A Quick Note for Real Estate Agents


Hi fellow servants. I just wanted to send a quick note about technology. I get all KINDS of responses to it, and the only ones that bother me are the staunchly resistant ones. I’m lucky. I’m over 60, but I ‘grew up’ when technology was getting wings, and I have something of an aptitude for it. So I’ve been a fan from the start, and I’m a nerd, which makes me crave the newest cool stuff. I think some of it is much ado about nothing, and I can usually tell when a program or gadget is going to be a one and done. And I can usually tell when someone took an existing popular program or app and tweaked it to make it seem new and ‘cool’. So I don’t have to have every SINGLE app that comes along, and I don’t need to post pictures of my food. So there you go.

But for the OTHER things, the ones that make our lives SO much easier and better, those…I love. And I put in the effort to learn how to use them so that I have at least a fairly proficient use of them. That’s one secret: Time. The other secret is teamwork. I GUARANTEE that your fellow agents will help you when you get stuck. At my office, if anyone needs help with ANYTHING, there are many hands reaching out to offer assistance. If you don’t have that…well, come to my office. You’ll be amazed.

For real estate, it is ESSENTIAL that you stay IN the mainstream of technological advances. None of them are rocket science, and I keep telling people: “You can’t break the earth if you make a mistake”. Because…you can always fix mistakes, either by re-doing the effort, or by filling out, you guessed it, a FORM. But I digress. Keep trying. Take a deep breath and remember that you are a human with a high functioning control mechanism (brain), and you can do this. And besides, I really hate it when I get a PICTURE of a document in dark gray…impossible to read. Come on.

YA GOTTA LEARN THE PROGRAMS, PEOPLE. Look, we are in this together, and while we are often on opposite sides of the table, we are in the same business. We can either go through it in abject pain and suffering, or we can all be paddling the tech boat in the same direction. I know time is precious in our world, but I also know that every one of us has time to sit down and learn one or two things a week, or a day…however you want to do it…to learn that new database or website you have to use. Again, none of this is rocket science. You can do it.

If you are going to use an electronic lockbox, for example, make SURE your smart phone has a high level of charge, because it has to talk to the lockbox, and if you are under 30% charge? Forget it. You’re going to have problems. And if you are in a low signal area, first of all there should not be an electronic box on that property because it won’t work right (the listing agent should have known that and acted accordingly). And listen, if the majority of the world is using electronic lock boxes, you NEED TO LEARN how to use them, and yes, you need to download that app on your phone. Why? Because it makes. your. life. SO. much. better! And??? It is EASY. Another reason? The listing agent shouldn’t have to teach you how to use the tools of your trade. My blood pressure shoots to the moon when I get an accusatory call that “your lockbox doesn’t work”. OMG. YES IT DOES. It does. I have driven many many miles to listings to check out my lockboxes and guess what? THEY WORK! And they provide a great service to sellers because each person who accesses it is ON RECORD. That’s essential in today’s world.

Wire transfers. Things are changing. You have to get on board with the new direction things are going with regard to funding real estate. And do you know, I have clients who do not have a checking account? Right! Providing directions for tracking electronic due diligence and earnest money transfers is coming. That’s technology. And it is necessary. The old ways of doing things are fading away; even ‘normal’ banks are fading. It’s true! How banking is done is being tweaked as we speak. Better learn to love technology, or at least not scream in fear of it. You HAVE to do this stuff.

Here’s something else to think about. If you are a buyer agent and you don’t have the electronic lockbox app, you will have have to get a one-day code to access the property. You probably should call the listing agent for that, because sometimes the showing services get it wrong and cause a lot of anxiety for buyer agents trying to show property. So, listing agents, learn how to get a one day code for your buyer agents! You should know how to do that if you are going to put an electronic box on the property. You don’t want them to get frustrated and walk away from your listing in anger. Not a good thing.

I know some folks who are absolutely terrified of new programs and apps and processes. I don’t really understand that, but I do try to help those folks navigate through, because each time they make it through without being struck by lightning, they feel a bit braver about using ‘it’, whatever ‘it’ is. But folks, if you are afraid, if you’re one of them, please try to learn. Try to stem the panic, calm down enough to remember WHAT you have just done, and WHY you did it. Knowing the ‘why’ piece makes learning the ‘what’ a lot easier, in my experience.

If you were in the corporate world and the new way of doing things was implemented, you WOULD get on board. These new real estate tools are no different. They are here because they add value to the process, they provide another level of protection for our clients, and they ease the process for all of us. So dive in. You can’t break the earth. Trust me. If it could have been done, I’d have done it by now! You should have seen me in the science world…right Phil?

And one more thing before I go: NOT answering your calls is NOT being technologically advanced. It’s resisting actually speaking to another agent in a business where we NEED to actually speak to one another. I know, don’t hyperventilate. ANSWER. YOUR. PHONE. If you do not, you are adding another UNNECESSARY step in the process, and you know….TIME IS PRECIOUS. Don’t ask me to text you. If I WANT to text, I will text.

Answer. Your. Phone.

Okay, I’m finished now.


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