Some of us are Charlie Buell....

By
Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Residential

We often tell consumers, when asked, that the best way to find a Realtor, is to ask your friends, family members or someone you trust, for their references of Realtors that they've worked with and liked.

In today's market, many of the young people are going to the internet. Sites like Angie's List, Yelp, Zillow and even our own revered Active Rain offer insights, and testimonials for consumers to review, but honestly all of those site, the reviews are from strangers that you don't know... so what is their opinion worth to you.  You don't know if they're high-maintenance or low-maintenance... you don't know if their likes are your likes, or if their needs are your needs.

When soliciting a recommendation from friends and family, at least you know who you're talking to... you know what their opinion is worth to you.  You know that aunt Esther is really, really picky... so if that Realtor could please her, then she must be good. Searching the internet is a good start, but don't stop there.

And when you do get a recommendation from a relative, don't just take their word for it.  Interview the agent, and see if they're a good fit for you.  Just because cousin Wilbur liked me, doesn't meant that you and I will be a good match.

And the problem with Realtors (or inspectors, or stock brokers, or plastic surgeons for that matter)... is that you won't know if you have a bad one, until it's probably too late.

Do your research, ask your friends or family... neighbors who just bought or sold... a good real estate agent can mean all the difference between a good transaction, or the attempted home sale from H-E-double-hockey-sticks.

And just like home inspectors, we're not all created equal.  Some of us are Charlie Buell, and some are strivers, and some are phoneys (those who just "phone" it in).  Don't hire the phoneys.

- 11

Posted by

 ALAN MAY, Realtor®
Specializing in Evanston Real Estate and North Shore Real Estate

Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate, 2929 Central Street, Evanston, IL 60201
847.425.3779      Cell: 847.924.3313      Email: Almay@aol.com

Evanston Real Estate & North Shore Real Estate
Licensed in Illinois

   

Do not copy the content of this blog, without first contacting the author for permission. 
Reblogging IS allowed. All other use is strictly prohibited without express permission from me.

close

This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Topic:
Real Estate Best Practices
Groups:
"Whacked"!!!
Midwest Rainers
Diary of a Realtor
Dedicated Bloggers
The Lounge at Active Rain
Tags:
its not just for dinner anymore
research

Anonymous
Post a Comment
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the woman to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the graph to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Show All Comments
Ambassador
987,136
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate

Liz & Bill - but interestingly, I'm sure as you're aware, just 'cause you've been able to sell a bunch o'stuff, doesn't automatically translate into a good fit with each and every consumer.

July 31, 2012 07:14 AM #2
Ambassador
627,242
Doug Rogers
Bayou Properties Realty - Pineville, LA
Your Pineville Louisiana Agent

Agents are like the stars in the sky. We all look the same from a distance, but we are light years apart (and some have not been bright for millions of years).

July 31, 2012 07:16 AM #3
Ambassador
987,136
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate

Doug - ooh, I like it, I like it!

July 31, 2012 07:17 AM #4
Rainmaker
224,559
Lynda White
Bluegrass Homes & Farms Realty, Agent Know How - Louisville, KY
Admin. Mgr., Keller Williams Realty

I agree that there are agents out there who get people to leave reviews to bring them up in search engine rankings and so on. And I agree that someone should NOT choose a real estate agent based solely on reviews. 

I'll have to say though, that as far as hotels go (a different service completely), reviews are usually spot on!  Maybe because there are so many more of them to look at. The thousands of hotels that have reviews saying they have bedbugs is frightening! It is nice that the internet has sites like this for consumers. 

July 31, 2012 07:43 AM #5
Rainer
276,790
Kathryn Maguire
GreatNorfolkHomes.com (757) 560-0881 - Chesapeake, VA
Serving Chesapeake, Norfolk, VA Beach

There are so few agents in my area that actively solicit reviews, gaming the system is fairly easy.  I hate to say it but it is true. You do need to do your own research and take each input source as just another data point.

July 31, 2012 07:54 AM #6
Rainmaker
447,863
Malcolm Johnston
Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario - Trenton, ON
Trenton Real Estate

I often get asked to review people on Stik.com, but I have never worked with them and only casually somewhat know then from their online presence. My review would be worthless.

July 31, 2012 08:03 AM #7
Rainmaker
204,504
Peggy Wester
Think Young Team--Realty Executives Integrity - Grafton, WI
Real Estate Agent Ozaukee & Washington County Real

What a great post (as usual). I agree that many of those online reviews are meaningless; like Malcolm I've been asked to recommend someone I don't even know. What?!? Just because we belong to the same social networking group, I should recommend you? Uhhhh....no. That just doesn't make any sense.

