Sell me something, please!

Two drops of grapefruit essential oil into my DesrosiersCook branded water bottle had me smiling this morning. My good friend Jen introduced my wife and me to essential oils and how they can enhance our lives. Billy, through his clever network of suppliers, sourced cool white with blue lettering “Swell” style water bottles. We have bought hundreds of essential oils and water bottles. Both items, I like very much. They make my short experience on this planet slightly better.

We purchased these items from friends. And, it’s important to note that we always try to purchase from friends and family. Why? I think it’s part of the meaning of life.

Sure, we could go online and find a slightly cheaper version of each item. And, chances are, they are all made at the same factory in the east somewhere. But to me, the act of supporting a friend is the essence of life.

Your entrepreneurial friends need your support. Those who rely on commissions, contingency sales or who own a retail business need your support to pay their bills. Simple as that.

Often your entrepreneur friends do not have retirement plans and they have taken risks to create a business. Unlike people with “Jay-Oh Bees”, entrepreneurs do not know if they will be able to pay their bills each month. Budgeting when sales are slow can be stressful. Jim Rohn calls it, “too much month at the end of the money.”

How can you help your entrepreneurial friends?

Buy their stuff, drink their Koolaid, ask them what help they need. Avoid their competitors and don’t be a dick. Support your friends and family.

It’s your story to tell.

Real Estate agency relationships are private and confidential. The things you say and do with your agent are… between you and your agent.

By knowing your private thoughts and motivations, your real estate agent is in a careful place to offer advice. A good place. A place to trust.

An ethical agent will hold back from the disclosing anything about your relationship, even it’s existence. Yet, top agents survive by referral. A referral is a recommendation from a past client, friend or associate. So, your referral is needed and vital.

If you liked working with your agent and he or she offered good advice and service please share.

Showing Properties…Simple?

Have you ever called your real estate agent to book a showing? Here is what happens.

  1. Your agent contacts the listing agent to make sure the property is not sold.
  2. Your agent sends a formal request to show the property at a set date and time.
  3. The listing agent receives the message and makes a log entry, contacts the seller and waits for approval. If all is good, the showing is confirmed by the listing agent sending a confirmation message back to the buyer’s agent via email and text message.

You simply meet the agent at the listing and are quickly escorted throughout the home. Simple!


What if the seller cannot accommodate the showing as requested? What if there are tenants who do not respond timely to the listing agent’s request. What if the showing is cancelled or delayed by the seller or tenant? And, what happens when the buyer’s agent has lined up two or three showings and now has a gap in the schedule? What if there is a pending offer? What’s the status of the offer? Is the offer in negotiation? What’s the process now?

Booking a showing may seem simple but there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes. In most jurisdictions the timing of offers and showings comes under legal scrutiny should a conflict arise. Agents have specific legal and ethical rules that govern their conduct designed to benefit the public.

Often, these rules and ethics are not crystal clear and agents do their best behind the scenes to ensure fairness. This is one reason why top agents often say such great things about other top agents. A solid transaction always takes two talented agents!

Veteran full-time agents will agree:

  1. Negotiation starts when the showing is booked. Every comment, question and nuance is important should the buyer write an offer later on.
  2. Every showing is important to the seller and to the buyer. If it’s not, don’t book it. Be respectful. You are not buying every house you look at but someone took a lot of time out of their day to prepare the home. Respect.
  3. Feedback is appreciated. What did you like or dislike? This could help the seller in the future. And, more importantly, what did you purchase instead?
  4. Work with a full-time agent. You will notice the difference.

Viewing and screening properties is the most important element in real estate sales. It may seem like a simple appointment but it can lead to a great real estate purchase with the right advice.



Make it a great day!

My life changed when I finally realized that each day when I awake…

1. It’s a miracle to wake up. Not everyone gets to. I have my wits and my hands, feet and legs all seem to be working just fine. Exercising a grateful attitude rather than angst for the day ahead has helped to shape my mood. Not every day is fluffy and bright but I am truly excited for the day ahead.

2. My day will be filled with challenges. I have replaced, “why is this happening to me?”, with “alright, these are my cards, what’s the best hand I can play?”. I am also getting better with leaving past events in the past. It’s not easy to forget the mistakes, fumbles and times when things don’t go my way but waking up with a fresh slate each day is refreshing.

