18 April 2015

Real Estate is Local

2015-04-17 14:26:25
Real Estate is local, but...

Real Estate is local, but Realtor® professionalism shouldn't be!

It's been awhile since I've had a good online rant...and I'm trying to keep that particular resolution! However, a 'gentle' reminder for my Realtor® friends certainly shouldn't be a problem...

The basis for the thoughts in my mind started germination in my tiny mind during a completely informal gathering of several friends 'in the biz' earlier this week. As I listened to their 'war stories', it became obvious that some of the issues we've been dealing with in our brokerage aren't isolated.

First of all, let me say that in my experience 95%+ of the agents we come in contact with are professionals and we have few problems. Frankly, that should be what I'm writing about today, and I will soon! That said, it's obvious to me that the 5% are making life difficult for many, and frankly not helping their clients in the process. Let me give you a few examples. The names are changed to protect the innocent...Just kidding, no names.  

Living in Tooele County is wonderful. We're far enough away from the big city to enjoy a 'small town' lifestyle, but close enough to the big city to satisfy any need we can't find out here. However, that means we are also close enough to tempt agents from outside the area to venture out here to do business. While I'd happily debate any seller about why having a local agent list their home is a great idea, I can't argue with the fact that roughly half our homes are listed with Wasatch front agents. In addition, the attractiveness of the values available in our area make us the target of lots of folks looking to buy. All of that's fine, as it's our job to move our clients homes. However, there are a few times when it really shouldn't be like this.

Let me give you an example or two. It's not uncommon to get a call from a buyer asking to see a listing. When asked if they are working with an agent, the answer is usually something like 'yes, but they are too busy to come out to Tooele County...' or worse, 'they don't want to drive out until we find the right house...'. Of course there's the old ' they won't be able to show it to me until they get off work...' but I digress. Of course we'll show them our listing. The problem is when they have a list of other homes they want to see. Then I get to explain agency law to your client! No fun!

Or we get the folks who have seen the home once, but want to show it to the uncle/aunt/mom/dad/pet groomer/BFF. Or maybe the agent wants the home opened for the inspector or appraiser. The agent came out once, but isn't really interested in coming out any more, especially if it's under contract. I'm all for professional courtesy, but guess what? We're busy too!

My current favorite is one in which an out of area agent wrote an extremely low-ball offer (in a sellers market!) and justified his offer by sending us a 60 page email showing his 'comps', which was really just the MLS printout of every rambler on the market in the Tooele Valley! Yep...

Look, I bleed Realtor® blue and I know it. To the 95% of the pros out there, thank you for listing and selling in Tooele County. We love working with you! However, to the small number of folks that aren't interested in doing things in a professional way, could I make a suggestion: REFERRAL! We'll take really good care of 'our' client. They won't miss out on getting into the right home (or selling!) at the right price, you'll make a little money and everyone will have a great experience. And guess what? We'll do the same for you when the time comes!

See, I didn't rant at all!


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