High School Dating Versus Real World Dating... and Yes, It Relates to Real Estate

By
Education & Training with Sell with Soul

dating

Had a conversation with my DBF's 17 year old daughter about dating. She's going into her senior year of high school and is involved in her first serious relationship. Two months already! I, being a way-out-of-touch-42-year-old asked her if teenagers still "go together" officially or if they date casually - as in - more than one person at a time.

She looked at me as if I were a loon and explained that yes, they "go together" and it's unheard of for a teenager to date more than one person - that would be called "cheating" or worse.

Fair enough - that's how it was in my high school days; probably in yours, too. After all, high school is a micro-culture and it would be pretty tough to have two boyfriends without causing a ruckus in English class or at the football game.

But as we get older and begin to look for a lifetime mate, we realize the wisdom of shopping around. Of not committing to someone after a date or two. Of not pledging "loyalty" to a virtual stranger. Heck, in the real world, you could date someone different every night of the week and two on Sundays without ever hurting a feeling. And perhaps you should. After all, you're on the hunt to find just the right person for you and the only way to do that is to explore your options.

During our collective searches for The One, someone's gonna get hurt. Someone's gonna get dumped. Someone's gonna feel misled. It's happened to all of us and we've done it to others, probably more than once. It's part of the process of finding The Right One for each of us.

And if I date five men and reject four of them in favor of the one I like most, have I done something wrong?

No, I haven't, not even if those other four men are disappointed. Not even if I went out with some of them more than once. Not even if I shared personal information with them and they shared some with me. (Of course, this assumes I haven't made promises to anyone I didn't intend to keep.)

It's the same in our business. Our prospects are out there in the world searching for just The Right One to do business with. They're visiting open houses, asking for references from friends, and dropping in at real estate offices in hopes of finding someone they can see themselves working with for an extended period of time. During their investigation period, they will share personal information; they'll allow the agent to provide free advice and they might even indicate an interest in seeing the agent again. It's part of the process and they should be allowed, even encouraged, to do so. The fact that they're "dating around" should not be construed to mean that they are "disloyal" people who are not to be trusted.

And yes, when they do select one agent over the others, the others may be hurt. They might even rant about the experience in a blog or around the coffee machine. They might proclaim the need for an earlier discussion of Buyer Agency and a commitment to enforce tighter "rules" in the future. They may even complain about the lack of loyalty among the general public.

My friends, no one owes us loyalty unless they've overtly promised it to us. We earn loyalty and we continue to earn it throughout the course of a relationship. If you get dumped (or better said "selected against) by a prospect, trust that the prospect found someone they were more compatible with and be happy for them. Move on, continue to trust the process, and don't lose hope that the Right One (actually, several "ones") is/are out there looking for you. Because they are. Put on your happy face and jump right back in!

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Rainmaker
4,797,120
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Jennifer, you make some excellent points here.  We try and work at building relationships and trust constantly.  But, there are some issues when it comes to money for the consumer.

Jun 14, 2009 11:21 PM #3
Rainmaker
1,026,935
Susan Haughton
Long and Foster REALTORS (703) 470-4545 - Alexandria, VA
Susan & Mindy Team...Honesty. Integrity. Results.

I totally agree with this because I am also interested in it being just the right fit.  And just like dating around, when you find the right person, it's much more mutually satisfying than jumping around...I have no interest in working with clients who don't want to work with me...in fact, I'm probably pickier about that than they are.  It needs to be right. 

Jun 14, 2009 11:25 PM #4
Rainmaker
1,004,473
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

Jennifer:  What a great post... and some excellent points.  Sure, our buyers and sellers are all looking for Ms Right, and it can definitely hurt when we spend time with them, and are then "selected against."  (I like that)  All we can do is take what we can from each series of actions, and try and improve, or at least try and figure out where something went wrong.  And... maybe nothing went wrong.  Maybe it just wasn't a "good match."

By the way... I am trying to figure out what DBF meant in your opening paragraph.  The only thing I come up with is Dullard Boy Friend.  LOL.  Take care... have a great week.

Jun 14, 2009 11:47 PM #5
Rainmaker
484,157
Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn
Sell with Soul - Pensacola Beach, FL
Author of Sell with Soul

Karen - OOooh, it can mean whatever you like it to mean... but I meant it to be Darling Boy Friend.

Susan - Amen sister! When it's a bad match, it's miserable... in both worlds.

Gabe - Money changes everything?

 

Jun 14, 2009 11:52 PM #6
Rainer
149,056
John Combs
Alan Deblat Real Estate Corp. - Oceanside, NY

I agree that  trust must be earned. It is also nice to hear that teenagers see the value of loyalty when it comes to relationships.

Jun 14, 2009 11:57 PM #7
Rainer
55,134
Bettina Settles
Greenwood, IN
Your Indiana Connection

Jennifer, great post and I soooooo agree with you. It is a two way relationship and has to be good for both sides.

