Chris Linsell TheClose.com

How Do Real Estate Agents Navigate Through The Current Culture Of Activism? • Close-ing Time • Chris Linsell

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Welcome to our monthly feature, Close-ing Time – in partnership with TheClose.com.

In this episode Chris Linsell from The Close introduces The Close Pro – a monthly subscription service providing access to all of The Close content and also premium content including, exclusive marketing courses, weekly small group coaching and access to their entire resource library. Second, Chris discusses the changes that are being seen in the real estate market as a result of the #BlackLivesMatter movement and how important it is to be on the right side of history. Last, a probable second wave of COVID19 is discussed and what real estate agents can do to be prepared for another possible lock-down.

If you’d prefer to watch this interview, click here to view on YouTube!

Chris Linsell can be reached at chris@theclose.com.


D.J. Paris 0:00
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Welcome to another episode of Keeping it real, the largest podcast made by real estate agents and for real estate agents. My name is DJ Parris. I am your host and guide through the show. And today, we have another episode of our monthly series closing time with Chris Lynn Zell of the closed.com. I know this is a partnership with the close.com. And let me tell you a little bit about their website, which is specifically for real estate professionals. Now the close is a new kind of real estate website designed to give agents teams and brokerages actionable strategic insight from industry professionals. They cover real estate marketing, lead generation technology and team building strategies from the perspective of working agents and brokers who want to take their business to the next level. Now please visit the closed.com That’s th e Cl O e.com. And subscribe to their newsletters so you can be notified every time they publish an article. They are our favorite web website, real estate website blog specifically designed to help agents. We’re super thrilled to have them. And today we have Chris Lynn sell. And let me tell you about Chris. Chris is the closest resident expert on real estate topics ranging from marketing lead generation, transactional best practices, and of course, everything in between. And he’s also a licensed agent in the state of Michigan. Chris has been part of hundreds of transactions from modest rural starter homes to massive waterside compounds. And when he isn’t writing, you’ll find Chris or servicing as clients, you’ll find Chris fly fishing the trout streams of Michigan or at the stage it is community theaters latest production. Chris Welcome once again to the show.

Chris Linsell 2:36
DJ, so glad to be back. Thanks for having me.

D.J. Paris 2:38
So I have to ask about community theater. Are you are people doing any virtual theater? You know you’re in Chicago, we have arguably some some say the best theater in the entire country or certainly right up there. We have great great places like the Steppenwolf and the Goodman, and lots of other theaters. But are there productions going on that you’re that you’re working with? Or is everyone kind of waiting?

Chris Linsell 3:04
Everyone’s pretty hunkered down here. Nothing that I’m involved in, though I have seen a couple of people from our local community group starting to develop things like like Zoom Productions, where they’re literally doing doing improv via zoom, we’ve got a couple of really great entertainers who are doing magic and comedy shows via zoom, which are actually getting really popular. So you know, I’m not I’m definitely not a participator at the moment, but I’m definitely a supporter of people who are finding new ways to express that art.

D.J. Paris 3:43
Yeah, it’s fun to watch some of some artists who are who are still creating, like, I noticed that if you remember, MTV had a series in the 90s called the state it was a comedy troupe from from the East Coast, and they have all reunited and are making sketches based on filming things at home, and then kind of piecing it all together. And it actually is pretty funny. And someone also just Jason Reitman. The famous director, just reshot the Princess Bride, with all various like 50 different actors, and they they cobbled it together. I don’t think it’s officially out yet. But I was watching that and there’s like, you know, five different people playing the same parts, which is going to be really cool to watch and it’s gonna be all dissonant because of course, the backgrounds and everything are, are unique. And so I’m very excited to see what what the theatre community and the, you know, sort of entertainment community is doing. During this time.

Chris Linsell 4:42
Here. I’ve got a friend who’s working on a series, like episodic kind of story of somebody’s first job, they got their first job two days before everybody went into lockdown, and so no The story of it’s like a fictional comedic telling of this person’s first foray into the professional world, you know, and having to do the entire thing via zoom. It’s a really funny, funny way to tell the story. Yeah. So anyway, yeah, lots happening. lots happening.

D.J. Paris 5:20
Yeah, a lot. A lot is happening. So I wanted to just quickly two things. First, I want to talk about the clothes before we get into our topics for the the clothes has a new program for for their their viewers, for their fans called the clothes Pro. And I was hoping you could walk us through what that is and how it works. Yeah, absolutely.

