Today I Worked for Free, Because Every Day They Work For Me

Real Estate Agent with Cherimie Crane & Associates


It isn’t like our jobs lack difficulty, emotion, or even on many occasions,risks to our health.  Even the most skeptical of client, in the end, believes we have earned every cent of our commission.  The days have grown longer, the questions more intricate and the hurdles in the market have multiplied considerably.  Even still many Realtors choose to keep trudging along through the choppy tide of real estate, holding the dreams of their clients firmly above water. We do this each and every day. We give up dinners with our friends to go over a lengthy inspection just one more time. We disappoint our spouses by rushing out to unlock a door, let out a dog, or disarm an alarm all with the hopes that we help our clients to get one step closer to their goal.


Of course we get paid, well most of the time we get paid. There are few jobs wherein a professional works so hard, so many long hours all on nothing more than a promise of a paycheck. Realtors do just that, and many of them do it without an ounce of hesitation.  Why? Many reasons I suppose.  The smile on a new mom’s face when she finds the nursery of her dreams, the look in a young marine’s eyes when he finds home, children running from room to room claiming domain or a wife being able to reunite with her husband because we finally sold their home. There is something uniquely special about becoming a part of someone’s journey home. It isn’t always as bright and cheery as the short lived episodes on HGTV. The clients aren't always over joyed at every single thing, and not every transaction has a happy ending. We still do the same amount of work, with no idea or guarantee of the outcome.


Today I am working for free. Actually it is the culmination of over 6 months of hard work. I chose to forego all commission.  The sellers trusted me to sell their home so that they could be a family as the Marine Corps has determined their next station.  Carefully and with an experienced eye I marketed and priced the home effectively. By doing so, I also obtained a buyer in less than 70 days. The buyers are also a young Marine family who trusted me to guide them on the very special journey of home ownership. All in all, everyone trusted me. The sellers would be able to keep their family together and the buyers were getting a beautiful home.


The transaction went extremely well, inspections were spotless, both parties more than willing to assist in ensuring satisfaction on all accounts. Our only battle came down to appraisal.  Without saying how I truly feel, and landing myself in court and/or prison, I can only say that the contract was extremely realistic, the price well justified. Having sold over 300 homes with VA buyers, this wasn’t my first rodeo. I am a knowledgeable, experienced, and very well versed in military clients. The appraisal came in so low that neither party could possibly move forward, even though closing was less than two weeks away.  Both are fully packed, lives scheduled all around this document.


After breaking the hearts of two new moms and their honorable husbands, I realized I wasn’t powerless, not this time.  Because I was representing both parties, I held the opportunity to make it right. By eliminating all commission, the sellers would not have to short sale, and the buyers can move into the home of their dreams.


Admittedly it was an easier decision to make than even I would have realized. The option flew out of my mouth with ease and enthusiasm. No, I don’t recommend all Realtors work for free and most everyone around me thinks I have finally lost my mind. My husband, however, simply patted me on the head and said “That’s my girl.”  I have financial obligations just as my clients, I work hard just like my clients, but today, in this situation I had an opportunity to thank two young marines for sacrifices that I don’t have to make on a daily basis.By removing all commission, I was giving a gift. For once in my real estate career, I held the answer and the power to make things right. Today I worked for free because everyday, they work for me. They watch over our country, our freedoms and our way of life. It was my opportunity, no matter how small, to return the favor.




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Whether you are buying or selling Real Estate in Beaufort South Carolina, We know Beaufort. Our little coastal town has something for everyone.





Re-Blogged 4 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Nina Hollander 06/15/2012 11:47 PM
  2. Juanita Simkins 06/16/2012 01:28 AM
  3. Kelvin Wallin 06/16/2012 01:38 PM
  4. Louise Thaxton NMLS 69996 06/22/2012 07:40 AM
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Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi Cherimie, what a great story.  Your reward will be in heaven.

Jun 18, 2012 03:36 AM #193
Gayle Krecklow
Peters Real Estate & Development LLC - Eau Claire, WI

What a great post!  Thank you so much.  This will come back to you, I'm sure, many times over.

Jun 18, 2012 03:58 AM #194
Amanda Jordan

Well done and God Bless you my dear.  Low appraisals happen to the best of us.  I had a similar situation myself with a low appraisal.  My deal fell through and a cash offer came right after that.  May God Bless you and your family for what you did for these families.  Realtors are in the business to HELP people and not take their money like most think.  Well done...I pray the Lord repay you 20 fold for what you did. 

Jun 18, 2012 06:24 AM #195
Bill Bentley

Hi Cherimie, as a retired service member, I appauld you for your action. I have heard a lot of people give lip service about how much they appreciate the members of the military but you actually showed how much you care. You helped 2 familes at once. You gave the military member peace of mind knowing that his family members are being taken care of  which allows him to concentrate on his job of protecting us. Good for you. Please have a conversation with them about how referrals work and you will be rewarded many times over!  

Jun 18, 2012 01:03 PM #196
Rebecca McArdle
Stunning Staging & Redesign, LLC - Fort Wayne, IN

Loved reading this post, thanks for sharing your story!  You had an opportunity to make a huge difference and you did it without hesitation, that says a lot about your character :-)  God bless! 

Jun 18, 2012 01:55 PM #197
David Edgell

I came across this post by chance and I am so glad I did. There are good people in this world and you lead the pack Ms Crane. Well done.

