Entry by Jeani Thomas Richie

My First Shot at NOT Selling!



I have been in real estate in one manner or another since I was a teenager.  I have always been told that real estate is a sales profession.  I am pretty good at selling and have had a successful career in real estate and marketing sales.  But I have gotten frustrated with the way real estate works...or doesn’t work.

I have gotten disenchanted with the “system”, the feast or famine, superstar or underdog, victor or victim system that is real estate.  I was in search of something more.  I fancy myself an outside the box thinker who is always questioning everything...Daddy taught me that.  I have never been one to settle for anything when someone says “Because that is the way it has always been done!”  

Before I go on, let me share this story...

A family had gathered for a holiday dinner and three generations of ladies are cooking up a storm in the kitchen.  The mother tells her daughter to take the large ham and cut both ends off of it and place it in the pan.  As she puts the ham in the oven the daughter asks the mother “Why do we always cut the ends off the ham before we cook it?”  The mother says “Because that’s the way we have always done it in our family.”  So the daughter turns to her Grandmother and says “Grandma, why did you always cut the ends of the ham before you cook it?”  To which the grandmother replies “Because it wouldn’t fit in the pan if I didn’t cut the ends off dear.”  The daughter pauses and thinks for a moment and asks “Why didn’t you just get a bigger pan??”

So back to real estate...everything about our industry is changing, so why are we not getting a bigger pan?  Why are we settling for “the way it has always been done?”  Recently I earned my ACRE (Accredited Consultant in Real Estate) designation and opened my eyes to a whole new way of looking at real estate.  I guess you could say I got a bigger pan.  I went on my first appointment where I wasn’t trying to SELL somebody something, imagine that!  What happened surprised me, in a good way.  
I sat down at the seller’s dining room table prepared to consult with them about my services.  The husband said “We were on your website reading about this consulting thing, please tell us about that.”  Be still my heart!!!  THEY asked me!!!

I explained the ways that I work and they explained their experience level in real estate and said, “We really only need you to do four things for us, what would that cost?”  I gave them a quote because I have a menu of services and service packages that I offer.  They said “We don’t understand why more agents don’t work this way!”  To which I replied, “Me either.”  What this conversation solidified for me was the fact that we are not consulting with our clients because we are too busy trying to sell them.  It really isn’t all about us...which demystifies how we got the reputation that it IS all about us!  As usual, we bring it on ourselves.  I have long said that “As agents, we are our own worst enemy, we shoot ourselves in the foot more often than we want to admit!”

I loved the way “consulting with” instead of “selling to” a potential client felt.  For the first time in my career I felt like I was actually meeting their needs instead of fulfilling my own and the result...I will get paid what I am worth for the work I actually did!  NICE!!!!!!


Well Done !!

Thank you for posting this here.  I, too, have been involved with real estate in one way or another for several years, never as an agent though; on  the buying and selling end a few times, as property manager for a "flipper" and my father has bought and sold several homes for investments.  I have heard, over and over again, how real estate agents don't earn their money, and I have also heard how, as the cost of homes go up, agents should reduce their commissions.  This from people in my circle of acquaintances.  So to find myself following the path towards certification and registration, I was keenly appreciative of learning the ACRE model - I had considered a fee for service model even before I heard of ACRE but wasn't even sure if it could be done. 

I have been to your website and see how prominently ACRE has been portrayed and plan on doing the same when I am registered.

Thank you for posting your experiences, and I look forward to reading more.

Hi Jeani- wow, you sound like the female version of me! Great story and experience- I feel energized!

Tony Wick

Jeani, you are a talented writer! Keep posting! :)

Jeani, I will continue to stalk you and comment and reblog whenever possible on here are AR.  Thanks,

This page contains a single entry by Jeani Thomas Richie published on April 6, 2011 3:25 PM.

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