SELLING OUT OF YOUR AREA ~ Not Always Best For Your Client

By
Real Estate Agent with LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc DRE 01235311
https://activerain.com/droplet/4dxq

I think most Realtors can/will agree with me when I say it's a good idea to refer clients out to other experts if they're looking to buy or sell out of your specialized area. Right?

Now this isn't always the case. Sometimes we have a friend or relative who will NOT work with anyone else. They just feel more comfortable with you.  I get that. I've helped people out of my area at times.  Very seldom, however. As I always explain to the client,  "I am not familiar with that area and will not be able to best represent you as well as a local Realtor could, who specializes in that city/town.

Lately, I am seeing more and more Realtors signing up with lead generating companies (ZILLOW, especially) and calling the area I live and work in, their specialized area. I'm talking about agents who live 30 plus miles from LAKE ARROWHEAD & other communities here in the San Bernardino mountains.  I'm talking about agents who actually live down the mountain, and even in the desert. I'm talking about agents who live and work on another mountain range.

Is this good business?  Are they really helping their buyer or seller? Not 100%, as far as I am concerned. As in my area, a mountain resort, we are not like your standard, down-the-hill city or town.  Lake Arrowhead is a private lake with Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions (CC&R's) and even a mountain addendum disclosing negatives and positives about living on a mountain and in a mountain resort.

Yes, I know if you're a lic'd Realtor in the state of California you can sell anywhere in the state. But why would you? Why not do what's best by your client and refer them to a local expert?  I do. I even refer clients who may be looking to buy or sell in Big Bear (26 miles higher on our mountain), to BB Realtors.  It just makes sense to me.  That said, we have some good BB Realtors that list and sell here and are good at what they do. 

And ZILLOW, what is with you? I am watching you SELL more and more of a tiny zip code and spreading it thinner than a piece of elastic in an old pair of underwear.  Of course, all for that  All Mighty dollar. You're not best representing we Realtors in this zip code. The ones that pay you good money!

Let me just say to you Realtors wanting to drive up this mountain: Make sure you always keep a set of chains in your car, as you'll eventually need them. And be extra careful driving in the fog, as it can get really nasty.  Also, get a set of our CC&R's and the Mountain Addendum, so you'll be able to educate your clients properly.

And, ZILLOW, you may have more of this zip code to sell, soon. We'll have a little chat about just that in the very near future.

 

 

 

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Real Estate Best Practices
Location:
California San Bernardino County Lake Arrowhead
Groups:
Everything California
Vacation and Second homes
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selling in a resort area
lead generatating companies over selling zip codes

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Ambassador
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

Hella: I do NOT beleive in the "mine, mine, mine" mindset.  I BELIEVE you should KNOW the area you're selling.  I would not be doing a Carmel client any favors, if I tried to sell their home, even though, legally, I could.  Silly, silly, silly. 

 

Jeff:  Exactly: Realtors need to read, every now and again, their fiduciary responsibilities to their clients."   I don't know how many times over the years I've told people "I would not be helping you IF I tried HELPING you buy or sell in your town/city.  Let me find an expert who can."    Simple, and you're doing the right thing, and not putting the All Mighty dollar ahead of your client.

Mar 26, 2014 02:56 AM #31
Rainmaker
1,431,110
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

I have found it does not pay to work too wide an area.  On occasion I will do something outside my area, but with the disclosure you mentioned and for specific clients that are loyal. 

Mar 26, 2014 04:00 AM #32
Rainmaker
1,510,079
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Kat - I agree with you. Just because you're allowed to do something doesn't mean it's in the best interests of your client. People need to forget about NAR's Code of Ethics and maintain their own personal code - to do what's right for the client.

As for Zillow - yuck.

Mar 26, 2014 04:44 AM #33
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

Gene:  Me, either.  And it rather benefits your clients.

Marte:  True; just because you can, doesn't mean you should.  And, I don't.

 

Mar 26, 2014 04:50 AM #34
Rainer
154,163
Deb Espinoza
Stage Presence Homes, San Diego Real Estate - Ramona, CA
GRI, Broker, SRS,ABR ePro, SFR, CNE

Hi Kat- I totally agree with you! I too live in a town with many special features such as septic, propane and communities with specialty CC&R's... many 'down the hill' agents are representing both sellers and buyers here and I see a future of possible law suits because they are not being the proper fiduciary they should be to their client by not knowing what inspections and disclosures there are unique to the area and could put them, their broker and their client in jeopardy.

Mar 26, 2014 05:07 AM #35
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

Debbie:  You're right, and it so wrong, I feel. I'll just keeping doing business the way I feel is right for me... and for my clients.

Mar 26, 2014 05:19 AM #36
Rainmaker
368,638
Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Associate Broker
Team Linda Simmons, Enterprise, AL 36330 - Enterprise, AL
email: Travis@theSOLDman.me / cell: 334-494-7846

I expanded to a new zip code with RDC last year, and got good results. It's a small town similar to the one that I live in, and the grand-kids live there, so I'm there regularly NOW. Waited to get the zip until I felt comfortable with the area.

