By Cory Brewer
Here is a quick story to inspire my fellow REALTORS® to keep after it (prospecting), even when it feels like a lost cause:
This past winter I volunteered to coach a youth league basketball team at my local Boys & Girls Club. My interest in volunteering was two-fold: 1.) I love basketball and have always wanted to coach, but I don’t have kids yet. I was ready/able to do it this year and there was a coaching spot open. 2.) What better way to forge relationships with potential clients in the community?
The experience was very fulfilling on a personal level for me, and at the end of the season most of the parents told me they will request me as their coach next season. That was the best compliment I could have received. It came as “icing on the cake” when after the season one of those parents told me he’d be checking in with me soon about some real estate related matters. In the back of my mind I was thinking, “Wow, it worked!”
Long story short, he had already been out looking around at open houses on his own and figured it was time to “get serious” so he brought up the subject with me. After following up a couple of times, I didn’t really hear back from him until a few weeks later when he informed me that he’d found a place that he liked during an open house and made an offer with the listing agent.
Ouch! Needless to say, I was very discouraged. But on the other hand, our communication to that point regarding real estate had been pretty casual. In retrospect, it was probably my own fault for not bringing up a buyer agency agreement.
This is the part where I could have given up…but I took a chance and decided it’s better to ABC: Always Be Communicating.
I kept an eye on the MLS and when he closed on the purchase, I sent him a card congratulating his family on their lovely new home. He got back to me to let me know that he still owns his previous home, and would like me to list it for him when he is ready to put it on the market. A couple weeks went by, and he emailed me a referral to a co-worker of his who is also looking for a house but doesn’t have an agent. I am now representing this new prospect in his search for a new home.
It took a bump in the road to get there, but the persistence paid off. I firmly believe that by keeping the lines of communication open, instead of giving up, I earned myself a future listing and a new buyer client.
Keep after it!
Cory Brewer is a REALTOR® in the Seattle area and branch managing broker at RE/MAX Preference on Mercer Island. Connect with Cory at www.CoryBrewer.com.