From the Lone Dog Left in Town

If you’re one of the Boss’ regular non-real estate-type readers, feel free to take today off and we’ll catch you tomorrow. We set by the exits? Good deal. I haven’t written a word on this blog for a long, long time but snuck onto the keyboard to write about my old friend Odysseus.

Seems the old dog never did learn any new tricks as the real estate market here in Phoenix fell apart and came back from the dead. Heck, his website still says this is the “This is the toughest market for sellers since the Great Depression” … just thinking an online guru would know to update his boilerplate every few years.

As of a couple of months ago, Odysseus still was predicting the change in the market here was a false recovery and that it only was happening because Fannie and Freddie were hoarding listings and keeping them out of the MLS – a notion that we’ve debunked here, with support from the folks at Arizona State University’s real estate department.

I’m not quite as up on all of this as the Boss but from what he tells me, I think this analogy works – if it looks like Pupperoni and smells like Pupperoni, it’s probably Pupperoni and not cat poop. (I eat both, of course, but that’s kinda beside the point.)

Maybe it’s the feline fecal matter getting to me, but I can’t seem to make sense of this either …

I have several custom-built automated IDX sites, and I can throw 300,000+ backlinks at any web page, raising any web site’s standings in the Search Engine Results Pages virtually overnight.

I guess those back links are as helpful as a good roll in the grass but if they can raise any website’s standings in the SERP overnight, then why not use them to get your own site off of Page 5 of Google for “Phoenix real estate”, Odysseus? We never claimed your level of expertise and hell, we’re only a page behind you.

The whole thing’s a little confusing. For years you’ve talked about how spectacular you are at marketing and lead generation and online real estate and all of the rest. Yet, from what it looks like over here, you’re not generating all that many leads else you wouldn’t be searching for a partner or a buyer or a bailout.

We keep muddling on through as … what was it you called us? Oh yeah, self-made mediocrities … yet we’re opening our 19th escrow of the year tomorrow to go along with the five escrows that our buyers’ agent has had herself.

Five escrows … why does that sound familiar? Oh, that’s right. That’s the same number of closed sales you’ve had so far. And aren’t there two agents over there? So, really, you’re sitting at less than a half a side a month according to the Arizona Regional MLS?

What was it you said yourself back in March?

Seriously, an agent closing fewer than 20 houses a year, on average, should find another job. He can do a lot better, hour for hour.

I guess now other people are seeing what I always knew, Odysseus … you were speaking from personal experience.

Could the answer be here?

In short, I have a freight train’s worth of internet power being pulled by a mule-powered real estate business.

That’s an old trick that became new again that you should have learned … the internet’s nice, but this still is a belly-to-belly business. One of your own contributors, one of the smartest damn guys I know, has said this on your own blog for years.

Anyway, as much of a howl as this has been, there’s a point to the post. The Boss is in the midst of looking for a second buyers’ agent. It’s gonna be on a straight 50-50 commission split as he’s going to be keeping an eye on the paperwork. He’s also looking for some production, so that might involve having your master put down the guitar, tuck away some of the tin-foil hat politics and abandon some of the efforts to rewrite philosophy as we know it.

We’re tossing out a couple of online leads a week and are expecting considerably more leads to come as our expired, short sale and investor mailings arrive in people’s mailboxes for the second or third time. It’s not as sexy as 300,000 backlinks or whatever but it seems to be getting the job done, that an old fashioned referrals.

Not sure how the interview would go … there seems to be a rather severe amount of human-relations style liability – including a long history of online libel – on your site, which is giving me paws. See what I did there?

Guess it’s a moot point as I can’t see you applying for the job, Odysseus. That’s okay … as you’ve said over the past several years, you know more about this real estate game than me or pretty much anyone else in town.

But it is ironic. After all the claims of originality, you’ve turned into just another guru who ain’t selling homes.

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