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Real Estate Salespeople

What do I know about real estate sales people?  First of all I used to be one.  I was 21, single, living in Portland, Oregon, and my dad was a broker in Indiana.  I had to show him that anything he could do, I could do also.  Not better, mind you.  Secondly, I am married to one.  Yes, V is a realtor, and a good one.

Vince Ingrao, Realtor

Would you hire this man as your realtor? I would.  He’s my husband, Vince Ingrao.

Realtors are busy folks.  You might think it is easy money being a realtor, but I assure you that it is not.  Just the opposite.  First, sales is a difficult art.   A sales person is not only selling property; they are selling themselves, and constantly having to remind people how capable they are in a humble way.  Next, realtors need to know how to coordinate between buyers and sellers,and the myriads of people who are involved with real estate:  loan, title and escrow officers, county and city officials, inspectors, repair people, builders, and many more.  Next, to do all the piles of paperwork involved in each sales transaction takes a working knowledge of computers and specialized real estate software programs.  Finally, realtors interact with families in stressful situations such as divorces, marriages, loss of income, and any number of other life changing issues.  They have to be able to solve problems and help make bad situations better.  A good realtor balances these activities and attributes to perform the service and make a sale.

TC Drive to Kaweah Lake031

Often, after spending days or weeks coordinating all the efforts to make it possible for people to purchase a house, the sale falls apart.  This means that the realtor earns nothing for his or her time, and can’t even recoup their expenses.  In addition to keeping their license active by taking classes and paying fees, realtors spend quite a bit of their own money advertising,  They create brochures, and even portfolios for houses they sell.  Many realtors have their own websites, which either has to be maintained by employing someone, or by the realtor during his or her off time.  Selling real estate requires a big investment of capital with no guarantee of a return.  Realtors really are in business for themselves.

Sleazy Salesman

Sleazy Salesman

Some realtors are obnoxious about making it obvious that their main goal in life is to sell property, and that’s all you think about them.  Others, like my husband, spend more time behind the scenes working hard to get the job done.  People that know him well often forget that he earns his living by selling houses because he doesn’t mention it constantly.  Then when someone in the family needs to buy a house, his name is not the one that necessarily comes to mind.

Who do you call?

Who do you call?

I say this because you may also know someone who is a great realtor, but you forget about them when a friend or relative mentions that they want to buy a home.  You might even forget about your friend yourself.  When you are driving around town and see a sign, who do you call?  Do you call your friend, or the number on the sign?  Most people call the number on the sign automatically, without thinking that their friend can get the same information, and will better represent their interestes.  I know because V and I did this to a friend of ours accidentally when we were first married.  That friend was kind, but plainly told us, “You know I can sell you a house even if it is listed by someone else.”  

Would you call your friend or the name on the brochure?

Would you call your friend or the name on the brochure?

Buyers, like we were, don’t often think they need a salesperson like a seller does, but they do.  A good sales person save the buyer, as well as the seller, a lot of headaches.  The listing salesperson must first represent the interests of the seller.  Sometimes those interests are not the same.  V has represented many, many buyers.  Many are investors who come to him time and time again because they know he will not try to sell them something they don’t want or need.  He will make sure they are qualified to buy any property he shows them. 

The bottom line for a realtor is that to make ends meet, realtors need referrals.  If your friend is a realtor, and your cousin is looking at house, your realtor friend can help them, and make a little commission on the sale even if they are in another city, by referring them to a respectable realtor they know.  It doesn’t cost you anything to refer a sale to a friend who is a realtor, and the friend that you trust can save you or your friend hundreds of thousands of dollars with their good advice.   

37 replies »

  1. Having the right realtor is very important! We had an amazing one in Utah and he still sends me a Christmas card every year. Any time I hear of anyone in that state needing a realtor, he name comes right up and I pass along his business card. He’s saved me so much money and given me so much great advice. Great post!


    • Awesome, it’s great to have customers like you!!! A realtor can save people a ton of money because they tend to jump into things without checking them out. If they can do it themselves, it probably isn’t very legitimate – at least that’s the way it seems.


