If I wasn’t a real estate agent I’d probably hang up but...
I usually hang right up from solicitors, especially since I’m every Do Not Call List that you can be on for all of my phones and multiple times, but you know we still get them. Usually automated, sometimes that good old “we are not asking for money pitch!).
Yesterday I got a call that went like this.
Hello Barbara. This is John from “xyz” realtors. (Did not say which town but I knew where he was from and it was across the county). Did you know that your neighbor down the street just sold their house? It was listed at $599,000 and sold for $550,000. (It was originally listed for $799,000 beginning of last year and went steadily down, which of course he didn’t mention and perhaps thought I didn’t know). I played along and said, yes, I knew it recently sold. Then I asked him: Are you the real estate agent that sold it? He said “NO!”. So this guy wasn’t the listing agent and he didn’t sell it. From a seller perspective, why would I want to list with him?
He proceeds to tell me that, if I wasn’t aware, inventory for houses is really low, and that he is calling all of the neighbors of that house in case I wanted to sell. There are buyers who would like to live in my neighborhood! (I also know that is not true since, although house prices can be high, taxes are high and we are not in the best of school districts. I have a hard time showing homes if people have school age children and are not planning on sending to private school).
At that point, I felt it wasn’t fair to lead him on anymore and said: John, I’m actually a real estate agent as well. Few things he should know is 1) I am on the Do not Call List, and did he look me up before calling me? 2) The house he is pitching, which he did not sell has been on the market for almost two years..and since he did not list or sell it, why would I list with him? 3) I have lived in my town for 19 years and even living here,there is very little turnover in our neighborhood and the few that list have listed with someone in our neighborhood they’ve known for 20 years.
I wished him good luck and told him to say hello to the broker who runs his firm and tell her that Barbara from J. Philip Real Estate says hello since I interviewed with her before joining my current firm! I have never done cold calling, even in my previous business. I always believe a ‘warm call” introduction through someone you know, or going out and putting your face to a voice is much more effective and less time consuming. Besides, that expression every no is closer to a yes has never been an incentive to me. I don’t like being solicited, and imposing on people’s lunch or dinner, to me, leaves the impression I’m desperate and they are probably one of thousands of calls I’m making until I get some lonely person who wants a visitor and tells me to come over!
So, the only thing I can say to brave soles who sit and research telephone #’s in neighborhoods is 1) know the neighborhood you are calling and make sure its one that you service and know well 2) make sure check DNC list 3)Don’t sound desperate...This guy sounded like, gee I have no listings and my broker wants me to dig up business and 4)if you have to use your neighbor sold their home pitch, at least know the history of how much it was going for originally. Rather than..wow..this house sold for rock bottom prices..do you want me to sell your house for the same rock bottom price? Really.