99 and 44/100% is Not Enough…Are You 100% Sure?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 311291


99 and 44/100% is Not Enough…Are You 100% Sure?


Ivory Soap X

Recently had a call from a seller who wanted to work with me and asked when I was available to list her home. While we were still on the phone I looked up  the tax records and listing history, found this  property  had been on the  market several times with several different agents.

Figure there must be a problem - why did it not sell? Was it overpriced, was it in poor condition, was there some other obstacle that could not be seen on “paper?"

Arriving at the home, I thought the property looked somewhat familiar... with a bit more probing, the seller admitted that she interviewed me several years ago.

So my question of course was…why the heck didn’t you sign up with me way back then!?  

The response was not what I expected....instead she made a confession.

A few years ago her husband wanted to sell but she was not ready. To keep peace at home, she listed with other agents. “I knew if I listed with you, my house would be sold! 

"I could not answer your two questions truthfully." 

So what are those two questions?


These two questions  must be answered with a "YES" before I will consider taking on a client: 

  • Are you both 100% sure you want to sell your home?
  • Are you both 100% sure you want to use me?

Now, she and her husband have agreed that it is time to sell. They are 100% sure they want to sell, and they are 100% sure they want to sell with me.

And so, it's another new HomeRome listing for me.



Give these two questions a try – you'll find they can help you avoid wasting time with uncommitted sellers so that you can focus on the ones who are 100% ready, willing, and able to work with you.

99 and 44/100% is Not Enough…Are You 100% Sure?

Handwritten 100%







Re-Blogged 1 time:

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  1. Gail C. Harris 08/11/2010 12:56 AM
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100 percent
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2 questions

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Mike Leggett
Crye-Leike Realtors - Little Rock, AR

Hello Margaret. 100%, is taking control.. I just read you story about 100% and it brought to mind an episode I had with a gentelman that called wanting me to list his condo. I walked into the dining area and sat down at the table. As I opened my notebook he questioned, "May I ask you a question before we get started?" Of course. " Why do I need you to sell my condo?" Now, I've heard this queston many times in the past but for some reason it realy disturbed me this time. I answered in a very calm, definite almost sympehtitic voice "You don't. The phone book has phone numbers for about 4,500 agents, maybe you should call one of them." I politly closed my notebook, rose from the chair and headed for the door. The gentelman quickly moved between me and the door and refused to let me leave without listing his condo, with no more questions or stalls. It sold in less than 45 days.

I guess the reason this came to mind is that we all at some point have to step up to the plate and take a swing at that fast ball. I had no illusions, I was going to win either way. I have had 2 other occasions since to use the the phrase and got the listings both times. I call it Taking The Wind Out Of Their Sales.

So here's to 100% and Taking The Wind Out Of Their Sales.  In eather case you better be very sure of yourself.


Aug 04, 2010 04:43 PM #57
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

I think these are two great questions to ask.  The sellers need to be committed and when committed to you, it makes it much easier.

Aug 04, 2010 06:36 PM #58
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge www.GoldenResults.com - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566

That is a really interesting point. They programmed themselves to fail on purpose but selecting you would have meant programming themselves to succeed in the sale of their home.

Aug 04, 2010 11:44 PM #59
Christa Ross
RE/MAX Select Realty - REALTOR and Green Homes Specialist - Pittsburgh, PA
Helping you buy and sell Pittsburgh's Best Homes

Two good questions, I am going to use them in the future.

Aug 05, 2010 12:40 AM #60
Richard Strahm
American Foursquare Realty - Lansdale, PA
Lansdale and North Penn Real Estate

The first question is fairly easy to get an honest answer from.  The second?  not so sure . . .

Aug 05, 2010 01:26 AM #61
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Home and Condo Specialists

Getting both husband and wife to agree 100% is the way to go. Your questions were the right ones to ask and now it should be a win-win for both you and the sellers!

Aug 05, 2010 02:02 AM #62
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Margaret, sometimes it is hard to know if the sellers have a hidden agenda. Your two questions should solve any potential problems. Thanks.

Aug 05, 2010 02:13 AM #63
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Mike, Enjoyed speaking with you this morning and welcome to AR. Your comment would make a good second post for you.

Christine, It is about both the agent and the client being committed to the sale.

Cheryl, I think that is right.

Richard, It is takes some time and confidence to ask and then wait for the answer.

Larry and Sheila, Now I have to work 100 % to get it sold.

Michael, Hopefully the right questions will help find if there is a hidden agenda. Thanks for stopping by.


Aug 05, 2010 04:47 AM #64
Deb Harshman
Long and Foster - Christie's International Real Estate & Owner of Staged Home Decor - Potomac, MD
REALTOR & ASPMaster Stager, The Selling Advantage

Interesting, very interesting!

Aug 05, 2010 07:48 AM #65
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Deborah, I that interesting good or interesting bad??

Aug 05, 2010 01:31 PM #66
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

That's sad and funny at the same time because it's oh so true.

Aug 11, 2010 07:28 AM #67
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Russel, It is oh so true! You have to ask!

Aug 11, 2010 08:10 AM #68
Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker
Janisch & Co. - Conroe, TX
Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!

Just when I think I have heard all the questions to ask.... you show up and give me some more weapons to use!  Thanks!  I'm for sure going to try these questions.  Should be very enlightening.

Aug 31, 2010 02:57 PM #69
Fred Griffin presently on Leave of Absence
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

Brad pointed me toward this Blog, Margaret.

100% - excellent question to ask!

Aug 31, 2010 05:09 PM #70
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Jeanne and Ralph, Please let me know how these questions work for you.

Fred, I am 100% glad you stopped by.

Sep 01, 2010 01:56 AM #71
Jack Mossman - The Nines Team at Keller Williams in Stockton
The Nines Team At Keller Williams - Stockton, CA
The Nines Team at Keller Williams in Stockton

Margaret - Thanks for pointing me back to this post.  I remember reading it at the time, but there were so many comments and I didn't think I could add anything of value .... except to say again, as many other have - your foresight in setting the expectations of both client and yourself ... seems to have saved everyone a lot of aggravation ....  Thanks for modeling exceptional professionalism!

Sep 10, 2010 04:50 AM #72
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Jack, This kind of comment is Better Than A Paycheck! 


"Thanks for modeling exceptional professionalism!"

You are are quite a special person.


Sep 10, 2010 05:41 AM #74
Melissa Zavala
Broadpoint Properties - Escondido, CA
Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County

I see this is an old post, but it brings up a good point about qualifying sellers.

May 29, 2011 02:51 AM #75
Fred Carver Personal Real Estate Corporation
RE/MAX Camosun Victoria BC Real Estate - Victoria, BC
Accredited Real Estate Consultant

Hi Margaret....Congratulations on your feature. Imagine a home seller not being honest with her listing agent and probably listing it too high so it would not sell....Most sellers don't do that to Realtors....haa

Love your two questions, no sense in fooling around with an unmotivated seller.

May 29, 2011 05:20 AM #76
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Melissa, Yes this post is almost a year old...but is so important for us to qualify our sellers.

Fred, Thanks for stopping by for this older post.

May 29, 2011 05:31 AM #77
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Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland

Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome
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