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Real Estate Kung-Fu: The Legend Continues

This post is in response to Ken Montville’s recent post, “Negotiating the deal- is it really what you think?” Ken hit the nail on the head with this one about negotiating as much (or more) with your own client than you do with the agent on the opposing side.  It’s the ability to overcome challenges like this that separate the young grasshopper agents from the master. 

The market has made everything about a real estate transaction a little more difficult, and understanding how to overcome these challenges will lead to happier clients and a happier bottom line for the agent!

While convincing a client to go with a certain price, or make certain repairs, etc. etc, remember that it’s not so much about what should or shouldn’t be done, but about the path that is taken to reach the goal.  You both want to see the property sold, right?  Remember that YOU ARE the real estate expert here, and it’s your job to help the client reach their goal.  Sometimes you have to let the client fail in order to help them succeed.

Know Your (Real Estate) Kung-Fu

One of the best moves I ever learned in real estate was the right way to say NO to a client.  It’s easy to upset a client and risk losing business because you said something (right or wrong) that the client didn’t like.  I found that the best way to handle objections is to carefully fashion your statements in such a way that you convey your opinion without making the client feel like theirs is wrong.  Call it a “Sideways NO” if you will, and think of it as one of the first things that you need to learn in real estate that no training class will teach you.

You Have Much To Learn, Young Grasshopper

One of my favorite things about real estate is that it doesn’t matter how long you have been in the business, or how many deals you have done in your lifetime, there are always things to learn from other experts in order to make your business better, faster, and stronger.  I will always see myself as a student to some of the industry experts out there (many of whom are writers on sites such as AgentGenius) that have found efficient and creative ways to expand their client base.

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If you want to strengthen your own real estate kung-fu, take my advice:  Read other agents blogs, listen to what they’re doing with their own clients to help them succeed, and use that knowledge to strengthen your business.  Also, stay away from Ninjas.  Ninjas hate Kung Fu.

Photo Courtesy of Martin Kingsley Via Flickr CC.

Written By

I'm a Realtor in Southern Maryland. I grew up surrounded by the RE business, spent time as an actor, worked as a theatrical designer and technician, and took the road less traveled before settling down in real estate. I run my own local market website at and when I'm not at the office or meeting clients, I can usually be found doing volunteer work, playing with my 3 rescued shelter dogs (Help your local Humane Society!), or in the garage restoring antique cars.



  1. Larry R Martin

    July 13, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    Good stuff! Excellent observations. One never quits learning about real estate no matter how much time in the business. Ya gotta be open to any source for learning, without prejudice or bias. My current mentors are two, young, top notch professionals, 22 & 23 yrs, who clearly “get it” about their specialty. I am much their senior by almost 3 times!

  2. Ken Montville

    July 18, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    Hey, Jon

    Thanks for the shout out.

    It’s OK for me to remember that I am the real estate expert. Who’s going to remind my client? If I remind the client, I’m being a pushy or arrogant real estate agent.

    I am learning how to say “no”. Someone called off my yard sign the other day and wanted me just to hop over and show the listing. I told them not now, tomorrow. I guess they must’ve had to talk to their buyer’s agent or changed their mind because the called and cancelled. Saved me a trip.

    I’m about to do the same thing with a Seller who pushed back a little too hard on a decent [all cash] offer on their [vacant] home they’re trying to sell in a tough market. The buyer vaporized. Now, the house is sitting, again. And I’ll never hear, “Ken, you were right. We should have taken the offer.” Nope.

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