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Why I Got Into Real Estate

Service Before Promises
Service Before Promises

I think the reason I got into Real Estate explains the type of service I want to provide. It happened long before I choose Real Estate as a carrier. I decided to move and tried selling my house on my own. That was not as easy as it seemed. It still cost me attorney fees and other costs I didn't plan on, but lessons I learned about Real Estate made up for the costs involved.

The first lesson was the barrage of Real Estate Agents calling on the phone and showing up at my door. They all seemed to have the same 20 second canned speech to in get their foot in the door. "I am in the top 1 percent in the nation. I can sell your house quicker and for more money than any agent." After hearing the same speech verbatim from a number of agents, it became evident this is what they were taught to say. I later noticed they all worked for the same company.

The next lesson came from a friend I knew in church. One day he handed me a card and told me he could sell my house. I asked him how much it cost. His answer was, "8 percent." It was a little high so I asked him why. He said, "you have to pay for quality service." That may have been the case in those days when the Internet was young and agents had to choose what type of print media to advertise in. But with the Internet everything is a pretty much level playing field and let's face it, placing a listing on the Internet is basically free. So I hope your asking yourself, "if advertising costs for home listings has gone down to nothing, why have commissions remained the same?" Good question. The fact of the matter is, Real Estate advertising costs on the Internet have soared. Like the oil, health insurance, and remember when the phone company had a monopoly? A few Internet companies have cornered the market on advertising and control the market. So they are charging a ton of money to Real Estate Agents and Brokers to advertise. I received a quote today from one of the companies. A 70 character ad that is estimated to get 56 clicks a month is over $500 per month. That is not customers, that is the cost of clicks. This company places a market value of $10 a click on their advertising. Based on past performance, 1 in 60 clicks turns out to be a sale. So figure it out for yourself. Internet companies want a piece of the pie and think nothing of asking $600 out of every sale. No wonder commissions have not decreased. This is only one aspect in a long list of expenses for a Real Estate Agent.

Something else also happened to me when I was trying to sell my house in my own. One day a well dressed, well mannered Real Estate Agent stopped by the house and handed me a booklet that contained color photos and printed specifications including prices on similar homes in the area. He handed it to me along with a card and told me to give him a call if I have any questions. Who do you think I called? I learned service is far more important than words and promises.

That's why I got into Real Estate. I figured for the most part the industry was filled with people going out selling themselves and only a few who practiced the quality of listening. I thought it would be an easy business to find success because I love listening and providing outstanding service.

With the Internet, we don't use printed reports anymore. This is another cost saving feature, the quest to paperless. I've found most customers would rather have a digital report emailed to them they can file on their own computer. Once I got into the business I found these reports are all CMA's, for Comprehensive Market Analysis. This report will show a list of active and sold homes in your area. It takes about an hour to put together, but I would much rather advertise by providing service than handing out a check to a group of greedy Internet tycoons every month. I know my results will be much greater than 1 out of 60. The investment in time is a no brainer and provides a valuable service to all my prospective customers. So if your looking for service instead of promises, give me a call or send an email and I'll see what I can do for you before we start talking numbers. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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