Chris Linsell 5:38
So in a nutshell, here’s, here’s the way the close Pro works. And I’ll backup by saying the close is a completely free 100% Open real estate resource for agents and brokers to better your business, we want to provide fantastic content, as often as possible that are going to that’s going to up your game. But we have found through talking to readers, and being a part of this business, that that we’ve got folks who are looking for more, and that’s where the close Pro comes in. Close Pro is a subscription, a monthly subscription service, it’s 35 bucks a month. And with the close Pro, not only do you get access to all of our article content like everybody else, but you also get exclusive access to premium courses that we’ve written, including six simple systems to transform your real life, as well as a course called Thrive, survive and thrive in a changing market, you get access to small group coaching every week. And you get access to our resource library with a ton of templates, and scripts, and guides, long form guides that you can download and use in your business. So it’s just a way to take your business to that next level, we really hope that everyone is getting tons of great strategy and advice out of the clothes.com. And for those agents who are ready to accelerate their business, the clothes Pro is a great option to do that.

D.J. Paris 7:07
Yeah, and so how and by the way, there’s a 14 day free trial as well. So it’s certainly something that you can you can test to see how it appeals to you and then continue on it, the clothes is an amazing resource. So I’m really excited, they’re now having this additional subscription option for for their fans. So definitely check it out, just go to the clothes.com you’ll see in the menu bar at the top of the clothes Pro, I think it’s also somewhere else on their homepage. But seek it out, it’s worth checking out and 14 day free trial. So nothing to lose. Absolutely. Wonderful. Now I wanted to also touch on this is about a week old at the time of us recording. So today is actually the second of July, this happened actually back towards the end of June, June 25, I believe. And I just so it’s so topical and something I thought we should just at least address and you know, discuss, which is that the Houston associate, Houston Association of Realtors, and I, I could be wrong, I believe they might be the first association to have made the shift has removed the word master with respect to being a bedroom descriptor. That is that that word is gone. They believe it has ties to slave ownership and figured that word was problematic and has now been replaced by the word primary. So no longer will the term master be allowed in the Houston Association of Realtors. And I I’m curious to see if that trend continues to spread to other local associations or even if the National Association of REALTORS might even have a statement about that. So just wanted to bring that up as something that’s very topical.

Chris Linsell 8:47
Yeah, yeah. So look, I mean, here’s here’s something to kind of just consider about this, the term master bedroom, or master bathroom, you know, we looking back at at the way that that word, or that phrase came about in the kind of nomenclature of the real estate business, nobody has been able to point specifically to a particular source where it came from. There’s not like a clearly drawn line between today and you know, slave owner era homes, there’s no, there’s no direct line there. But that’s really not the point here. The point here is that that term has the opportunity to be interpreted as hurtful or as, as as applicable towards, you know, these times in our country where there really was a master of the house who owned slaves. And so I personally, I applaud the Houston Association of Realtors for making this change, in part because it’s the right thing to do. It’s You have to be on the right side of history. And also because they recognized like we should all recognize that there’s no downside here. There’s no downside to removing this term from the way that we talk about property and listings. There’s only upside, this is only going to benefit the people who are using these services in our communities. So I really am glad that they took a look did the math on this, and said, We want to be on the right side here. And this isn’t hurting anybody to make this change. It’s only helping.

D.J. Paris 10:34
Yeah, I agree fully with you with that thought. And, you know, it’s interesting, too, because now we’re starting to as as a society, and and hopefully as globally starting to look at language and, and understanding its impact that seemingly, maybe to to, you know, someone who’s not currently dealing with racial issues in their own personal life, we often overlook and forget. So in the IT world, the word master and slave are very well, they’re not used as much anymore. But they were used very commonly to describe, you know, hardware components, there’d be a slave drive and a master drive. And it was used and there’s, there’s all sorts of designations that are called I’m a master X, you know, I might be a master chef for a mess there. And so we’re starting to look at all these phrases and say, Okay, is it time to retire these phrases? Do they harken back to days that we aren’t wanting to associate with? And again, to your point, does this actually hurt anything to change? In this case, master bedroom to primary bedroom, I would say, personally, doesn’t seem to hurt anything, seems to only help easy shift. And, you know, no, no, no blood drawn as a result of it. So I also applaud them and hope that this seems like a real simple and easy shift. But, you know, we were talking Chris and I were talking offline, there’s other there’s other language that hasn’t yet been fully understood. But But in that same vein, I, our managing broker here at our office, whenever he sees one of our agents listings, if they use the word, just a few steps away in a description, so the property is just a few steps away, he has, he will make sure that’s removed, because not everyone’s mobile, not everyone can walk, not everyone can walk up steps, even though that’s not really what that’s referencing. But it is referencing mobility. And that is something that not all of us have. And so to think about, you know, I think this is a great opportunity, just just to reflect upon the language we use and how we speak to clients, the language we use when we’re posting our inventory online, you know, how are we describing these? Are we trying to be inclusive? And is there any language, even if it’s benign, and not ill intended? Is there a language here to consider adjusting to be more inclusive? Yeah, absolutely.

