RE Commandment Number One: "No agent shall ever answer their phones"

Real Estate Agent with Cupertino, CA

I've been in the RE business just 2 years. In my previous life I had my own computer company for over 20 yrs. where I was literally available to my customers and resellers 24/7 via my cell phone (my 1st cell was the Motorola 8000 "the brick", paid $2,400 plus $0.50 per minute, no pre-paid minutes, etc.)

I find it very troubling that 95% (no exaggeration) of the agents I ever try to contact never answer their phones, be it mobile, office, etc. Sometimes when I'm showing a house to a buyer, there's no key in the lockbox, the key in the lockbox doesn't work (4ht generation copy of original) they never tested, buyer's questions need immediate answers, SupraKey box was programmed to only open between 12noon and 6pm (listing agent had no clue this could be done), etc., etc.

When I'm with a buyer standing next to me (deposit check in his pocket) and call the listing agent's phones on the MLS printout, or on the for sale sign, because I can't get inside to show the house, I usually leave a message saying that they just lost a potential sale because they didn't pickup the phone and my client went to see other houses. (One for sale sign had a cell phone number that was disconnected. Very impressive!).

I asked many agents why they didn't pickup the phone and they said that if they did, they would never get any work done. I then asked them what kind of work? They said working on transactions. Then I remarked that they must not want any more sales, because this could have been another transaction.

Is this the standard practice, or is this just in SF Bay Area in California? I can't imagine a successful agent not answering their phones.

Comments (12)

Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

 Peter, Welcome to Active Rain and congratulations on your first blog! I am dellighted to be the first comment on your first post!

This is NOT my standard of practice. I answer my phone! Give it a try if you like.

Jun 28, 2008 05:19 AM
Ray Henderson
Weichert Realtors' Northeast Group - Saratoga Springs, NY

This is not only in your area.This is a constant and frustrating problem. In todays market I can assure you that the agent is not THAT busy. I think most agents just like to screen their calls or they want people to think that they are too busy to bother with you. If you are lucky they will get back to you. I have been in the same situation with no key in the lock box and no available agent. All I could do was apologize to my buyer and move on. I try like hell not to show that property again.

Ray Henderson---Weichert Northeast Group

Jun 28, 2008 05:21 AM
John Petrone
ERA Nalbandian - Saddle Brook, NJ

It's an issue obviously some area's more than others. The thing is for those who are conintually not available on their phones they build a reputation in the negative way with both the public and the circle of Realtors in any given area! Bottom line is you should not want that rep.  

There's always circumstances that arise, but if you're continually missing calls.. ouch!

If you are a listing agent with listings that need your attention at any given time, you owe it to everyone to answer your phone or call back a.s.a.p.


Jun 28, 2008 05:34 AM
Greg Steffens
Mountain Country Realty - Lake Arrowhead, CA

Welcome to Active Rain and congrats on your first post.  Be sure to spend some time looking around at what and how others are blogging here.  It is a great education and lot s of fun.  Looks like you're off to a great start...keep it up!

Jun 28, 2008 07:31 AM
Dwayne West
Atlanta Real Estate - Canton, GA
Canton Georgia Real Estate

Welcome to the Active Rain community. You have chosen a great site with tons of information you can learn from.

Jun 28, 2008 07:44 AM
Keith Elliott Jr
KEIRE Realty Group - Manassas, VA
Principal Broker/Owner

Hello Peter,

Welcome to Active Rain and congrats on your first post! The opportunities to learn and network are incredible here. Best of luck to ya!


Jun 28, 2008 08:30 AM
Bill Kennedy
Keller Williams Realty - Greenville, SC
Homes For Sale Greenville SC

Welcome to Active Rain!  This is an awesome community for learning as well as sharing.  I think I pick up something new every day!  Watch out though - it's addictive!

I look forward to reading some of your future posts!

Jun 28, 2008 01:51 PM
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Wow!  Peter!  Wonderful first Active Rain post about my pet peeve!!  I'm looking forward to reading more posts!  So Blog on!

Jun 28, 2008 01:57 PM
The Trumm Team Omaha Homes for Sale, Real Estate
Keller Williams Greater Omaha - Omaha, NE

Welcome to ActiveRain!

If you would like a few tips on getting the most out of ActiveRain, please visit my blog Welcome to Active Rain.  It has a few simple steps of what to do now that you have joined.

If you ever have any questions, just let me know.

Troy Trumm

Jun 28, 2008 02:07 PM
Scott Magaw
The Bill Kennedy Team - Keller Williams Realty - Spartanburg, SC

Welcome to the Rain!  This is a great site for learning and sharing.  YOu'll have a blast here!  I look forward to seeing more of what you write.

Jun 28, 2008 04:01 PM
Kirk Westervelt
Van West Realty - Greenville, SC Realtor -Short Sale Expert! - Greenville, SC
Kirk Westervelt, Broker In Charge, Van West Realty - CDPE - Short Sale Agent - Home for Sale - Greenville, Simpsonvil...

Hi, welcome to Active Rain! I hope to see more of your blogs in the future. Learn from others, share your knowledge and experiences and enjoy yourself!

Good point on the phone topic! I rely on a great local mortgage broker who ALWAYS answers his phone when I call. He knows that when I call, I'm usually standing next to a prospect or new client who needs his services!

Take care! ---Kirk.

Jun 29, 2008 03:17 AM
Crystal Corr
Keller Williams Greenville Central - Simpsonville, SC

Welcome to Active Rain. Congrads on your first post! I hope you will enjoy it and learn from it as much as I do. Happy Blogging.

Jun 29, 2008 04:49 AM