much of a mortgage you can get, or entirely ruin your ability to buy a house at all.
So don’t be rolling up in a brand new car you just purchased earlier in the day, saying you would’ve been on time if the clerk didn’t take so long processing your application for store credit to buy new furniture for your future house.
4. Your uncle needed to get his tools
You should definitely get a home inspection on the house you’re buying…once you’re under contract and officially buying it, that is! And when you do, you should hire a licensed inspector to do it.
But some buyers feel like bringing an uncle, cousin, parent, or friend (who happens to have bought a house or two in the past 30 years) to get their input. You might not hear the groan out loud, but if you show up late because you had to wait for Uncle Expert to grab his ladder, that’s the sound your agent will be making.
5. You turned back time
Now we’re getting into more acceptable reasons for being late! Who hasn’t lost track of the actual time right after daylight saving time? This is totally acceptable, but only for a day or two afterward. Don’t use this one as your excuse weeks later and expect your agent to feel like it’s a legit reason.
(***Also note that this excuse is never acceptable in Arizona or Hawaii.)
6. You had to get your Starbucks…
If your agent is a coffee addict, they’ll be more understanding than one that isn’t if you ran late because you just had to stop for your coffee fix on the way. Either way, most agents will give you a pass and just be glad that you’re caffeinated and ready to focus on the houses you’re seeing. But they’d probably still prefer that you left a few minutes earlier to make sure you weren’t late.
7. …but you also got your agent one!
However, if you show up with a cup of joe for your agent, that takes the excuse up a notch to number 7 on the list!
(***Bonus points if you know your agent’s favorite drink order, or other treat for ones who don’t love a java!)
8. You were getting a mortgage pre-approval
Agents truly appreciate a buyer who comes prepared already pre-approved for a mortgage before they start looking at houses. It helps save you (and them) from the heartache of finding the house of your dreams, only to find out you don’t qualify to purchase it. So your agent would probably rather you be running a little late than showing up without being pre-approved.
9. You forgot your checkbook
If you were halfway to your appointment and turned around to get your checkbook just in case you want to write an offer on the house, your agent will certainly be OK with that!
10. You brought a new client
Showing up late because you got tied up talking about how great your agent is to someone who wants to buy or sell a house is something your agent will find more than acceptable.
But if you want to score even more brownie points (and lots of good karma), be late because you stopped to pick up that friend on the drive over so they could meet your agent in person, but had to wait while they got pre-approved, and then ended up driving back to their house so they could pick up their checkbook.