Is anyone else appalled by the lack of courtesy when brokers fail to call to cancel a showing and fail to show up? I think its unprofessional.

Asked by Christine Nicholson, Denver, CO Fri Mar 14, 2014

It's hard to explain to Seller's, when they've picked up and vacated for a showing ~ "Oh, I'm a professional but many other brokers aren't. Very sorry." Seriously, it's an embarrassment. Of course I prepare Sellers that this can happen, but it's a two minute phone call or text to cancel.

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18
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Sat Mar 15, 2014
Christine, stuff happens.
I've come to accept that buyers are like a swarm of bees, they are hard to manage.

I've come to realize many agents REFUSE to manage their buyers. (Dear agent, this is a looking trip to see if the house meets the physical requirements. IT is NOT an inspection. 30 minutes is MORE than enough. Tell your buyer, then manage your schedule. After all, you are the one who MADE the schedule.)

I've accepted that I must advise those agent who are on my list that I MUST BE CALLED WHEN THEY ARE 30 MINUTES AWAY...otherwise access denied.

Those NOT ON THE LIST will receive a call from me 30 minutes before the appointment to verify they are on schedule.

This is the mechanism I have relied upon to manage my time, maintain the integrity of other professionals, and protect the home owner.

The greatest disrespect we can show another is by wasting their irreplaceable time. If you waste the time of others YOU ARE A DISRESPECTFUL PERSON. Be cautious when working with those who are disrespectful.

Best of success,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL
727.420.4041
http://FirstLookHomes.us
3 votes
In caps and bold.
Flag Sun Mar 16, 2014
Jill Murty, Agent, Mission Viejo, CA
Mon Mar 17, 2014
Agents should always make it to their scheduled appointments. If they absolutely have to cancel, they should kindly apologize to the seller(s) and/or listing agent. Eating dirt goes a long way and may keep you off of Annette's LIST.

I will never forget the agent who insisted on seeing one of my listings at precisely 5:40 PM. We had multiple offers on the property and didn't need to accommodate him, but we did.

The agent never showed. He did not answer the phone when I called and he failed to return my call. That agent, whose name I will never forget, is on my LIST.
2 votes
There really is no excuse.
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
Love those who insist, the worse!
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
Exactly.
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
It rarely fails. The more demanding the buyer and buyer agent, the less likely anything good will happen and the greater probability something BAD will happen. We are pros! We know how to handle situations when things go wrong. Leaving us hanging, though, is unacceptable. Such deficient behavior should result in:
"No Soup For You!"
And, for a short time, Elaine did get her act together.
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
Judi Monday,…, Agent, Green Valley, AZ
Sat Mar 15, 2014
It is really all about managing time and making sure the Buyers are aware there are appointments that must be kept. There really is no good excuse for not showing a seller the courtesy of letting them know if we are running late, or worse yet, plans have changed and we won't be able to make the showing. I subscribe to the Golden Rule--treat others the way we want to be treated. It is really that simple.
2 votes
Thomas Moser, Agent, East Northport, NY
Tue Mar 18, 2014
I agree, it's highly uprofessional. However, there are a lot of highly unprofessional people in our business.
1 vote
Debbie Shick…, Agent, Staunton, VA
Tue Mar 18, 2014
I have been in real estate nearly 26 years and yes, it is unprofessional especially in the age of cell phones and instant communication. Agents should either call the listing office or agent and cancel or reschedule. If the agent does not answer, for heaven's sake leave a message or follow up with an email or text. As a professional, you should always leave a card and give feedback to the agent after the showing. I am always amazed at the number of agents who want feedback on their listings but never return the courtesy to other agents in return.
As a professional, you should always return calls from other agents and give honest feedback on the listings.
There are some agents that will never act professionally but you can set an example for them.
Be sure to read the professionalism hints from NAR. If you are a REALTORĀ®, you should always act professionally and with courtesy.
Debbie Shickel, GRI
Bishop Realty
459 Lee Jackson Hwy.
Staunton, Va. 24401
Licensed for Real Estate in the Commonwealth of Virginia
1 vote
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Mon Mar 17, 2014
SOLUTION!

Include in REALTOR REMARK - "$100 FEE to the homeowner for NO SHOW!"
Send the invoice to the agent AND the broker.

It may be hard to collect, but the message will be clear.
There is the residual of 'unpaid invoices."

