Love Potion #5


By: Shelby Austin

The Magic

Before we get to Love Potion Number 5, let’s first look at how most perceive the skills of a Quality Real Estate Agent.

If I asked you what it takes to be a Real Estate Agent you might say, honest, hardworking, would love to look at houses, be able to negotiate deals and good at marketing. The job would entail showing homes, decorating homes, putting deals together, holding open houses and negotiating deals, happy buyers and sellers.  Right?

The Truth

Real Estate sales require the draw in of people, the tenacity to get the job done, a desire to work hard and a willingness to understand the craft-but long term success is the work smart, not hard approach.

The Job

Seek out people to work with, create trusting relationships and ask for business. Self-educate about laws, markets, lending environment. Educate others, negotiate, counsel, close. Refresh and Repeat!

The Skills

I say these 5 characteristics are required for success. But Love Potion #5 is  guaranteed to reduce the risk of burn-out.

  1. Likeability
  2. Communicator
  3. Roll off me & bounce back attitude
  4. Determined

(Love Potion) #5 – Teacher & Coach

Here is a snapshot of transactions in the life of an agent lacking Love Potion No. 5 – we can see why the Teacher & Coach skills are critical.

Agent Sally’s last 6 months – 5 opportunities:

  1. Buyer – pre-approved. Hasn’t signed agency agreement. Shown homes over 3 weekends-12 houses, 20 hours invested, 21 phone calls. $30.00 in gas. Buyer gets job transfer to Texas, waiting a year to buy. Zero Earnings
  2. Buyer – pre-approved. Under contract. Wrote a check that bounced accidentally. Now can’t get financing. 32 hours invested, 28 phone calls, $60.00 in gas, Lunch $20.00. Zero Earnings
  3. Seller – Listed home. $225,000. Should be $210,000 at highest. Needs de-cluttered and has two dogs. On market 3 months –only 6 showings. Seller reduced to $220,000. Agent purchased Dog Kennel for sellers since seller refused to remove dogs during showings and alpha dog (Muffy) snarled and snapped at first buyer viewing the home. Agent stopped calling seller every week, now seller is calling agent to say they are not re-listing with Agent. 60 hours, 93 phone calls, $25.00 in gas, $75.00 in lunches and flyers. $30.00 dog kennel.  Zero Earnings
  4. Seller – Listed home. $450,000. Priced right to get showings. Seller smokes. Feedback is always about the smell.  On market 3 weeks – 20 showings. Agent purchased ionizer – still smells as seller is still smoking in the home. 43 hours, $15.00 in gas, 52 phone calls, $150.00 in lunch and flyers. Zero Earnings
  5. Buyer – pre-qualified. Signed Agency agreement. Wants fixer upper. Needs FHA financing. Won’t look at anything unless it is grossly underpriced. Purchases a home that must sell as a Short-Sale (needs lender participation to sell for less than owed). Buyer waits 2 months to find out Lender will not accept net amount, buyer is frustrated and wants to give up on purchasing, decides to rent. Now buyer won’t return agents phone calls. 32 hours, $38.00 in gas, 43 phone calls. Zero Earnings


Hours: 187

Gas $168, Lunches $245.00, Ionizer $240.00, Dog kennel $30.00= TOTAL OUT OF POCKET $683.00

Phone Calls 237

Earnings $ ZERO

See below for possibility of how the Love Potion might have made a difference:

  1. Might have questioned better about commitment to purchase – likely same outcome Earnings – still ZERO
  2. Counsel Buyer on possibility of Financing falling through if something changed or went wrong – may not have corrected, but Agent would have not kicked themselves quite as much in the end) Earnings – still ZERO
  3. Might have coached Seller on correct pricing, only agreeing to take listing if priced right, insisted that dogs be removed from home for the short time it takes to sell) Commission earned or Seller does not agree and agent moves on to something more productive, time and money not wasted.
  4. Might have explained to seller that the investment of Agents time and money comes with the understanding of what is needed to attract a buyer. The seller cannot smoke in the home and Agent will not put home on the Market until such time that it is smoke free. Seller’s commitment to sell is evident by their willingness to be in the game to get the job done as they would also expect the same from their Agent. No half way.) Commission earned or seller does not engage. Agent moves on to something more productive, time and money not wasted.
  5. Might have coached Buyer that only seeking out deals limits the pool of homes. Explains that a deal can also be found but with much less risk than a home that has not been maintained– such as one with low repairs or potential for added equity because of desirable location or plan. Also coach that as a hard working Agent, you are not inclined to spend time on risky transactions. When financing, homes need to pass many levels from the appraiser, insurance and underwriting.) Commission earned or Buyer chooses to stay in mode of finding the perfect deal, Agent moves on to something more productive.