3. The type, quality and value of my challenges will define my life. Speaking with people who seem to be “stuck” in their lives, it’s often easy to see what they are stuck on is low-value issues. What problems am I helping with today? Am I at 30,000 feet or am I stuck in the weeds of anger, frustration with small issues. Is the work I am doing benefiting me and those people around me? When I am at ground level, am I approaching the work with gratitude?

My only task, therefore, becomes, choosing my challenges wisely.


Serving One Master

Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters, since either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”

June 15th Real Estate Agents in BC are banned from Limited Dual Agency. It’s an old lesson and it’s time now for agents to understand what this really means.

To me, it’s the goal to avoid conflicts of interest. My interest to support and protect the interests of my client needs to be placed at the forefront of my actions. Yet, real estate is a consumer game. Buying, selling, products, services, features and benefits, and emotions are involved. It’s not so cut a dried as some would like.

Let’s say I work for a developer selling new downtown condo’s and they are selling fast. My mom wants to buy one. Today, based on the rules, I would have to step aside and get my mom and the developer new individual agents. Agents that neither really know. Interesting. I don’t think this serves either of them very well at all. The delay could cost my mom a place to live. Mmmm.

Or, I list a home down the street in my area and my buyer clients whom I have shown many, many properties want to view the property. Technically, I am now in a conflict. And worse, if they want to buy it, I could again be double recused. This one I understand but I still struggle with.

Can agents create a thriving business serving one master? I know we can. But it’s a hard profession to succeed in and perhaps one of the hardest to “make it”. So, next time you meet with your agent, discuss these changes and how you will tackle these issues should you run into them. You will need to be flexible and you may not feel “served” but let’s hope you get the deal!

Don’t call the listing agent!

By now you have read, “Limited Dual Agency is truly limited” and “Let’s party, Ok maybe not…” blogs posted earlier. If you haven’t please click back and have a quick read. Apart from my poor grammar an misdirected humour, the reads are quick and easy.

So, what does “Don’t call the listing agent” mean?

Well, first off you can call the listing agent. He or she can give you factual information on the property. Technically they can even show you the property during an open house. Booking a showing with them is most likely a no-no unless they bring in another agent who is entirely unconnected to the seller. If, during your conversation, you discuss anything personal about you or the seller (motivation, price other than list price, use, dates, desires etc) you will be putting that agent into a conflict of interest. Afterwards, the agent will have to recuse themselves from any dealings with you and the seller, their first client. (See Implied Agency in a week or so on this blog)

Why this change?

Simply put, Real Estate Agents in British Columbia can only serve ONE Master as of June 15th based on the banning of “Limited Dual Agency”. This is a good thing. It’s new, but it’s good. More than 20,000 agents across B.C. are learning the new rules and many of us are spot on yet some are still learning. We will get better at interpreting the rules but for now, it’s a new set of tools.

So, why should you not call the listing agent?

1) The Real Estate Council of B.C. really doesn’t want you to call because of the ban on limited dual agency. It’s a natural by-product of the ban.

2) You are working with an agent you already trust or have an agreement with. Call this agent. He or she can get you all the info you need just as fast and often with more detail and learn motivations and details that will help you make a good choice. Your agent can dig deeper. There maybe a delay, but the seller’s agent will welcome the call and often “hold” the property because they know you are working with a pro.

3) By calling the listing agent, you could inadvertently harm your negotiating position and do yourself a disservice should you choose to place an offer. It’s easy to give away personal details on a call or email and this may harm you later on.

4) The Real Estate Council of B.C. wants you to know that the listing agent serves the seller’s interest only, not yours. The listing agent’s goal is to sell the unit for the highest price, at the best terms and as quickly as possible to benefit the seller. Period. 

5) If you speak directly to the listing agent, you could create a conflict of interest. (See recusal or visit CNN and research Jeff Sessions and Donald Trump… same thing) By virtue of this, if the listing agent has learned anything personal about you, it could hurt your position.

By working closely with your Real Estate Agent, the Real Estate Council of B.C. believes that you will get better protection and better advice. The result moving forward will be better transactions and better results for consumers overall.

Here is what you will get as a client from your agent.


Avoid Conflicts of Interest

Full Disclosure of Relevant Information

Protect Your Confidentiality

Result: Expert Advice – Better Protection of Your Interests.

Dean Desrosiers is a Realtor and Associate Broker who helps people buy and sell houses in the Central Okanagan, British Columbia. He works with clients, not unrepresented parties.