Jun 15, 2009 12:14 AM #8
Ambassador
837,516
Charlie Ragonesi
AllMountainRealty.com - Big Canoe, GA
Homes - Big Canoe, Jasper, North Georgia Pros

Well I had to click this to see how this all came together. So you had e at the title. Very good post and thanks for the analogy

Jun 15, 2009 12:38 AM #9
Rainer
29,180
Jimmie Graham
Keller Williams Realty - Ypsilanti, MI

I remember high school all too well. I see your points and they are excellent points. Yes like everyone here has said it's about building relationships.  Don't be attached to the outcome. No one promises anything unless they state clearly that they are working with you exclusively.  I learned the hard in both arenas

Jun 15, 2009 01:40 AM #10
Rainmaker
601,332
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

Jennifer - AMEN!  BRAVO!  Not only was I fortunate to learn this life lesson back in high school but have coped with it throughout my life.  As a result, I've developed what I like to think of as a healthy attitude to rejection:  IT HAPPENS.  THAT'S LIFE.   PICK YOURSELF UP, BRUSH YOURSELF OFF AND MOVE ON.

As a fellow 40's something gal, I have been on both sides of the rejection fence in every aspect of my life (personally and professionally).  While I may give myself a moment to feel hurt by some new rejection, I just remind myself that things happen for a reason and I just pull up my big girl panties, quit whining and move on. 

Jun 15, 2009 04:22 AM #11
Rainer
39,049
Michael Delp
Mortgage Pro - Telford, PA

Some very good points Jennifer. We all want to be "the one", but it isn't always in the cards. whether dating or in business, it is all about people. Different people have different personalities and like different things. It would only be right that people would like to deal with people they connect with. Sometimes you "win" the date, other times you don't!

Jun 15, 2009 04:28 AM #12
Rainmaker
747,125
Robert Rauf
HomeBridge Financial Services (NJ) - Toms River, NJ

OK, you cleared up the DBF for me too!  (I was thinking Divorced best friend)..

It is true that our business is all about the relationship.... We need to nurture that relationship prior to gaining a commitment!

Jun 15, 2009 06:20 AM #13
Rainmaker
122,939
Glenn S. Phillips
Lake Homes Realty - Birmingham, AL
CEO, Lake Homes Realty / LakeHomes.com

Divorce can also apply to Real Estate... and then there are those with unrequited "crushes", one-night-stands, only engaged (say "contract"), "play'as", and of course, the unhappily married but won't do a damn thing about it relationships.    Ah, life and business... what mirrors they are of each other!  Great post!!! G

Jun 15, 2009 10:45 AM #14
Rainmaker
151,716
Carol Lee
Dilbeck Real Estate - Oak Park, CA
Realtor - Agoura, Oak Park, Westlake CA Homes

I am with you on this one- loyalty must be earned.  You don't see physicians having patients signing agreements. AS far as high school dating- I am told that there is a difference between "going together" and being "boyfriend/girlfriend" .  What do I know?  My teenaged boys either don't date, or don't tell me about it!

Jun 15, 2009 05:06 PM #15
Rainmaker
484,157
Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn
Sell with Soul - Pensacola Beach, FL
Author of Sell with Soul

Glenn - Wow - there's probably a great blog in your comment!!!

Carol - I've always been puzzled by the fascination with "loyalty" in our business - hey, if a relationship is working for both parties, enforced loyalty isn't needed!

Robert - Nurture the relationship and no formal commitment is needed...

Michael - Yeah - why would you want to win a date if it's not the right person for you?

Donne - LOVE IT! Your big girl panties... I hope we can meet someday.

Jimmy - I've just never worried much about promises, in love or business. People will stay where they feel loved and taken care of. And, in those times where the chemistry isn't right... NEXT!

Jun 15, 2009 11:17 PM #16
Rainer
123,477
Michael Cole
CPG Tours - Orange, CA

Hi Jennifer,

Great post. And it's exactly why I have an aversion to a 'buyers' agreement. It's like having to making a commitment before you even get to go on the first date.

Jun 16, 2009 12:19 AM #17
Rainmaker
747,125
Robert Rauf
HomeBridge Financial Services (NJ) - Toms River, NJ

Jennifer, you always say it better than I can! 

Jun 16, 2009 02:45 AM #18
Rainmaker
122,939
Glenn S. Phillips
Lake Homes Realty - Birmingham, AL
CEO, Lake Homes Realty / LakeHomes.com

Jennifer, you are welcome to take my comments and run with them... I'd love to see what you develop and how you could expand the ideas!  G

Jun 16, 2009 07:28 AM #19
Rainer
76,539
Sabrina Kelley
ERA Herman Group Real Estate - Woodland Park, CO
Woodland Park Colorado Mountain Homes and Land

Thanks for the mental boost. It sometimes seems as if all the clients are dating but no one is ready to get serious.

Jun 16, 2009 09:16 AM #20
Ambassador
2,298,890
Robert Vegas Bob Swetz
Realty ONE Group - Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas Henderson Homes for Sale

Jennifer - Thanks for the read and yes trust, trust, trust!

VB

Jun 19, 2009 11:33 AM #21
Rainer
15,934
Xinh Truong
Connect Realty.Com, Inc. - San Leandro, CA

For the most part, I'm so glad I'm not in high school anymore...but sometimes, I sure miss it.

Jul 30, 2009 10:30 AM #22
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