 Do you believe in Love potion#5?


How To Have A Successful Tuesday Tour


By: Shelby Austin | Managing Broker Reece & Nichols Jo Co SW | 913.254.2500 


Flyer – Should have these elements

1. Be specific about food “Mom’s homemade frosted brownies”  (FUN! They will come!)

2. Prize Drawing (FUN!)

3. Date of Tour (EASY!)

4. Start & Finish Time (SIMPLE!)

5. Photo (FUN!)

6. Price, Address & Subdivision (SIMPLE!)

7. Directions (EASY!)

8. Best Features (FUN!)

9. Your name & cell phone (call if they get lost) &email address/website (EASY!)

10. Your company name, logo & direct office line (Check Your License Law )(EASY!)

Promoting Tips

  • Promote personally to closest offices no later than 3X before and again on Tuesday morning – ask agents/brokers that you know to mention in meeting, drop off flyers for agents boxes, flyer via email to a marketing target list and all agents that you know
  • Be sure to promote as soon as Listed! – mention Upcoming Tour (Easy!)
  • Personally ask comrades to come – even offer to pick up and drive (Easy!)
  • Place many pointers coming to house (Easy!)
  • Be present at tour – great way to network with agents and promote other listings (Simple!)
  • Tour other agents listings – they will in turn want to come to yours (Simple!)
  • Ask agents to fill out feedback sheets-include question about whether they have sold in area/price range in last 6 months (Easy!)
  • Have all listings on flyer that agents can take with them (Fun!
  • Send Thank You after the tour and send an update if you were able to price reduce because of feedback

“I believe that Real Estate can be SIMPLE! We can make it EASY! Then all our endeavors will be FUN!”


Multiple Offers In Real Estate


By: Shelby Austin | Managing Broker Reece & Nichols Jo Co SW | 913.254.2500 

Multiple Offers in Real Estate

Wow! We are seeing higher demand for homes and lower supply for the first time in years! As we know, this creates buyers competing with other buyers for homes. Multiple offer situations opens up  some complex issues in the negotiating process and most important, brings about the importance of educating the consumer.

This information is based on my experience over the years and is only an opinion of those observations. I am offering some steps and possible missteps to avoid when working multiple offers.  Any agent should always seek direction from their supervising Broker.

This is also not an agency discussion – agent’s need to address representation based on the agreements they have in place.

We know that a Buyer or Seller can be caught off guard about a multiple offer situation.

Here are few of the situations and issues I believe we should cover:

  1. Agents should exercise the utmost care with multiple offers. If an offer has not been accepted, ensure that all potential parties are aware that multiple offers exist (with permission from the Seller) and ensure that all potential parties understand the process for submission if additional offers will be considered
  2. Sellers are not required to work with the first offer received – it is not a first come-first served situation-the seller is seeking the best qualified offer with terms that fit their individual needs and desires-Our Code of Ethics states that First is the requirement that REALTORS® “protect and promote the interests of their client.” Second is the “obligation to treat all parties honestly.”
  3. Terms that are acceptable to a Seller may not be the highest price – or the fastest closing – sometimes a Seller may even choose a lower offer simply because they like the Buyer – it is their choice – just as stated above, our responsibility to our client is to protect and promote their interests
  4. An agent with an Agency Agreement in place has the responsibility to provide the client with options, potential outcomes as the agent understands the situation, advise the client to seek expert advice in areas outside of the agent’s area of expertise and allow the client to make the decision
  5. Best to remember that what you as an agent could live with may be much different than what a client would be willing to accept – answering the “What would you do in this situation” should always be avoided
  6. Sellers cannot counter on more than one offer – this could create the possibility of the home selling to more than one buyer-but Sellers can ask each Buyer to offer their “Highest & Best” – advisable to caution Sellers that this may cause some Buyers to remove their offer as they do not want to enter into a bidding war
  7. Verbal offers are considered legal – although they are hard to enforce –  there was a winning case where a verbal offer was enforced when emails confirming the agreement made the contract binding
  8. A high offer may create an appraisal issue – when prices first start rising, appraisers do not have comparables to justify
  9. A multiple offer situation can allow an opportunity for the losing contract to become a Back-up contract if the parties are interested
  10. Excitement and competition can create urgency that turns quickly to remorse when there is time to reflect – prepare Buyers and Sellers for the possibility that they or the other party paid too much or sold for too little

Educate & Communicate

Education and communication that is clear and prompt to all parties involved will keep everyone advised and eliminate the risk of the problems.