Chris Linsell 12:53
And, you know, I think it’s also important to remember that, you know, personally, I’ll just kind of bare my soul here a little bit. Personally, I have not ever been on the negative end of any kind of what feels like discrimination or housing discrimination that’s never experienced, that I’ve personally had. And so, you know, I can’t necessarily identify with how it would feel to be in that position. But what I can, what I can do is, is I can say to myself, Okay, so what, what, challenge what, what work? Do I have to do personally, in order to remove those roadblocks for other people? And, you know, I’ll be the first to say, Yeah, we got to be thoughtful about the words that we choose. And for some folks, that’s annoying or frustrating. But I guess I would just put it to you like this. You, nobody is asking you personally, to change the way that you’re thinking they’re asking the way, you know, we’re the ask is to consider changing the way that you’re acting. And remember, this is this is your profession, this is your community. These are these are the words that you’re choosing have an effect on your professionalism on your career and on the industry as a whole. And so, why not err on the side of progress rather than erring on the side of hesitance because, you know, it’s just the way we’ve always done it just doesn’t the math just doesn’t add up for me there.

D.J. Paris 14:38
Right and ultimately, to you are running a business and you want as a real estate professional, it’s your business or you’re on you work for a team or you work for a firm. But either so this is your business and you know it from a business perspective. You want to make sure that people aren’t feeling estrous sized or discriminated upon, this will only, of course, ultimately help your business to, which isn’t the reason to make the shift. But you want to run a successful business, which means you want to avoid any sort of challenging language that might not only, you know, you know, result in in issues around your licensing, but also just as being a good citizen of the country, you want to be inclusive. So I’m excited to see what changes are coming. Because I had never thought of the term master bedroom. I hadn’t thought of that. Because again, like you had said, I have not been, to my knowledge, the recipient of of any sort of housing discrimination, but I suspect to those who have obviously the, you know, that term might be a lot more sensitive. And again, easy change.

Chris Linsell 15:48
Yeah, yeah. And, you know, even even Vince Malto, who’s the, the head of the National Association of REALTORS said something along the lines of, you know, we get that HUD and, and, and the NAR, don’t, you can’t find any kind of historical connection to these words. But if the use of the terminology is offensive to some people, we would, you know, we encourage people to make the decision that makes sense for them and for their market, and to be on the right side of history, essentially. So, you know, I think I think the momentum towards positive change exists, and just, we just need to get on board with it.

D.J. Paris 16:30
Ya know, moving on, I also wanted to talk about and unfortunately, you know, in the news right now, Dr. Fauci, who has been discussing recently, that there may be this the second surge coming, we’re seeing some troubling stats, specifically in a couple of states, Florida, and Texas, although in a lot of states. In fact, as of about a week ago, I think there are only two states with declining numbers. But Florida and Texas have jumped unfortunately, higher than, than other states. So he’s been warning of possible second surge, also flu seasons coming. So there’s a lot going on that unfortunately, might might sort of merge into, you know, a second wave that that is, is problematic. What are your thoughts on on kind of what we could start doing as real estate agents to to prep? Well, let’s say for the worst, yeah, this does if we do get a second wave?

