'For Sale' by lisbokt, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License
Just when I thought I couldn't hate real estate agents any more than I already did, they prove me wrong by pissing me off on a different level this time!
The reason I have always hated realtors is that I find them to be hot-headed, egotistical, not responsive and useless. This is not to say they are ALL bad, but many of them are.
Their hot-headedness and egoism is my personal opinion, I admit. As for the non-responsiveness, I believe that many of us, while using a realtor to buy a home, can attest to how they often show you listings that are way above your budget, or that dont fit at all your specifications, as portrayed in the following conversation:
Buyer: "I am not looking for a fixer-upper. I want something move-in-ready."
Realtor: "Just imagine the possibilities."
No! I do not want to imagine anything! Thanks for wasting both of our times with this useless visit!
Or, I love it when you tell them you am looking for a 3-bedroom for example, and they take you to a listing that says 2+1 bedrooms, only for you to find out once on site that the +1 is not really a bedroom, but a corner or tiny den that is usually impossible to make into a separate bedroom.
As for their uselessness, I have already addressed this in a previous blog entry. I still believe that with total availability and dissemination of information, as demonstrated by websites such as MLS, ComFree and others, realtors' role and value will diminish because we will all have access to the same information they have been trying to protect for decades.
More recently, however, several agents have really gotten under my nerves by sending me emails complaining about comments left on their listings on SeekOdin. Some have even insulted me, my business and threatened to take legal action against me if I do not remove the comments in question, which they think are defamatory.
Let me first state that I always filter out any comment or part of a comment that is actually defamatory. I admit that some comments left are out of place, insulting, useless and not in the spirit of SeekOdin. I do not need to be threatened to filter those out, which I do on a constant basis. However, none of the comments brought up by those complaining agents are actually defamatory. They all speak to the poster's frustration while using the services of the realtors in question.
I have never received any communication nearly as ridiculous, offensive and menacing as the ones I regularly receive from realtors from a professional under any of the other category of services listed on SeekOdin (accountants, lawyers, mechanics, plumbers ...), even though many of them have much more negative comments left on their listings.
I will not name those agents, but they know who they are. Rather than satisfy their childish demands and delete the "offensive" comments in question, I have decided to remove their listings altogether. Why should a "professional" that cannot accept criticism gain exposure on a site that gets well over five thousand unique visitors a month? It is their loss, if you want my opinion. That, plus the fact that I do not have time to keep answering their pesky and insulting emails, let alone go to court for the sake of their inflated egos.
I want those agents to know that the reason I have sort-of "caved in" at the end, is not so much to protect myself and my business, because in the end, it is not I that am "defaming" them, as they like to charge. It is rather the honest Montrealers that contribute to my site by leaving comments. For that, I thank them for their participation. If ever a case gets big enough to go to court, I would most likely receive a court order to give out the IP address used when an offending comment was left. So in the end, it is the users of my website that will lose, not me. And that is something I will never let happen.
Needless to say, those agents have demonstrated their non-professionalism, their lack of openness and complete inability to take any sort of criticism. And THAT is why I believe they are hot-headed and egotistical.