PATIENCE - Not a Virtue of Real Estate

Real Estate Agent with Briggs Freeman Sotheby's International Realty

We've all heard it spoken to us for years!  From our parents, from our clergy, from our teachers, books and stories we are reminded that, "Patience is a virtue."  For the most part, I believe we've all done our best to abide - to tolerate - and to use self-control when necessary.  However, "patience is NOT a virtue" of real estate.

Not a portion of the industry tolerates delay.  Both as Agents and as Buyers and Sellers - there is the prominent desire for wanting everything to happen now - without instruction, planning or waiting for the right moment.

"Most" agents want the listings NOW.  We don't want to spend the time to actively market our sphere or get out and about in society to build relationships.  We don't want to wait for the seller to make repairs and stage the home before we have them sign the paperwork and place a sign in the yard.  We don't want to spend the 3 hours on an open house or the time it takes to load everything into the computer and blog about it in the social networking world.  We want the inventory - we want it now.

Sellers want the buyers NOW.  Their impatience with agents can sometimes be intolerable - but, can you blame them?  Sellers want what they want and they want it now!  They want the price they "feel" they deserve - not what the market demands.  They want the buyers to flock in by the droves for showings on a daily basis.  They want their agents to sell the home for free but still spend the money to market the home.  They want an offer within the first 30 days or they'll find another agent.  They want their agent to answer the phone everytime they call regardless of any reasonable explanation.  And they don't want to hear about why any or all of these things aren't occurring.  Not now anyway.

Buyers want to see the house NOW.  Afterall, there is no time to wait for the listing agent who might have other clients or a family they're spending time with when the buyer makes that sign call.  They don't want to be loyal to the agent they have if they aren't available the very moment they need them.  They don't want to spend their own money to make the house "perfect".  They want the sellers or agents to pay.  They don't want to commit to buyer representation with an agent . . . just in case.

Everyone wants their money NOW.  Well, of course!

How can we as agents - as buyers - as sellers - as an industry - put some patience, kindness, forbearance and virtue into real estate?  Is patience only a perspective - an illusion?  Do still waters run deep?  Do patient people really break things when no one else is looking?  Or, should we simply try to convince those people who "stop to smell the roses" to hurry up and get out of the way?

Comments (3)

Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

Interesting way to interpret the old "Patience is a Virtue" saying.

Apr 27, 2010 06:56 AM
Morris Massre
Pembroke Pines, FL
Real Estate Instructor Broward County Florida

If you don't have any patience you shouldn't be in this business that is for certain.  Nothing comes fast or easy in RE.

Apr 27, 2010 06:56 AM
Ryan Smith
Keller Williams Energy Real Estate Brokerage - Pickering, ON

I agree with Morris. There is a misconception that RE is a get rich quick scheme and its a great way to make a quick easy buck. But to REALLY make it in real estate, it takes time, patience and hard work.

But going with what Lisa has said, clients definately seem to lack patience these days.

Apr 27, 2010 07:02 AM