To most people, it's a puzzle what Realtors do in a day. The impression is we work every evening, every weekend and all day. I don't want to dispel that notion but it's not quite true. An average day in 1987 when I started selling was certainly much different than a typical day in 2006. Besides the fact I was new and needed to establish myself by working unholy hours, new technology, particularly handheld devices, has allowed us to take our office with us, wherever we go. It's kind of difficult to describe this as a routine.
There are no two days alike. But let me describe last Thursday and you can draw your own conclusions as to what the other days must be like.
I begin around 7:30 and I read all of the papers www.thestar.ca and www.theglobeandmail.com . I check the Real Estate section for ads. I like to know what everyone is doing and that's a good place to look. I also need to know if there are any articles that might be useful to me our my clients. That day, there was a piece about the increase in active listings and the affect that is having on prices. So of course, later that morning, I sent the article to my clients, particularly since the article reinforced what I had already been telling them. Then around 8:30 I head to the computer to see what was listed and sold overnight. Again, I send this information to those who might need it. I'm planning an open house at one of my listings that weekend so I write a couple of ads and submit them to the newspapers. I write and design good ads and I'm always surprised how long that takes.
I received an email from a west coast Agent who is part of the Canada Referral network I belong to. www.canadareferral.com He is one of many Canada Referral agents that I've been emailing and/or phoning each day. It's a form of prospecting. Sort of like door knocking only I'm going after other agents to send me business rather than the general public. I receive a fair bit of referral business each year but I can always use more. I've never tried prospecting this way before so the jury is out as to how effective it will be.
I also received an email from a client in London England who just sold her flat and will be coming to town soon to look at houses. She wants to know if a particular home is still for sale. From London it looks like a great home and it's cheap so she's keen to see it. I tell her it's still available because it's located in a crummy area. She'll want to see it anyway. I'm showing a condo later that day so I call for an appointment.
I receive a call from an agent who sold one of my listings recently. She is missing one of the forms that accompanied the offer so I have to call my secretary to dig it out of the file and fax it to her.
I have a client who will be listing in the spring and there's a house similar to his that was listed last night so I call and we chat about seeing it and watching for a sale price when it finally sells. These "chats" seem to consume a good chunk of my day. I write a couple of letters acknowledging clients' anniversaries. They moved into their houses 5 years ago next week.
I was door knocking in East York 15 years ago and I met a gentleman who asked me to appraise his house. He has never sold anything in the years I've known him but he assures me that he will retire up north soon and will use my services. He called. His ex wife's home (the one he gave her when they divorced) is for sale and he wants to know the price and who is on title. I willingly oblige him and look it up. He's retired but spends much of his time rebuilding vintage motorcycles and so he tells me about the one he's working on presently. He had it shipped in from the Czech Republic. He's pretty sure it was used by the Germans during the war. It had been sitting in an old barn all these years.
Yikes. It's 11:30 already. I check the list of agent open houses, hop in the car and inspect a few. There's a free lunch at one of them so I get to eat some delicacies from a local deli. Darn this job is tough some days! Stop at the market to pick up some fruit. Wash the car. Return home to make some more calls. I need to find a couple of goalies for the hockey game next Monday. Prepare for a Comparative Market Analysis that I have to have completed for early next week. I have a new colour printer and a repair guy is dropping off a new drum later this afternoon so I have to stick around to meet him. I call my graphics lady about the new Buyer's Handbook I'm developing and we also chat about the Cabbagetown flier that I'm going to send out next week. Drum arrives. I show the condo and next thing you know, it's 5:30 pm. My how time flies. Then it's dinner and I return to the computer to do some lead follow up and work on this blog some more.