Looking forward to a golden future

Brokers and agents conducting business in California are faced with a once-in-a-lifetime golden opportunity because of this real estate crisis. This unique condition has not presented itself since the Great Depression and WWII. Out of that financial disaster and the war-time recovery, many new rules for future conduct were developed, most of which were never before conceptualized or even envisioned.

As we evolve from this financial crisis (and concurrent recession), new levels of agent conduct in future real estate transactions will appear. Some will be brought about by individual reaction from within the brokerage community. Many others, as we already are experiencing, will certainly come from government oversight due to the real estate industry’s past failure to police its conduct with the public and the properties they list and market.

Consider that in the ashes of the Millennium Boom, a fertile environment exists in which we are unbound by past marketing digressions (internal corruption and outward deceit) and free to move towards a more sustainable structure for brokerage conduct consistent with time-honored market fundamentals, not short-sighted get-rich-quick opportunism and phoney projections of growth and profits.

California brokers and agents have been given a blank slate upon which to implement proper standards for conduct with clients and the properties they list, sell, lease or encumber. The real estate industry has in the past shown little inclination to police itself, and in this power vacuum, legislation will naturally step in to protect the public from dilatory, if not incompetent,  brokers and agents.

Clients, as members of the public, have expectations. Find out what they are and, if arguably reasonable, facilitate them to the full extent permitted by law. After all, agent and brokers are the gatekeepers to the entrance and exit of real estate ownership, and with that comes responsibility. Responsibility to be flexible in thought and knowledgeable about the properties you list sufficient to produce the maximum transparency between sellers and buyers – the match sought –  about the property you are handling. Innovative agents will use this opportunity to redesign the edifice of real estate practice, and construct it with more effective, efficient, public oriented needs in mind.

Agents by nature are generally quite optimistic about the future of real estate, and there’s much to look forward to as the real estate industry awakens from its present slumber. Optimism, however, must be grounded in rational thought and fresh conduct in order for its innovative energy to be put to productive long-term use.  The corrupt mentality of “we will let the buyer know about the facts after we go to escrow,” or ”this buyer wants too much information” must be abandoned and replaced with forthright thinking and receptive reaction.

The concurrence of a business recession and a financial crisis has created a moment in time for mavericks and innovators to excel.

The concurrence of a business recession and a financial crisis has created a moment in time for mavericks and innovators to excel. The coming years will be tough ones for corruption, deceit and other quasi-criminal elements to exist, much less thrive as they did in the mid-2000s. Also, speculators do not stand much of a chance of interfering with homebuyers once government subsidies end and the market finds its foundation for sustainable growth in sales, leasing and mortgage lending.  All facets of real estate activity will certainly change as agents will not likely waste this golden opportunity to become one of the innovative high-functioning market makers.

What shape might the innovations take? No one knows just yet, but innovation will happen as the deep freeze of this crisis-fed recession begins to thaw and the DNA of future conduct by all is pieced together.

Here’s a helpful hint to all first tuesday students and readers: the biggest challenge – a puzzle – for the greatest optimist to figure out and implement is an innovative idea that will allow the 2.5 million underwater Californians to sell their homes and escape the bondage of their house arrest.

Editor’s note – Holland has the answer for homeowners by allowing their participation in the MBB market to discount the loan on their home, underwater or not.

Figure this riddle out and you’ll have a golden future indeed…