Every now and then I run into a home shopper who – asked if they’re represented by an agent – says, “Oh, no, I’m just looking on my own.”
And that’s the end of the conversation. I don’t try to enlighten them because they’re too far behind the 8 ball. Educated buyers understand that you need an agent if you’re going to play in San Francisco. The reasons for this are numerous and fairly straightforward. But today I want to focus on some of the more subtle ones.
Who else is going to listen to you with such patience?
If you’re in therapy, your psychotherapist will (hopefully) listen to whatever you want to talk about for 50 minutes once a week. But the listening ends when your time is up, and the list of folks who’ll put up with your prattling stops there. Except for your Realtor. A good agent is going to listen to you no matter what. She is going to lend a compassionate ear as you struggle with your dreams and disappointments. She will do this because in order to be your effective ally, scout, coach, and advisor she must listen closely enough to view things through your lenses.
Who else is going to give you hard-to-hear advice?
Your agent is going to hang on your every word and carefully review your story. And then she is going to tell you what’s real. She is going to give you objective yet heartfelt advice. She is going to speak the truth even though it may be difficult for you to hear. She will do this because she is loyal to you and she knows that if she is honest and plain, you’ll be happy in the long run – whether it results in a sale or not. Sometimes the client who doesn’t transact becomes the best source of referrals!
Who else is going to have a big birds-eye view of your life and progress?
A Realtor stands at the center of the big circle that has to do with your home, and she can zoom out for a grand overview. She’s a generalist who knows when to involve a lawyer, an estate planner, a financial planner, a tax consultant, an accountant, a contractor, a stager, an organizer, an architect or a decorator, and she sees how all the puzzle pieces fit together. Home purchases or sales are the focal point where all aspects of one’s progress merge, so your agent is almost always the person with the clearest, most inclusive vision of what’s going on.
Who else is going to be available to you 25/8?
I’m talking pretty much all day, all night, every day, every night, whether working or on vacation, for better or for worse, in sickness or in health, until there’s a closing? Think about it. When was the last time you were able to raise your accountant or your physician at 8 pm on a Sunday night? Do you know how often I’m on the phone or answering emails after 9 pm or before 9 am?
Who else has nothing to sell you, only wants you to be happy, and isn’t paid for her time until and unless you transact?
Me! Your Realtor. I have nothing to sell you because I’m not offering my own property and I’m not in the new development business. My sole goal is to help you find and buy something you love, or to help you sell your house so you can progress with your life. It’s that simple. I am, indeed, your biggest fan.
Photo Credit: Artem Beliaikin
Cynthia Cummins is the founder of Kindred SF Homes and has been serving homeowners and homebuyers for 3 decades. For information on San Francisco Bay Area real estate visit KindredSFhomes.com. For my writing and mindfulness blog, visit WildHeartWriting.org.