My Big Why Re-Visited

Real Estate Agent with Fathom Realty West Sound WA State 52404

After a recent successful closing, I was reminded of my Big Why, and the reason I've been a REALTOR® for the past 20+ years.

One of the many things I appreciated about my time affiliated with Keller Williams West Sound was reading Gary Keller's book, The Millionaire Real Estate Agent (MREA or The Red Book) and applying the principles it contains. One of the questions Gary poses in his book is "What is your Big Why?" What is the primary motivation and purpose behind all that you do in your business.

For me, my Big Why is to serve my clients, and to help them achieve their goals. During the course of my professional career, I've had the benefit of being counseled and encouraged by some really great mentors. Early on, one challenged me that if I focused on providing my clients with the best service I could offer them, then the money would follow. By striving to represent my client's best interests first and foremost, to the very best of my abilities, everything else would fall into place. Having this mindset has resulted in many years of success, reward, and personal satisfaction.

Such was the case recently when my Buyers closed on a bank-owned property over in Brownsville. They were a wonderfully sweet and fun retired couple. He was a Bubblehead, having served on numerous submarines over the span of his Naval career, so we had that in common. But this couple had also purchased their current residence over 40 years ago from one of my mentors, the Duke of Real Estate, Don Pennington! They had been patiently hoping for an affordable fixer-upper to come onto the market in their neighborhood that they could purchase for their granddaughter and her husband.

So when this bank-owned house popped up, it was the perfect fit! After navigating the usual endless series of contractual hoop-jumping, we finally achieved mutual acceptance! This was back in early April.

Fast forward to mid-July (of course, nothing seemed 'fast' during the process!). We discovered that this property was subject to a Right of Redemption, and subsequent Sheriff's Sale. As such, we were put into an interminable holding pattern while the bank could clear up these issues, and convey a clean title.

One of the frustrating things about this business is that there are things outside of your control. You can do a great job, to the best of your abilities, and still, something can go awry. In such instances, all you can do is remain optimistic, and hope for a positive outcome at some point down the road.

My Buyers were rock-stars throughout the entire waiting period! And their patience was happily rewarded when we received news that the deed issues had been resolved, and we were cleared to close!

That moment of handing the keys to these folks was golden. For them to successfully achieve their goals of purchasing this property for their grand-kids, making their dreams of home ownership come true as well, that is my Big Why!



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Rich Jacobson is a District Director for Fathom Realty and a licensed REALTOR®; an avid Crab Hunter, Clam Digger, and Oyster Shucker, He is the Social Media Evangelist for Life on the Kitsap Peninsula & The Western Puget Sound in scenic WA State.


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  1. Kathy Streib 08/12/2018 04:54 PM
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi Rich- for those getting into the business or those who are wondering why they're in the business, they would do well to read this. Being able to give the keys to a first time buyer, or someone moving closer to family or for whatever reason, has to be rewarding! 

Jul 22, 2018 04:12 PM #1
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

It's just amazing when have a deal that is a struggle bus and we get so attached to the buyers/sellers and it all falls into place after a ton of work and waiting. It is the big Why.

Aug 12, 2018 10:00 PM #2
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Rich - it's good to be reminded of our "big why".  A good post.

Aug 13, 2018 08:51 AM #3
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Very good post Rich - great example of Why.  Yes, it always starts with the why and if you don't have that you won't succeed in the how.

Sep 11, 2018 06:47 AM #4
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
RE/MAX Northwest. - Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority!

Hi Rich, I share your passion for service in real estate.  

Sep 12, 2018 02:54 PM #5
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Rich Jacobson I do love your big WHY! Things are not always in our control...

'' In such instances, all you can do is remain optimistic, and hope for a positive outcome at some point down the road''

Sep 22, 2018 07:21 PM #6
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