How to Choose a Realtor & Mixing Business with Friendships
Someone posed the question to me recently, “Should you mix business with friendship?” My answer was a resounding, “Yes!” Working with friends is really a great thing to do in real estate. When it comes to buying and selling homes, the two most important things between agent and client are good communication and trust, two things which most people already have established with their friends. Think about it – who will work harder, care more about you and what happens to you, and will try to give you the best deal possible that a friend? Another benefit to working with a friend is that you will be spending alot of time with your realtor, so it is always more fun if you are friends too! Many times people do not use their realtor/friend because they are worried about hurting their friendship – well, they actually may hurt the friendship more by not using that realtor/friend. It can be very hurtful to find out that a friend used a stranger instead of you without even discussing their concerns.
When NOT to use a friend in Real Estate (or to just think twice about it):
- When that friend isn’t well trained
- When that friend lacks brain power (translation: dumb or ditzy)
- If that friend has a full time job doing something else and just “dabbles” in real estate
- When that friend doesn’t have a strong company and network behind them
When you should use your friend in real estate:
- When you trust this person
- If you think this person is smart and well-trained
- If you think this person is a hard worker and shows initiative
- If you enjoy being around this person
- If you think they will easily understand your style and what type of home you will want
If you are still worried, call their broker (boss) and ask questions about your friend’s training and client history. Ask for testimonials and references. Ask if they have worked with friends in the past and call them to talk about how it went. Personally, I care about all of my clients and I make it my policy to treat all of my clients the same, whether they are friend or stranger. I follow the golden rule by treating people just as I would want to be treated.
p.s. The photo above is of me and two friends who were also clients last year when they purchased their first home using me as their agent. We all lived happily ever after – especially when we celebrated the Jayhawk Men’s NCAA Basketball championship this Spring in Lawrence together as shown in the photo.