17 October 2011

To Have and to Hold: A Real Estate Story


My husband and I bought our dream house in early 2010.  We worked with a wonderful real estate agent who more than earned her commission.

She started working with us two years before that and accompanied us to countless open houses and showings.  She proactively worked with us to understand what our goals and needs were.

She also helped us rent out our other home so we could make the move quickly. At the one year anniversary of our closing, she sent us a card with a gift certificate for a local restaurant that we love.

In the end, the energy she invested in us probably outstripped the commission she earned. Or did it?

I have referred several friends to her over the past two years.  I will continue to do that with great enthusiasm.  When we are ready to sell the house we are renting, she will be our agent.

What is the true value of a customer?

If you treat them like a transaction, and not a person, the value of a customer is finite. It is limited to the commission you earn with them that one time.

If you invest in them, build a relationship, and exceed their expectations, the value of your customer increases exponentially. You will earn their repeat business.  And their referrals. And their referrals’ referrals.

What are simple things you can do to increase the value of your customer relationships? Here are some suggestions:

  • Understand their personal needs.  Each and every client is different. They have different priorities and motivations. Take the time to listen.
  • Add value to the process from beginning to end. Be an expert on the community. Be aware of important factors like commuting time, school quality, health care services, and arts and entertainment activities.
  • Reach out to your clients after the transaction is done.  Remember milestones. Send a card, an email, or reach out with a phone call.
  • If you get a referral, handle with care. Your client referred business to you because they believe you did a great job for them, and will do the same for their friend or family member. That is both a big responsibility and a big vote of confidence.  Take the implications of both seriousl

Remember that each and every client interaction is an opportunity to grow your business.  It’s up to you if that growth is a single point on a line or an exponential curve.

9 thoughts on “To Have and to Hold: A Real Estate Story

  1. So true! My goal is make every client a raving fan. Do that and you'll never have to settle for working with the other side of the coin – the raving lunatic!

  2. This is very true Jennifer! Building relationships should be the focus of a real estate agent and not merely about earning commissions. It’s the simplest and most effective way to build a good reputation in the real estate industry.

  3. The information supplied by this post is so very true. When real estate agents treat clients with so much care and pay attention to their needs more than focusing on the commission that they would earn, it would be easier for them to establish good reputation and this would spread like a very contagious disease. This is what all home buyers are looking for.

  4. Hi Jennifer! The points you have established and raised in your blog are so true! This would be a good resource for most newbies in the real estate agent community. More than just the commissions that they would earn, real estate agent should focus more on building reputation first and sure enough everything will follow smoothly. Thanks! Cannon Beach homes for sale

  5. Hello there Jennifer! I agree with you….agents should make sure that they listen to the needs of their clients first before they pay attention to how much they would earn from the sale. Building a good relationship with clients is the key to growing bigger and better in this competitive real estate industry. Thanks much!

    Doral homes for sale

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