A Unique Perspective
I am not a Real Estate Professional, I have never practiced the profession, although I do have a licence which is currently inactive and I have had the privilege to work with a Real Estate Professional that is beyond reproach, my lovely wife Elizabeth.
However, I am a business-man and have managed and run a number of small-medium businesses throughout my career from an Amaco Service Station, Janitorial Service, Carquest Auto Parts, and all the way though an Internet Bubble start-up. Nevertheless, I am the first to admit that at my core, I am simply a Software Engineer by training and trade and currently contract with the US Army on Redstone Arsenal.
What in the World – A Real Estate Website?
How in the world does this fit into my life, its bizarre really! Nonetheless, I signed up for this task to get my wife Elizabeth to marry me and move to Huntsville. Now bare with me, I feel sure she wanted to marry me, but she did not want to leave Nashville and her established Real Estate career to move to Huntsville Alabama, that I know that for sure! …So I promised to do her Real Estate Website myself and make sure it was successful and help her with the transition all the way …That sealed the deal and the rest is history.
What a Bizarre … Bizarre Ride!
So I built it and they came! …At first the Real Estate Professionals in the Huntsville area were very gracious and complementary. …It was a nice to hear these complements and I was approached by several agents, teams, and even a few offices to do there website work …Now that is a compliment and I took it that way. …Thank you!
Nonetheless due to time constraints and competitiveness I declined …and the key phrase that now sticks out in my mind, is every single decline was followed with the comment, “Oh come on now, there is plenty of business for everyone. Right?“. …I kid you not, every single decline, and in the middle of the country’s mortgage/housing crises, this is what I was told over, and over, and over again. …um …What planet are you living on?
Then the Real Estate Professional complaints started rolling in …and in …and in …for the past 2 1/2 years non stop:
That photo is my listing and it doesn’t have my office name on it …my office name is not prominently placed on the listing, …my listing has the foreclosure word on it (field name from MLS and ‘No’ right next to it) …etc, etc, etc.
I can’t tell you how many times my wife has been yelled at, name called, and even cussed at over the phone for simply following MLS IDX rules. …It gets old …but here is a true story so you will get the gist:
I have received many, many, many of these complaints via email and have never passed them on to Elizabeth. …One stands out as a real lesson teacher:
‘I received a very nasty email about how low we were stooping by placing this office’s listings on our website along with a few moderately selected curse words, and not so pleasant suggestions.
I calmly wrote back explaining the IDX listing share program and suggested he simply remove his listings from the MLS IDX program …Three days later I get a very nice email and the broker of this office asks me: ”How Much Will It Cost Me to get a Website Like Yours?“‘ …true story I swear to god!
Being A Free Thinker - I Took an Opposite Approach
I didn’t complain or point out the 10 other competitors that were not placing the Office Name on photo clips and small summary’s. I decided not to hide the listing office name down in the small type at the bottom of listing pages like the vast majority of local competitors. I didn’t try and hide the Listing Office Name in smaller font and discolored font like a few other local competitors.
I decided to do exactly what they asked; ‘Place the Listing Office prominently on their listings with a bold font header. Moreover I added a feature that is very common on many many real estate websites …I let our visitors search by Realty Office and Agent giving each office’s listings prominent display to those users wishing to browse their listings. Now surely the complaints will cease Right? …Wrong!
Lawsuit Threaten from a National Franchise
No …now it turns out that we are promoting their listings more than they wish them promoted. What? ….Seriously? ….Really? …There is something sinister at play here and I know exactly what it is. …I really really do.
BUYER BEWARE!!! – DUAL AGENCY – This is What is Going on Here!
Alabama is one of only 2-3 states in the United States that allow legal DUAL AGENCY …yep agents in Alabama can practice dual agency and collect double commission when a listing agent sells one of their listings …hey I understand a double paycheck …would like one myself from time to time …However Huntsville Agents listen up and just take a deep breath and think for a moment:
What you want, desire, and are pissing and moaning about is not only morally unethical but illegal in 48 states!
Buyers deserve representation too right? …not so in Alabama …Buyer Beware
Huntsville Real Estate agents …don’t let greed cloud your good judgement.
End of Rant …I feel better,