This can create the behavior modification that recognizes the need to respect the time of others.
1 vote
I'm all for it, $200 if you play possum.
Flag Wed Mar 19, 2014
Annette,
A home with this limitation would receive fewer scheduled appointments out of fear from some agents who just wouldn't risk it. Which would result in less interest, and lower offers. It's unenforceable as you recognize and indicates you may be a difficult agent to deal with if someone did want to move forward.
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
Yanoska Diaz, Agent, Miami, FL
Sun Mar 16, 2014
Don't you just love when you call them and they don't even know what you are talking about? Oh really! Do you have a minute?...............

"Be cautious when working with those who are disrespectful". Best thing I've read on this thread.
1 vote
, ,
Sat Mar 15, 2014
Of course it's unprofessional. In Manhattan, New York, I follow REBNY's guidelines: which is to allow up to 20 minutes in the event of delay beyond the control of the agent which they are experiencing and knowing mobile devices do not receive wireless signal while traveling by subway. But otherwise the agent requesting access should always call to cancel or give an update regardless - it's a basic courtesy.
1 vote
Dennis Evans, Agent, Clifton Park, NY
Wed Mar 19, 2014
We should all prepare our sellers for the fact that this can happen, although very infrequent.
Here are just a few of the other things I do to help resolve this issue.
I make contact with the buyers agent before they ever come out and talk about the listing as well as setting the expectations for the showing... I make it very friendly and let them know that I am easy to work with and set up a relationship. I let them know if they have any questions, to give me a call on my cell phone and let them know that I really, really appreciate their feedback...
Doing these simple steps help secure a better relationship, more sold homes and better feedback.
Just an idea...
0 votes
Scott Godzyk, Agent, Manchester, NH
Wed Mar 19, 2014
Or 20 second email, it drives me crazy when buyer agents do not show up for scheduled showings. There is n excuse for no call or no show with all the ways to communicate these days.
0 votes
Barry Stewart, Agent, Watertown, NY
Tue Mar 18, 2014
On a related note, I have very few agents ever call me back with feedback on the showings. I always five feedback. Does anyone else have this issue or is feedback something I should not expect?
0 votes
Barry, good topic. Start a new question.
Flag Wed Mar 19, 2014
Kawain Payne, Agent, Seal Beach, CA
Sun Mar 16, 2014
Sad to say, but this happens more often than one would think:(

Kawain Payne, Realtor/Notary
0 votes
Karen Rice, Agent, Hawley, PA
Sun Mar 16, 2014
It is frustrating. I do try to give the benefit of the doubt because we all do make mistakes - things do slip our minds. Cell phones do fail. Sometimes there ARE circumstances beyond the agent's control. If I miss a showing I do get in touch with the agent as soon as possible...

One time I had several homes to show in an area with NO CELL SIGNAL. My buyers, at the last minute, decided to skip one of the homes. I couldn't have called the listing agent before I did - which was about 2 hours after the showing was scheduled and I was back in an area with service. She had already left me 2 very nasty voice mails wondering why we didn't have the courtesy to call. What blew my mind about that is that she lives in and works in the area and knows darn well how spotty cell signal is in that location.

This is probably not the reason most of the time - I will agree that in most cases it is simply negligence....but there are times when phone calls are NOT an option right away.
0 votes
Akil Walker, Agent, Upper Marlboro, MD
Sun Mar 16, 2014
Hi Christine,


Its not their fault the assistant schedule the appointment by accident! :)

It happens way too often. Plus with a schedule service all you have to do is call & cancel or reschedule. its crazy.
0 votes
Spencer Gray, Agent, Bonney Lake, WA
Sun Mar 16, 2014
It does happen, although I always try to get in touch with the sellers. Sometimes you drive a client to a showing and they don't like the street or house from the outside and say skip it. In this circumstance, it last minute notice to the sellers. I don't ask my clients to see a home they don't like when were outside.
0 votes
Spencer I counsel my buyers before we ever go out that it is a privilege to be allowed to tour someone's home, and even if it means we just step inside for a moment or two, that is what we need to do. As a Seller you are basically allowing complete strangers to poke around your home while you are not present. I think it is worth the five minutes to extend that courtesy, and then be able to say in the feedback, which I also give, that it didn't meet their needs for whatever the reason may have been.
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
What a shame to read this when an appointment has been made.
"I won't ask my clients to see a home they don't like."
I see you have included NO followup action. You leave everyone hanging.
You have wasted the irreplaceable time of the listing agent, the irreplaceable time of the home owner and the irreplaceable time of all others who were involved in making this opportunity available.

