If you know any real estate agents, it seems we are always in our cars rushing from place to place. This is true even in the age of electronic signatures. This is part of the joy of being a real estate broker in St. Louis and I suspect elsewhere. It’s been said that no one ever sold anything in their office, and I admit, the people I see in the office everyday aren’t doing as much business as the people I never see. I also think the good real estate agents have made a conscious decision that they aren’t in a job that is behind a desk, and they don’t want to be behind a desk 24/7.
This particular day, I had to go from Gravois in South City all the way out to Telegraph and Becker. Because I was making stops along the way, heading down I-55 wasn’t going to work. In my decade of real estate, I must have shown thousands of houses by now, so I know my way around pretty well.
With the light of full sun but less humid than a normal August day, I couldn’t help but look around and remember the houses I’ve sold along my route. Off of Bates and Morganford, we represented a buyer who was looking to downsize. I passed by Bowen, and I remember a nice lady looking to move in with her family. All along the route, I remembered people who I’ve met through our real estate brokerage. Some had tough houses to sell, and others were surprised how quickly their homes sold. I got out to Lemay ferry, and down Forder, two couples bought houses, and on Telegraph, 2 houses sold.
“Mastering The Art of Selling Real Estate” was written years ago. I’ve come to believe it really is more of an art than a science. For example, when I go on listing appointments, I rarely spend as much time talking as I do listening to what the seller wants. It’s also been said that “you can learn a lot just by listening” and I do. This is contrary to what Real Estate coaches and trainers will tell you. They’ll tell you that you really need to wow someone with laser light shows and throw tons of data at them. I’m not sure if this is to confuse them or what.
It’s my belief that we do best when we put our clients first. While we are all obligated to do so through the Realtor Code of Ethics, I think it’s important that we really try to make the best deals for our clients. Sometimes, we may do things we think are helping our clients, but I think that our clients each have individual goals. The couple selling the house that they’ve outgrown is looking at a sale far different than a family member selling a home from an estate.
We don’t know the future of real estate sales. There have been many attempts to eliminate the real estate agent. In 2017, 87% of buyers used an agent. While that number may fluctuate throughout the years, it does show that buyers are normally more comfortable with the help of an agent. In my career, this makes sense. As I show houses, I’m always trying to educate the buyer about what to look out for, and what to expect given their particular price points. As a bonus, I get to meet all kinds of people, and on this particular day, driving through town, it was nothing but great memories.