Is MLS just a source of
listings for you? Or does it represent a compendium of resources,
education, benefits and the ability to become part of a unique system
that has true value to you as a professional? Does it represent a model by which you guide your actions and your activities?
Are you using the information services and the other services available to you?
If you are, you are improving your salesmanship skills by adhering to the principles and values that govern us.
Why bother mentioning this after nearly two years of writing articles? Here’s why.
We have all been either
recipient of, or observed, or been party to many transgressions of
members who choose to flaunt the rules and regulations guiding all of
us in the industry. MLS was created not
only to sell each other’s listings, but also to ensure that we operate
in a diligent and ethical manner with each other and with consumers. Many
of us wonder about the members who simply take for granted the
standards and the benefits that we get when we are granted licenses.
Brokers and managers are
confronted almost daily with a barrage of complaints from other
brokers. So, here are Albert’s Ten Top Peeves about fellow registrants!
1. Agent did not call back.
2. Agent left lock box undone/and/or the key was missing.
3. Agent did not bring in deposit cheque when required.
4. Agent was demeaned at a presentation of offer.
5. Agent neglected to tell colleague that he had his own offer.
6. Agent went to see property without appointment.
7. Agent has no cell phone/pager that works.
8. Agent unavailable to present an offer.
9. Agent failed to send proper documentation following an offer.
And number 10, my favourite of all complaints – a roll of the drums please, à la
Dave Letterman – Agent had the wrong information on the MLS listing,
which resulted in either an aborted sale, or even worse, a complaint to
our regulator, or litigation or both.
Why is this occurring so
often in recent years? I can only give one answer: Not enough
schooling/education at the broker’s level. Some readers may say that it
is the fault of the board or the provincial educators.
Can it be improved on? Sure it can. Brokers must take a more proactive role in ensuring that their agents don’t continue on a path of continuous misdeeds. They
can do this by hosting sales meetings with some “meat on the bone”.
Although many of us scratch our heads and wonder why we don’t get full
turn-outs to these events, the members who choose not to attend are
usually the first at our doors to ask questions about the rules.
During the past 8 1/2 years at our brokerage, we have hosted numerous credit courses that the agents require for their renewals. Also, many of us hold seminars about general business conduct and the development of good business practices.
It is unfortunate that many registrants don’t take advantage of these courses or seminars. Is it that they are too busy making money, or are just not interested in participating in these events? I’m never sure about that.
I truly believe that by
following the rules of conduct as laid down by the governing bodies, we
would have a much better business model. Brokers must convince their
colleagues in their offices that the rules of conduct apply to us all.
And it is not really necessary to “shoot from the hip,” every time a misdemeanor occurs. I
have found that by calling up the other broker and finding out what
really happened, ethics charges often can avoided, as well as a
potential arbitration hearing.
I recently suggested to my own board that we need more education of the new members, prior to granting them membership. The
idea was to craft the major points in the rules and regulations, with Q
and A, on a DVD or CDs. The disc would be sent to the applicant and
he/she would have 48 hours to answer the questionnaire. Perhaps some of
you readers have a similar or better idea. I would love to hear from you.
By “co-operating” in the true sense of what the MLS was created for, we can all survive and thrive in the 2000s and beyond.
Thought for the month: “Age
is not a particularly interesting subject. Anyone can get old. All you
have to do is to get there.” – Groucho Marx
Albert is celebrating his 35th year in real estate, and is a committee
member with TREB and RECO. He is a registered trainer/consultant, and
is now in his ninth year with Re/Max Professionals in
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