Oh, the Tacky Things We Do!

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Charlemagne International Properties BRE# 01147470

 

During one of my recent strolls through Active Rain blogs, I stumbled upon one stating real estate agents are now ranked below used car salespeople in consumer opinion polls.  Geez, it was bad enough when we were considered equals with the guys on the corner lot with the obnoxious TV ads, but now they're standing on our shoulders?  What's going on here?

 

Have you noticed the used car salesmen have upgraded their image?  No more bullhorns to announce blowout sales! They've toned down their spiel, and upped their professionalism. It is now a savvy decision to buy used and save thousands of dollars.  Maybe we should make them our mentors. After all, most of us are used house salespeople.  Those used cars are parked in the garages we sell. Let's learn something from the guys who sell those cars, and maybe we can sell more garages with houses attached!

 

Overnight Open House Signs: Don't deface the neighborhood you are trying to sell a house in.  Take the sign down when the open house is over.  Those signs with balloons and flags flying all night long is graffiti not branding!

Tone Down the Number of Signs in the Yard:  There is a house for sale in a neighborhood I frequently drive through that has two real estate signs (must be a divorce and they each have an agent) in the yard, plus add-on signs giving an 800 number, a TV show and a price reduced rider is perched atop the whole mess.  I feel sorry for the neighbors who have to look at it every day. 

Talk Less and Listen More:  Remember, it's all about the consumer.  They are the customer--find out what they want/need and provide it.  Word of mouth is a classy marketing tool.  It's also green (no paper wasted) and free!

Be of Service:  People need cars.  People need houses.  There are lots of provider choices.  Service makes a difference.  Follow up and follow through.  Provide value.

Lock the Doors:  Seriously, the house you just showed is someone's home.  Their possessions are inside it.  They have allowed you to enter their private domain.  Make sure the doors are locked when you leave.  I've received calls from upset sellers saying sliders were left open, the air conditioning temperature was changed and once an agent left the garage door open!  

Leave a Business Card:  It's a professional courtesy to the seller and the listing agent.  If you really want to raise the bar, shoot the listing agent a follow up email with your prospective buyer's feedback.  It will save hours of agent chasing and it's the professional thing to do.

Respect is not given; respect is earned.   We have some work to do!

Norma Toering & Team RE/MAX Palos Verdes Realty
(310) 493-8333 / Office Phone: (310) 831-0800

South Bay Los Angeles cities I sell real estate and homes in: Palos Verdes Estates, Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, Rancho Palos Verdes, San Pedro, Long Beach, Torrance, Lomita, Redondo Beach, Hermosa Beach and Manhattan Beach.


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Rainer
34,185
Dennis Sanchez
Coldwell Banker Tenafly - Hackensack, NJ

You are right.  We as agents have to raise the bar.  In this market specially, we have to provide better service and better marketing

May 18, 2008 04:24 AM #1
Ambassador
1,584,061
Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

Dennis - The customer is king (or queen)!

May 18, 2008 04:30 AM #2
Rainmaker
193,804
Mary Strang
Viroqua, WI

Here is another, I have this myself, hate to admit it but oops right now my assistant voice is on my voice mail as I have been too busy to change it. Shame on me.

May 18, 2008 04:34 AM #3
Rainmaker
1,728,866
Sam Miller
RE/MAX Stars Realty - Howard, OH
Knox County Ohio Real Estate Specialist

Norma - It seems like the reputation of real estate professional has been on a roller coaster over the past 20 years.  Our industry starts at the bottom of the list, then works hard to build itself up, then the process seems to repeat itself over and over especially during changes in the home selling cycle.  I believe it will get even worse before it gets better simply because NAR went from 800,000 member to 1,300,000+ pretty rapidly.  The market will thin itself out like it has done over time.  The challenge for many today is that there are 80% more agents in the business and today there are obviously fewer buyers purchasing homes.  This creates a very challenging condition for many in the business.  When the market becomes challenging people begin to do desperate things.  We are certainly seeing this in our industry today.

May 18, 2008 04:40 AM #4
Ambassador
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Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

Mary - That's not such a bad thing, especially if your assistant gives a direct contact number for you.  Delegation is necessary.

May 18, 2008 04:46 AM #5
Rainmaker
78,480
Shannon Ziccardi
"A Quick Note" ...in Tennessee! - Clarksville, TN
"A Quick Note" Mobile Notary ...in Tennessee!

Sandwich Board Photo Then THIS must be out of the question huh?

Fun Post!  You have to wonder when good sense will kick in...or if it will...

"A Quick Note"

May 18, 2008 04:48 AM #6
Ambassador
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Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
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Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

Sam, you're right.  These are challenging times indeed.

May 18, 2008 04:49 AM #7
Rainmaker
22,714
Selling Homes in Western New York, Licensed Real Estate Broker, Terri Kern
Turning Key Realty - East Amherst, NY
Terri Kern, Broker, Turning Key Realty

In a GRI class I recently attended our instructor informed us that we (real estate agents) are finally ranked above lawyers!  All good points that we should uphold.  Thanks for the post.

May 18, 2008 04:50 AM #8
Ambassador
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Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

Shannon,  Thanks, I keep hoping common sense will prevail. 

May 18, 2008 04:52 AM #9
Ambassador
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Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

Terri - Finally some good news!

May 18, 2008 04:53 AM #10
Rainmaker
434,606
Adam Brett
The Adam and Eric Group - Fullerton, CA
The Adam and Eric Group, Fullerton's Finest

The barrier to becoming an agent is minimal so you get 1/2 of the people who sell maybe 1 home a year - and they are the ones giving all of us a bad name.

May 18, 2008 05:20 AM #11
Ambassador
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Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

The thinning of the pack is happening.  Let's hope the true professionals are the ones left standing.

May 18, 2008 05:32 AM #12
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