BY HEATHER KEHOE, THINKSASKATOON
“Does anyone know a good real estate agent?” Have you ever been asked this question? If so, what’s your response? What does “good” mean? One persons definition of “good” may differ from another’s. The majority of my business comes from referrals from past clients, friends, family or business contacts. People who trust me and trust that I will look after their friends and family in a professional, respectful manner and still have some fun along the way. Some of my best friends started out as my clients and continue to be my biggest supporters. But even though they have referred me to someone, does that mean that I am the “right” agent for them? Are they the “right” client for me? We are all different with different personalities and some people just do not work well together. It does not mean they are not a good agent or a good client, it just means maybe they are not the right agent or the right client for a successful partnership. It similar to a marriage. How do you find the right agent for you? Well guess what? I’m going to help you! You ready for this? Ok, let’s look at the Real Estate Relationship…Part 1.
When a client is referred to me, the first thing I do is call and have a quick chat with them. First things first, an “interview” is set up. Scary, I know. (Bring pen/paper/iPad to take notes) I ask them to bring a list of any questions they want to ask me. I like to meet at a coffee shop instead of my office. It’s more casual and people feel more comfortable and can be themselves. Good Earth Coffee House, Broadway Roastery, City Perks, Collective Coffee and Tastebuds are some of my favs! We are getting to know each other’s personalities, likes/dislikes, similar to a first date. 🙂
The right agent is going to want to get to know you and your family. Launching right into business and rambling on about themselves is a red flag. How can you help a person find what they really need if your relationship is strictly transactional. The right agent needs to know about you. Where are you from? Chances are you are going to know mutual people, its Saskatchewan! If the person is a referral from another client then you will have that person in common. Tell me about your work, do you have kids, ages, names, what activities are they in, school preferences, do you have pets. Married? Divorced? Separated? Believe me, these questions are extremely important. But that is a whole different article. Are they new to Saskatoon? Where are they from? Are they familiar with areas of Saskatoon? Do they have a neighbourhood in mind? Real estate should be about building relationships!
But, wait, the agent knows all about you but you need to know more about them. Funny thing is, you DO know a lot about them from your previous conversations. You’ve both discussed families, kids, mutual friends, etc. Informal quality conversation. No texting, but actual face to face old school conversation!
By this time you may be feeling like you’ve known each other forever or else you could be getting the vibe that maybe this won’t be the right real estate relationship. Either way, you will both have a pretty good idea if this is going to work out or if you should just break up right now. If that warm fuzzy feeling isn’t there and sometimes it just isn’t, then congrats, you have realized that this was not going to be the right real estate relationship for you and no feelings have been hurt! It happens, and it’s ok, this may be the biggest purchase of your life and you need to feel 100% confident in the agent you are choosing. On the other hand, if you know that you are both right for each other and the real estate relationship is starting to bloom, then brace yourself because you are in for some fun!
You are going to have fun during this process. Yes. Fun. So sit back, relax, and let’s get down to the real nitty-gritty! There is a lot more to cover before we head out looking at properties and there are some very important questions we need to ask each other but right now I am off to list 2 properties out-of-town and I need a solid 45 minutes to get my winter gear on and make sure my winter safety kit is on board. My Mom always said to be prepared! So stay tuned for the continuation, yes Chad Ward of Ward Homes Ltd., it is to be continued! Keep you eyes peeled for part 2 of the Real Estate Relationship. Till next time, It’s Just Another Glamorous Day in the Life of The Saskatoon REALTOR®!