If you haven't noticed already, gas prices seem to be a little high. I don't know about you, but my family and I have really adjusted our driving habits quite drastically. Everything from a simple thirty minute drive to visit family, to a summer trip to west cost is being thought about twice.
Here in North Texas, gas prices are hovering around $3.85 per gallon. As a new homes sales consultant, I have the luxury (not necessarily the freedom) to work out of a sales office and limit my travel for sale related activities. But what about those folks who make a living on driving clients around looking for homes, or have to hustle to land a listing in an area they would normally refer to a more centrally located agent. As a "once upon a time" agent myself, I know the difficultness involved to get started in the industry. There are enough fees and other costs involved in staying above water in this line of work other than worrying how much a 40 mile round trip will cost me to land a client.
I'm curious on how agents have adapted to these modern times. Working smarted, not harder has been the motto to live by in just about any industry, but is this compromising your production due to the current costs involved in simply operating your vehicles? On the other side of the spectrum, how is this affecting the locations your clients are considering? Are they still looking at those far off suburbs, or are they staying in more inner city regions or sub-districts? All of these things could be thought of as signs of the times.
I'm not an alarmist nor do I think our economy is in total shambles. Call me crazy, but I think looking at the big picture, the U.S. economy is still fairly strong regardless of oil prices. I haven't seen any soup lines becoming to the norm across the country or any great migrations to Canada to take advantage of that great health care system they have (that's another topic)....right? Here in the in Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, the argument could be made that the housing market is still going strong. Just visit such sites as DFWHousingFacts.com and read about why this is the best time to buy in Dallas/Fort Worth. If you're not promoting these types of websites to your clients, start now to reinforce the fact that buying now is the right thing to do. Perception is not realty, it's just perception. It's like convincing someone that when a tree falls in the forest and there's no one around to hear it, it still makes a sound. Go out there and hear for yourself. Don't get me wrong, we are going through some economic struggles and oil prices will be a big part of some big shifts on how we all live our lives. But maybe that's just what the doctor ordered. Now more than ever, we are making major improves or modification to not just the way we drive, but to how we build cars, homes, how we recycle, how we grow and make food, and how we spend. Just like the Beatles needed the Rolling Stones, Coke needed Pepsi, and man needed woman, we should view this is as an inevitable change that will for at least a little while longer, bring future success and prosperity in to our lives. In the mean time, drive smarter, slower, and more selectively. Live that way too, you'll be glad you did.