You have the following options that are reasonable"
1. Say, "We have an appointment, we need to keep it. It will only take five minutes.
2. Tour the home yourself, without the buyer. This is respectful

Manage your buyers or they manage you.

It is my hope that you find it increasing difficult in getting appointments set up to show homes to your buyers. Your actions should have consequences.

Those consequences, may appear to you as, "Why is it so DIFFICULT to set up a viewing appointment?" The answer is 'Because you are on THE LiST."
Flag Mon Mar 17, 2014
Amanda Chris…, Agent, Fort Wayne, IN
Sun Mar 16, 2014
It happens. It's not professional at all, but it does happen. You can't control other agents. I think it's best to focus on the positive.
0 votes
Phil Rotondo, Agent, Melbourne, FL
Sat Mar 15, 2014
It's appalling you think it's intentional or a lack of courtesy. Schedule 12 homes to show with your client, and he/she decides not to see house #7 while talking your ear off about house #4 and you're driving to house #8. .
0 votes
Phil-we have all been there but it is really up to us to make sure we are handling our business in a professional manner which includes letting sellers know when we are running late or won't be able to make it. I know I have been on the receiving end of a very unhappy Seller who has gone to all the trouble of making their home show ready only to have an agent be a no show on them and I'm guessing you have as well.
Flag Sat Mar 15, 2014
I guess we have different work styles Phil. 12 is a lot to show one person, and if we are running late I do jump in and let them know that as a courtesy I need to let the Sellers know we won't be making it to their home. I do the same thing when we drive up to a home and the buyers choose not to view it. I don't think it is intentional, but it is a lack of courtesy.
Flag Sat Mar 15, 2014
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Fri Mar 14, 2014
Christine,
This is something you should prepare your clients for. When I go out to show homes, I start with a plan, but plans change. When a buyer lingers at one or two early homes, we may have to scratch the last one. I can't rush a buyer planning on spending hundreds of thousands of dollars when they are interested. I don't always know if we'll make the last one until our time together gets late. I try to call if we are going to miss one, but sometimes it just doesn't happen.
You can get upset about it or you can explain to your seller's that some agents will show up with little notice and some won't show up at all. It's unfortunate, but it happens.
0 votes
I try to be considerate of the occupied homes and most of the time this isn't an issue. Of course I separate the occupied homes from vacant ones. I won't take some clients through occupied homes if they are not prepared to move on one quickly. I have called more often than not if we ended up scratching a home from our list. I've even pulled into a driveway to have a buyer say, "no thanks, I don't want to see it" but I go in and double check myself and leave my card out of courtesy.
I just believe that while some agents don't do this and some are completely rude and inconsiderate, I can't control them. Instead I pre-warn my sellers so that when/if it happens it's not a shock. When they complain to me, I remind them that it happens. It's unfortunate that we all can't be fully professional all the time, but I choose to control that which I can and prepare for what I can't.
Flag Sun Mar 16, 2014
Holy guacamole...30 minutes per home??? We usually do 15 minutes or less unless the home is 1) ginormous or 2) it's a 2nd showing of the home to decide on an offer. I hate when buyers walk into a house and say "Oh, this won't work" and then you spend the next 20 minutes trying to get them to leave, but they just want to go over every room of a house THEY DO NOT LIKE with a fine tooth comb. LOL. Most buyers do not want to waste time on something they're not going to buy but some just want to look at every nook and cranny.
Flag Sun Mar 16, 2014
Dan, if you'll notice in my post I mention that I counsel my Sellers of that prospect at the start of our work together. Yes we all know that plans change. Even if you call to let me know after the time has passed that you just didn't make it, I realize that happens from time to time. It's when it shows up on a feedback form as in "we missed it, oops Im sorry" that it shows a lack of respect for other people's time. I just think we as brokers can and should be operating at a higher standard. Its bad enough that a large portion of the public thinks we don't really do all that much work and "anyone can do this job." Which we reinforce when we are discourteous.
edsotep mau
Flag Sat Mar 15, 2014
Dan, you advise your buyer there are 8 homes to show. of those 8, 4 are occupied and we have a scheduled appointment we must keep. Let's keep the looking at 30 minutes. I do have 4 vacant homes that we can see anytime. This will allow some flexibility in the schedule if necessary."

"Spending hundreds of thousands of dollars' is no excuse for disrespecting everyone else involved.

If you don't TELL them they assume they are 'Just Looking' at the mall.
Flag Sat Mar 15, 2014
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