Someone asked me if I knew any real estate agents with common sense the other day. I thought it was an odd question until they explained that they had never met any. Of course, they said present company excluded, but I knew that they could not mean that because they did not know me yet.
I got to thinking. What does that mean, agents don’t have any common sense? I think I have the answer. I think that they mean that agents are using the common way of sales to get sales done.
The first thing that you have to do in sales is prospect. The only way to prospect is to go to where the buyers and sellers are. And, the only ethical place that we can go to gather these prospective clients is on the Internet. Yet, when you look on the Internet, at most agent’s performance, you find that the houses they list have horrible photos, no enhancement of the ads or anything else that make them stand out.
Most agent websites, if they even have one, lack content are mainly a business card template saying how great they are. There is no mention of any accomplishments, their track record or anything of substance. It is just a glamour shot, as if that is going to lure a buyer or seller because the person looks nice.
The advertising that most agents do for the homes that they have listed require no effort past putting the house in the MLS. They then rely on the MLS to feed the data to other websites. Their thinking is, “Well we did pound the sign in the yard, etc…”
There is nothing else done on the majority of the advertising plans implemented by traditional agents.
Now, the latest trend is that the listing agent refuses to show the house to any buyers that call that are working with a buyer’s agent. And, if they do show the house, they are claiming the entire commission, citing procuring cause. Now correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t it the listing agent’s job, to open the house to all buyers? And certainly, they shouldn’t cop and attitude with any buyer’s agent who has a client that wants to see the house. The overall attitude now is that a listing agent can dictate whom they want to work with – but this is not nor shouldn’t be the case.
So, to work towards a reputation as agents that is one of ethical common sense, I think that many schools, brokerages and workshops really should focus on how real estate should be sold in the 2000’s not in the 1960’s. Times have changed and most consumers today know more about how to market their home on places like You Tube, My Space and with Google Ad Words than agents do. And that is scary!