By Bill Primavera
Have you ever fallen in love with a realtor? It’s very possible, you know.
As a long-term realtor, I am reminded of the time when I was sitting in my office near the desk of a colleague who was talking with a client on the phone. After she related all the hurdles she had managed to negotiate that day in assuring a successful transaction for her client, she asked, “So, do you love me yet?”
Surely, all of us realtors want our clients to love us, not just for the money we can help make for them, but the satisfaction that comes from knowing we’ve negotiated a minefield in a process where almost anything can go wrong. Finding the right house or the right buyer, marketing a property that may need work, negotiating the selling price, getting an accepted deal, clearing the inspection, the title search, the more stringent mortgage requirements and the closing itself can be riddled with peril.
If there were to be a Match.com kind of service linking clients with realtors, the client would find that psychological profile of realtors would make them a likely catch, at least from a business point of view. They tend to be hardy in nature, outgoing and capable of responding to any kind of situation. In both ragingly good markets and those that are depressed and depressing, realtors can be a homeowner’s or buyer’s best friend.
It’s both the trying times and the moments of glory that bond realtors with their clients and vice versa. After all, there’s a lot at stake, considering that a home is the biggest purchase most of us ever make. In that process, the realtor can come to know the most intimate details about their clients, their familial relationships, their financial status, as well as their preferences about how they want to live. Clients usually share with their realtors all the hard truths of their past and the eager hopes of their future life. And in the present, they spend a lot of time together.
If realtors are representing sellers, they share the creative process of marketing a home and the debriefings that follow every showing. If they represent buyers, they travel all over the countryside with them. The glue of either relationship is a lot of hand holding.
These relationships can be extremely loyal and long-term, with case histories lasting from the purchase of a young couple’s first home to that same couple making a transition from their last home to assisted living, all with the same realtor who has grown old with them.
So it is no wonder that after a successful transaction we will see an agent agonizing over an appropriate closing gift to give the client, or a special delivery package will arrive at the realtor’s office from clients to their special hero or heroine.
Yes, occasionally there can be a spat. Looking at both sides of that possibility, when a relationship goes bad between a realtor and a client, polls have shown the killer of the love affair is usually related to communication. Most frequently, complaints among sellers come when they don’t hear from their realtors as often as they would like.
When realtors complain about their seller clients, it is usually about their refusal to price a house according to its market value. The realtor in this case feels that they will put in all the work and not get the expected result of a sale.
There’s even the scenario of unrequited love, and that would be when sellers attempt to sell a home on their own (called a FSBO). Most realtors will say that is tantamount to representing one’s self in court or removing one’s own appendix. More specifically, lack of a realtor can deprive a seller of this kind of relationship where essential guidance and expertise is offered, resulting in a better offering price, even with the realtor’s commission factored in, as statistics confirm.
But there are some very special moments in the client/realtor relationship that are just incredibly sweet. In one such case, a young couple with whom I had been working for a full year in finding their ideal first home asked if they could stop by my house to show me their newborn baby. I felt as happy and pleased as if I had just become a new grandfather.
Bill Primavera is a Realtor® associated with William Raveis Real Estate and founder of Primavera Public Relations, Inc., the longest running public relations agency in Westchester (www.PrimaveraPR.com), specializing in lifestyles, real estate and development. To engage the services of Bill Primavera and his promotional talents to market your home for sale, call 914-522-2076.