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Stories from the trenches: real estate is not for the faint hearted

I totally understand that real estate agents have a bad reputation historically all over the world, not just in Terrigal or North Avoca.  I’m not so sure I understand it but certainly there has been room for improvement over the years.

Hopefully the industry has pulled its collective socks up and real estate is now heavily legislated and all the shonks and scoundrels have changed professions (into local government perhaps?…!)  Hopefully now, every buyer and seller is well treated and every client is made to feel special. Especially by real estate agents in North Avoca.

But you know there is another side to the coin… How the Agent is treated?

My very first listing appointment in real estate I rocked up to the apartment building, ready to conquer the world and to appraise the property of an older gentleman who I had met at an open house.  It was a good quality apartment building – high end price bracket and just across the road from the beach.  I thought this was going to be the launch of my stellar real estate career.

Little clip-board in hand (well, yes, this was a few years ago now…) I rang the doorbell and went up to the fifth floor. The unit door opened and I was greeted by his excessively hairy gray chest peeking over the top of his shortie robe… ugh.   He lounged suggestively on the couch while I commented on the view.  For those following along and not gagging, I kept my eyes on his eyes, signed the paperwork and listed and sold my first property. Not in Terrigal but in Santa Monica, but I am sure this same vendor exists on the Central Coast.

You would think that would be my first and last experience of vendor in a state of dis-robe – but yet, no, sadly it has happened more than once.

When I arrived for an open house in Terrigal (nicely 6 minutes early admittedly) for my gorgeous but slightly eccentric 75 year old lady, she shouted through the closed door that she wasn’t quite ready.  She threw open the door, then toddled off completely nuddy leaving me at the front door watching her retreating rear.  Starkers, I tell you.  What is that old joke about “I don’t know what she is wearing but it needs ironing?”…  I called her from the driveway from then on.  And yes, sold that one too.

I’ve been abused by tenants, unhappy that THEIR home is being sold.  That’s tricky because it turns out the home OWNER has some say in this matter.  Tricky.  I know its not the tenants property but it is their home so the piggy in the middle agent has to tread a fine line.

I have had a North Avoca tenant refuse to let me in for scheduled open houses, and one who deliberately left dirty dishes and dirty clothes, including grundy undies, everywhere to put off buyers.  This backfired horribly by the way, because the investor who ultimately purchased the property wanted these slobs out of his new property.

One tenant with a very large, barky dog tell me to let myself in… “if I dared” (I didn’t dare) and another who just sat there watching really loud television with his two room-mates for the duration of every open house.

I have had prospective clients insist on meeting me on National Holidays – then just not show up when I have left family BBQs to get to the office in time.  Buyers furious they didn’t secure the property because they weren’t the highest bidder.  (Which offer do you think the vendor wanted to accept?)

Mostly I think my career is a matter of Do Unto Others –  treat others as you would like to be treated. Not that hard really. Especially in North Avoca and Terrigal.  We are all decent folk.

So a synopsis:  put your clothes on.  Pick your knickers up if you know strangers will be walking through your house.  Take your snarly dog out for a walk on North Avoca beach or Terrigal dog park.  If you arrange to meet me,  show up or reschedule.  Make your best offer if you don’t want to lose out.  And if you are renting and the person who owns the house wants to sell, be gracious and allow them to sell THEIR home.

Do Unto Others.  Simple.

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