Mar 26, 2014 07:46 AM #37
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

Travis; I totally understand why you would expand.  I'm sure you know the area well, and are an asset to your clients.  AND to be around the grand-kids more than usual, is a PLUS in my book.

Mar 26, 2014 07:49 AM #38
Rainer
117,175
Bill Morrow
Keller Williams of Central PA - Mechanicsburg, PA
Bill Morrow, Associate Broker

The "Zillows" of the world have done more dis-service to buyers, sellers, and our industry in general than good. I know we live in an electronically connected world, but good old fashioned ground pounding and real knowledge are the best tools for servicing your cients. I will glady pay a referral fee to any professional asking for my assistance.

Mar 27, 2014 02:01 AM #39
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (
Bill, I'm with you. I'll happily pay an expert a referral to make sure my clients are in the best hands.
Mar 27, 2014 02:04 AM #40
Rainer
18,117
Bill Irwin
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Florida Network Realty - Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
"Where Luxury Living Meets Luxury Hospitality"

Kat,

I've only been in the business since August 2013.  About a month later, my neighbor referred someone in his office to me who was looking to buy in the historic area of which I knew NOTHING about...located on the other side of the city.  I barely knew where the restrooms were in my own office!  Anyway, I referred them to an agent in our sister office who specifically handled that market figuring she can do them more justice than I.  I was very upfront with them on why I was referring them to another agent.  They now have a contract pending on a beautiful house, I will receive a referral, and everyone wins in this situation!

Mar 27, 2014 02:55 AM #41
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

Bill (#41), I think you did the right thing and I'm sure the folks who own the historic home AGREE!  Good for you!

Mar 27, 2014 02:57 AM #42
Rainmaker
444,600
Dee Toohey
Innovative Realty Solutions Group - Longwood, FL
Broker, ABR, AHWD, CIPS, FMS, ePro

I have sold out of my area.  I'm in Central Florida.  I sold a relatives property in Key West.  I joined their board, added the listing, and it worked very well.  I have a contract now with an out of state buyer who I've known for 15 years.  She purchased about 2 hours from me.  I would not normally sell that area but I did because she asked me to do so and had bad experiences with other agents in that area.  She knew I'd represent her very well.  She and her husband will close soon and they are very happy with the services I provided.  I do know both areas well, know how to do research, and never hesitate to say "I don't know but I'll find out". 

Most of the time, I refer the customer to a local agent which does make sense if I have no connection or personal knowledge of the area. 

Mar 27, 2014 05:58 AM #43
Rainmaker
1,325,894
Jeff Jensen
The Federal Savings Bank/Lending in 50 states - Greenwich, CT

Some areas lend themselves to selling in multipe town better than others.

Mar 27, 2014 08:19 AM #44
Rainmaker
496,765
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

As a beginner agent, I would virtually go just about anywhere in the Kansas City metro area for a sale.  Many agents in my office still do it.  I am more comfortable sticking with the areas I know well. I tell prospective clients up front:  these are the areas I know...and I can refer you to someone if I don't know the area you want. They always appreciate the honesty.

Mar 27, 2014 11:04 AM #45
Rainer
306,619
Jimmy Faulkner
Florida. Homes Realty & Mortgage - Wantagh, NY
The Best Of St. Augustine

We are a very Greedy bunch in America and it shows in everything. Every year Greed is more prolific in every area of our lives. We did get rid of God though.

Mar 27, 2014 01:17 PM #46
Rainer
144,447
Gordon Wood
Canyon Ridge Realty LLC - Scottsdale, AZ
480.226.2842

Wow touchy subject. Are we doing what is best for our clients?

Mar 28, 2014 01:39 AM #47
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (
Dee: I've done that a few times, for the same reasons you stated. Overall, I stick to referring a client to an expert. Jeff: agreed. Mary: I think our clients always appreciate honestly. I know I do. Jimmy: nope, not I. I haven't gotten rid of God. Gordon: it's a question we should always ask ourselves.
Mar 28, 2014 01:47 AM #48
Rainmaker
1,505,944
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County

I had a contact request on Trulia yesterday. My response was a typical customer response, etc.  The reply was "I am a real estate agent...."  Out of area but will be here Saturday to show homes....

May 08, 2014 10:48 PM #49
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Kat DeLong
LakeView Realty Enterprises, Inc - Lake Arrowhead, CA
Realtor DRE#01235311, Lake Arrowhead Real Estate (

Hi Gary:  Maybe your out of area isn't quite as "out of the area" as we are to cities (we're unincorperated) off our mountain.    Hope you ended up writing an offer.

As for me, I can't help clients in the way I feel I need to, when I go to areas I don't service. 

May 08, 2014 10:54 PM #50
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