Posted on Dec 01, 2019
A recent interaction with an agent gave us cause to reflect on a contrasting interaction some 30 years ago. Different boots on different feet. And we recognise that there will be those whose reaction may well be “OK Boomer”. But bear with us. There is a point to the story , as considering ways in which we can improve our performance has got to be good for us all.
The interaction 30 years ago concerned a residential house I was selling. This was back in the days before smart phones. Before even cell phones. Communication was mainly a mixture of smoke signals and carrier pigeons. But smoke signals didn’t work so well at night. So agents would get in their car with a hard copy of the sale and purchase agreement, and personally take it to the client. In this case it was after 8pm – this was post the crash of ’87 and 12 hour days were normal, and getting home at 8 was an early night. The agent presented an offer for the house we were selling. It wasn’t good enough. But it set off a shuttle, with the agent going back and forth between vendor and prospective buyer, until a deal was settled at 2 am. You might well say that a more efficient way to conclude would have been to get both parties in a room and thrash a deal out. But that was how it was done back then. The attitude was that there was a deal to be done, so let’s work it until it is either done or dead.
I contrast that with an opportunity presented to me by an agent recently. I didn’t need to go on site (thanks Google maps) and I didn’t have a lawyer telling me to get a LIM, a property file, an IEP and an asbestos report. And the quoted price was marginally excessive – but we could live with it. So the instruction was “send me the sale and purchase agreement to sign – and make it unconditional”
Surely that is an easy deal for an agent?
But after 36 hours no agreement had been sighted. At which point I retracted the offer. Just on principle.
We have the tools now to be able to transact quicker and with less hassle. There are some agents who just need to use them.