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.,  in Sioux City, IA

Do you drive clients to show homes in your car?

Asked by ., Sioux City, IA Wed Feb 16, 2011

To drive, or not to drive? Many agents will gladly drive their buyers around when showing homes as a sign of professionalism and service. Is this really better than having each drive their own cars? What are the benefits of driving your buyers vs. the benefits of having buyers drive themselves to see properties?

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I do what every my client wants to do. I want them to feel they are in control. If they prefer to have private time by driving then great. If they want to be with me than great. I let them do what makes them most comfortable which I think pays off in the end either way.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Supplying transportation for potential buyers is not only the professional way of doing business but it offers the agent an opportunity to get to know their customer better. This knowledge base can be helpful and lead to information that could lead to a sale.

Additionally, I cringe when my customers say they'll follow adds to the stress level and it really isn't a warm and fuzzy experience when customers get lost.

3 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
If I have several properties to show, I take my prequalified (i.e., I already know they're serious buyers and I have already met with them) clients around .

This gives me an opportunity to talk with them, point out certain things that my guide them in their decision-making, even enable me to familiarize them through the neigborhoods, Best of all, if they have questions, I can address them quickly while they're thinking about it. Furthermore, if they're thinking out loud, it gives me a better sense of knowing their thought processes.

Finally, it's another opportunity to build rapport and trust.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 17, 2011
I drive them. I prefer they look out the window and take in the neighborhood. Plus its always about trying to figure out how they are reacting to the homes and the area. Nothing beats the time in the car for that.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
For clients, I am too happy to show them around. I use the time to gather more information and get to know people better. I drive a minivan. Very comfortable.

I get good feedback in the car, too.

If a client prefers to meet at an address that's certainly fine, too. If they feel they need to discuss some things alone, that works for me. When people are making that decision, I don't want to impose.

Best regards,
PML of Longmont, CO
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 20, 2011
We have too little time to communicate with them as it is:

This is an excellent venue and opportunity to learn what we need to know.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 19, 2011
Normally, I offer either option and I have had only one client take me up on driving in my car. Interestingly, most showings I have done have been at least 3 people (sometimes 4) so they take up a whole car themselves. I also normally meet clients at the first property the day of showings and it can be hard to have them leave their car at the home and then drive back there at the end of the showings.

Incidentally, as a buyer, I NEVER wanted to be in the agent's car. My husband and I wanted to be able to discuss things freely, not have to make small talk, etc.

Finally, as a single female, I like to be in control and decide if I will offer to let them in my car or not. When I have had single males shopping, I have always just nicely said 'ok, follow me to the next property.' While it can be nerve wracking to have someone follow you, it seems safer to me than letting them in my car.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 17, 2011
Some of my clients have requested to drive separately, however some of the benefits of having a client in my car is time to share information, receive information AND point out features of the neighborhoods they are looking at.
Web Reference:
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Good question Andrew. Of course, it depends on the clients. I work in a team with another Realtor, so there are only two spots left in our car.

Sometimes I think it is actually better for the bueyrs to drive themselves (if there is more than one) so they have some private time to talk in between homes.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
I will go either way with driving clients. My preference is to let the buyers drive and I navigate with my GPS. I can relax and talk to them about the neightborhood. If it is a neighborhood they are more familiar with I let them talk about the neighborhood and their likes, dislikes and also features about the neighborhood they want to express to me

Overall, in most of the showings I do, the buyers follow me and are able to have their own private discussions about the homes and neighborhoods we are looking at without having to couch their comments with a third party present. There are sometimes personal or even 'heated' duscussions going on while they are following me to the next home. When it is all over we are able to discuss all things together at the last home or at a restaurant afterwards depending on the time frame.

Robert McGuire - 303-669-1246
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
I prefer to drive them around, a few will want to follow and rarely they will drive. The time we spend in the car talking is the best time to get comfortable, answer questions, get information about them and bond with each other. I sell many more homes to those I drive with than those that follow around. I always give them a choice but I always let them know I would be glad to drive them. Sometimes they want to smoke and I would rather they not do that in my car.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
You can educate the buyers about the areas you are driving through and to the next home. You can get to know your client better and connect with them at this time. And find out what they liked and disliked about the prevouse homes you jut looked at.
Web Reference:
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
I generally do, but sometimes clients prefer to follow in their own car. I always give them the choice. Vicki
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
I use every opportunity I can to drive the clients myself. It is a great time between homes to check in with them and make sure the showings are hitting the mark and help them stay on track toward purchasing a home. I ask lots of questions during drive time and stay in tune what what they liking and what they are not.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 26, 2014
The best scenario is for the client to drive so I can have an opportunity to go over information and answer questions.

