By Lolly Spindler

As a Realtor, one may like to think s/he can work with anyone—or at least will make an effort to. However, some things are more easily said than done. In fact, there are a few types of buyers that you’d probably like to avoid altogether than try to do business with. Therefore, we’ve compiled a list of 13 types of home buyers to avoid and the early warning signs you may have a problem with a particular client. Hopefully you’ll be able to spot the signs early on and get out of the deal ASAP! After all, some hassles are just not worth your valuable time.

types of home buyers to avoid

Look out for these buyers!

1. The Flaky Buyer

Sellers spend a lot of time preparing their homes for showings, and flaky, inconsiderate buyers fail to realize this. Avoid buyers who make a habit of missing appointments without calling you ahead of time to explain their absence. Missed appointments could mean a missed opportunity for the perfect home.

2. The Whiny Buyer

This is the type of buyer that complains about the littlest of things. Whether it be the choice of paint color or style of the newly-installed carpet, this person will add small, easy, and cosmetic fixes to their laundry list of problems with the property.

3. The Realtor-Hopper Buyer

I couldn’t really come up with a snazzy name for this one, but this is the type of buyer that’s already worked with multiple agents. They give reasons why each Realtor didn’t work out for them, and may up telling a similar story to the agent they work with after you. Ultimately, this type of buyer will just end up wasting your time.

4. The Questionable Buyer

This buyer may not have all of his/her finances in order. If this buyer generates a shaky response from the bank—who reaches an agreement but with odd contingencies—the transaction probably isn’t a sure thing. After all, why are they house hunting if they’re not 100 percent financially capable of purchasing a home?

5. The Distrustful Buyer

The distrustful buyer isn’t quite sure about any part of the deal. S/he questions the seller’s choice of contractor, the home inspection, etc, and insists yet another expert come and give his or her own two cents. These inspections are often done at the seller’s expense—making the seller wary of doing business with your buyer client from the start.

6. The Know-It-All Buyer

This type of buyer isn’t quite sure you have his or her best interest at heart. They think they know better than you (it’s not like you do this for a living!) and will therefore insist on doing things their way instead of taking your expert advice.

7. The Sleep-Over Buyer

This is the buyer that insists on sleeping over in the property prior to closing the transaction. This can be an odd and uncomfortable request, especially if the sellers are still living in the home. Although you may be able to negotiate the buyer simply spend a few hours in the property at night instead of sleeping over, some buyers will simply not budge on this.

8. The Rude Buyer

This buyer doesn’t act like a guest in homes s/he’s viewing, treating the property as if it’s already his/hers with complete disregard for the people that are still living there. These are buyers that bring rowdy children to showings, flop down on the bed, leave the bathroom a mess, etc.

9. The Indecisive Buyer

This type of buyer can be one of the most frustrating of them all. From the number of bedrooms and bathrooms to the type of lot, this buyer may demonstrate that making concrete decisions is impossible for some. The indecisive buyer may require you to wear multiple hats during the home buying process.

10. The Multiple Visits Buyer

This buyer insists on seeing the home multiple times before closing, demanding immediate access after committing to the deal. This is the buyer who wants to bring friends, family members, decorators and architects in right away, before the transaction has even closed.

11. The Blamer Buyer

This buyer consistently denies responsibility, blaming you for anything that doesn’t go perfectly during the home buying process. If you do try to make it work with this type of buyer, make sure to outline what are considered realistic expectations for a real estate transaction.

12. The Rushed Buyer

The rushed buyer demands closing and moving dates. The buyer who rushes the closing date is usually oblivious to the emotional attachment the sellers may have to the house, not letting them move out and on when they’re ready.

13. The Negotiating Buyer

This buyer tries to negotiate after the deal is already closed. It’s imperative to remind these clients that the final walk through is not the time to renegotiate. Even if the market has changed, the agreed-upon price is the agreed-upon price. Period.


Working with these 12 types of buyers is far from ideal, but sometimes necessary. Therefore, be prepared: involve a contract during multiple steps of the real estate transaction and act as a mediator if necessary. Unfortunately, with some clients, you’ll just be happy that the deal is over and you’re finally free of them. It’s likely you won’t be getting any referrals from these clients, but at least you’ll be equipped with the experience of managing, and successfully closing a deal with, difficult clients.


Did we miss any types of home buyer to avoid? Please tell us about your less-than-desirable real estate buyer clients in the comments!


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