The 80.10.10 Rule
At this point, you’re probably excited and full of optimism. You’ve gotten pre-approved and have (hopefully) started to complete the Buyer’s Questionnaire. Now comes the most important step: finding the right home.
I will have set you up for automatic search via the BLC (Broker Listing Cooperative). Each day (or however frequently you want to receive the search results) you’ll be emailed new properties on the market matching your criteria as well as any price drops on homes that were previously over your budget. This is a HUGE time saver. And if you’re in a market like Indiana, where great properties sell in a matter of days, it can be an enormous advantage to be able to get in and to see a property within a day or two of it going on the market.
Before we start, what is the 80/10/10 rule? No home will be perfect but thinking through the process I’ve outlined below will help eliminate homes that simply will not work for your family. However, once we begin looking at homes, I want you to think about them in this way:
- Does this home meet 80% of my needs?
- Can I change 10% to make the home meet 90% of my needs?
- Can I live with the remaining 10% I cannot change?
Now make a list of your top 4-6 needs and a list of your top 4-6 wants. Examples of needs are:
- 3 bedrooms (because we have 2 kids that will fight and drive us crazy if they have to share a room)
- In a certain school district/s
- Yard for the dog (because you’re sick of walking the dog in the dead of winter)
- Central AC (because the kids are driving you crazy complaining about the heat)
- Updated and move-in ready (because you don’t even own a hammer)
These are the things you absolutely cannot live without. You won’t even see a property unless it has every one of the above items.
Then, make a list of your wants. Examples of wants are:
- Hardwood floors throughout
- Ensuite master bathroom with double sinks
- Updated kitchen with granite and stainless steel
- Wood burning fireplace
- Rainbows over the home, flying unicorns, and pots of gold in every room
These are the things you’d really like but can live without if needed (unless your budget is $40 million, then we can probably find something with everything on your list).
Once you’ve made your lists, share them with me. That way when you see a property on the BLC that you love with the kitchen of your dreams, but I notice that it doesn’t have central AC, we won’t waste time seeing it.
When the email of listings comes, I need you to:
- Review all of the properties sent to you that day. Hover over the shaded heart to mark properties you want to see as ‘Save as Favorite’. That tells me to schedule that home for you to view. Properties you want to think about longer, mark ‘Save as Possibility’. Properties you definitely don’t like mark as ‘Discard Listing’. If you have any questions about a particular property once you click on the address to bring up more information, write those questions in the ‘Notes for you and your agent’ located under the pictures. I’ll monitor those sections and will get answers back to you.
- I’ll then ask that you select your top four or five properties. If time permits drive by the properties to look at the neighborhood, checking for anything undesirable. Eliminate any homes you no longer want to see. Don’t have time for a drive-by? Consider Google Maps instead.
- Shoot me a quick text or email letting me know when you’re available. That way I can set up the showings.
- NOTE that during the spring and summer, great properties sell in 3-4 days. It’s important that you review the BLC email daily so we can jump on a great property as soon as you see it.
- I’ll bring printouts for each property so no need for you to bring anything other than snacks or drinks if you think you might get hungry.
While you’re looking at the BLC feeds each day I’ll also be networking with our contacts to find you homes, before they go on the market.
At this point, there should be no further need for you to look on Zillow, Trulia, etc., as all of those properties should be showing up in your BLC feed. If needed, we can fine-tune the search parameters of your BLC feed so you will only receive the listings that really get your heart fluttering!
Now on to the showings!