October 2017

Click Here if You are Not a Robot

(Raising The Bar on Our Relatability )

Recently I logged onto an on line shopping website and before checking out, I was directed to a box that asked me to verify that I was not a robot. This got me thinking about the strange competition we real-life realtors are now encountering since Zillow literally moved into our neighborhoods.
There’s no doubt that our industry has become more and more automated. For example, at a click-of-a-button Zipform fills-in by default, many of our negotiated / assumed time tables without us giving it much of a thought. Then add to the equation people’s desire for a tech-easy life, not to mention the ever-present debate that realtors get paid too much “for nothing”, it’s almost as though real-life realtors are becoming something of the past.
However, I am not the least bit worried about it.

Don’t get me wrong. There’s no doubt that products like Zipform and similar programs have made our life much easier as professionals. And, there’s no question that Zillow does step on our earning potential toes. But in my 30 years in Real Estate, I’ve learned that at the end of the day, not every decision by a buyer or seller is made strictly on dollars and cents, or objective data alone. The truth of the matter is that the purchase of a home is still grounded in emotion. And last I checked, Siri cannot find that information in her database.

Meaning, she cannot convey why there is value in location. Or understand the history of a home. Or convey the subjective reason why a purchase might be a good fit, even if the comps don’t substantiate it. Siri cannot tell your client which local team’s coaches are the best. Or what growing old might feel like in the home of their dreams. Or where the Christmas tree will fit perfectly in the house.

In the day of robot competition, it is important to remember that not a single computer or software can create emotion or comprehend the needs of your clients.

But you, as a non-robot realtor, can. You can empathize with the needs of your client. You can find the creative ways to close the deal. You can seek and find the house with the exact nuances your special clients need.

But you (in the day of complacency), must make the commitment to click the box and not act like a human robot. Instead, put your real-life human personality on and continue to perform like the passionate realtor you are, selling your clients the house of their dreams. Flaws and all, real-life realtors are still the best deal in town.

The Six Things to Remain a Real-Life Realtor, Not a Robot:

COMPENSATION – Though commission makes our human heart pound, it is important that you take that pulse out of the equation. Your sole focus is what’s best for your client, and how can you accomplish that task. You must trust that the compensation will take care of itself, as long as you do your job.

BE THOUROUGH – In the day and age of click and submit, your real-life element is to approach each aspect of the deal with thoroughness. Meaning don’t rely on “autofill”, but instead take the time to insert every date, data and detail of the offer yourself, to ensure that it accurately reflects every aspect of your clients intent, and offers all the protection your client deserves.

NO AMBIGUITY – As all programs have a back button for review, we real-life realtors must not be embarrassed of redundancies. It is better to confirm a contingency removal, or an inclusion of a personal property, or an inspection aspect more than once, rather than not at all.

VALUATION – The number one value-for-money that we agents have over computers is that we can look, evaluate and feel the needs of our clients and their properties. Therefore, look for the intangible aspects of the property and merge that with your client’s perception of value.

HONESTY – A computer can perhaps list a fact. But a real-life realtor is able to provide an honest opinion. When it comes to deficiencies of a potential listing, don’t be shy. An accurate list price can make all the difference between a sale versus an expired listing, and in the trust between you and your client.

RELATIONSHIP – At the end of the day, people want to do business with people. Nothing replaces a strong hand shake and an eye-to-eye dialogue. The human element, or the real-life Realtor will never go out of fashion. No matter how quickly technology advances.
In a world that is rapidly embracing artificial intelligence, never underestimate the value of a soul connection. After all, even Alexa is limited by programming.

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