Entry by Mary Pope-Handy

Do Your Clients Need "Just a Little Help"? Consulting Is Perfect!

  1 Comment

We can get very busy helping friends and past clients with jobs that they and we know are not going to turn into a listing or a sale. These odd jobs and favors can wreck havoc on your productivity if the requests get out of control. What kind of "favors" would these be? The most time consuming ones, in my experience, are really those which involve doing a competitive market analysis. Just in the last few weeks, I've had several along these lines:

  • Valuation of a home at the time of death of the owner for estate tax purposes
  • Valuation of a home for owners who are trying to decide whether to refinance, sell, rent, or attempt a loan modification or take another course of action
  • Valuation of a home to fight foreclosure proceedings (not a loan modification, but to overturn a foreclosure

Each state has different rules about charging for an opinion of value (please see the Appraisal Insitute's article on BPOs) but I believe that in most cases, if you do charge to give your professional estimation of market value, you may not call it an appraisal. BPOs (Broker Price Opinions) are very common due to the foreclosure mess, but of course those are never done as a favor, there's an established fee between the agent providing the BPO and the bank.

What kind of "favors" are you asked to do for which you might actually get paid? Time to rethink how we spend our time! Consulting might be the best way to approach these small jobs. Are you at a brokerage that currently does not permit your being paid as a consultant? Perhaps approaching your broker with a short list of things for which you'd like to be paid would be a simple way to ease into it. It's a difficult change for many companies - perhaps a small bridge is the way to start. This is how I'm going to approach it with my firm, which is newer and still estabilishing policies. Since BPOs are being done by a couple of our agents, it seems to me that charging for these other types of valuations is related, and should be an easy "yes".


1 Comment

You make a great point Mary. I think we get caught up in the big changes and forget that Rome wasn't built in a day. Approaching a broker regarding CMA's is a great place to start. How many of these and how many hours do we spend working for free?

IMNSHO, when we give away our services, a far worse thing happens than not getting paid. We erode our value.

Sounds like a great blog post for TCT Mary. If you write it, I'll put it in the next ACRE Alert.

This page contains a single entry by Mary Pope-Handy published on November 4, 2009 1:41 PM.

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