All was quiet on the Western real estate front this week as Thanksgiving came and went with many calories ingested and naps taken throughout the Country. Homeowners everywhere took time out of their busy lives to slow down and enjoy friends and family around them by either inviting them in to their homes or traveling to someone elses residence to enjoy the holiday there.
Inevitably, however, there is a negative impact that this week tends to have on the real estate market. Almost everything comes to a screeching halt. Title agencies, lending institutions, buyers, sellers, and everyone in between begin to work fewer hours, take more vacation time, and start to focus on holiday related activities. This tends to put a damper on a business that relies upon many cogs working together and marching towards a successful close of escrow.
It's easy for any business professional that has ties to the real estate industry to begin our annual holiday induced panic as the market begins to slow and business does the same. Will our phone ever ring again? When will we get another email from a prospective client looking to sell or purchase a home? Why has my website traffic suddenly been cut in half? Even the most savvy real estate veteran can begin to question their overall business plan and outlook when the holidays are in full swing. Some years are worse than others. You can enter in to the final push of the year with prospects galore only to have them all disappear or fade away leaving you with nothing to do but contemplate your next move.
I received an email yesterday from an individual I met almost 10 months ago. They wanted to advise me that they will be completing their pre-approval process next week and will want to begin their home search right away. I remember this person well and I was ecstatic to hear that they are ready to start their home purchase journey not only because I look forward to working with them, but it was nice to finally see that my email address was indeed still working after not receiving any business related contacts in almost a week.
So what did I learn in real estate this week? Year after year the threat of the holiday slow down is enough to rattle even a well-grounded, seasoned agent. I learned once again that the seeds we sow throughout the year will take root if we planted them properly. Your business doesn't have to experience extreme highs and lows if we consistently and strategically lay the groundwork from the beginning to the end of every year.
Can we always avoid the lulls that can come and go throughout our careers? Certainly not. There are many factors at play when it comes to running a successful business. However, if we do all that we can and work hard during every season, we'll at least experience enough of a harvest during a drought that we'll live to see the next time of plenty.