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A SUCCESS GUIDE
for real estate lenders, real estate agents and those who would like to learn about the professions.
I listed a home; I placed an ad in the local paper and a resident from that same community called and wanted to see it. The buyer did not have a real estate agent and ended up buying the property, so, yes, I represented both parties in that case. All good, right? Here comes the bad part—and also the lesson.
I quickly formed a pleasant relationship with the buyers and everything was just dandy. The buyers owned another home that they wanted sold after moving into the new one. Great. They softly mentioned/asked me to list their home, first on Tuesday, then again on Thursday. Mr. Cool (that was me) was noncommittal, busy, busy, slightly aloof to the request, “glowing,” distracted with other stuff, and was planning on getting around to it when he was ready, which was Monday. Too late, bud. By Saturday, they were getting nervous, so they called around to their friends, got a couple of names of real estate agents, and had it listed by Sunday night—$30K, poof, gone. Painful.
I thought they knew that I wanted to list their house. No. I didn’t speak those exact words—but I thought they knew nonetheless. Everything is plainer when spoken than unspoken. And by the way, in this case, everything is more profitable when spoken than unspoken.
To be fair to myself, I was a little swamped trying to do a good job on their deal and several others. I was planning on working like crazy through Saturday, taking a breather on Sunday, and starting to work on their listing on Monday. Well, my plan was not their plan. They were ready to do business. Both the husband and wife told me, independent of one another, “Jim, you were our first choice; we honestly thought that you were not interested.” I’m dying a slow death as I’m hearing this.
We have to be ready when the customer is ready. In retrospect, I could have taken one hour out of “my busy schedule” on Tuesday or Wednesday just to get the process moving. That would have made the customer very happy and we would have locked in the business. Think about it this way. Has this happened to you on taking loans or listings or buyers? You are on vacation and slightly difficult to reach. Your client is ready to do business. You come back to work and start moving through e-mails and voicemails. And the conversation goes something like this:
“Hi Client, thanks for the call, supersorry for the delay, I was on vacation, but I’m back in action and happy to help you on financing,” says Jim.
“Ummmmmmmm, hi, Jim, I feel terrible but I needed to get things going, so I already started the process with Johnny at Happycurbside Lending,” says Client.
“Uhhhh,” says Jim.
“Yeah, you know how it is, Jim, but I still love ya,” says Client.
“Uhhhh,” says Jim.
“Yeah, but for sure I’m going to get you on the next one, for sure, promise. You da man and I hope you had a good vacation,” says Client.
“Uhhhh, okay, thanks for thinking of me, Client,” says Jim, as he is feeling quite nauseated at this point and is ready to hurl one in the trash can under his desk.
“Well, Jim, my clients always wait for me.” I don’t think so. If you have been in this business for more than three minutes, you have had something like this happen. Why? Because…
The customer is ready to do business—ideally with you, but if not with you, then someone else will do. Be ready to jump when the customer is ready—and tell him or her clearly and plainly that you accept the job.
Go get ’em!
Everything is plainer when spoken than unspoken.
Chapter 27 - When the Customer is Ready