Sacramento Real Estate Agents Who Resist Change

Female Estate Discussing Property Details With ClientMost people dislike change or the unfamiliar, especially certain Sacramento real estate agents, I’m guessing. A while back an agent got his knickers into a twist because I called him to find out why he left my lockbox open. It was pretty easy to figure out who did it because the SUPRA online system stores contact information, including time and date stamp; it tells me when any of my 70-some lockboxes are accessed.

At first, the agent denied the accusation. When pressed and presented with evidence, he became agitated and admitted he probably did leave it open but he had a good reason. (There is never a good reason to leave a lockbox open unauthorized.) His reason was he was confused. He had never showed a home which had 2 lockboxes, one for Supra to open to retrieve the code and the second for contractors, in which the key was stored. So, it was all the listing agent’s fault and not his. Ya gotta love the logic. Sometimes I use this system because it’s convenient for contractors: those people who do home staging, or maybe employees from pest companies, roof inspectors, home inspectors, handyman, what have you, who need access to the home.

It is also required by our MLS. Our MLS forces agents to use SUPRA lockboxes if an agent wants to advertise a listing as having a lockbox. Pretty clever, that MLS business alliance. In other words, a Sacramento real estate agent is not allowed to put on a contractor’s box and state the home is vacant with a lockbox and provide the code. It’s governed and stipulated that way at most associations. Otherwise, agents would buy contractor’s lockboxes because they cost roughly one-third the price of SUPRA lockboxes. They’ve got almost ten grand of my money — $10,000 that could have been invested in an aging barrel of Maker’s Mark, but no, I have lockboxes.

Although I like the SUPRA lockboxes because it allows me to follow up on listings and obtain buyer feedback after an agent shows a home I have listed. It provides greater security for my sellers because only agents can access those boxes. However, if contractors need to access the home, for example, I will also attach a contractor’s box to the property. It allows me to better devote my time to marketing the home, following up on showings and tracking open houses than standing on the front steps waiting for some guy to show up so I can open the door. Yet, two lockboxes are still very confusing for some buyer’s agents.

The biggest problem I see with buyer’s agents is not the fact that they can get confused over lockbox instructions, it’s that they don’t often read the entire MLS listing before taking action. They are so excited that their buyer wants to write an offer, they don’t always take the time to peruse confidential agent remarks or note the type of financing that is offered. They waste a lot of time writing offers that have little chance of acceptance because of this little quirk.

I wish I could digitally manipulate my listings. I would put big red arrows and circles that draw attention to specific information for agents, maybe include a few starbursts.

This morning I received an offer that was sent to the wrong agent last night. Three specific lines in the agent remarks state where and how to send the offer, yet they were overlooked.  On top of this, the email from the agent said her buyer had seen the property and was very interested in owning it. Except the property is located in a gated community and there are no showings allowed. It’s enough to make one wonder if the buyer’s agent mixed up the address of the property and perhaps wrote the offer for the wrong home.

On top of this, it was an FHA offer, and the property is not listed with FHA terms and the seller cannot accept an FHA offer because an FHA offer is not allowed on that particular home. That was a lot of work for the agent to go through to write an offer, provide supporting documentation on behalf of the buyer, get the purchase offer signed and then deliver it to the wrong agent when there is no way the offer can even be countered.

All of which could have been prevented if the agent had just given that MLS listings one more glance before writing the offer. Are there attachments to the listings? Long gone are the days when all homes are listed with identical terms. Almost every listing is as unique as the sellers are unique.

My policy as a real estate agent is not to fight change, I embrace it.

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