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This article was published on: 12/01/2007


Hard Times or Opportunities?

If we listen to and believe what the news media are saying, then maybe we should chuck our licenses and find a new career. If we are dabblers, and don’t want to work at being REALTORS®, then that advice is especially good also. If we group ourselves with other naysayers, and have group pity parties, how are we going to be motivated to move forward?

On the other hand, if we learn to see opportunities in situations that seem contrary, we have progressed from adolescence to maturity, from mediocre to professional. Is it hard at times? Sure it is, but if it were easy, this would not be a profession, and commissions would not be what they are. If you like facts instead of fiction, here are some facts.

This market right now is a huge buyer’s market. Prices are great for those who need a home and for investors who want to build their portfolios with rental properties. Think about it. Many folks who now cannot get financing would rather live in a rental house than an apartment, especially if they feel they may have the opportunity to purchase the house in the future.

Financing has not dried up; it’s just less easy to acquire. Money is readily available for creditworthy people, and there are a lot of them out there. Many of the folks being hurt right now with foreclosures were sold a bill of goods by unscrupulous lenders who were not looking out for the best interest of their customers. In some cases, those customers did not understand, or didn’t want to understand, the ramifications of getting in before they were ready.

Stay positive, group yourselves with other believers, and seek training that is motivational and pertinent to your situation, and you will see your business grow. Since the market is rife with foreclosures, get training in short sales and HUD auctions to be able to develop your capacity to consult with investors.

In more than 30 years of running companies and training managers and salespeople, I have always emphasized that companies are not built by rocket scientists—but by common sense. If you want to be called a professional, be a professional, which means finding the way to make things happen while everyone else is commiserating about how bad things are.

Hard times or opportunities — it’s up to you.

Dick McBain, Cherokee Association of REALTORS®, Woodstock, Ga.

Check-Writing an Honor

Kirsten Joan Means expressed her concern (“Incentives involve reputation issues,” October 2007, page 10) that offering a selling broker bonus on listings generates a negative, commission-driven image to the public. I disagree. As a REALTOR® with a solid listing inventory, I provide a bonus on all of the listings I market, as a personal thank you for selling my listings.

Admittedly, the costs of marketing are expended dollars with no guarantee of return. However, we all have exactly the same commodity — our time — for which I appreciatively reward the selling brokers for their professional efforts.

It is an honor to write my check to them at the closing table.

Joy Isenberg Snyder, CRB, CRS®, RE/MAX Premier Properties, Ocean City, Md.

No Fake Sounds, Please

In the “Cool Tools” section of REALTOR® Magazine’s October 2007 issue, you promote a CD that brings the sounds of an office to your home. The CD features two 39-minute tracks, ‘Busy’ and ‘Very Busy,’ and contains such sounds as ringing phones, typing keyboards, and mumbling voices.

Instead of spending millions of our membership dollars on a “Public Awareness Campaign” to "educate and persuade consumers about the value of hiring a REALTOR®" (quoted from, we should look more inward at why we need such a campaign to begin with.

Brett Weinstein, Realty Advocates, Berkeley, Calif.

Mail: REALTOR® Magazine, 430 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611-4087
Phone: 800/874-6500
Fax: 312/329-5978

Letters are edited for space and clarity. Publication of a letter doesn’t constitute an endorsement of the writer’s views by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® or REALTOR® Magazine.

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