Sergeant Hulka and the Phoenix Real Estate Agent

Jonathan Dalton, Phoenix Real Estate AgentThere are moments when I wouldn’t trade places with my branch manager for all the world. Yesterday was one such moment.

As part of our weekly sales meeting, Ron was trying to convey the point that all of the outside factors real estate agents cite for their lack of success shouldn’t impact their success. Only what we do day in, day out will determine whether we succeed or fail in this business.

This isn’t a new concept. In fact, real estate god Russell Shaw said much the same thing during a podcast last month. But the point was lost for the simple reason that we tend to find it much easier to point the figure outward than look within with a critical eye.

  • “It’s all the bad press in the newspapers and on TV.”
  • Jay Butler’s always coming out with negative stats.”
  • “We can’t get our buyers qualified.”
  • “The broker’s not spending enough on advertising.”
  • “AAR should be telling people what’s really happening in the market to counter the press.”

As Rabbi Pinkwasser once told me, “Caca de toro.” And as I tell my kids, “Enough!”

Sergeant HulkaDoes anyone else remember Sergeant Hulka? “Your mamas are not here to protect you now. It’s just you, me and Uncle Sam. And one day you’ll find out we’re one and the same.”

The broker’s a businessman. In our case at Century 21 Arizona Foothills, there are no desk fees. Instead we pay a percentage of our commission to the broker, up to a maximum of just over $19,000, and then we’re at 100% for the rest of the fiscal year. Not to say this isn’t lucrative, but the broker isn’t sitting back collecting exorbitant desk fees and hoping no one writes a contract.

My company has cut down on print advertisement because there was virtually no return on the investment. Expecting good money to be thrown after bad is asinine. If you think print is a viable platform, run an ad and see how many calls you don’t get.

As for wanting the Arizona Association of Realtors to step in and provide their take on the real estate market … are you kidding me? Have you seen what NAR keeps spewing? Do you think anyone … ANYONE … takes NAR’s pronouncements seriously anymore? I can’t even watch the new TV commercial because it’s so blatantly transparent.

“But we only can reach one or two people …”

Really? Write a blog. If you can’t write, stick to a few sentences and some quality links. But make it meaningful and you can reach far more people than you ever expected.

(One of my colleagues said, “I knew you were going to say that.” Of course he did. All of them did. But guess how many bloggers are in my office? My company? Keep believing it doesn’t work, folks. You’re helping me greatly.)

Somewhere north of 100 people a day read this blog. If Athol’s good enough to add me to his Feed Bag, there are another 100-odd readers. If I get linked off the Bloodhound for the weekly Odysseus Medal People’s Choice award, there’s another thousand or so.

How many people can you really reach? As many as you believe you can.

You don’t need AAR to say that for those who really qualify for financing, financing still is available. You don’t AAR to say that market medians for Maricopa County don’t tell the story for every neighborhood. You don’t need your broker to run print ads that no one is going to read.

All you need to do is get working. Maybe it’s knocking doors (which I don’t do.) Maybe it’s sitting an open house (which I don’t do.) Maybe it’s blogging (which I do to excess – I passed the 500-post mark since January 4 earlier this week.)

But quit waiting for your mama to come save you and create your own career.

[tags]Phoenix real estate, real estate marketing, real estate agents[/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


  • Sock Puppet 10 years ago

    Wow really get 100 extra readers from the Feed Bag linkage? That’s actually quite pleasing.