A collection of stories from real estate professionals detailing crazy, funny, or poignant experiences that have happened on the job.
Dog dreaming
© Steve Musgrave

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A Joyful Homecoming

I was showing a ranch house. As I unlocked the front door, a Jack Russell terrier bolted up the front stairs. My client tried to stop the little dog, but he slipped inside just as I opened the door. The client was concerned about a stray coming into the house, but we found food bowls in the kitchen and it appeared that the dog belonged. We continued with the showing, and when we got to the primary bedroom, we found the dog curled up in the middle of the bed.

“I think this dog is home. How else would it know where to go?” I told my client. I left my card on the kitchen counter. Then, we headed out and locked up.

Later that evening, I received a voicemail message. The woman who left the message was sobbing. “Bobbi, you don't know me, but you showed my home earlier today,” she said. “I'm calling to thank you for bringing my dog home. He's been missing for four days. He must've gotten out during a previous showing.”

I was happy my instincts were right and my client and I didn't shoo the dog out of the house. But I did take the opportunity to recommend that the caller remove her pets before showing—just to be safe.

—Bobbi Markowitz, Coldwell Banker Realty, Fairfield, Conn.

What the...?!

On entering a split-level, my client and I could see into the living room on the lower level. A human-sized statue of a lizard in men’s clothing and wing tip shoes sat at the bottom of the stairs. The lizard was looking up toward the front door, its glass eyes seemingly watching our every move. It was one of the funniest finds in my 40 years as an agent. But my client, spooked by the statue, refused to enter the home. What could I do? I called the listing agent and suggested he remove the statue.

—Pat Enomoto, RE/MAX Heritage, Kansas City, Mo.

That’s Rich

My very first clients more than 20 years ago had been in the market for nearly four years. After I showed them a home, they said they’d discuss it and get back to me. The following Sunday, my husband read me a news article about a couple who had won the Ohio lottery. It was my clients. A few days later, the wife called me and said, “We’re in a new price bracket.” I visited the couple’s home and noticed their refrigerator was covered in real estate magnets. I asked why they chose to continue to work with me. Their response: “Because you treated us with respect when we didn’t have much money.” I went on to sell them four homes, and they still refer business to me.

—Valerie Evans Coontz, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Ravenna, Ohio