If I am driving, we do have an opportunity to discuss and share information. It enables me to have time to obtain a better understanding what my clients are in need of. And gives them a good opportunity to relay. Time well spent to get to know one another.

Separate vehicles, I understand the need for privacy and want to ensure my clients are comfortable in any setting. We will just spend more time discussing and sharing informtion, questions, ect. at our property tours.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 26, 2014
drive them around yourself. they will connect with you more since you can make conversation along the way.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 9, 2011
I'm wavering. Too many buyers have been fence sitters in the last two years. I really want a pre-qualification letter before I'll drive a client around. I think if someone takes their own car, it shows they are serious.

of Longmont, CO
720 810 0683
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 6, 2011
It's up to my client, and most of them prefer to drive themselves. Especially if they're a couple, they like private time in between showings to discuss what they've seen and I don't infringe on that.
It is never my decision. always theirs.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 4, 2011
Hi Andrew,
Yes I do, particularly when the clients are out-of-town buyers and we are going to see four or five homes. It's simplier and gives us a chance to chat about each home in a relaxed way. There are times when a buyer would like to take a look around the neighborhood, as well as look at the particular home for sale. That's when having your car really comes in handy!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 4, 2011
Besides the professionalism associated with driving them around, there are a lot of benefits for driving your clients in your car. First, you control most decisions, like what to drive by, where you are going next, etc. Also, you have the ability to take a long way around to have more time to "talk with your buyers about the potential" of one home versus another. The only reason I will allow a buyer to follow me is if there are difficulties with one car, like too many passengers, a handicap need, or a pet that needs to be in their car. In each of these situations, I still would rather them be in my car, but if we have to take their, I would rather ride with them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 27, 2011
Good points by some of you that I hadn't considered before. Most of my clients thus far have been single people so I never really thought about them wanting private time to discuss the homes as we go along, but that makes perfect sense. I would always ask them what they'd prefer anyways, but that's definitely something that a lot of couples / families probably want. If I were looking with other people, I think I'd want that alone time too.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 24, 2011
Sharing information and getting feedback from your clients is key in any transaction, and driving around is one of the best times to do so! Right after showing a property is an excellent opportunity to find out exactly what the client thinks. What did they like, what didnt they like?

I always prefer to drive the clients around, but sometimes it cant be helped. Sometimes they prefer to follow, or sometimes you just cant fit everyone!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 24, 2011
I agree with most everyone else. I tend to give them the option but would prefer to drive them around as it allows for some quality time to get to know my clients. It also allows them some time to take in the area and really decide what they like and don't like about it. If they are driving on their own, they don't really get a sense of the area and neighborhood since they are busy trying to get from point A to B. I think there is a certain level of professionalism that comes with providing the service of driving them around. It also helps if there are multiple appointments set up in a row as no one has to worry about following one another and getting lost, etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Aug 22, 2011
I do whatever is convenient. If we are looking at one house then I will normally meet them there. If there are more than two (kids or parents of buyers) I meet them there. Otherwise they ride in my car. I think it also gives us a chance to get to know each other a little better and it gives us a chance to talk more about what they like and didn't like in the last home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Aug 22, 2011
I am flexible when it comes to driving my clients or not. Driving your clients to various properties allows you a certain level of control of the situation and of course an opportunity to converse & get to know each other better. Lately, my clients have been young families w/ young children who prefer the drive themselves.

Driving together or apart I believe you can your customers happy by showing the properties they desire.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 19, 2011

I agree with Bill 100% and I love having my clients ride with me. Great time to build the relationship and if you miss a turn you don't have to worry about it. But I can understand that some other brokers don't like to have people in their car and the wonderful thing about real estate is that there are many ways to get to the goal of a closed transaction. I always tell agents to do what makes them comfortable. Best
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 19, 2011
Hi Andrew:

I think I agree with both of the predominate views below:

1) I drive my clients whenever I can. It helps foster a good working relationship.

