I solicited your client today

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Atlas Realty Service, LLC Ga Re lic. 266576

Dear Listing Agent,

I solicited your client today for your listing located at 123 Oak Street, in Powder Springs. Certainly you will not have a problem with this.  Hey, I know that you have the home listed so all I did was just send them my card and contact info.  Just in case they may have any unanswered real estate needs.

My business card

P.S. They just called me! Thanks for providing me a lead on this future real estate prospect!

Are you really steamed now? Are you ready to call your broker, the MLS, the local real estate board?  Are you calling me every name in the book?

Relax! I wouldn't knowingly solicit your client.  We all know that would be considered highly unethical.  However, I am 100% certain that you are soliciting clients of other agents.  How do I know this?  It's simple.  The virtual tour that you have on your listing for 123 Oak St, in Powder Springs has your contact information right there on the tour! When my clients and my prospects visit my website and click on your virtual tour they see your contact information!

Do you get it now?  According to our local MLS rules and the code of ethics, we are supposed to respect each others clients.  Don't put your contact info on your tours!

note: 123 oak st is a fictional address but the scenario is quite real.  No agents were harmed in the writing of this blog.  :-)


Bob Southard, e-ProRealtor®, Solid Source Realty, Inc. Buy or sell a home in Powder Springs, Marietta, Kennesaw, Acworth, Dallas, Hiram,and Cobb, Paulding, Douglas, North Fulton, South Cherokee, County, Ga

Visit my website www.AgentBobSells.com

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Copyright © 2008 By Bob Southard, All Rights Reserved

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Bob Southard
Broker - Owner  Atlas Realty Service LLC #75911
1% Listing Commissionand BuyerRebates



CALL ME DIRECT: 770-656-9134

Buy a home, Sell a home, in Powder Springs, Marietta, Kennesaw, Acworth, Smyrna, Dallas, Hiram,and Cobb, Paulding, Douglas, North Fulton, South Cherokee, County, Ga. Call me for all of your real estate needs.

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Jeff Rogers
retired - Manchester, TN

True very true.  Thanks for pointing this out.  One time I had a photo that including a picture of my sign in the yard.  I took it off.  It was an accident that I didn't see till later.  Thanks for pointing this out.  Keep up the good work.  Nice post by the way.

Oct 01, 2008 07:11 AM #1
Nicole Weidauer
Keller Williams Greater Seattle - Shoreline, WA

I hate it when that happens. Thank goodness I have dealt with loyal clients, but I sure have seen this happen many times before.

Best of luck for this NOT happening to you!

Thanks for sharing, Nicole Weidauer

The Egerer & Weidauer Team, Keller Williams Realty North Seattle

Oct 01, 2008 07:12 AM #2
Bob & Carolin Benjamin
Benjamin Realty LLC - Gold Canyon, AZ
East Phoenix Arizona Homes

This is a problem. It is not supposed to happen. There are non-branded and branded tours that an agent can choose from and appropriately choose when to use a branded one and when not to. Besides the virtual tour issue you mention there are times when an agent will put right in the public remarks of the MLS to call them for something -- not good.

Oct 01, 2008 07:12 AM #3
Sondra TenClay
Grand Rapids MI Coldwell Banker AJS-Schmidt - Grand Rapids, MI

Bob, Great post!  It's good to be reminded that this is a cooperative business and we need to be respectful of the client relationships we all have.  While the internet has opened many doors sometimes those doors open to ugly things!

Oct 01, 2008 07:13 AM #4
Stephen Kappre
KW Hometown - Mantua, NJ
Helping You Home

I agree with Bob - most of the tours around my area aren't branded.  I guess it all has to do with who does the tour no?  And I have also seen the agent that puts his contact info in description of the property - the same description that eery realtor prints out for their client.  I'm sure you've seen the same.  On certain days I'm not above calling the local board.

Oct 01, 2008 07:19 AM #5
Alan May
Jameson Sotheby's International Realty - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

Our local MLS requires that our virtual tours be non-branded, and does not allow photos with our signs in them, for exactly that reason.  Good post!

Oct 01, 2008 07:24 AM #6
Jim & Maria Hart
Brand Name Real Estate - Charleston, SC
Charleston, SC Real Estate

Hey, Bob. I cant agree with you more. I always ask the agent to fix it prior to sending the listing to mu client, if they chose to not fix it I report it to the board. Thanks, Jim

Oct 01, 2008 07:25 AM #7
Angela Lawrence
Noble Merit Real Estate Services - Winston-Salem, NC

Yep, we see these type of violations all the time, especially with the listing agents contact info and website within the remarks of the mls sheet, big no no.

Oct 01, 2008 07:25 AM #8
Carol Spengel
Prudential Rubloff - Wheaton, IL
Wheaton IL

Our MLS fines people who brand virtual tours on the MLS system.  So, go get your MLS to do that also.  However, we can use branded virtual tours everywhere else.   We also can't put contact, open house or webiste address in the remarks section of the MLS.

Oct 01, 2008 07:27 AM #9
Bob Southard
Atlas Realty Service, LLC - Kennesaw, GA
e-Pro - Cobb, Cherokee, North Fulton

Wow!  Thanks everybody for all the great comments already. 

Our mls has been pretty good about policing the comments area on the listings but the tours are another story.

The  culprits are agents that create their own tours, usually thorugh Point2 or Imprev.  Both of these services give the option to create an MLS compliant tour, but the agents choose not to.

There is no way to for me to screen the listings first.  I have a ton of people set up to recieve automatic listing updates either trhough my IDX or theough the mls.  If they open up a tour that is branded then the damage is done and I can only hope for the best.  If somebody finds my website on the internet and starts searching, then calls an agent with contact info on a listing I will never know it happened.  My blogging and seo just got a client for some agent with a branded tour.


Oct 01, 2008 07:41 AM #10
Joel Weihe
Realty World Alliance - Wichita, KS
Helping you to use your VA home loan benefits

We're not allowed to have any branding on tours linked to the MLS, or in the pictures posted on our MLS.  I have seen contact info in the remarks, which is irritating. 

Oct 01, 2008 07:43 AM #11
Rich Mielke
REMAX Results, Frederick MD - Frederick, MD
REALTOR, Frederick Maryland Real Estate

The tour company I use will not allow me to upload a branded tour to the MLS feed.

Oct 01, 2008 12:07 PM #12
Bart Whitmore
Keller Williams- Louisville - Louisville, KY
Real Estate Agent

I hope they correct thier mistake, I know all to well how things like that can hurt your business---Bart

Oct 01, 2008 12:51 PM #13
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator

My MLS also doesn't allow branded tours, and you can't put phone numbers in the public remarks. However, branded tours are fairgame when you put the list on other websites on the internet like postlets or vflyers, or anything else. If your client is on one of those sites, it's fair game.

I also don't like it when agents leave their business cards in the house when they're showing.  There is no need for the seller to have those cards.  It's the listing agent's job to follow up with buyers' agents, not the sellers, so save your cards for your own clients.

Oct 03, 2008 03:06 AM #14
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