Angry with Your Agent? Look in the Mirror.

J Philip Faranda September 1, 2009

Most of my listings are homes that were not sold by another brokerage. I work the "expired" niche, and I speak with people who have been trying to sell their home for 3, 6 and sometimes 12 months or more with another broker before they decided to go in another direction at the end of their contracts.

And some of their reasons for choosing their last agent blow me away. Before I go on, let me share something. Just yesterday, I was in Best Buy to upgrade my Blue Tooth. Among my fellow shoppers were some people driving their sales clerk utterly nuts. They were couldn't decide whether or not to buy something for $59.99 or the other model for $79.99. You would think they were trying to choose a brain surgeon. I've seen the same thing at car dealerships, hobby shops, the Post Office ("To confirm delivery or not? I shall hold the 40 people behind me up as I ponder..."),  and plenty of other places that are small potatoes compared to the largest transaction of one's life.

Yet many of these same people, who will drive to 3 different department stores to match curtains and blankets, will end up listing their home with someone they hardly know anything about. Their reasons for choosing their real estate agents run the absurd to the height of greed.

"He quoted me the highest price." "She is my hairdresser's daughter." "I know him from Little League." "She advertises in the church bulletin."

I mean, gag me. Would you have your gall bladder removed by a doctor just because he's a fellow stamp collector? People have made more effort choosing between 2% and skim milk at the grocer!

Here are some classic examples of poor judgment in choosing an agent I've heard from the past 2 weeks:

  1. They said no to the owner of an independent firm who sells a high volume of homes because they were put off by his car and, and they prefer a larger franchise.
  2. He said no to an experienced agent with a well known local office with many years of success under her belt because she advised him that harvest gold appliances and shag carpeting might not be well recieved by the buying public.
  3. She told a successful team from the next town to hit the road because she weren't happy with the valuation they made of the home.
And on it goes. Expired sellers know this the hard way- TRACK record, references and a strong marketing plan have to trump being a fellow cat lover, coaching little league, and other non-related things. This is the largest transaction of your life. A mistake here costs far more than buying the wrong dishwasher, car, or bluetooth. And not all agents are the same. You have to choose an agent the same way you choose a doctor or lawyer. Look at the professional credibility and track record. Those are paramount!

Search the MLS like an agent here. Read my short sale bog here. See the New York Photo blog here. J. Philip Serves Briarcliff Manor, Ossining, the River Towns, Westchester County, and the bedroom counties of New York City.


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