You're still selling real estate? Well yes, yes I am

Real Estate Agent with Beach Realty - CRG Construction

It wasn’t long ago anxious home buyers whispered nervously in another room, not about whether or not they could afford their mortgage, rather, if their future backyard was big enough for a pool. Sales were up, the market was good and all a Realtor really needed was a license and a suit. Agents were a dime a dozen and people flipping real estate were too.


A lot can go wrong between a listing and a sale

Long after Ponzi, Al Capone and Nixon’s Watergate Scandal; somewhere between Martha Stewart, an economic downturn and Wall Street’s Bernie Madoff, people started to pay attention. We’re smarter, thriftier, and almost everyone has trust issues when it comes to money changing hands. So where does this leave an agent who makes an honest living selling real estate? Fortunately for us there’s less competition, unfortunately in today’s market it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find a client who isn’t terrified by pricey listings.

Surfing the sales tide

Now before feathers start ruffling, not everyone has economic issues or thinks Realtors exist solely to usurp 8% commission. Believe it or not, some of us really do enjoy helping people find an affordable place to live. People are still buying and selling, but what are clients searching for when they’re deciding on an agent?

After being asked a valid question about how I’ve managed to remain successful, I had to stop and think about why someone would choose one agent over another to begin with. Though I could probably go on forever, I managed to narrow it down to 5 simple facts. Sure we make sense of paperwork, help with closings, some of us even help our clients move in, but what makes an agent truly successful in this business? This was a very good question. Without divulging my biggest weapons like SEO or the name of my dentist, I thought I’d share some of my thoughts with anyone who might be interested.


TELL THE TRUTH. This may sound menial, but honesty and integrity are your biggest loaded weapons. In real estate you have two things, your business and your reputation. If you manage to mess these up then you might as well start packing. Sure there’s a little fudge room for honest human error, but I’m sure every realtor out there knows what NOT to do in real estate. A smart, reputable realtor knows the answer lies in networking, building clientele, and maintaining an integral image.


ASSERT YOURSELF. Even if you eked through your real estate exam thanks to a mistaken hanging chad, you still have a chance to redeem yourself every time you approach a sale. If you’ve repeatedly demonstrated an ability to match clients with homes they love (and can afford), then chances are you will continue to do well. It doesn’t take rocket science to become a successful Realtor however it does require patience and a commitment to your clientele.


FOCUS FOCUS FOCUS. Do not waste your time (or your client’s) driving in circles by making lefts. Nail down exactly what your client is searching for, or at least try to get within an ‘inth’. If they’re not exactly sure, it’s your job to help them. Everyone has some idea of what they can or can’t afford. If you manage to sell a house that’s beyond your client’s limit, they’ll probably curse your name forever and subsequently haunt you in heaven. Even if the commission is enviable, a wealthy elderly couple in search of a quaint retirement villa doesn’t need you steering them towards a “reduced” mansion with a disco in it. (Unless of course they ask for this). The point is, focus on your clients’ needs and meet them where they are at. Search for consistencies in their requests and take them to listings that have real potential for developing into a contract.


DO NOT SIT BACK AND RELAX. Open houses do not turn into “homes” by themselves. If you think selling in today’s market is easy, then I want to be where you’re at. For sale signs are everywhere, some are even double stacked. If you aren’t actively doing anything, someone else will steal the bank. Even FSBO’s are hanging in there, and most of us know how those turn out. Whatever you think will work for you, embrace it and do it well. Whether you’re spiffing up your glamour headshot or sporting magnets on your Cadillac, if you don’t have an angle you’re going to fizzle out, fast.


BE YOURSELF. One of the biggest mistakes Realtors make isn’t forgetting their agency pamphlets; it’s selling themselves short by eliminating all traces of personality. While I don’t recommend divulging everything to a client I do recommend letting them know there’s more to you than real estate. You must still treat your clients respectfully, but never try to be someone you’re not just for the sake of a sale. Clients want to connect with a real person who has a real working knowledge of real estate. If you can make them laugh or make a connection along the way then your relationship will multiply exponentially.


Ultimately, there are no real methods when it comes to selling real estate. There are no cosmic or magic equations handed down by “top producing” agents. Every now and then the stars might align in our favor, but I’d like to think it has more to do with the quality of our relationships. I believe there is one right Realtor for every buyer, seller or investor. It’s up to us to make the connection. No matter the economy, the market, or the location of your business, there’s still a lot to be said about an Myrtle Beach real estate agent who cares.


Comments (5)

Anne Hensel
South Beaches Real Estate Professionals - Saint Petersburg, FL
Realtor - Broker - St. Pete Beach, Treasure Island

This is a great post and so true. You have to be on the ball at all times.

Dec 13, 2009 12:30 AM
Paul Guenther
Empire Title Agency - Chandler, AZ
The Extra Mile Is Part Of My Regular Route!


Nice post!  I really like the hanging chad comment.  I hope others follow your lead

Dec 13, 2009 12:34 AM
Gloria Laughton Allston

I really enjoyed reading this post because it cut right to the bone. This should be common sense advice to those of us in sales and the only thing I might add is "try to have fun". 

Dec 13, 2009 12:43 AM
Sara Woolford & Steve Golson, ALHS
iTexas Realty Co. - San Antonio, TX
Hi Preston- Well, it is a changing market, but I can see that you are presenting consistancy to your potential buyers and sellers. People love to know who we are and how we will help them. --Sara in San Antonio
Dec 13, 2009 01:40 AM
Sasha Miletic - Windsor Real Estate
RE/MAX Preferred Realty Ltd. - Windsor, ON

Hi Preston,

Enjoyed this post. Very informative and helpfull... Keep posting.



- Sash

Dec 13, 2009 11:03 AM