I hope this information will help you when faced with a fast moving and pressure filled multiple offer opportunity!



 “I believe that Real Estate can be SIMPLE! That consumers and agents can be TRUSTWORTHY! And in creating this type of experience, our endeavors will be FUN!”

Talk a Good Talk or Get the Job Done

By: Shelby Austin | Managing Broker Reece & Nichols Jo Co SW | 913.254.2500 

In our current political environment, we are hearing about these two points on a daily basis. One side is able to provide a great vision but yet is criticized for getting the job done.  The other side offers results but is faulted for a lack of power of persuasion.

I am not writing this to provide an opinion for either side of our political aisle; I am watching the parts and questioning the equation of the whole.

Which of these really propels a mission to completion is something we wrangle with in business. I have always believed that the ultimate test should be who gets the job done. Flat out we want the accomplishment. And yet, isn’t every step a vision that we must share, hadn’t the talk better be good?

I look back at my dad, he is a simple man and he had a simple business. He worked on cars. For many years I begged my dad to move to Johnson County where business opportunities were big. Sadly, Kansas City, Kansas was losing out from the 70’s on; crime took its toll and we watched as businesses started closing left and right, but not my dad’s shop.

What I didn’t know then and I recognize now, no doubt he was a fantastic mechanic and ran a great shop, my dad was able to get the job done…but what made his business a success was his reputation and the vision of what was important to him and his customers. You see, dad worked with local Kansas City, Kansas people. They knew my dad, they trusted him and he treated them well. His power of persuasion was the vision that they shared, keeping local good businesses in Kansas City while serving people they knew and cared about. Relationships were what his business was about.  So, although his talent to get the job done would have been able to be used anywhere, it was his vision and passion for Kansas City that was necessary to really get the job done.

So I give these two items equal billing. We can really be good at something, but usually our passion takes us there and our vision helps others propel us forward. Take a person who has the talent to do something and yet they cannot share their vision, we know the road will be harder.

So I guess what I want for our next President, any business person, the real estate agents I work with, Brokers, like myself and even your local mechanic, that we have equal parts of the vision to talk a good talk and the talent to get the job done.

Shelby Austin

First Date Sally

By: Shelby Austin | Managing Broker Reece & Nichols Jo Co SW | 913.254.2500 

This blog is for every home ready to market and buyer ready to buy. For this example, we will call it dating.

So, the decision to date (sell the house) is made. First date Sally (house) doesn’t know the rule of first impression….so Sally shows Peter (buyer) on their first meeting her everyday, lets say we call it the relaxed look. You know, hair kind of shaggy, sweatshirt and jogging pants, flip flops and for grins Sally is chewing gum, which she pops on occasion, real loud.

Now, it doesn’t take much to guess how this first date goes. Peter had great intentions of a successful first meeting, he has spent time investigating his options, paying particular attention to what he is looking for in a date (house) and was properly reviewed by roommates (experts) before proceeding with this first date. The presentation that Peter received about Sally before he decided to pursue a first meeting said that she had all the qualifying criteria. But, alas the first impression caused Peter to take a different path all together, leaving Sally wondering what went wrong. Where as Peter’s subsequent date wowed Peter immediately, so much so that Peter did not waste time and moved to the next stage quickly as he realized that this new prospect was rare, still having a fresh memory of Sally in his head.

Now one could argue that Sally may very well have been a great match for Peter, as she met much of what he was looking for.  Unfortunately for Sally & Peter, the odds of them getting together have now been reduced tremendously by the mistakes of First Date Sally. In fact, Sally did become part of the story, but only that of the Bad Date.

So, what it the moral of the story?

Even the best diamond looks rough before it is polished!

Hello world!

Learning something new and trying to expand on some of my lengthy thoughts with real estate as the subject. 23 years and counting….there is definitely quite a bit of material, not all repeatable but can say that it has been a trip!