Please allow me to preface this post with a couple of brief statements: I have been selling homes full-time in the Austin, Texas area for over 20 years. I am a broker and co-owner of a company with about 20 agents. These facts may be important as you read my mini-rant below. :)
This morning at 8:30am, I received a call from a listing agent who has been in business nearly as long as I have. I was not able to pick up at that time, because I was in the bathroom (yes, this is probably TMI). At any rate, he left me a message wondering if one of my agents was out of town, or perhaps sick, because he had trouble reaching her. The final statement was more than a bit passive-aggressive, noting how we are in a different era, because "no one answers their phone anymore".
To be fully transparent, I didn't have any interest in calling him back, so I texted him to let him know I would try to reach my agent. Let's call her Sarah for simplicity's sake. I have no Sarah's working at our company. We will call the other listing agent Fred.
Fred asked me if I had any other numbers for Sarah. I do not. I offered to reach out to the agent who recruited Sarah to see if there was some other way to reach her. I was surprised to think that she was truly difficult to reach, as this has literally never happened with her.
I asked, "How long have you been trying to reach her?". His response, "Just this morning, but I have 7 offers and I have to act quickly."
Sooooo.....you had what you described in this way, "I have been trying to reach her without success" and later "It is surprising how difficult it is to reach agents who have submitted offers", and all of your efforts were BEFORE 8:30am today?!?
So, I did hear from Sarah by 9:01am, and she had already spoken to him at that point.
Here's the fun part:
She sent me a screenshot from her phone which showed NINE missed calls from this agent, starting at 6:19am and ending at 6:54am.
Want to guess what time the sun rose today here? 6:55am.
That means Fred made nine phone calls to my agent to try to reach her in a 35 minute span WHILE IT WAS STILL DARK OUTSIDE.
This begs the question: what time do you consider it reasonable for your colleagues to start their day?
Yes, we are all self-employed, and setting our own schedules is part of the appeal, but there are limits to what we can and should expect of other agents.
In my humble opinion, most real estate business starts at or near 9am, with the exception of Sundays. I recognize that this is only my opinion, but as someone who has been doing this for a long time, my thoughts are informed by my experience in the industry. Perhaps I am old-fashioned, but I think this is more realistic and normal.
What are your thoughts?
I can understand being concerned if you are in the midst of active negotiations and you have trouble reaching an agent for half a business day or more, but (again my opinion) nothing will change if you wait until after the sun comes up to notify anyone who has already made an offer on a property. In fact, if you have a listing, and a buyer's agent who has placed an offer is impatient at 7am to hear something from you, I think you need to consider setting better expectations.
I welcome your input below.
Thanks for reading!