Marketing

Blowing the foreclosure opportunity?

Author
Brian Boero
No.
269
Please excuse the mess. This page is currently under construction.

Someone sent me this image the other day. It’s the back panel of a Realtor’s moving truck. I thought about it often as I flew around the country last week.

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Look, I know everyone’s got to make a living. I am also aware that conclusions based on style are useless and some may like this ad. But I keep thinking about how our industry, right now, as I write, seems to be squandering the chance to reconnect with a cynical marketplace, to redeem the excesses of the past — both perceived and real — with discretion and excellence in the face of crisis.

The foreclosure opportunity is real. Realtors who know — or take the time to learn — the intricacies of the foreclosure process can help clean up the housing mess. They can also materially impact the lives of families in a positive way.

But in my opinion, pitches like the one above (which is just a sampling of what we see all the time) take this “opportunity” to extend the stereotype of the opportunistic, tasteless Realtor still lodged in too many consumer minds.

Leveraging a child’s image … really?

Yet another designation … please, please, for the love of god, no.

On a truck? Dude, we can do better.

There are very few agents that are truly qualified to handle pre-foreclosure counseling, short sales or REO brokerage. The gentleman driving this truck may indeed be one of them. But I suspect most of the real pros are among a silent minority that quietly work this market based on demonstrated mastery built over time.

If you’re a broker, or running a brokerage company in a market hit hard by the foreclosure crisis, there are things you can do. Hire a short sale specialist to help your agents and their clients navigate this process. Have them host a forum on your website where consumer questions are answered credibly, without a sales vibe. Display a feed of foreclosures on your company’s website so buyers and sellers get a full picture of what’s happening on your market.

We’re working with a couple of companies to put similar practices into place. It takes work and investment. There are no shortcuts.

But the expectation is a dividend of trust paid for years to come.

— Brian Boero