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My Realtor, My Friend

Real Estate Agent with Fonville Morisey Realty

How do we, as realtors, separate out these two things?  So far, whenever I work with a client for more than one short outing, I feel like I've made a new friend.  I know it's business, but how can you build trust and rapport unless you take on a role of friend?  Buying or selling a home is so stressful and emotional.  The littlist things set clients off.  If they don't think of me as a friend, how can they be honest about what they are thinking?  I had an experience this week with a couple who is now my clients, but we started the relationship under a lot of false pretenses.  They called and wanted to see one of my listings, but they didn't want to come to my office so we could meet and talk about my relationship to them as a listing agent.  I managed to get them to agree to meet me at a restaurant so we could meet and talk briefly before I showed them the home.  They said they had no interest in being represented by a buyer's agent - they wanted to represent themselves.  They made it sound like they didn't see any need for a buyer's agent.  Long story short, it turns out all they really wanted was to make sure they got the home at a specific price that they thought was reasonable for the home.  Rather than just saying that, they tried to present a low offer and tell me to just relinquish 3% of my commission because they were representing themselves as buyers.  When my sellers were ready to walk away from the deal because they did not want to work with unrepresented buyers, the "go it alone" buyers called me and confessed - they really didn't have any issue with me or any other agent representing them; it was all about the money.  I realize these clients did not know me so why should they trust me?  We managed to salvage the deal and I sold the home, but the whole experience left me feeling a little strange.

Eric Egeland
RE/MAX SUBURBAN - Libertyville, IL

Thanks for the post Linda,

I hear you & have had similiar experiences myself

Aug 28, 2008 03:05 PM
Linda Lipscomb
Linda Lipscomb RE/MAX Lexington Henderson County TN - Lexington, TN
731-695-1118, Lexington TN Homes

Good post.

You handled it quite well, obviously.

At least, in the end, they fessed up.  Was quite strange.

Aug 28, 2008 03:10 PM
Larry Story ALC
Total Care Realty - Greensboro, NC
Beneath it all is the Land, Covering all of NC

Linda many of my clients do become friends simply because I do so much for them.

Aug 28, 2008 03:40 PM
North Carolina Linda

Eric - how do you handle these experiences?  My asst. manager said that I should always ask more questions when prospects do this kind of thing, but this couple was purposely being vague.  It felt to me like they had rehearsed a script out of a book or something.

Linda - It felt strange - not only in the sense that this couple seemed to be doing something out of character or something that did not quite fit - as I was saying in my reply to Eric.  Is it bad to be more blunt when people do this and simply ask - "Is this really about the money or do you truly have a reason for not wanting any representation?"

Larry - I realize that part of real estate means developing long term relationships, but it is also a business transaction.  How do you separate out these two things? 

Aug 29, 2008 01:44 AM
Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

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