By Dave Robison
The problem client:
That’s what an agent said to me over a year ago. “Dave, this client calls me a lot and is really high maintenance. Her listing price is unrealistic, we should just drop her listing.” This agent was selling 40 listings a year. He should know exactly what he is talking about right? Many sellers have pie-in-the-sky pricing on their listings and they may blame you that its not sold! Phone rings… “Mr Agent, why haven’t you sold my unrealistic high priced listing? I mean you haven’t even brought one buyer over to see it!” (Ummmm…probably because no one wants to see an overpriced listing, duh.)
Well, this seller had a hard time reaching their listing agent mainly because the agent felt like she was high maintenance and his time was better spent elsewhere. As a result, when her mother asked if she liked her agent, her response was, “Not really.”
There went $20,000 in referral commissions down the drain. The mom went and used another agent.
I took over:
Right about this time I heard through the grapevine that she wasn’t happy. The agent wasn’t happy either. So I took over. I sold her home and helped her buy another one. That client was worth $20,000 in commissions on those transactions. If she had been happy there would have been another $20k in commissions for a total of $40,000 in commissions made.
Where success comes from:
I’m convinced that whether or not you succeed in real estate isn’t due to the market, isn’t due to you getting good or bad leads, isn’t due to you having high maintenance clients…but due to your personal opinion, your focus, and mindset.
The first agent’s focus was, “My client is high maintenance.” As a result, whenever the phone rang he cringed. My focus was, “I’m going to sell her house and help her buy one and she is going to love my help!” As a result, whenever the phone rang I was excited to talk to her and brainstormed how we were going to make this whole thing happen. Once it did happen, she told my wife, “I never would have had this happen if it wasn’t for your husband.” The first agent lost $40,000 in commissions, not due to the bad market downturn, but due to his own mindset, his personal belief, and how he focused negative energy on that client.
Next time you have a client that you feel might be high maintenance or have an unrealistic expectation….focus on how you can make $40,000 from them not on how they are wasting your time. You will be right either way. It’s just up to you.
Dave Robison, known as “Utah Dave,” is a broker of Robison & Company Real Estate.