To Buy or Not to Buy, That is The Question

To Buy or Not to Buy, That is The Question

Residential News » Miami International | By Valeria Grunbaum | May 29, 2013 8:13 AM ET

I don't want to get all philosophical here, but some buyers get to a point where indecision can paralyze them and even kill a deal. Are you one of them?

Let's get real here--for many of you buying a property in Miami could be the most important and biggest investment of your life. Knowing where to buy and feeling certain about it can be difficult, even more so when for international buyers, who may not know the city. There are always questions behind the doubt: "is this the right one?" "Is there something else better than this out there for me?" "Am I getting the best property for my money?"

The tricky part is that no one has the answer for you.

Buying a property is a big deal, even more so when you buy in another country. Feeling certain is important for you as a buyer. In the process, many times the buyer, in the search for certainty, becomes paralyzed by indecision and risks losing the deal or property they liked.

Three years ago I was working with an international buyer and I showed him about 30 condos. Finally, on his last day in Miami, he decided he wanted to buy in a certain building. When it came time to put in the contract, he said that he was not 100 percent sure and that he needed to talk to his business partner first. I responded that we could put an offer with a contract contingent to the approval of his business partner, so he could buy time and get back to his country and talk to him. His answer was, "No, if this property is for me, it will be there and if it is not available then that is because it was not meant to be for me."

Three month later he called me and he said, "I am coming back to Miami with my business partner and we decided to buy that property that I liked." I checked the property and it was not available any longer-- and what he liked in that building for $250,000 was now priced at $300,000. He finally bought another condo in that building and his decision to wait cost him $50,000 more.

Last month I had a similar case. This time the condo that my customer liked was a unique unit in the building. There was only one. So I made sure that the buyers understood that not putting in an offer might risk the availability of that property by their next trip. Sure enough, they came back 45 days later and the unit was already under contract. They ended up buying another unit that was not what they originally wanted.

When you are in the process of buying think about this: "Is my indecision costing me money and probably the property?" If your answer is, "no," then you can wait. But if you get really anxious about what this question means and you really care about losing the property or you care about having to pay more--then you need to make a decision and live with it!

When emotions get in the way of your buying process, fear, excitement or doubt can definitely cost you time, money and the property.

Valeria Grunbaum is the founder of The International Real Estate Academy and a Realtor specializing in international clientele in Miami. Her Web site is

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