Chris Linsell 17:25
Absolutely, absolutely. So first of all, I would say, it’s not what we can do right now. It’s what you absolutely need to do, everybody needs to be doing this right now. And I’ll use an example of the last time I went to the grocery store just a couple of days ago, before I left, my wife said, start getting some stuff. And I knew exactly what she meant. I knew exactly what she meant, because, you know, things in Michigan are, okay. We’re experiencing kind of an uptick in cases here, but not as bad in other places. But, you know, it’s pretty clear the chances of things of us having to go back into a lockdown of businesses shutting down of us not having the ability to, you know, move as freely, the chances of that happening again, pretty high. I mean, I’m not gonna say they’re, you know, more than 5050. But who knows, I’m not a doctor, I really don’t know that. And so if you as a real estate agent, or not, and I’m using air quotes here, if you’re just listening to this, if you’re not getting stuff, as my wife says, You are crazy right now. And here’s what I mean, by getting stuff. Think about all the things that you wish you would have done the first time or your business at the end of February, right? Who would have gotten if you could go back in a time machine, you would have gotten a great video tour for every single one of your listings, you would have put in place protocols for virtual tours, and partnered maybe even with your property owners to conduct virtual tours, you know, with their cell phones, if really necessary, you would have put into place all sorts of systems that would allow you to have contact lists, communication with title companies, with lenders, with inspectors with appraisers, all of the people that are required to make your business run. And guess what, right now, at least, you know, for most markets, we don’t have to have all that stuff because restrictions have been loosened. But you know, what, if we move back to where we were in March, and you don’t have those systems in place, you are going to get blown away by all the people who are right now, getting their stuff. They’re getting this stuff together right now. So there’s there’s a lot we can talk about here. But that’s just kind of the top you know, the top line of advice here is put yourself back into your shoes. And a February beginning of March. And all of the things you said, Oh, man, what am I going to do without X, Y, and Z, you better be making a plan for every single one of those right now. And we’ve talked more specifically about individual stuff, but that’s the top line advice, getting your time machine, go back, start getting your stuff together.

D.J. Paris 20:23
And also think about the connections that you may have missed or that you, you know, we were all dealing with so much uncertainty, fear, stress, a lot of job loss. A lot of just people feeling disconnected from other humans due to us being you know, locked in, in our homes, essentially. And if that were to revert back, which seemingly it could, and maybe we’ll, this is a great opportunity to say, okay, Did I did I do a great job of connecting with my clients, while we were going through this, or, you know, doing sort of a hard line look of what maybe I didn’t maybe I really didn’t reach out as much as I as I ought to have? Well, now you can start to prepare to say, Okay, what you probably should be reaching out at all times anyway, but creating a structure saying, Okay, well, this does happen, people are gonna we know what’s going to happen, people, I’m sorry, as far as we don’t know what’s going to happen. But we know how people are going to feel we’re going to be scared about their jobs, they’re going to be they’re going to feel lonely and disconnected. And they’re going to be frustrated and stressed. So as an agent, are there things I can do to help my mike, my clients, my prospective clients, you know, deal with that more effectively. And now is a good time to get some stuff. If you want, you know, you can, you could do a little care package, you could just make sure everyone’s you know, going to get a phone call, you know, at a certain amount of time. Those are all things we can easily start to set up and do so that we can be prepared to support those those those clients.

Chris Linsell 21:53
Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, the other interesting thing, too, that I think listeners should be considering right now is, back the first time we went through a lockdown in a quarantine, it was literally I mean, I remember in my business, and in my family life, it was a, it was uncharted territory every single day, we just we didn’t know what the next day was going to look like. We didn’t know how the market was going to react. We didn’t know how our industry was going to react. Well, we have some learnings now a relatively small batch of data, but we have a little bit of understanding of what our local markets, what are our more macro markets are going to how they may react if we go back into like a shutdown mode as an economy. And so this is an opportunity for real estate agents to look back at the historical data that they have, even if it’s just a few months old and say, Okay, if this happens, again, how can I use the expectations for what may happen again, to my advantage, and I’ll give you an example of this. Recently, on the close, I want to say just not even a week ago, or so, one of our contributors, Shawn Madre published an article, it’s nine proven strategies to find hidden list and least hidden listing inventory in 2020. And I know for me in my local market, one of the relatively unexpected but now very consistent things that has happened as a result of of COVID-19. And the pandemic, is the already short levels of inventory have gotten even shorter. Yes, and people are just are hesitant to list their property for sale. But it has not slowed down the the hunger of buyers, especially in certain sectors of the market. And so agents who can be strategic and thoughtful and get ahead of the game, when it comes to developing listing inventory, those agents are going to be more successful and are going to actually accelerate their business, especially through another lockdown phase, because there is going to, we’re going to come out on the other side of that lockdown phase, you’re going to have 50% more inventory than you typically would. And you’re going to close all those sales because we’ve got people hungry for those for those purchases right now. We just don’t have the inventory to sell. So check out that article on the clothes if you’re interested in that nine proven strategies to find hidden listing, inventory and 2020. And that’s one thing I know I personally am going to be focusing on if we end up moving into another lockdown phase. I’m going to be looking specifically at developing inventory with the idea of of, you know, moving it as soon as people can get back into homes.