  2. Your husband looks like an honest man, Marsha. We dealt with a really great realtor in Florida, and he did put a lot of effort into helping us find the right place at the right price. 🙂


    • Awww, Vince will love reading your comment. I’m glad you had a great experience. It’s really great when you find someone helpful. Lots of love to you. Glad you’re back to warmth! Loved your trip to England, though. 🙂


  3. I have two Realtors locally. One looks like Jabba the Hut (from Star Wars) who is always naked from the waist up with a massive beer belly. The other is an old lady who looks like a tramp with a son who acts like a gypsy. Friends directly sold me their apartment at a massively reduced price because the housing market here in Spain has crashed, so we are both happy with the outcome 😀


    • hahaha No WAY, Jabba the Gut? What realtor goes around nearly naked? Not here in sunny California. I’m glad the market crashed just in time for you to buy your wonderful apartment! I think it look lovely! I heard on the news the other day that Spain is one of the MANY countries in which the Euro is not doing so well. The good news is that years from now the tide will turn and you will be sitting pretty on a great piece of property, and Jabba will have moved on. Your new realtor will be a beautiful, young lady with long blond, slightly curled hair, gently framing her face wearing a short tight skirt, and a professional looking blouse and jacket, bringing up beautiful young people to look at your apartment. The sad thing is that you will be VERY old. Meanwhile ENJOY the wonderful place! And invite guests to see it when you get it all done! 🙂


  4. I had my California license for many years but never really used it . I took all the classes required all the time to keep it active. Congratulations to Vince for staying with it.


    • Yes, I read all the books, and took the online tests, but when I went to get fingerprinted, I had no fingerprints. I couldn’t ever get them to come out, so I gave up. I didn’t want to get my license anyway, so I was being a little passive agressive. Nonetheless, I knew all the stuff! 🙂


  5. Great article! My hubby is too a real estate agent. He has been at it full time since last year!
    He works longer hours than he has in his whole life. But he loves it.
    He was self employed contractor for 35+ years and then did a stint working for as a outside sales rep for Lowes. He hated the red tape to that job and its nothing compared to the red tape of selling a HUD house! But he still loves it.
    His favorite part is working with people. Clint is a natural people person and it shows.
    The out of pocket expenses are far outweighing the income at this point, but he has (we have) faith that this is what he is supposed to be doing in his twilight years.
    A lot less physical than construction and he gets to dress better!


    • Wow! Small world! Thanks so much for reblogging. I feel honored, but it is a difficult profession, and most people have no idea how much is involved! Eventually, we are going to have to meet!!! 🙂


      • I know what you mean.
        I saw a show one day that made a reference to real estate agents as people who do nothing but sit around and collect a commission. Whoever wrote that story obviously has never seen an agent jump through the thousands of hoops to sell a HUD house. There are some properties that Clint spends more on than he makes in commission. But you have to treat all customers alike.


  6. Very good advice. When are you available to walk again. I need the exercise and I want to hear all about your experience selling Real Estate.
    Miss you


  7. Good post and reminder. I think there are many who don’t understand how it works. I took the class in college and never took the test. ; ) My sis is an awesome realtor in MS. She runs into many “interesting” situstions. Our dad is a retired realtor, so Kudos to Vince for hanging in there through the tough economic times! He married an awesome PR person!


  8. Wise advice. And I realized how tiring the life of a realor could be when I was selling my house and saw how often realtors had to come with prospective buyers afterhours or on the weekend. It’s definitely not a 9-to-5 job.


    • It is not 9-5, for sure! Besides dealing with the buyers, there are so many inspections, and bank issues that they coordinate and check up on as well. Thanks for the comment, Cotton. 🙂 Marsha 🙂


  9. Informative post, Marsha! I think that the advice not to necessarily call the number on the brochure is great advice, and something we don’t always think about. As for real estate … may I say ….. I hate Zillow. They have our entire neighborhood in the wrong township and the results are devastating. Grumble, grumble.


    • Vince says that Zillow is a website that is nearly totally inaccurate, and it makes realtors look like THEY don’t know what they are talking about because their information is different. Yours is a legitimate grumble!!!! 🙂


      • Thanks to Vince! That makes me feel better. Not only is our entire neighborhood mis-represented, but right down to us vs neighbor … with considerable more square feet, and extra bathroom, a two car garage compared to a single, Zillow has them priced at thousands more than us. It’s frustrating!! Good to know the realtors know what’s really what. 🙂





Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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