Beware of Candy from a Stranger
As parents we teach our children to never take candy or get into a car with a stranger. Yet everyday around the world strangers call into real estate offices and ask the eager 100% sales commission based real estate agent to meet them at a house so they can see it. What happened from childhood to adulthood that we forgot the lessons our parents taught us?
This month in the Greater Raleigh Area, a female real estate agent was held at knife point and raped in a vacant new home. Every year somewhere in the country reports are sent from the National Association of REALTORS and local real estate board office telling of another tragic story of rape, robbery or murder. Last year a female agent who was raped and stabbed multiple times survived because she was wearing a Blue Tooth and had enough strength left to reach her ear piece and press the button for 911. Many REALTORS rushed out to buy Blue Tooths for a new level of protection. I think they missed the main lesson and that is how many violent crimes occur against REALTORS. It is amazing to me how all of these reports of real estate agent found dead in basements and robbed at open houses we still meet strangers at houses and the parents who warn their own children never talk to strangers expect us to do it and get mad when we say no.
As an Real Estate Industry Our Home Showing Practices Need to Change
Everyday in Raleigh the telephone rings into real estate offices where people are out in front of a home for sale and they want to know if someone will show them the home. When we tell the prospective home buyer our company policy is to meet in our office first, qualify them financially, copy their driver’s license, make an appointment with the seller to view the home and then drive them to the property for the showing they feel it is a waste of their time and are insulted by our protective measures. As you read this blog ask yourself…would I be insulted if a REALTOR said they wouldn’t show me a home unless I first went through that sort of security screening? Of course you would be insulted. You are in a hurry, you are not a bad person, you are a serious home buyer being treated like a criminal. You will hang up the phone and call another real estate agent who gladly put their life at risk for a chance at a small commission. Pop Tart REALTORS is what I call them. They pop out of the chair and speed off to a vacant house to meet an unqualifed stranger. When you think about this common occurance, isn’t is kind of crazy thing to do?
As Experienced Real Estate Agents We Need to Help Safeguard Our Newer Associates
Last week I had one of my young new REALTORS all excited becasue she had gotten a call from a Doctor who wanted to see a 2 million dollar estate home in Raleigh. He had found it on my web site www.lindacraft.com. All she could see in her mind was the big commission she would earn if this Doctor bought it. As a 24 year veteran real estate agent here in Raleigh all I could see was danger. I asked her are you meeting him in the office? Yes, she replied. Have you Googled him and checked LinkedIn as I asked? Yes, she couldn’t find him was her answer. Have you requested a letter from a lender or banker showing proof of funds for purchase? No, she meekly confessed and then quickly asked what if he gets mad. Where I responed, if he has money he will understand and be proud to show you his financial strength. If he doesn’t he will get mad and you will never hear from him again. Either way you have your answer. As she dialed his number to make the requests I emailed my fellow members in the Triangle Luxury Home Marketing Group to see if any of them had encountered a Doctor with this name. Within 10 minutes 2 emails popped into my account with warnings to stay away. He isn’t a doctor, lives in an $80,000 town house and has no money. We had our answer and our seller didn’t waste their time and interrupt their life.
Let’s Stand Together and Change Our Ways
Everyday in the world of Raleigh real estate someone is posing to be a buyer when they are not, sellers are also told to vacate their house during all home showings and real estate agents heed no safety warnings even after reading graphic details from stories of other victoms. Something has to be done to change this system. Real estate agents need to remember their Mother’s warnings and the world needs to understand how dangerous it is to demand REALTORS to meet strangers at a home for sale. The National Association of REALTORS is the largest association in the world. It is time to commit together to change a system that has been broken from day one.