In today's tech-forward world, where it's easy & affordable for most anyone to have some type of home security device, it's important to remember that there's probably a good chance you're being recorded by both audio and video when showing a home. (I bought the Arlo Pro 2 system on Amazon for outside my home not too long ago, very affordable, easy to install and has 2-way audio on the cameras.)
"Never allow that agent in my home again!" yelled the woman on the phone.
An angry lady called our Newton RE/MAX office the other day, a REALTOR from another office in town had just shown her home that was one of our office's listings. She had a Ring doorbell or some similar device, and was listening to the conversation the showing agent was having with her clients as they were in range of the front door. Apparently the agent from the other office was making derogatory comments about the home, all while the home owner was listening live on camera. The selling homeowner was livid.
There's probably a whole discussion on whether she should have been listening ... whether it's ethical ... if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen, etc. But the fact is it's happening all the time now and as Realtors we need to be aware of it, and make our clients aware of it when showing homes.
The agent may have thought she was "safe" talking outside the home, but because of today's affordable far-reaching home monitoring devices, ended up getting overheard and making the homeowner angry to the point she never wanted that agent in her home again. No matter if her clients had liked the house or not, the seller of that property was not going to deal with that particular showing agent under any circumstance. Period!
Imagine that agent's reputation around town to everyone that homeowner talks to!
An important lesson here is to make sure we talk about confidential things far enough away from the property to avoid putting ourselves or clients in this awkward position in today's tech-forward world. As my mom used to say, "If you don't have anything nice to say then keep it to yourself."
Understandably, at times it's easy to get caught up in the moment and talk about confidential things while inside the seller's home. But imagine if sellers had secretly been listening to some of the conversations you and buyers may have had in the past while looking at properties. OMG. Discussing low-ball offers? Credit issues? How much you love ... or hate certain things in the home? (especially their decorating style) All which could potentially be insulting to the home seller and ruin any chances of a deal, or ruin your negotiating postion if you're talking numbers while in the home.
Imagine finding the perfect home, only to lose it because of blabbing within range of a home monitoring device. It's important to show restraint. When showing a home I remind my clients to keep our comments to a minimum while looking at the home, and if they have something important to discuss we'll do that once we're back at our cars or out of range. At that point we can talk quietly about our strategy for that property moving forward.
How do you feel? Have you had anything like this happen to you while looking at homes and being recorded?
Scott Neasham, REALTOR
120 N 2nd Ave W
Newton, Iowa 50208
A little about my blog:
To me, my REALTOR BLOG is a gathering of my thoughts & notes, I’m always scribbling things down and bookmarking websites. This is me trying to pull those random ideas together from lots of sources and hopefully arranging them in a somewhat coherent way.
My blog is intended primarily for my clients in the Newton & Jasper County, Iowa area. I’m hoping it’s an effective way to reach them to help educate on real estate matters that I feel may be important for them to know.
This blog is also a great way to help me to pull ideas together which, I hope, will make be a better REALTOR for my clients.
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