My Biggest Rookie Mistake in Real Estate

The Rookie A few days ago on Facebook, someone posed the question, “What was the biggest mistake you made as a real estate rookie?”

We all did it. You get your freshly minted real estate sales license and off you go, headlong into your new career, probably without a whole lot of guidance and direction in the beginning, until that moment when you suddenly realize that your licensing classes prepared you well for passing the state exams, but not-so-well for what must be done on a day-to-day basis in order to survive as a real estate agent.

Until that epiphany hits you, and you come to the realization that your broker is your new best friend and mentor, you will make silly rookie mistakes. Heck, you’ll make some silly mistakes all throughout your real estate career, not just in the beginning. But it’s those classic rookie miscues that (hopefully) you only make once that really stick in your mind.

My Biggest Rookie Mistake in Real Estate

The ink on my license was barely dry. I think it was Day 3 of my real estate career when I got a “desk call” from someone who wanted to see a $450K home, “RIGHT NOW!” (keep in mind at that time the median sales price in my market was about $120K. So we are talking about a sale at roughly four times the going median sales price. That’s a big deal, and visions of dollar signs danced in my head.)

I hung up the phone, screamed like a little girl, found another agent to cover the phone and raced to the property to meet “my new clients.” The “clients” and I really hit it off. We connected well. I distinctly recall thinking, “Man, this selling real estate stuff is EASY!”

After we walked through the home, and I locked the door they turned to me and said, “Thanks so much. We love it. We’re going to call our agent right now and submit an offer!”

We’re going to call our agent right now…

Turns out they’d already viewed it once with their agent (the wife’s cousin’s second-best friend) who was “busy right now” so they just called information and asked for a Century 21 office. When the operator said “Which one?” they just said, “The first one.” I worked at Century 21 Aware Realty… “Aware” came first in the alphabet.

I worked that desk phone with every free second I had. So I got the call and made the biggest rookie mistake possible when dealing with a new contact. I have never, not once since then failed to ask, “Are you working with a real estate agent?

What was your biggest rookie mistake? Come on, fess up. No one will hold it against you, and you just might help some other new agent avoid making the same mistake you did.