What should a Realtor keep in their car?

Real Estate Agent with The Keyes Company

Today I decided to get organized. I decided the best thing I could do to achieve ultimate efficiency was to put a file system in my car. I went to Office Depo and got a portable file system and 25 brightly colored files. I made 5 copies of both purchase and listing contracts and put them in separate files and neatly labeled them. I found a few flyers for local condo projects like Trump Hollywood, my third folder witch I also neatly labeled. 3 folders down twenty-two to go, that's when I had a brain freeze. What else should a Realtor keep in their car? Any suggestions?

Christina Lackey
Coldwell Banker Prime Properties - North Syracuse, NY
Syracuse Central New York Real Estate
Well, I have no advice for you, but I do think you have a good idea.  I also tried to have a file like that in my car.  It met an untimely end when my two year old "reorganized" it for me.
Apr 25, 2007 11:35 AM
"JT" Prevatte
Former Agent - Fayetteville, NC

It is a good I too embraced when I first started.

Now...that plastic file crate is full of everything else. 

Apr 25, 2007 11:42 AM
Michelle Burgos
RE/MAX PowerPro Realty - Pembroke Pines, FL
CDPE, Short Sale Expert, Pembroke Pines,Miramar,Davie,Hollywood
Ok, well I have been trying to this for a very long time now and have yet to master it because I bounce between three cars in a given week (all my husband's fault).  But I would say one thing that I always wish I had at arms reach every time I get a call is a designated "real estate" note book to jot down information (e.g. phone numbers, agents info for showings, etc.), rather than writing on receipts and  Also, it helps to have a print out of all your listings to enable you to have the information on the spot - you know how it is trying to drive, chew gum, think, and hold a conversation with one eye on the road the other in the back seat watching the kids, and did I mention one hand on steering wheel while the other is holding the phone....what do you do when you have to reach for your note book/write??? ....can get a bit confusing...hehehe! JUST PULL OVER ON THE SIDE OF THE ROAD!!! Well good luck, stay safe and let me know how it goes.
Apr 25, 2007 11:48 AM
Laurie Mindnich
Centennial, CO
I am behind- it's frustrating enough to make sure that I have magnets, postcards, newsletters, and cards in my car (although a sign has been battering the old Lexus for months now, as well).  Oh, and my shoes, because one never knows when one will need more comfortable attire; the various greenery (fake) for listed homes; and, I LOVE tag sales, so the occasional vintage 100 piece china set is crackling around back there...what was the question?
Apr 25, 2007 11:50 AM
Chris Griffith
Downing-Frye Realty, Bonita Springs, FL - Bonita Springs, FL
Bonita Springs Listing Specialist - Agent
Apr 25, 2007 11:57 AM
Lisa Dunn
Edina Realty - Minneapolis, MN
flashlight, gloves, paper towels, extra batteries, jumper cables, pens, rubber bands, folders, snickers candy bar, towels, water bottle, toilet paper too!
Apr 25, 2007 12:00 PM
Nattalie de la Mothe
Maximum One Greater Atlanta Realtors - Atlanta, GA
Selling Atlanta Homes like a Boss

I was told

A flashlight

Snacks for kids

Copies of ,request for showing unlisted property for FSBOs

uhmmm there was alot more...I forgot

Yeah- first aid kit

Ok, that's all I can think of now...

ohhh,last one, air freasher... you'll need that!!

Apr 25, 2007 12:01 PM
Sean Stark
Options Realty - Riverhead, NY
A bottle of Scotch
Apr 25, 2007 12:01 PM
David Swierczynski
Retired - Antioch, IL

Either a handheld device for all the numbers and such or a small recording device. I can't tell you how many times I'm driving down the road when I have an unexpected brainstorm. Just talk into the device and review later.

Apr 25, 2007 12:16 PM
Ann Guy
NA - Allentown, PA
Ben-how about my business card.  LOl  I would say wet towels, flashlight, first aid kit.  Don't forget the jumper cables (I just remembered I have to put mine back in my car!)
Apr 25, 2007 12:24 PM
Susie Leavens
Cornerstone Real Estate Company - Keystone, CO
how about a local map, telephone book (white pages and yellow pages), tape measure, and digital camera (although I keep the tape measure and digital camera in my purse, so I always have those with me)
Apr 25, 2007 12:28 PM
Vickie Arcuri
Coldwell Banker Realty - Fort Lauderdale, FL
South Florida Luxury Real Estate

Hey Ben, great idea...I haven't done it yet, although I day soon LOL Here are some other items to think about adding, if you haven't already....some are file items and some are just other items to keep handy, though not necessarily in the file. 

