Oh I know, I'm in danger of being labeled the perpetual pooh-pooher and general downer of our REO Pro discussion boards, so I'll start with a qualifier, this time: PLEASE do NOT read this without first having either a shot of Brandy, a Margarita, or a steaming hot bath and a cup-o-chicken soup--why? Because I'm gonna' rant and rave and generally be Mr Pessimistic.


You see, I think it's time we demand accountability.

I could pull up the current REO listings in our area and show you that:

A majority are held by 3 particular agents.
These agents have less experience than the average.
One has skipped between at least 4 different agencies in as many years--this person is about as slovenly and presentable as a dead aardvark, and with a similar personality (and reputation).

Another only does REO's, (married to a rich partner), and can't seem to get more than a picture or two of any property into the MLS (and often even these are out of focus!), and like the above agent, also has the personality of a snake that's been stomped on by a large boot.

The other is fairly new in real estate and fairly unknown.

Still some other listings are held by companies hours from here and we have to contact them through their 800#'s

And then there are the properties listed by some small little boutique agency with only part-timers!?


Why do AM's, why does FANNIE allow this to continue?  Why isn't there some kind of checks and balances?  Aren't there secret shoppers out there checking on these listings? Don't they hire undercover checkers to call and evaluate agents, the way they handle calls, the way they treat people, and their marketing and subsequent results?

I'm sorry, I just don't get it!

I look at the sloppiness in their listing sheets.
I look at their real estate  and sales skills and am amazed at these agents brash, unprofessional, and often snotty personalities.
I can even look statistically at their longer days on market or higher list to sale negative %,

And then S-N-A-P, I figured it out.

Why would an hourly employee in Colorado even care about these things?

Why would a salaried worker in Tulsa, Oklahoma want someone who might be more knowledgeable than they?

What need would an AM in Framingham, Mass have for pleasant phone manner or upstanding character of a "people person"?

All they care about is disposing of the property and without rocking their boat--and sometimes they may even think that a nasty person can get better results than one of those annoying "people persons".

And yes, I do think I could do better. I've been in business longer, I've got years previous experience listing and selling REO's, I've got a wonderfully engaging personality and, taking from an old Clint Eastwood quote: "I've got the sweet love of Jesus in my pretty blue eyes"!

Why ANY asset manager would want to work with some of these bozos is really beyond me, and I also think they (AM's) need to reconsider, or at least re-evaluate, some of the agents they currently have before they get hauled into court, or find themselves party to a criminal inquiry, or catapulting over a new bad-agent-induced "Fiscal Cliff"!

There, I've said it. Yell at me, call me a cad, berate me for all things under the sun. But I'm sick of the current practices in our area and really wish I had the power to fix it.

In fact, if anyone is reading this that is in a position to hire - I'd like to take on the national challenge of cleaning house:

* I would give current listing agents notice that they would be audited. They would have an opportunity to justify their performance.

* I would put out a call for agents to make application.

* I would interview agents and thoroughly check their credentials, experience, references, and available access to systems relevant to performing the job as required.

* I would put each on a 90 day probation and review after that period - no one would continue to get listings just because their breathing.

* I would be much more specific as to the requirements necessary to list properties for best net.

This process would keep banks from losing the tens of millions they are losing now doing business as they are.

Strengthening this process would bolster our economy in many ways. And, even if this plan were initiated in just one region, it could have a huge positive impact and guide other areas as to best new practices.

So...I hereby throw the challenge gauntlet!

If any AM's are reading this, I'm ready, willing, and able.

How about you? Are you ready to make a positive statement and get some accountability towards better business?

I'm all ears! Let's talk.

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  • I guess I look at things a little differently. First off, let me say you will not find an REO agent in my area who is as particular about pictures and descriptive attention getting verbiage as me. Lights all on, all the pluses and distinctions extrapolated,  highlighted and photoed. Loaded with pics. Good pics. Weekly inspections even if its not required. 4 or 5 wesbites, 2 MLS systems, plus ListHub. The whole kit'n'caboodle and then some.


    On my listings I post a sheet with instructions on exactly how to write the offer and what to expect. There is a supplemental section that further explains the processes of the specific client. The theory is that I will receive a perfect offer every time and save myself and the selling agent and their buyer lots of frustration because they will know exactly what to do, how to write it, and what to expect.


    So when I get an offer in that assigns the contract to grandma, subject to Grandmas house selling, with a promissory note for earnest money, expires tommorow, maybe I can be a little curt! Don't get me wrong. I'm polite and profesional but maybe I lose the sweet love of Jesus in my pretty brown eyes if only for the moment.


    I understand the frustration. There is an agent in my market with several large accounts. You can never get the courtesy of a return call or email. Lost one of my offers once. And the volume is no excuse, because there is another agent who does more who is completely professional. You can count on him, he is dependable, responsive and more. And I have a friend who does a lot of volume and he is the same way.


    So instead of trying to change what I cannot, which is other people and the system, I focus on what I DO have control over. ME. I know my efforts will translate over into quantifiable metrics that will seperate me from my competition. I don't lose sleep over how "it" could be or should be in the macro perspective. I don't focus on the failings or shortcomings of others, other than to evaluate how I can do things better than my competition for my clients.

    If we all tend to our own gardens, and do it well, then the landscape, the macro, will change.


    Just my 2 cents!

    • Good stuff Derrick! You know, I also use an "instruction sheet" in my listings as to how to write an offer but 8 out of 10 times the buyers agents are missing docs, signatures, initials here.....And when you send them notice of what they are missing they invariably always take 3-4 days to get you waht you need. That gets frustrating.

      • LOL, John. It never fails! Thanks.

  • I think the asset management companies need to open up a secondary unit, called the audit company.  And sorry...but Realtors would NOT be allowed to do the audits, which would cause a challenge considering that they might need to get in to the property...hmmm...I will have to rethink that part of my solution.  But anyway...basic form. 

    1.  How many photos are on line? Are they quality?  Could there be more or better shots? Is the listing agent's assistant's car sideview mirror in the shot?  I say assistant because you know the actual listing agent never went there.

    2.  On the application to apply to be an REO agent they always want your sales volume.  What fascinates me is that when you look up these big REO agents they might have 80 listings closed, but NO buyers....but that was so important to the asset manager when we applied.  And if you took all the REO listings away from those closing totals what would be left?  2 or 3?

    3.  Is the property being marketed?  Craigslist?  Newspaper? Open houses?  I bet the answer is no. I have a handful of REO assignments and I have an assistant who posts each and every one of my listings on Craigslist several times per week.  I have buyer agents who do open houses at my REO listings....SHOCKER!!!


    Tara Nagelhout....Principal Broker

    Emerald Valley Real Estate.  Serving the Eugene & Springfield area, Lane County Oregon.

  • Fulton.....Truly? That is all good stuff and you are not far off base.....The problem is that 80% of the listings in our current market are REO's or are going to be REO's....Translated? This means "corporate owned" ...Which translated means that red tape, bureacrasy, back stabbing office employees, long lunches, punching out at 5:00 with the closing package still on the 22 year old asset managers desk, butt kissing and " I am out of the office automatic replies are now commonplace. You would think it would be easy enough, we have a buyer that wants to buy and we have a seller that wants to sell....But we do not have a seller, we have a corporate giant....This crap will not move like it used to and that has been the hardest adjustment for me to make in the last 3 years was to realize that just because I have a listing does not mean I will have any money. Settle in to this process Fulton because this is how it is going to be for years to come....

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