By Karen Monroe
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Oh, the stories we can tell as real estaters. Some of the stuff that happens to us you couldn't make up. Seriously. No two days are alike, just as no two clients are alike. That can be the good news, or bad. What we constantly need to do as real estate professionals is learn from every unique experience. The dynamic of people, personalities, places and prices varies with every interaction. Let's call it the four "P's."
People and personalities: we all know what a challenge that can be, even with the folks we actually like. Some will test our last nerve and every ounce of patience we can muster. But that's just the way it works. Real estate is all about getting along with our fellow colleagues, clients, attorneys and mortgage brokers to get the job done. Most importantly, our role is to match the first two "P's" – people and personalities – with the last two: places and prices. That's where the heavy lifting begins and we earn every dollar of our commission.
I've found that I enjoy working with most types of people. When there is a common bond, whether shared interests, kids, pets or San Francisco, the short term relationship of real estate can become a longer friendship that includes more transactions in the future. But again, people are not always predictable, and anything goes.
Places and prices: crazy. Finding that wow place in the right price point for the people and personalities can wear you down on certain days. I listen to my clients and try to maximize everyone's time. But when you feel you've located the place your client will love based on their checklist must-haves and they still don't like it, that's where the real "fun" begins. It's not like there is a lot of inventory lingering on the market to choose from. Here is where we have to educate our clients on the necessity of expanding their search to create opportunities. It usually means becoming open to new neighborhoods or spending more money to secure their perfect place.
If you watch reality TV shows about real estate, the most difficult situations make the best entertainment. But that stuff really does happen. Talk about stress. Honestly, my heart races when I watch “Million Dollar Listings” anywhere. The possibilities of conflict are endless.
During any real estate transaction, it's not over till it's over. The deal is complete only when there is a check in hand. Offers are pulled, deals fall through for reasons you can't even imagine, people change their mind, and on it goes.
I've had clients who seemed impossible to please, but eventually I did. And others who were so needy I wanted to scream. But mostly, at the end of the day, it is simply a matter of matching the four "Ps."
On the Run
I'm headed to Atlantic City. Not to gamble and carry on, but for an annual company-wide event. It's all about networking, seminars…oh, okay, and a bit of fun, too. Continuing education is a big priority in my company as well as a requirement by the state of New York to keep my real estate license active. There is a lot to keep up with in real estate - market conditions, mortgage rates, laws, preferred practices and loads more. These conferences are created to help us stay ahead of the curve and remain valuable, educated and trusted advisors to our clients. Like in life, you don't know what you don't know, and these conferences help uncover that. What I do know is that after Atlantic City, I'll know a lot more.
Karen Monroe practices real estate at Douglas Elliman Real Estate, 156 Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights. She lives in the neighborhood and represents buyers, sellers and renters in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Karen can be found walking her dogs and running the parks, paths, streets and bridges of Brooklyn and beyond. For feedback and all of your real estate needs, contact Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org.