Haters Gonna Hate No More: Changing the Perception of "Realtor"

“I am a Realtor.”

Y’all, you should be proud of these words. Proud to claim your profession. Especially if you’ve put in the long hours and diligent work to be the best Realtor you can be! Of course, your identity is far greater than your profession alone (we hope!). But to outsiders, your profession is one of the first (and few) identifiers off of which to judge. For that...I am sorry.

Wait, what! Why?

Realtors don’t usually have the best “rep.” In fact, a survey on the Perceptions of Real Estate Agents by CoreLogic in Australia claims that only 9% of people rank real estate agents as “high” or “very high” in ethics and honesty. You may be thinking, “Well, yeah, there are some slimy agents out there, but I’m not one of them.” We know. At Village Realty, we want to change this perception. But how can we expect to change the mindset of a multitude without understanding the claims in which their mindset is rooted?

Exactly. I present to you, “6 Things People Hate About Realtors.” My hope is that through reading each critique, you wouldn’t be discouraged, but rather, fueled to prove the haters wrong. Here’s a list of Accusations accompanied by plans of friendly Attack (to get you started). Don’t let a few bad apples tear down what YOU’ve built. Realtors can be exceptional, service-oriented people and professionals. Reclaim your profession with pride. 

 

6 Things People Hate About Realtors

#1

Accusation: Being a Realtor is a backup career plan.

“Many are misfits. People who don't fit into any other kind of profession. People who buck tradition and are rebels. People who mistrust authority.”

Attack: Communicate Motivation & Qualification

Communicate why you became a real estate agent, why you still are a real estate agent, and why you are qualified to be their real estate agent. Honest and clear communication is key. Don’t be defensive, but do be conspicuous. Although it is easy to “toot your own horn” when discussing this topic, be humble without being too modest. Your attitude and posture when communicating your motivation and qualifications are essential. Don’t over-exaggerate or lie, but also, don’t cut yourself short.

#2

Accusation: Realtors are often unprofessional.

“A fair assessment is about 75% of the agents, or 3 out of every 4 agents, don't have enough experience and will probably never gain enough experience to develop themselves into the professionals they should become.”

Attack: Conduct Yourself Professionally, Always. Focus on Growth.

If this is your side gig 1) it probably shouldn’t be and 2) don’t act like it is. Clients want to know that you are 100% invested in your career because your investment will translate into how well and how hard you will work to sell and/or find them a home. Despite your experience level, take advantage of opportunities for professional growth. Not only will you better yourself, but you’ll be better equipped to serve your clients. You’ll feel more professional, act more professional, and eventually, become a professional. All experiences matter, communicate how past experiences (large or little) mattered to you.

#3

Accusation: Realtors never have enough experience.

“Real estate is a business in which the newly minted real estate agent is placed on the same level as an agent with 20 years or more of experience. Granted, there are some agents for whom each year is the same, so their experience level adds up to one year times 20, for example...There is value in experience.”

Attack: Adopt a Learning Mindset

Communicate how you’ve made the most of your time as a real estate agent, highlighting certain experiences that have been tremendous to your professional growth. Also, younger agents, don’t be afraid to use “youth” to your advantage. Explain how your recent entry into the field is advantageous. Finally, keep in mind that every experience can be a learning, or career development, opportunity. Use the past to inform the present, but don’t be limited by “what was.” Challenges, failures, and best of all, successes keep life interesting. Embrace them. Learn from them. Use them to your professional advantage.

#4

Accusation: Being a Realtor is easy.

“To sell a home, some people think it means just stick a sign in the yard and post photographs online. Those two actions might bring a buyer but they don't necessarily sell a home. A lot can happen between signing the contract and closing.”

Attack: Explain What You Can Do For Them

Always make sure to outline and explain EVERYTHING you will do for your clients as their agent, and then, actually do it. Well. If you choose to go above and beyond, first ask clients what you can do to best SERVE them, specifically. Whether they bring up a task within your area of expertise that you overlooked (or forgot to mention), or reiterate a task you already mentioned, you’ll know what it takes to delight that particular client. No client is the same. Do for your clients what they couldn’t do themselves.

#5

Accusation: Realtors get paid too much for what they do.

“...it's the money that can originate from one transaction that sometimes sends outsiders into a tailspin. They think it's too much.”

Attack: Explain Commission & Value

Most people don’t know how commissions are split. Explain to sellers how the 6% (generally) is going to be split. People like to know where or to whom their money is going. I also encourage you to make a list entitled “Why 6%?” Have this list outline--in detail--how you provide value of 6% or greater to clients’ home buying or selling experience. 

#6

Accusation: Realtors don’t care about their clients, they just want their money.

Attack: Make Service Your #1 Priority

Show clients you care about them by connecting with them on a personal level.  Be prepared to offer advice often and perform kind and personalized gestures to relieve the stress of home buying and selling. Be empathetic, striving to ease the process to the best of your ability. After the real estate transaction is complete, don’t lose contact with clients. Stay in touch to maintain a positive reputation and an amiable relationship.

SURVEY

I encourage you to read this survey. It provides extensive insights on how to better serve your clients based on real-life feedback.

Takeaways:

Professionalism

Reliable, Honest, and Transparent Communication

Market Knowledge

Negotiation Skills

Client Loyalty

Friendly, Personable, and Thoughtful

Stay In Touch

Now say it again with gusto and a smile. “I AM a Realtor!”

Good. Much better.