Are you looking to sell or do you want a free lunch? Part 2

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker

I received a call from an ad I had placed in the Chinese version of Home and Land. The lady sounded older and had broken english and said she was interviewing agents to sell her 3 unit building and purchase a high end condo in the $1M range.

When I followed up from our first call, I had the comps for her building and a list of nice condos in San Francisco. She said we would meet at 10:30 AM on Sunday, which happened to be Valentines Day and also Chinese New Year to talk about business, and then we could go have brunch.

When I pulled up in front of her building, I called to let her know I was down stairs and the first thing she did when she got in the car was to show me she had $1.7M in her bank account. When I told her it wasn't neccessary to show me, she said I just don't want you to ask if I am pre-approved for a loan. Note: ( I have sold hundreds of properties and dealt with many Asian investors and no one has every showed me proof of funds, at least not at first.)

When we got to brunch, I got a very funny feeling that this potential seller really wanted a lunch date. or a free meal. I got an odd look from the young gal who seated us.

Right then and there I wanted to ask her, are you looking to do business or are you looking for a free lunch? I thought to myself to just play it cool. During lunch, she showed me pictures of a Jack in the Box she owns along with it's lease and asked if I do commercial real estate as well. Yes I told her.

To make a long story short, I met with her again and once again all we did was have lunch. I even told my wife the first time that I had a funny feeling about this lady, but this time she showed me her owners unit and also a vacant unit in her triplex. She also told me she no longer wanted a condo, and that she would move into a rental she owned when her tenant moved out at the end of March.

Well, I must be a glutten for punishment because I met her a 3rd time, but explained to her that when we met, we needed to go over the comps and sign the listing for the 3 units. We met, but she wouldn't sign the listing agreement until she took it home and read it first.

I'm waiting to meet with her again so we can move forward with the listing, but my instincts tell me this is a scam. If we do meet, it will not be for lunch. Trust me!


Last week my client and I spoke and she informed me that she no longer wanted to sell her triplex, but wanted me to meet her the following day and write an offer for an Applebee's she was interested in.

When I informed her that I would change my schedule and come over and write the offer, but I wouldn't have time for lunch, she hung up.

Next time I will follow my instincts.



Comments (6)

Jeanna Martinez
RE/MAX Access - Schertz, TX

Wow!  That is one interesting story!! I guess she was mistaking real estate ad for a match-making ad!! I hope the food was at least tasty!! :-)

Mar 23, 2010 09:06 AM
David Tapper
Coldwell Banker - Burlingame, CA

The nerve of some people, huh? The food wasn't bad, thanks Jeanna.

By the way, the company where I placed the ad sent me a story on this lady, but it was in Chinese.

I spoke with the ad gal and we shared a lot of laughs. This lady has been doing this for 20 years and some of the agents have fought back. Some cemented her door locks, dropped her off on the freeway, and left her sitting at the restaurant.




Mar 23, 2010 01:58 PM
Jim Cheney
Saint Francis Property Santa Rosa, CA - Santa Rosa, CA
Rincon Valley Realtor 707.494.1055

That lady has some bad karma coming her way.  I don't usually do meals until I have a signed contract.  You should take her to small claims court and see what happens.  Too bad :(

Mar 27, 2010 04:41 PM
Michael Haigh
The Michael Haigh Team - Rocklin, CA
Production Manager/Top Producing Sr. Loan Officer

I agree with Jim...would be fun.  But your are a good guy, top agent and still do things the right way.  Good luck...let me know, when you have time...I'll buy.


Apr 21, 2010 05:16 PM
David Tapper
Coldwell Banker - Burlingame, CA

Jim, I would but I don't have anymore time to burn.


Apr 22, 2010 11:58 AM
David Tapper
Coldwell Banker - Burlingame, CA

Your a good man,  Mike. Thanks for the offer.



Apr 22, 2010 11:59 AM