July 31, 2012 08:11 AM #8
Rainer
277,179
Steven Cook
No Longer Processing Mortgages. - Tacoma, WA
- Pierce, King, Kitsap, Thurston, Mason Counties

Alan -- A great reminder that everything one finds on the internet may not be what it seems (as some travelers are reporting about sites that rate various vacation venues).  One must be a bit more proactive, and dig a little bit, interview a couple agents, loan officers, inspectors -- to get a right fit.

 

July 31, 2012 10:22 AM #9
Rainmaker
895,336
Donna Foerster
Cherry Creek Properties, LLC - Parker, CO
Metro Denver Real Estate Agent

Alan~ The interview is so important.  Having a comfortable relationship between the consumer and the agent makes for a smooth transaction and isn't that what we ALL want?

July 31, 2012 10:32 AM #10
Ambassador
987,136
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate

Lynda - I didn't even touch on the "fake" testimonials..  I think the reason that hotels and restaurant reviews on places like "yelp" work, it because there are alot of them... and that's much more difficult to tilt your way.

Kathyrn - that is why the interview is so important... and still, you may not know if you have good one, until your in up to your shoulders.

Malcolm - never heard of Stick.com... I'll have to run over and check it out.

Peggy - There's some online company, that for $5.00 will write you a fake review.

Steven - one must be proactive.

Donna - a good relationship is one thing... but that still doesn't guarantee competence.

July 31, 2012 10:56 AM #11
Ambassador
1,902,931
Chris Ann Cleland
Long & Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Northern VA

Maybe not completely unrelated, but I was watching An Idiot Abroad and the main character was talking about what superhero he would be if he could be anyone.  He chose bull**** man.  Someone with the ability to bust into situations where someone is pouring it on to an unsuspecting party and cry bull****.  Might be the best superhero ever if you ask me.  

July 31, 2012 12:19 PM #12
Ambassador
987,136
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate

Chris Ann - that might be the best superhero ever invented.

July 31, 2012 12:39 PM #13
Rainer
180,033
Tatyana Makarov
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - South Windsor, CT
Your Greater Hartford Area Realtor

Great post, Alan.

My slogan for life is: "Do your best and reputation will pursue you."

July 31, 2012 01:10 PM #14
Ambassador
1,079,924
Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Alan, well you know that I am going to like this post :)  PS---where do I send the check? :)

Oh I forgot to add---you are most likely Charlie Buell too.

July 31, 2012 01:42 PM #15
Ambassador
1,326,457
Richard Iarossi
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Crofton, MD
Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate
Alan,

One of the problems that I see is that people are so reluctant to get rid of a service provider who isn't meeting their needs. When this happens to me, I just say...next.

Rich
July 31, 2012 02:17 PM #16
Ambassador
773,060
Hannah Williams
Re/Max Eastern inc. - Philadelphia, PA
Expertise in NE Philadelphia & Bucks County

Funny you should mention this .Went on a listing over a year ago ;told them what they didn't want to hear ;the truth. Two Agents later .They called me back and I don't even know if I can sell it for what I told them I could a year ago .. But I can sell it

July 31, 2012 02:42 PM #17
Ambassador
987,136
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate

Tatyana - not sure I like the idea of "anything" pursuing me... but hey, what the heck.

Charles - well, in fairness... you ARE Charlie Buell.

Richard - a real estate techincal term... "next".

Hannah - I have no doubt that you can.

July 31, 2012 04:04 PM #18
Rainmaker
365,047
Donald Hester
NCW Home Inspections, LLC - Wenatchee, WA
NCW Home Inspections, LLC

Alan, I am going to have to get the big pin out to pop Mr. "B's" big head now ; ) Do you know how hard you just made it for us to talk to him?

Just kidding... good stuff.

 

I sure hope I get past the striver some day ; )

July 31, 2012 10:31 PM #19
Rainmaker
632,150
James Quarello
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC - Wallingford, CT
Connecticut Home Inspector

I think the online reviews are often used by complainers. I received a review by someone who would not identify them self, whining about how the extra services cost, well extra. What they didn't bitch, um say was there was a problem with the inspection, just the price. So I do agree with you, ask people you know for referrals. 

August 01, 2012 05:59 AM #20
Ambassador
987,136
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate

Donald - I know, he had trouble fitting his gigantic melon through the doorways before...

James - yep.... if people are happy, they might tell a friend or two... if they're unhappy, they'll broadcast to the world.

August 01, 2012 06:35 AM #21
Anonymous
Post a Comment
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the scissors to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Show All Comments
Ambassador
987,136

Alan May

Evanston & Northshore of Chicago real estate
Ask me a question
*
*
*
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the balloons to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Additional Information