We’ve all seen it before . . . a clean, polished smile uttering the words “trust me.” Sadly, these two words are some of the most dangerous out there. I want to talk a little about trust and the real estate business.
As a person with too much faith in humanity, I tend to get myself in trouble, but luckily, I learn from my mistakes . . . I’m more of a professional skeptic now. I’ve had more bad experiences in the real estate business then one person really needs to, but each of these has taught me one extremely important lesson: only trust yourself!
What does trusting yourself entail?
First, it means that you need to educate yourself enough in what you’re doing, so that you don’t need to rely on the
bad advice of anyone else. This includes everyone from your friendly real estate agent, to your mortgage broker, to a teacher who may be in it for himself. I see and hear about people getting screwed by others so frequently that it no longer shocks me. If you’re educated, then you can’t be victimized by the bad advice of others. This is not to say that every realt estate agent or motgage professional gives bad advice, but if you have no idea what they are talking about, you have no way to tell, do you?
Since we don’t want to trust the good intentions of others, we also must remember that any business relationship should be in writing. When I was getting into the real estate business as a real estate agent many years back, I asked a friend of mine to mentor me. He agreed and we established a relationship . . . unfortunately, it was done by word of mouth. I agreed to help him on a particular deal he was working on in exchange for a financial return. Once the deal was completed, he simply disappeared. I got a lot of promises, but never saw a dime. As you could imagine, that was the end of our friendship, but it taught me to put EVERYTHING in writing, ESPECIALLY when working with friends!
Along similar lines, you need to learn to trust only the facts. Not the facts as someone presents them, but the real facts. Is there a difference? I’ll argue that there is, and the following example should help me demonstrate. Recently, a member of our site heard about a deal from someone who was making certain claims about both the deal and himself. He was somewhat skeptical, as he should be, of what he heard, and did some research on his own to VERIFY the claims. This research revealed that the guy couldn’t get his story straight. What he was saying didn’t mesh with the facts of reality, presenting a MAJOR RED FLAG to our member. Thanks to his research, he was able to avoid entering a relationship with someone who wasn’t presenting the REAL FACTS. Again, you can only trust yourself and what you can personally verify though proper research.
I can go on and on about this, giving dozens of examples, but I think you get the drift.
To sum it all up:
- Educate yourself so you don’t need to rely on bad information from others
- Put everything in writing
- Always personally verify information by doing your own research