Adjusting to Disintermediation

avatarthumbnail.jpgI had been told for quite some time that this day was coming and now it’s here. I find myself on the verge of being disintermediated and I’m not certain how I’m supposed to react. I tried telling myself that this wasn’t inevitable, but it was. Some types of change wait for no man, even a dad.

My 9-year-old leaves for Girl Scout camp this weekend – on Father’s Day, of all days. We’re going to celebrate the event when we go to San Diego next week but still, as much as I rail against the Hallmark holidays, this still is unpleasant.

By my reckoning (and/or marching orders) I have two days on the calendar that are mine – Father’s Day and my birthday. My birthday was co-opted by my wife’s nephew last year for his wedding; Father’s Day this year has been stolen by the Thin Mints pimps.

Of course, the two weeks the kids have been out of school have been a testament to my diminishing role. Sure, there are moments when she still needs her Dad and she hugs me even as I destroy her on the Wii (because no one learns from having victories handed to you, or so I tell my wife) and she needs me for rides and for trips to see Kung Fu Panda (but NOT Beverly Hills Chihuahua.) But priorities have changed and now she’d rather spend time with her friends than with me. It’s complete logical and not fun whatsoever.

Maybe it’s because of this that it has been much easier to deal with my changing role as a real estate agent. Sellers still need me as much as ever; the days of the unrepresented seller being able to put a sign in the yard, an ad in the newspaper and having hope of a sale are going by the wayside. But buyers … they’re a completely different story.

Want to know what a home is worth? Check Zillow. Maybe it’s right. Maybe it’s wrong. But it’s taken at face value more often than not. Pointing out its faults is akin to me asking how my kids can be bored in a house with a Playstation 2, a Wii and cable television – the idle ramblings of a would-be dinosaur.

Need to find out what’s near a house? Go to Google Maps. Want to see what’s for sale? Go to Zillow and see some listings, Trulia and see some more and Realtor.Com and see a far larger chunk. (Just don’t try to get a decent home valuation on Realtor.Com) You don’t need me to provide your viewing entertainment and most buyers would prefer to spend the time with their online friends Z and T and R and not so much with me.

When buyers do come to me, though, that’s when I have the opportunity to provide the kind of value few others can provide. Not all agents are the same. Not all of us have the same skill sets, the same training, the same knowledge. So I’m useful in that way.

When buyers are unsure about something, they come to me. And when they get nervous along the way during their escrow process, they definitely come to me. Sometimes it’s a matter of telling them there really aren’t monsters in the closet on the inspection report. Sometimes it’s a sympathetic ear after an argument with a friend.

Kinda the same role I serve for my little Princess. She doesn’t seem to need me as often or even for half the reasons she once did. But when she needs me she needs me and for those moments, I’m still around.

At least until she starts dating.

[tags]Phoenix real estate[/tags]

Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at


  • Charleston real estate blog 10 years ago

    JD, cute picture. And I’m sure your daughter will always need you, just not in the same ways as before.

    Just like re. Well said.

  • BawldGuy Talking 10 years ago

    The Princess will come back when she realizes Mom doesn’t know the real scoop on guys. 🙂