For the last 18 months, maybe longer, a significant part of my job has been to disappoint people. I get to deliver messages that nobody wants to hear:
- “Your home is not worth what you paid for it.”
- “You owe the bank more than your house is worth.”
- “Your neighbors got more last year than you will get this year.”
- “Buyers want PERFECT.”
- “Certain ‘shortcomings’ will get you almost no showings.” (Location, location, location. Condition, condition, condition. Price, price, price. Marketing, marketing, marketing.)
- “I don’t know when…”
It’s been rough. Honestly, I really don’t enjoy that part of the job. I don’t think anybody would.
It has also been tough watching my peers leave the business as they struggled to put sales together to support their families. Realtors are independent contractors. We live without the safety net that comes with a ‘job’. No health insurance, retirement plans, paid vacations, sick time, or the ability to collect unemployment checks when there hasn’t been a closing in a while. Every morning, we wake up unemployed.
Our payment is contingent upon a home sale closing. We can show someone 80 houses, giving up hundreds of hours of our time, but if they don’t buy, we don’t get a nickel for our time and expenses. Or we can list a house for a year, spend money on marketing, but if it does no sell, once again, we get nothing.
We signed up for this career with our eyes wide opened. We understood the risks, and the potential for profit. Today, I think you would be hard pressed to find a handful of Realtors here in Southeast Michigan who would tell you that this is an “easy” job.
When I started this blog in March of 2005, the market was much better. I started it as a way to keep in touch with our past clients and to provide information to others who might share my interest in Oakland County real estate. All in all, my achievements with this blog have FAR exceeded my goals.
Back then, I didn’t really think that people would call me and ask to work with us because of what they read here. Now I know why they do. Not only does this blog come up high in search results for lots of key local real estate terms, it gives people a sense of who we are and how we work. It shows that we are innovative. We are doing things differently to get results for our buyer and seller clients. We put it all out there for you to see and judge for yourselves.
In addition to regular calls from prospective buyers and sellers, I get a fair number of calls from local and national media looking for information. USA Today did a feature this summer on a Birmingham home we sold in 6 days. A few weeks ago I had a brief chat with Nathan Hurst, a new real estate reporter to the Detroit News. Nathan had recently relocated here from Boston and started reading my blog. Cool, huh! Today Nathan mentioned miOaklandCounty.com in a piece he did about the tough times Realtors are experiencing right now. It’s true, times are tough for sellers and Realtors alike.
But I did not start this blog because times were tough. I started this blog because I am always looking for the best ways to market my client’s homes, a quest we embarked on in 2001. This blog is a part of our innovative marketing plan. We beat most offices in google searches. This helps us to get more eyes on our clients properties. That is something that can make a huge difference with most buyers doing their search for a new home on-line. There is a lot of information in these pages that can help you to do the things you need to do to get your home sold. We are focused on what we can do and how we can deal with today’s market conditions.
When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Don’t be left behind.
[tags]detroit news, michigan realtors, oakland county real estate, metro detroit real estate, maureen francis, luxury homes[/tags]