D.J. Paris 24:50
And I think that that was a great article. I did see that. So right now all of us are we’re at least at least here in the Chicago area and Chris’s area of Michigan, where he is he’s experiencing a shortage in inventory. We’re seeing that too. And everyone I’ve talking to from all the top producers we interview on the show are saying the same thing. So this is a great article to start to understand what else might be out there outside of what you’re seeing on the MLS. And I also have another suggestion. If you have listings right now, and maybe if you feel they, they aren’t going to close right away, which hopefully they will due to lending rates being inexpensive, you know, obviously, not as much inventory being available. But if you suspect that, that you’re, some of these listings may go into the fall, before they’re sold. And if that’s when, you know, the CDC may be projecting some of these unfortunate, you know, increase in cases, your clients are going to be asking, Hey, what happens if we go back into lockdown? And what happens to my listing? And how does that affect buyer trends? And how are we going to do showings? And and you need to have an answer. And so the good news is, you know, some of the procedural stuff is pretty easy, because you went through it last time. But what you really should be able to say is, here’s let me actually show you what happened to listings, when when blocked down, you know, sort of went into effect. And and here’s how it affected their time on market. And here’s how it affected, you know, buyer trends. And you need to have that answer, because they’re going to be wondering that I know, if I was getting ready to list a property, I would be asking my agent, hey, just just in case, what happens if we all get locked down again? And if you’re kind of like, well, we’ll see day by day, nobody really knows. I don’t feel like that’s, that’s the strongest answer. So what you can do, and what I’d recommend is, probably all of our listeners are paying local association dues, state association dues, National Association dues, we’re all paying these these, you know, sizable amounts of money to be part of these organizations, you can reach out specifically start with your local association, say, Hey, I just want to have a really, you know, intelligent answer and an educated answer with some data about how my clients are I’m, you know, I suspect they’re gonna start asking about this off, obviously, hopefully, your firm would be able to provide some guidance, but if not, contact your local association and say, How do I run some reports, just to see what actually happened during that time in case we’re going into a second wave? Because I want to make sure my clients have have an understanding of what might be coming. And boy, you will look like a superstar if you have that information.

Chris Linsell 27:25
Absolutely. Yeah, huge. I mean, that’s the other thing that I think real estate agents should be thinking about right now is there was established in the last, you know, six months of four months here, there has been an established expectation for the professionals in your community, that are servicing their their clients the right way, during a lockdown a pandemic, and that that right way, whatever it is, it’s different for every community, it’s different for every industry. But you know, now, through stories from what other people have told you, through your own experiences of people reaching out to you checking on us seeing what they can do for you, you know, what is resonating as good service and what is resonating as mediocre, or not so good service? Yeah, this is the time to take exam but you know, take take those learnings and like DJ said, like, be that rock star, you know what it takes to be it now. And you know what kind of time you’re gonna have on your hands. If you’re stuck at home again, you all you can do is just allocate that time into being that Rockstar, it’s, you’ve got the formula, you just got to execute it now.

D.J. Paris 28:44
I agree. This is this is the time. And it’s a challenging time to because agents are probably as busy as ever, right now. So So we understand that time is a bit limited if you’re producing agent, excuse me, because of course, things are have started to return to some sort of normalcy, we’re seeing more activity, we’re seeing multiple offer situations on on many listings, agents are, you know, money is cheap. This is a great time to be to be buying, but a very difficult time to be buying simply because of the low inventory. So So you might be really, really busy right now. And that would be a great, wonderful problem to have. But it also is something to think okay, well what happens in three months, if we’re backed down in a lockdown? You know, what can I can I can I put a structure in place to make sure I have answers for my clients and and also do I have outreach built into my, my daily life so that, you know, I’m staying in touch no matter what happens?

