I am a member of a loosely knit group of Realtors across the country. We have our own website where we share ideas, complaints and commisseration with one another. No, we don’t have a secret decoder ring or one of those fancy hand shakes, but we do take the time to support one another.
Recently, an issue came up and a Realtor asked for advice on how to handle the situation. All the names have been changed and faces re-arranged but the facts are basically accurate. Jim was approached by another agents client. The person told Jim that she hated her current agent and wanted Jim to represent her. Jim would like to accomodate her, but he is also bound by our code of ethics.
Jim shared his story on our forum. My good friend Stephano replied that he would be well within his rights to suggest that he would be glad to speak with the woman after her agreement with her current agent ended. Others shared that since she had contacted Jim, he had every right to explain to the woman how she may extricate herself from her agreement. A few even suggested that Jim just sign an agreement because no broker will ever risk bad publicity by going after an agent. (This is probably true, most brokers like to play nice and overlook issues that may be perceived in a negative fashion).
I shared the following vignette. It probably says more about lessons learned in life but I thought I would post it on my blog. I do want to keep my growing readership happy.
Back in the day, I was a junior in high school and madly in love with Kathy K****. Now Kathy was drop dead gorgeous and sadly enough for me, going steady with Bruce B***.
One weekend, we were at one of those parties and Bruce passed out on the couch. Kathy grabbed me and pulled me into another room. She planted the most wonderful kiss on me and said she couldn’t wait to dump Bruce. She claimed undying love for me.
Well, Kathy was way more advanced in the ways of the world than I at the time. Soon, I was cutting class and sneaking into the room above the gym for afternoon tryst with sweet Kathy. That went on forever. It must have been at least two weeks. Kathy dumped Bruce and began sporting the $1.00 silver ring I purchased at the Ben Franklin around her neck.
We were going to be lovers for life.
JMAC had become Bruce.
Sad to say, Barry S**** soon became JMAC. It was a few short weeks later that my ring was returned and I was left with the devasting heartbreak.
I could not believe that it could happen to me. Heartbroken, I sat in my personal hiding place, a storage room under the basement steps in my home, listening to Gene Pitney croon “Only Love Can Break a Heart”. I figured that I could just die there and everything would be ok.
My father opened the door and asked “Dummy, (he always chose the most tender of nicknames) what are you doing under the stairs? Turn that damn radio off and get the hell out of there.”
“But Dad, I have had my heartbroken”
“Really, well the grass needs mowing. Get out there and get it done or your rear-end will be broken too.”
The look in his eye and the smell of alchol on his breath just washed ole Kathy and my heartbreak out of my mind.
It was first experience with a term that became quite significant during the Viet Nam incursion.
DON’T MEAN NOTHING
It also gave me the first lesson that if someone is willing to cheat on someone else to be with you, they will probably cheat on you to be with someone else. That sentence says more about self image than anything else.
I think that you deserve clients that will be loyal to you. I am sure there are exceptions, I just don’t care to deal with them. I try not to agree with Steve too often, but in this case, I almost do.
I wouldn’t want the client. I would be concerned that she/he would be crying the blues to another agent the first time I handled an issue in a fashion that was not satisfactory.
Hell, go mow the lawn.