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The Truth About Real Estate

The renown author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who is most famous for his characters, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, promoted a consistent theme throughout his stories and novels. This theme was about the art of observation! To observe without judgement is a difficult task however once one can master this your ability to understand is increased 10 fold. Real Estate isn’t about sales! It is about observation and listening. It is different than any other sales discipline in that quite often your client becomes your neighbor or you see him or her in the grocery store or hardware store or your favorite restaurant quite frequently.  Additionally, the most successful agents/brokers are ones whose clients are repeat clients or referrals from former clients.

In 45 years of working in  the title insurance, escrow, lending construction and real estate profession I have learned to be observant and to listen. Quite often the initial goal of the client will change several times during the process of finding them a suitable property. If I didn’t observe and listen I would certainly miss those subtle changes in direction and most certainly lose the client.

One of the other observations I have made throughout the years is that both the buyer and the seller need to walk away from the transaction feeling that they were treated fairly. Quite often sellers feel that they have sold to cheap and buyers feel that they have paid to much or that they have ended up with a “money pit”. This is not a good outcome for anyone involved. My goal is to have my sellers feel that they have received a fair price for their property and  that the my buyer is just as excited at the prospect of home ownership at the close of escrow as when they started the process. This is not always easy. By the time the buyers “due diligence” is complete and the loan process is complete both parties feel like they have been pulled through a knot hole.

I have found the best way to deal with the emotional roller coaster of buying or selling real estate is to: Observe, Listen and Stay Calm. All transactions are not perfect and many are fraught with issues. We live in an age of Disclosure and the best way to deal with problems that arise on the way to close of escrow is to deal with them honestly and with candor.  In the final analysis, I feel successful when both parties are smiling at the close of escrow.


Terrence Pershall