Jun 18, 2012 11:44 PM #198
Cherimie Crane
Cherimie Crane & Associates - Beaufort, SC

This post has taken on a life of its own. I am so humbled by all the many comments, the stories, the emails and phone calls. There are so many sweet and supportive people in the real estate industry. This transaction closes next week and two families move forward not just because of me giving up commission, but because of attorney's, inspectors, my broker, and their lender...everyone chipped in and made it happen. No, we can't do it everytime..but we did this time and losing a paycheck stings, but gaining a smile from a client that I did, in fact, help change their life even if only this week, is a great reward.

Jun 18, 2012 11:49 PM #199
Tina Beasley
Florida Homes Realty & Mortgage, LLC - Saint Augustine, FL
It's not about me...It's all about you!

That is awesome!  I have done the same before and people say that I am crazy, but I am fortunate in that my husband earns a good living and we have a good life.  why would I crash two other couples dreams by being greedy about one paycheck.  I recently paid a large portion out of my commission toward the seller's repairs just to get my buyers into the house they wanted as the seller was distressed to the max and selling short as it was.  Of course, when I suggested to his agent that she give up some of her commission to help as well...I got..."Are you crazy?  I worked hard for this money and my commission is not up for negotiation."  Oh well, charge your poor client must be about the all mighty dollar for her but people are first in my book.  GOOD FOR YOU!  And I am sure that the buyers will send you more referrals that will help you make up the loss.  Work it girlfriend.

Jun 19, 2012 12:55 AM #200
Jan Green
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Cherimie:  What a wonderful, selfless thing to do.  All too often deals fall apart.  With a little creativity and "SACRIFICE" we can all win. Thanks for sharing your story.  I appreciate your level of commitment to the biz!

Jun 19, 2012 03:16 AM #201
Joy Carter & Jeff Booker Brother and Sister Team
Keller Williams Parkland/Coral Springs Realty-GreatFloridaHomes Team - Coral Springs, FL
Trust Your Family's Move To Our Expertise!

Sometimes a short financial pain, is a good feel for a long time.  Been there, done that (not as HUGE as your level), regrets!!

Thanks for making REALTORS, Honorable!  Joy

Jun 19, 2012 03:26 AM #202
Olivia Gray

Proud to be a Realtor

Jun 20, 2012 03:58 AM #203
Bonnie Mills
Coral Shores Realty - Ocala, FL


Jun 21, 2012 01:27 AM #204
Robert Rauf
HomeBridge Financial Services (NJ) - Toms River, NJ

I cant believe the outpouring of support - 207 comments and counting.. .you are my hero(ine)!!

Jun 21, 2012 06:23 AM #205
Bruce Lynn

As long as you set it up the right way, I think you did the right thing.

Normally I would let them both no this in unusual and extraordinary.

You're doing the right thing this time to get them out of a jam.

However in return for this HUGE favor you expect a lifetime of business from them.

Everywhere they move they need to call you first and let you know so that you can arrange a great realtor to assist them in the future.  Them and everyone of their friends and family.

Of course you have to do this in the right way, but you have great repoire with them, so it shouldn't be a problem.  Both of them are people you need to keep in contact with and turn into your greatest referral sources.

Jun 21, 2012 06:29 PM #206
Patty Da Silva, Davie, Southwest Ranches Cooper City, Plantation, Weston, REALTOR
BROKER of Green Realty Properties® - 954-667-7253 - Davie, FL
Top Listing Broker

So often Realtors are made out to be commission hungry people, but no one can say anything anymore after that story. THANK YOU and THANK YOU to the families you represent.

Jun 22, 2012 08:11 AM #207
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

I have made the decision to do what it takes to support our troops when it comes to selling their homes.  Just wrote a contract where I am the "dual" agent and part of my commission is going to the buyers since the sellers are covered by HAP.  Not the first time I've done it and it makes perfect sense since I know HAP won't pay the closing cost the buyers (also military) need.

Jun 22, 2012 09:41 AM #208
Karen Harvey

I read your posts often and I love your writing style but this one is just so heart felt. I showed it to my husband and we both agree that one day your stories will be told either by you or someone who knows you. You have such a unique view on life, a positive attitude and your kindness comes through in each post. We don't know you, but we just adore you and hope that this deed does not go unnoticed! Ms. Cherimie, whoever you are, you are a ok in our book

Jun 22, 2012 10:48 PM #209
William Rhoten
Richmond, VA


What a great war story.  After being in the military for over 12 years I have learned that no matter how many times my Army buddies and I get together the same old stories get told over and over again.  "Remember that time you..."  This is a story that will be told over and over again in both of these young Marien's lives.  What a powerful tool you have given these two families to drive referals.  I am not in any way suggesting that was your motivation, so don't take it wrong.  When it come's to explaining how great their Realtor is, these guys are packing the big guns.

I refer my Realtor to everyone I meet that even says the word house.  I do property management / maintenance as a small business for landlords, so that is a lot of people.  I don't tell people I have a great Realtor, I tell people what she did for me and my family.  Your a great Realtor, good job!

Jun 25, 2012 12:01 AM #210
Roy Burlingame

It was a wonderful thing you did.  I'm sure those families will remember this for a long time. 

Jun 29, 2012 12:55 AM #211
Roy Burlingame - Blk Riv Falls, WI


It was a wonderful thing you did. I'm sure those families will remember this for a long time. (reposting - wasn't logged in the first time)

Jun 29, 2012 12:59 AM #212
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