Chris Linsell 29:48
Yeah, for sure. And you know, a piece of advice to that. I think this is really interesting. I was talking about this with a realtor the other day. There’s something that agents can be doing right now. Now to help ensure the kind of the forward momentum of their business, if you are currently working with buyers and sellers right at the moment, especially in that active negotiation phase where you’ve got a property, and you’re just trying to negotiate the terms that work for everybody, I encourage you, right now, I’m encouraging realtors to bring into that negotiation, an element of let’s close as quick as possible, and involve a delayed possession date, if we if if that is necessary for folks, you know, I think we’ve all had clients who said, you know, the, my clear to close date is on the 15th. But I need until the 22nd, in order to get my stuff out to get to the next place, I can’t, I can’t close on my next home until the 22nd. So let’s delay closing, you know, it’s just not a good idea right now, build, negotiate your contracts, so that you can close as soon as possible, and offer some sort of delayed possession if that is necessary. And the reason I suggest that is, once the contract once the ink is on the contract, once the closing is done, your ability to be able to move, you know, your clients ability to be able to move from place to place to get into their new home, that is really on them, they don’t have to depend on an institution in order to make that happen. But if you say to you know, if you’ve got a client that says, you know, we’ve got to clear clothes, but let’s just push it out by two or three weeks, because I need some time to get my ducks in a row here, you may be at the mercy of a closing company that all of a sudden can’t offer you a closing, right? Or you may have to get an appraisal on a property that you no longer have an appraiser available for. And so, you know, right now thinking about your business moving forward, you want to get those contracts executed as quickly as possible, stack all of that stuff up right now, when we know we can execute that stuff. And the things like possession, that’s the sort of thing that even though it’s kind of a pain in the butt, sometimes, for buyers and sellers to have to deal with each other after the contract has been closed, I guarantee you, your clients are will be much more happy to deal with each other to trade off keys later on than to not have that option at all.

D.J. Paris 32:26
There were many, there were many lenders that were finding, finding it extremely challenging to close by their traditional closed dates, because of course of the lockdown. Also, remember, there’s a confluence of things going on that, you know, during lockdown, of course, just operationally It was challenging to get things done in time, across the board, whether you’re a title company or a lending institution, it was just difficult. And also, we had rates being at their lowest and in quite a while to get all these people refinancing. So I another opportunity would be to contact Chris had said this earlier, but just to reiterate, you know, talk to your lenders talk to your mom said, hey, when this happened back April, May and June, how did that affect? You know, you saw probably lots and lots of closings or refinances, how did it affect the ability to do any of those things, because if we might be heading towards that, I want to make sure my clients are educated so that I can, as Chris said, have an intelligent conversation about maybe not waiting to close, because of here’s what happened, you know, just a few months prior, I was actually I have to be a little careful how I how I describe this, I’m gonna be very vague. But I was speaking to a friend who works at a company who has a website that promotes real estate listings. So I’m just going to keep it as simple as that there’s a lot of them. So hundreds of websites that do this. But But So I’ve started a friend who works at one of these companies, and I said just out of curiosity just talked to him the other day I said, How did that affect your web traffic? April May and June What what did it look like compared to pre pre lockdown? And he said, I can’t even share with you the numbers we we more than doubled our numbers month over month, you know and during during that time. And he said I he goes it’s so incredible. You wouldn’t believe me if I told you. So what what what do we can we take from that as if we go back down into a lockdown scenario that’s likely to happen again, right? We still have rates being low, people are feeling maybe more confined, or just looking around their house more and going maybe it’s time for change. This is a great time to remember that. So in the event that that you know we start becoming less active and either voluntarily or involuntarily, staying more at home, that those trends will likely continue. And you have this wonderful opportunity to to reach out to your clients. Understanding that so many people are just maybe they’re even just bored and looking. Either way, that activities there. And, you know, we’ll great way to just keep that in mind so you can reach out and and see how your clients are doing?

Chris Linsell 35:01
Yeah, 100% 100%, a good mentor of mine once told me never be satisfied with what the press release says, always be satisfied with what the boots on the ground are saying. And so essentially what when it comes to real estate, what what he meant by that was, you can read what you can read what the announcement is on a bank’s page about their policies and about their timelines, especially in a situation like this, but the best information you can get is from the lender who knows you by your first name. And so that’s something I’ve done, I’ve reached out to a lender that I know, and I’m in daily contact with him specifically about how his business is going, and how things are going. Just in, in the lending industry in you know, in general, it’s, it’s, you know, being prepared and having those connections and relationships, if you don’t have, if you don’t have a favorite lender, if you don’t have a preferred lender or inspector or appraiser, you know, you don’t have to invite these people to Thanksgiving dinner. So, you know, being friendly is a good thing. What you want out of this is you want somebody who is going to answer your text messages, because they know that you are interested in their business, maybe you’re giving them from referrals, they are doing the same thing for you. And more often than not the most valuable thing here is not the occasional client, though, that’s nice, the most valuable thing in here is the information and the insight that you’re gonna get.

