Fab Real Estate Blog: Agents Should Play Nice

Agents Should Play Nice

Is your real estate agent rude? 
Does your real estate agent play well with others?

These are important issues to determine when hiring an agent to represent you in the purchase or sale of a home.  They can also be difficult questions to answer.

The first time you meet an agent, they should be on their best behavior.  You should have an opportunity to both talk to them on the phone and meet them in person. 
Are they polite?
Are they friendly?
Do you like them?

Yes, liking your agent is important.  You'll be dealing with them for a while.  If you don't like your agent, then the already stressful situation of buying and selling real estate will be that much more difficult.  And, if they're not nice and friendly to you, chances are they will be even worse when dealing with cooperating agents who may just have the perfect buyer for your home.

Oftentimes, you'll need to go with your gut instinct to decide if this is the right agent for you and your home.

Here is what happened to me today:
I'll be showing homes later this afternoon.  I scheduled all the viewings yesterday - a full 24 hours in advance, which is something we don't usually have the luxury of doing.  One of the homes I would like to show is "By appointment only."

Now, I could write a whole separate post on why showing your home "By appointment only" is not wise.  Why make your home difficult for buyers to view?  It is definitely not in your best interest, if your goal is to actually sell the home.

Anyway, this listing agent finally returned my call to schedule this appointment - at 6:30 this morning.  Gee, thanks for waking up my whole family...her call went to my voice mail.

I asked for an appointment between 2:30 - 3:30 this afternoon.  Her message was "if you want to show it it must be between 1:00-3:00 because I think someone will be there holding an open house."

You think your listing will be open today?  Perhaps you should be sure.  I know most sellers would appreciate knowing whether or not their home would be open...

At 8:15 this morning she left me another message while I was getting my kids out of bed:  "Are you showing the home or not?"  

Oh, wow.  Now, you know I have no desire to show this home.  But, my buyers would like to see it, so I will try to arrange it.

I called this listing agent back a little before 9am.  I kept my cool.  I didn't tell her she woke up my family at 6:30 in the morning.  Guess what?  She was still rude to me!  And, she kept calling me "Dan" even though I corrected her each time.  That seemed to annoy her, too.  Apparently, it is an inconvenience to her to have her listing be shown.  Maybe that's why it has been sitting on the market unsold for 310 days.

Now, for the homeowners, here is the clincher:  If my buyers decide to consider purchasing this home, will I tell them about my previous dealings with this listing agent?  Absolutely.

My clients deserve to know that we will be up against a rude agent on the other side of the deal.  My clients will be made aware that if it was this difficult to simply view the home, it will probably be just as difficult to negotiate the offer, schedule inspections, deal with repairs, schedule the closing, etc.

It will then be my buyers' decision as to whether or not to proceed.  There are many homes for them to choose from in their price range.  If this is their dream home, then we will move forward and get the deal done.  If they have others they are also considering, then this may be the reason another home gets purchased over this one.

Is that fair to the sellers?  Probably not.  But, they are the ones who chose this listing agent.  And that's a shame.

Make sure your agent plays well with others!

Don Fabrizio-Garcia, REALTOR
Connecticut Real Estate & Appraisals
Keller Williams CT Realty
Connecticut Real Estate and Homes for Sale


Comment balloon 8 commentsDon Fabrizio-Garcia • April 06 2008 09:44AM


I AGREE COMPLETELY.  When an agent is a barrier to showing a home, the buyers need to know it.  Folks don't change their personality from listing to sale.  They are what they are.  If they don't want you to show it, you know they don't want you to sell it. 

In about 55 days when the listing expires, they agent will, no doubt, hold the sellers responsible. 

With the inventory we have in our resale market, if the listing agent makes showing difficult, we just to to the next house on the list. 

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) almost 11 years ago
I see your point. We have to DEAL with these type of agents on a daily basis. But I think our job is also to assist our buyers with whatever house they most want so I don't see how telling them about how rude the agent is will help them out. It is best to try to make everyting appear 'seamless' to your buyer & YOU just deal with this agent. Buying or selling a home is stressful enough & pulling your customer into the mix of dealings with the other agent may not be wise. Try killing her with kindness, that is usually fun & quite often effective :) Good luck!
Posted by Susan Milner, Cape Coral Real Estate Broker, FloridaFutureAgents (Florida Future Realty, Inc.) almost 11 years ago

Go Dan!

I run into that all the time down here in Naples --- The agents are forgetting that we are in the "service" business, no matter what level of home you are selling. I have a feeling that when you speak with them they would say how professional and sophisticated they are compared to others in the industry. Again... Ignorance is bliss.

If your buyers were interested in making an offer, I would try every angle to meet the owners and try to get them at the table with the agent while making the offer and what the expectations are. No time for formalities, you already know what you are dealing with --- do what you have to do gracefully, but with assertion.

 Good Luck!  

Posted by Patricia Murray (Premiere Plus Realty Co.) almost 11 years ago

Lenn - I knew you would agree.  There is no reason for rudeness, and making the home difficult to show just hinders a possible sale.  I will be showing this home today, if we get there before the "possible" open house ends.  Otherwise, we'll see plenty of other homes today.

Susan - I disagree. If my buyers are considering a home where we already know it will be a difficult transaction, then they absolutely need to be forewarned.  I will not hinder the deal, but I will give them warning as to what to expect.  These buyers are my clients, and they deserve my respect and the knowledge of what we will be dealing with.  Then, we will deal with it together.  Why would I allow my clients to wander into a difficult transaction without knowing what they may be getting into?  Doing so would be a disservice to my clients.

Posted by Don Fabrizio-Garcia, Owner/Broker/Trainer - Fab Real Estate (Fab Real Estate) almost 11 years ago

Patricia - I was wondering who would be the first to call me "Dan."  You win!

You are right that if there is an offer on this home, I will have to work to get the offer presented properly.  In this market, I'm thrilled when an agent wants to show one of my listings.  It's a shame this agent has a problem with her listing being shown...


(I couldn't resist) 

Posted by Don Fabrizio-Garcia, Owner/Broker/Trainer - Fab Real Estate (Fab Real Estate) almost 11 years ago
Don. I totally agree. You did the right thing. I don't know why other agents are that way. I always ask others "Do you treat the other people in your life the same way. I treat others like I would treat my own Mother." That makes them think. Thanks for the post, Royal..
Posted by Royal Goodman, "We Treat You Like a King" (Royalty Home Solutions) almost 11 years ago
There is no excuse for rudeness (unless its in the best interest of your client) but  to show a home without making an appointment at least a day in advance might also be considered rude.
Posted by Ron Parise (LocateHomes.com) almost 11 years ago

Royal - Good point - let's treat others how we would treat our mothers.  Or, how we would like to be treated.

Ron - I don't know how rudeness could be in the best interest of your client, unless your client doesn't want their home to sell...  Appointments a day in advance are not the norm here.  Usually you call and then go.  Typically this gives an hour or two notice.  There are of course exceptions, such as a tenant who demands 24 hour notice.  But, that is rare, and such a home may not be shown.  Remember, real estate is local.

Posted by Don Fabrizio-Garcia, Owner/Broker/Trainer - Fab Real Estate (Fab Real Estate) almost 11 years ago