(OK – Stay with me – this post DOES have to do with real estate!)
So, yesterday, I went to see a doctor for a second opinion and the meeting started out like this:
Me: “Hi Dr. Hartley. It’s nice to meet you.You may remember my Mom. You operated on her shoulder a number of years ago.”
Dr. Hartley laughs and says ” Oh I remember your Mom. And I know all about you too. She wrote me a note.” And he pulls out a note my mother wrote that was marked “Read this before you talk to patient Christy Belt Grossman”.
As I reflected on my visit after the fact, I realized that what I experienced at the doctor had several parallels to what our clients experience in the real estate market.
1. When the doctor pulled out the note, I was flabbergasted. I am 51 years old. Does my mother really think that I am not capable of handling my own medical care? I was embarrassed to say the least. But as I think back, I now realize that my Mom has been through many shoulder issues, has gone through lots of physical therapy and several surgeries. So she actually does have a lot of experience and a lot to offer in terms of the best way to go about getting the help I need and achieving a healthy shoulder.
Our clients often experience this same thing. Once they say they are going to buy or sell a house, everyone they know comes out of the woodwork to give them advice. They hear tons of stories about what to do and what not to do, who to call, who to stay away from, and how to do things themselves. Young couples particularly get TONS of advice, usually from loving, well-meaning parents, especially if they are helping with the down payment.
The trouble comes when the people giving advice don’t sell real estate professionally. They may have bought or sold many homes over the years, but things change from state-to-state and year-to-year. Laws change. Strategies change. Markets change. And so just as in my case at the doctor, my Mom could direct me to an expert, but she was not the expert herself on shoulder rehab.
2. The whole reason I went in for a second opinion was that the doctor I had already seen did not inspire confidence. I did not do my research before I went to him. And while he may be a fine doctor, I just wasn’t sure. Regaining movement in my shoulder and getting rid of the pain is a pretty big deal to me. When my first doctor recommended a cortisone shot, I just wanted to know I was doing the right thing. So I went to see Dr. Hartley.
Dr. Hartley is the President of Commonwealth Orthopaedic (a large practice with about 10 offices). He handles tons & tons of patients with shoulder problems. And he’s been doing it for years. Not only that, I talked to multiple people who have gone to Dr. Hartley and were pleased with the results. My existing doctor is the only doctor at the location I go to. He is much younger and though not inexperienced, he is less experienced.
So what did Dr. Hartley say? He totally agreed with my doctor’s diagnosis and treatment plan. 100%. I breathed a huge sigh of relief, got the cortisone shot & headed back to physical therapy. But I believe the outcome will be much better because of my peace of mind.
I think home buyers & sellers often experience the same thing. There are many Realtors who are probably just fine to work with, even good perhaps. But those who consult with and work with Realtors who are at the top of their field (“great” Realtors) buy & sell their homes with much more confidence and much less trepidation. And because of that, they are able to make the right decisions and make them more quickly. In today’s swift market, that means a much better financial outcome, as well as more peace of mind.
3. Lastly, I looked back at my day and thought, “You know, even though I’m 51 and my Mom is 74, it still feels really good to have someone looking out for me.” Our clients feel the same way. We look out for them and put their interests first. No matter what. That’s just the way we do business. Sometimes we tell people it would be better to rent their home than to sell. Sometimes we tell them not to sell for a few years. Sometimes we say we think they should buy a less expensive house. Sometimes we advise folks to buy the house that’s best for them, even if we don’t get paid. (You may have seen the national news story about this very issue happening in Des Moines, Iowa recently.)
So – when it’s time for YOU to buy or sell a home, remember my Mom and:
1. Consult an expert Realtor instead of listening to advice from well meaning, but possibly misguided friends & family.
2. Do your research and consult the TOP Realtor in your area so you can proceed with confidence to the outcome you desire.
3. Have the best Realtor you can find look after YOUR best interests.
Call The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975. You deserve the BEST Realtors in Northern VA!
P.S. “THANKS MOM!”