D.J. Paris 36:43
Yeah, and you know, knowledge is power. I know, that’s an overused expression, but boy, is it it’s so important because, you know, I think real estate professionals, myself included, I’m really, I don’t really consider myself that much entrenched in the real estate industry. However, we have 700 agents here at our own firm, who I’m always asking how are things going, what’s working, what’s not working for you? But understanding that that the top agents I know, have answers to well, okay, if we go back into lockdown, what’s going to happen? Or what did we see happen last time? They already know the answer to that? And if you find yourself not knowing those answers, okay, great, that’s honest, that’s fine. Now’s the time to develop that skill set, talk to top agents, you know, talk to top producers, and just sit them down or talk to your managing broker or whoever can help you or their local association. Because your clients are going to be searching this stuff. And especially if we go back into lockdown, they’re going to be looking up these answers as well. And you don’t want them to be more educated than you and and that’s a really important thing when they’re paying you a most cases a very sizable amount of money. I was I had I’ll, I don’t know how it works in Michigan with with earnest money, or if that’s a big thing. In Michigan, it’s very popular here in Illinois, or in Chicagoland at least. And I, I, some somebody, not one of our agents, although I, maybe our agents do this, too. I hope they don’t. But somebody came by to drop off an earnest money check. And it was the client and it wasn’t the clients agent. And they dropped it off at our office. And the client, of course, well, you know, we just assume everyone understands that process and what it’s for and why it happens. And client was really clueless, and we don’t even we don’t even accept earnest money here at at our company. So that made it even more difficult, because then I had to tell the buyer, hey, I’m really sorry. I think your agent might have given you the wrong information. We don’t have it and, and I was just thinking, you know, as they were leaving, and I’m not trying to be critical, and I don’t know who that agent was, but I thought, you know, if I was getting two and a half percent to help somebody buy or whatever that amount he or she was getting, I probably swing by and grab get that check and not say Hey, Mr. buyer or miss, go ahead and drop that off for, ya know. Yeah, yeah. And I look for other agents that if that process works for you, great, but you know, you’re getting paid handsomely. And you should have knowledge, you should have answers. And now’s the time to develop those and look back to your processes as well. And then think about, you know, what are things you can improve upon? Anything else, Chris, anything else on your mind?

Chris Linsell 39:23
Yeah, you know, the only other thing I think this has been kind of a revolving theme for me in the last two weeks here is this idea that COVID 19. And the pandemic that we’re experiencing the effects of that pandemic, have not necessarily been a major pivot in our business or business at all. It’s been an accelerant. It’s it has been a moment where we have made something like, you know, we’re advancing, you know, client X lactations opportunities in our businesses by 10 years in the span of something like 10 weeks. And so something I’m telling agents right now, is, it’s important. Everyone should be thinking about what their business looks like 10 years from now, think about what you look like as a professional in 10 years. Where do you want to be? Where what sort of clients do you want to be servicing? What sort of business do you want to be doing? How do you want to be spending your time. And the reason that I’m making the suggestion to folks is, clients are our clients, our buyers and our sellers and our communities have in the last two months here, three months here, they have realized a lot more of what they are depending on agents for is something that they can do from their couch. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing for us in our industry. But it is an eye opener that says, you know, what, are this this, this customer education, which typically happens slowly over the course of years, happened in weeks. And so we need to be accelerating our business plans. Accordingly, we need to be thinking, Okay, this is what our customer expectations are. Where’s How do I match those? How do I accelerate my business right now? And so I’m encouraging folks, not just in their business, but in their personal life where look at where you are right now, where where do you expect to be in 10 years? Where do you want to be in 10 years, these are the priorities, we should start setting right now. Because the world is moving very quickly, much more in business and in real estate much faster than it was three or four months ago. And so if you want to keep up with that, you got to have that accelerated mindset.