2) I don't try to get them to do anything that feels uncomfortable for them, including riding with me when they would rather ride in their own cars.

However, If they do use their own vehicle, I try very hard to arrange a meeting after showings at a neutral space like a coffee shop (coffee on me). I find I learn a lot about their preferences in a casual environment after they have had a little time to process what they have seen during the showings. And this is a good time to build the relationship.

Kind regards,
Ron Rovtar
Prudential Real Estate of the Rockies
Days: 303.981.1617
Evenings: 303.473.1926
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 19, 2011
Yes unless I am uncomfortable with the clients.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 18, 2011
Yes...unless they have children. Then I ask them to follow me to the location.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 18, 2011
I will always drive if I have the choice. The only time I do not is when There are children that need to be in child safety seats. If this is the the situation I will offer to ride along with them simply because there is no better time to ask questions about showings than right after you have seen them. There are also quite a few non verbal signs you can pick up on that help you get to know your client likes and dislikes.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 17, 2011
Great answers below. Answer is I would prefer driving the clients(control, ask questions, pick their brain) but let them decide. Not a prefect world and we as Realtors havew to adjust, not the client!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 17, 2011
Funny How everyone has a different idea on professional service. It will truely depend on area custom. I build raport and educate my buyers in a meeting held before we ever go see any homes and unless they have no transportation they NEVER get into my car. There is a substantial liability issue. I have a complete plan dsigned to assisit them in the decision process and there is no need to discuss the house in the car we decide if it is in their top 3 before we go to the next house. Obviously what works for me may not work for you deffer to your broker on all subjects.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 17, 2011
I always drive them, that way we can talk as we go to look at property. It builds repore between me and my client. I will tell you though, if they have young children and car seats I have them drive, and I'm the passenger telling them where to turn. They seem to feel better in there car in that situation. Best of luck to you!

Bill Pearson
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
If you drive your buyers, you will get to know them better and get real time feedback on properties you show, helping you narrow the selection process, to conform with their search criteria.

If the buyers drive themselves, you'll know far less, how to better meet their needs.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
It is much better to drive my buyers around for several reasons, the main one being that it saves on gasoline! Other reasons are that I can build rapport and chat with my clients about their likes and dislikes and that it just feels much more professional that as an agent I can give them a tour of potential future homes without them worrying about driving.

Often I have my buyers drive themselves so they can discuss in private their true likes and dislikes about the homes they've seen. They are then more revealing to me when we enter the next home because they havent held back with each other. Some agents may not want to drive their clients because their car is unclean and messy, or maybe not the nicest vehicle on the block. Yipes!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
it gives you a chance to get to know your clients and qualify them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
it gives you a chance to get to know your clients and qualify them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
It is a lot easier than showing them on my Bike. Lust kidding. Some buyers like to ride with, some follow. Do what makes your client comfortable. I like to drive then so we can discuss the homes and get to know eachother.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Driving in the same car is a huge advantage in my opinion. Time in the vehicle is time to discuss showings, what they like, didn't like and in my business, often opportunities to drive by properites I've sold and share applicable stories to their transaction. I do like if they drive or offer to so I can navigate and focus on my notes, etc. But that is not the norm. Two cars is sometimes advantageous if showings are further apart and/or our schedules require us to have our vehicles at our disposal after showings are completed. Basically I think it all depends on the situation. But to answer your question, I like and use the time in the vehicle to my advantage.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Of course I do. It is a great way to get to know the client better, plus it allows them to take in the neighborhood. It is time well spent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Virtually always. The only time I won't is when I'm in their car because they have a child with them or if they have their whole family along for the ride. It's great time to bond with them and really get at what they want.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Yes, If at all possible. The car time is one of the best information gathering sessions. But if they do want to drive behind, I will drive slow and very cautious so they can take time to look around and they don't feel rushed.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
Hello Andrew,

As a courtesy, I offer both. Some clients like to sit and view the neighborhood while I'm driving from home to home. But there is a small number of individuals who prefer to drive themselves and meet me at the homes. I don't have an opinion as to which way is better, I just like to remain flexible.

Marissa Ross
New Perspective Real Estate
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
I do drive my clients, and my preference is to have them drive while I am the passenger, reviewing maps, giving directions, reading to them the description of the next house. But, sometimes they prefer not to do that.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 16, 2011
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