It’s no way to make a living but as long as we’re passing out pats on the back …

Dear Christopher:

My wife and I wanted to extend a HUGE thank you for your assistance. I called you in April, and requested your unbiased and extremely professional opinion on our purchase of  [XXX] Road. We did purchase the home and are extremely happy to be in Riverside! Your blog is extremely informative, and your candid disclosure of the real estate market really helped us with our transaction.

Many Thanks, [XXX]

Of course, I can provide this kind of information to actual clients, too.

UPDATE: In view of some of the comments to this post, I’ll point out that, in fact, I appreciated the note of thanks from this reader. I write this blog partly because it attracts clients but just as important, it’s fun, and I enjoy passing along my view of the real estate industry here in Greenwich – gossip, tales of wrong-doing but also what I hope is useful information. I don’t expect to represent every buyer in town  and, if I did, I’d get so rich that I’d quit after a year and there’d go my blog, so yeah, here’s an open invitation to any buyer, or seller, to send along questions. If you’re working with someone else, fine- no hard feelings at all. After all, it’s your loss, not mine!  : )






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15 responses to “It’s no way to make a living but as long as we’re passing out pats on the back …

  1. anonymous

    If they liked your blog so much and found it extremely informative, why didn’t they call you to consummate the deal? I’m not sure I’d pat yourself on the back for this. Bend over, perhaps.

  2. idontgetiteither

    amen anonymous

  3. Stanwich

    Chris, your hit rate needs to be higher. All of your loyal readers want you to succeed but you need to help us help you. The next time someone emails you for advice, have them sign an agreement first. All the major brokerages do it, you should too.

  4. Anonymous

    You were gracious to offer your help and they were gracious enough to acknowledge it. At least it’s “something” although it doesn’t put food on the table. Perhaps their pleasure will result in word-of-mouth references to any friends or relatives they may have who are looking to buy.

    OT: Did you happen to see this article about DOJ demanding banks provide prime-rate mortgages for minority borrowers who otherwise wouldn’t qualify for them?

    I’m still trying to figure out why banks should consider income from temporary sources (UI, welfare) when rating the loan. Most mortgages last 15-30 years and last I knew UI runs out somewhere between 80-99 weeks.

  5. anon

    The least they could do is send you an envelope with some cash

  6. Just_looking

    @ Chris, ask for the order! Every time someone asks you for any specific info sign them up with a buyers agreement. Period. If anyone is offended by your request, then they are moochers so who cares. Besides, you seem happy to offend plenty of people for lesser reasons.
    This is your business. Treat it like one. I only say this because I care.

  7. anon

    where’ s the thank you letter from their broker.

  8. Sweets

    They were probably stuck with their broker at the time they reached out to you for advice, so they couldn’t have hired you if they wanted to. I think you did the right thing in this case. They will probably refer you to their friends/family/co-workers who want to buy property in the Greenwich area in the future.

  9. So Greenwich

    It goes in the good deed column, you’ll get a good parking space one day or find a $20 on the street. Would have been nicer if they had “used” you in a compensable way.

  10. Anonymous

    Say hey, Just-lookin, what ya got cookin? Nothin much, apparently.

    It’s CF’s rejection of your sort of advice that would make me want to hire him to help me hunt for a house. He seems more concerned about helping those who want to make an honest deal than locking in the “moochers” that you seem so concerned about.

  11. Agree with Chris, disagree with most of the commenters. What this blog does, and what Chris and I and other old-pro agents do daily, is offer opinions and advice. And yes, a lot of it is free and some folks end up using their niece Harriet who just got her license instead of us– but it’s all part of building our reputation and cred, and in the long run gets us more business, because people know we’re trustworthy and smart. Ever ask a doctor a medical question in a social situation? Same principle– but you wouldn’t enter a course of treatment with the doctor without making a commitment, and once it gets past the free-consult stage with a buyer or seller we’d expect the same–

  12. ML

    I have a closet full of “at a boy”‘s, pats on the back and “great job”‘s from my days at Lehman. They don’t do much for me now.

  13. I’m with Al on this one, for the most part. Anyone in real estate likely gets asked a million times a week for advice. I’d take it as a compliment that (a) you were asked and (b) that your advice was well received enough to elicit such a glorious letter. However, I do wish for your sake, and those mounting medical bills, that they, on their own, had offered up a handshake with a wad of cash in it. If your advice sealed the deal for them, then I say they have some moral obligation to give you a piece of the pie. With ice cream.

  14. Peg

    I’m with Al and EOS. Your reputation matters greatly – and in the long run, pays off in the ways that truly matter.