D.J. Paris 41:57
That’s great. Keep an accelerated mindset. I love that. I mean, I while you were talking about, I was thinking about my own personal life and, and thinking about my physical being I got really sick. Thankfully, not, not from COVID, just simple food poisoning about four months ago, right? When all this was really starting. And, and I was laying there just feeling miserable, I had about three or four days where it was really rough. And I was laying there. And I realized the previous five years, I thought back five years, and I had this vision of of what I wanted my physical health to look like and what I how I wanted to feel. And I realized, as I was laying there, very sickly, which was not my fault, I just ate some bad food that that was delivered to me. But I realized that, aside from that, I said, you know, I’m not in the physical shape, I thought I would be in five years ago, you know, today, and so I thought, Okay, five years, or in your case, your, your example, 10 years, it’s going to come in 10 years is going to happen. And the question is, you know, it’s going, you know, where do you want it to be at and really starting to make an actionable plan, that’s doable, and achievable. And forever. Not everyone also wants not everybody wants to be a top producer, as well. I, we have on Ryan Ryan de April, who, who’s from depo properties, and he, he has hundreds and hundreds of agents. And he talks about he has agents that their goal is to, you know, serve a certain number of clients here, they make around $300,000 or so. And he’s always encouraging them to get to the next level. And he’s learned over over years, he says, you know, not everybody wants to, that’s a very sizable amount of income. And you know, sometimes that you know, whatever that amount is for you, it doesn’t mean in 10 years, you you have to be a top 1% producer, maybe that’s not your goal, maybe your goal is to help a certain number of people per year, you know, with your business and, and let the sort of chips fall where they may, that’s a goal. So So you know, you don’t I’m not at my goal for my physical being isn’t to have, you know, 8% body fat and, and chiseled abs, and I don’t care. But I want more energy. And I know that if I want more energy in my life, I’m going to have to do things. Because five years, 10 years is going to arrive. And what I’m doing today is really, really important, as opposed to you know, another five years going by and I get sick again and have time to reflect on my physical health. And I’m like, What am I doing? So, so good time, as Chris said, to to think of that accelerant mindset is where do you want to be in 10 years? Perfect way to cap our conversation. So, Chris, once again, I want to encourage all of our listeners right now, stop what you’re doing unless you’re driving, keep driving, don’t or pull over. But go to the close.com this is legitimately our favorite real estate marketing website. I wish I would have thought of it. It would be a great way to promote this podcast if I would have come up with it. But I didn’t put the clothes did and they’re awesome and they come out with just a handful of articles. Week and they’re very, very well written, they’re intentional, they’re researched. You know, sometimes you, you go on, I’ve gone on line and done searches, like best marketing tips for realtors, you come across these lists of 100 things you can do and 98 of the 100 are really like, not that interesting or exciting, or all that helpful. The clothes doesn’t do that they do have lists, but their lists are amazing. But they also, you know, do other types of pieces as well. So definitely check out the clothes.com Also subscribe to their pro option. Again, a free 14 day trial, nothing to lose, and, and you’ll get, you know, guidance from people Hey, Chris, along with all their editors, and contributors. It’s an amazing organization, we’re super proud to be affiliated with them for this to have them on the show. And super grateful. So Chris, on behalf of the viewers and the listeners, once again, thank you for continuing to come on our show and and spend time out of your incredibly busy day Christmas. By the way, Chris is not only you know, has a family and does, you know fishing we talked about and is an actor, but also is a real estate professional himself and a trainer, a coach as well as a journalist. So he is a busy, busy guy. So

we are so thrilled to have you. And you know, we’re going to continue to to keep asking you back. So thank you. Thanks, Chris. And we’re going to ask everybody real quickly two quick things we always cap or end with which is please tell a friend think of one other real estate agent that could benefit from listening to this particular interview with Chris from the close and send them a link to our podcast, easiest way to shoot him over to our website, keeping it real pod.com. Also, you can find us on any podcast app. So just look for keeping it real, you’ll see us there’s a bunch of keeping it real podcast by the way, which was a silly thing I should have looked at five years ago when I named this but you’ll find RSV look, you’ll see you’ll see us and also please follow us on Facebook facebook.com forward slash keeping it real pod we also post all the things the close writes there as well. So you can read all the close stuff right on our on our Facebook page and also follow the clothes on Facebook, which is facebook.com forward slash the clothes spelled out D O T CLM. So the clothes.com so ever just search for the clothes, you’ll find them on there. And there. They have great content there as well. So, Chris, thanks again. And this is the Fourth of July weekend. So for everyone watching live as we’re recording this happy Fourth of July, everyone listening after the fact we’ll go why are they saying this? That was a week ago. So I apologize to our all of our listeners. But for our viewers. It is Fourth of July and hope everyone has a safe and healthy holiday, as I’ll show you as well Chris, thank

Chris Linsell 47:44
you. Thanks, guys. Thanks for having me back. I look forward to talking again soon. Great

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