  1. A couple of Listing Presentations (although I present mine on the laptop, I leave a bound copy with the Seller and I like to keep some with me in case of a lucky phone call)  :)
  2. Miscellaneous stationery items like envelopes, note cards, pocket folders
  3. Any necessary brochures
  4. Supply order forms (ones used by your office for you to order logo items, property flyers, etc.)
  5. All the normal stuff we take to our listing appointments (flashlight, camera, measuring tape, etc.)
  6. Seller and Buyer Consultation forms
  7. Pre-qualification forms for Buyers (if you have a certain mortgage person that you work with)
  8. Open house sign-in sheets
  9. Open House signs (I keep these in my trunk, but I suppose they don't have to be in the car at all times LOL)
  10. Confetti and bottle rockets (just kidding)
  11. Clipboard
  12. Plenty of blue ink pens
  13. Key chains and similar freebies
  14. Your fax cover sheets
  15. Client Referral Forms (for referring out-of-area clients)

I'm sure there's more, but anyway...happy filing :)

Apr 25, 2007 12:33 PM
Roger Stensland
Keller Williams Realty Puget Sound - Maple Valley, WA
Let's Move!
From some of the comments about safety, maybe you should keep a Glock.  Just kidding.  Honestly, I am going to get a GPS very soon.
Apr 25, 2007 12:35 PM
Yolanda Hoversten
Self Employed - O'Fallon, IL
Referrals for O’Fallon, IL & the Metro East

If you don't have GPS like me, maps are useful :)  With all these items you're collecting, you'll run out of space before you know it.  this is a better system than I have--boxes in the back of the car!  Thank yew!

Apr 25, 2007 12:38 PM
Bob Force (REALTOR®)
Weichert Realtors - Aspen Hill - Mount Airy, MD
The FORCE in Maryland Real Estate
All great suggestions; but one I have that I do not believe was mentioned - a compass.  I had been asked several times which way was West.  Yes, most of the time I can pick it out; but it is better to show it on a compas.
Another is an unbrella
Apr 25, 2007 12:43 PM
Louisa Kastendick
Prudential Americana Group, Realtors - Henderson, NV
PENS!!!!  I don't know about you but mine are always being stolen!!!!
Apr 25, 2007 12:49 PM
Christopher Benedict
BIG Realty - Collegeville, PA
I would say a personal driver and assistant!
Apr 25, 2007 01:31 PM
Stephen Gladstone
Stonehollow Fine Home Inspections & Testing - Stamford, CT

My inspection vehicle is loaded with lots of stuff, but here are some things we might share with realtors:

First aid kit

purell wipes

folding camp chairs for the home with none

coloring books and crayons for bored kids

a good book for open houses

dog biscuits

surgical booties to keep the house clean

a towel for cleaning up

a roll of paper towels

pepper spray

a good reversible screwdriver

a rechargeable flashlight

a roll of quarters

a painters mask for dirty environments

duct tape, electrical tape and scotch tape.

some good music to calm one's mood

a book on tape

a small 1 gallon wet vac

latex gloves (somehomes are gross)

airborne, tylenol, and zinc (tums for realtors)

pair of rain boots, a slicker and umbrella

my AAA card

Hope that helps... You may want to read my blog on Prelist inspections

Your home inspector in CT, Steve Gladstone Stonehollow Home Inspections



Apr 25, 2007 04:07 PM
Inga Czech
Assurity Financial Services - Simi Valley, CA
FHA California Loan Officer

ok, stephens suggestion on the latex gloves made me laugh!!  But it is too true!  Well Ben you have inspired me to get organized!  Good luck with putting all this wonderful organizational information to work for you as well.  You can never be too organized!


Apr 25, 2007 05:02 PM
Jim Little
Ken Meade Realty - Sun City, AZ
Your Sun City Arizona Realtor
Did I miss something? I didn't see Offers to Purchase or Listing Agreements.
Apr 25, 2007 06:04 PM