Being a real estate agent is an interesting career. You get to interact with your friends all day and you are always doing business with people that you know. I’ve been doing this for over 15 years now and I’ve helped over 2,000 clients buy or sell a house. Over the years, I’ve tried to follow one principle above all else “create massive value and the rest will take care of itself.”
In the past few years, I started to notice in the online world that it became very popular to make posts on Facebook and Instagram promoting national brands. You watch people post daily about Taco Bell or Tesla. I didn’t ever think anything of it until a conversation I had about a year ago with my close friend Aaron Wagner. He said, “I don’t get why people post about these brands they have no attachment to? I don’t want to promote them, and I want to promote my friends!”
Since that time, our group of friends has gone out of our way to make sure we promote each other any chance we get. You might be annoyed by the number of posts about Crumbl Cookies, Rex Real Estate Team, or our new restaurant in Vegas, “Mas, Por Favor.” But we know how hard we each worked to build those companies and so we are happy to share in their marketing and success.
A few weeks ago, I was grabbing lunch and ran into an old acquaintance. He is a friend, but we also aren’t that close. We had a fun, quick exchange and as we were talking, it came up that my friends and I were going to be having our grand opening of our new restaurant that weekend in Vegas. When I mentioned this, the old friend let me know that his company works with restaurants and tech marketing and that’s what he is doing now. He asked if we could meet up sometime. I said, “Of course!” As we were saying goodbye, I asked him if he’d been good, and he said, “Ya man, we just closed on our new house down the street!”
Being a real estate agent, I of course, was disappointed that I hadn’t had a chance to at least be in the conversation to help them. But ultimately, I wasn’t too upset cause I hadn’t done an excellent job of staying in touch with this particular person. I didn’t overthink it.
It wasn’t even a few hours later thought that he texted me asking to “hop on a call or go to lunch.” I knew I’d have to move important things to make it happen and so I asked him who he used as his realtor. He told me, and then he said, “I should have called you first.” That’s when I got bugged and thought, “I really don’t want to do this meeting anyways and honestly, I hate that he thought he should have called me but didn’t.”
This picture was the exchange that we had continued...
I made it clear I didn’t want to meet up and I wished him good luck with his new venture. This was petty of me and upon giving it two weeks, I wish I had told him that I’m busy and couldn’t meet up. At the moment, I wanted to share the lesson that “Friends Support Friends.”
The irony in all of this is that he owes me nothing. I didn’t feel he did. Nobody ever owes me anything in regards to real estate or anything else I do. Everything I do with real estate, from client parties, to charity work, to coaching and training, I do so that hopefully, people will say, “I wouldn’t even think to not use him! Of course that is my guy. He is the best at what he does and has always been a great friend to me.” But that being said, I have 100’s of friends that haven’t used me. In no way does it effect our friendship. But taken out of context it could look like I expect them to use me no matter what.
Ironically, earlier that day, another close friend messaged me on Instagram to explain why she wasn’t going to be using me because her father in law is an agent.
This picture is the exchange I had with her.
Later that night, I was talking to another good friend and I asked him, “Why did that one bother me but the other one I was completely ok with?” And as we talked, we decided on a couple of things.
People should always do what is best for themI value loyalty and friendship deeply. Because of this, when somebody honors the friendship and explains to me, I am 100% ok with it. (And maybe they don’t even owe me that, we couldn’t decide.)It feels good to know you are appreciated. I’ve worked tirelessly for 15 years to be the market expert and to truly become the best in the industry so that I am easy to refer to. This is why it hurts when I see them use another realtor or company that I genuinely feel won’t do as good of a job for them as I would.I’ve worked hard to build amazing relationships with successful people, so it does bother me when people want me to just connect without creating any value first.
Even as I type this now, I doubt I handled this the right way. I think I value not only my time but also my friends so much that unless you’ve given a little amount of value, I don’t feel like I want to give so easily a relationship of trust. Many acquaintances have done harm to friends of mine after I introduced them. Some financially and some in other ways. Because of this, I think I am sensitive to that. I get asked multiple times per day from strangers or people I barely know to introduce them to these amazing humans I’ve spent years creating a real bond with. I overprotect that. I overprotect myself.
I do know this, and I would do anything for my friends regardless of real estate or anything else. My best friend since I was 12 years old, just closed on his new home last week. The house was up north and he decided to go another route than using me to buy it. Do you know what he was doing a few days after that? He and I sat down and had a 2-hour lunch cause he wanted me to coach him up on how to do some marketing. I couldn’t be happier for him.
One of my favorite things in this world, and for sure, my favorite thing about being a realtor is when a friend calls me to buy or sell a house. They are saying to me, “I trust you with the biggest financial decision of my life! I trust you with where my family will grow up and live. I trust you to help me build my retirement! I honor this so much. I could have 50 or 100 realtors on my real estate team, and I turn down new agents all the time. I don’t ever want one of my clients and friends to feel like they got passed off to someone that won’t do as well of a job as I can. Every agent on my team has ten years or more in the industry and sold over 200 houses. Why? Because I always want to honor that trust they have put in me.
Thank you to all my amazing clients. Thank you to all my amazing friends for your friendship. I honor all of you and appreciate you in my life. I hope if I can ever support your business in any way you will let me know. I will always try to do the same.