A friend of mine was on a business panel and he was asked the question, “As an employer, what is the number one characteristic you look for when hiring someone?”
He answered, “That’s easy… honesty!” Amen to that! I could not agree more. He went on to say that people can learn and be trained in their respective jobs, but honesty is a hard quality to find in people these days. In fact, when you do find an honest individual, you usually get the whole package. That person tends to be good at their job, on time, looks to succeed in their endeavors, treats people well, is a great representative of the company or product, and helps not only the company but helps themselves.
I would have to say that honesty has to be number one in real estate. We are dealing with transactions that mean a lot of money to a lot of people and honesty must be paramount. I have heard from buyers that won’t use a Realtor ever, or ever again because they had a bad experience with honesty. We’ve all heard about sellers or buyers that were not honest with one another about a purchase of a home. We’ve seen in recent years the crackdown on mortgage lenders again because of issues involving honesty. Appraisers have been scrutinized on whether or not they were providing honest evaluations. One of the biggest governing clauses in the real estate contract is Section Nine entitled “Good Faith.” It talks about the buyer’s and the seller’s obligation to act in honesty and good faith during the course of the transaction. Many attorneys have won cases on just the “good faith” clause alone. That’s how important it is.
Many times, buyers will work with Agent “A,” and then out of the blue, buy a home with Agent “B,” leaving Agent “A” that did all the work without a commission. Of course, they wouldn’t sign a buyer’s agency agreement, and in the end, they just did not want to be honest. Sellers tell brokers all time that they choose some other agent to sell their home. Do they tell the agent that did not get the listing the real reason why they were not chosen? Sometimes, but not often.
I think we would all agree that it’s not easy finding the real, honest, genuine people these days. I try to trust my gut instincts, but even on my best day, I have to take a leap of faith and eventually trust someone.
Dan Polimino is a Realtor with Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty. He can be reached at DPolimino@fullerproperties.com