Lisa and Jim's Northern Nevada Real Estate Blog: You Really Don't Have To Be A Jerk! More Tales From the Trenches!

You Really Don't Have To Be A Jerk! More Tales From the Trenches!

You Really Don't Have To Be A Jerk  ...  More Tales from the Trenches!

You don't have to be a jerk to advocate your position.  Whether a Seller, Buyer, or agent, you will be involved in negotiation along the way to accomplishing your real estate objectives.  Some seem to think that they must be rudely aggressive, or aloof in their demanding communication efforts to negotiate effectively.  Communication is essential to negotiation and achieving the desired objective.  Rarely is rude or challenging behavior rewarded in our society. 

It is natural that when one party is selling and another buying the goals are different and adversarial positions are created between the parties. How you communicate to advance your position is essential to your overall success.  We have seen situations where one party is so rude that the other side begins looking for ways to not make the deal work.  Any interest by a third party at that point is met with enthusiasm, a zeal to make something work with the new party. 

We understand thaLisa Wetzel - by Lisa Wetzel RE/MAX Realty Affilaitest you don't have to like one another to do business together, but likewise, you don't need to generate hate emotions in an attempt to force someone to act in a manner contrary to their best interest.  Harassing agents or principals is surely not a way to get what you seek.  In fact, you usually motivate them to work against you. 

Daily harassment of an agent by an agent is not professional.  During the course of negotiations, or an escrow, things work at a pace.  The pace varies according to the parties and the nature of the transaction.  Sometimes its hurried, even harried.  Occasionally it takes time.  If a party is an hour from a FAX with no scanner it will take time to get the documents worked around.  No sense beating up the agent that doesn't have a signed document as fast as you might like it - they can't sign it.  People can be distracted for legitimate reasons, i.e.- a serious family matter, and they just won't move as fast as the other side wants.  No amount of counseling or perspective assistance is going to get them where the other side wants them when they want them there, but harassment will only delay, if not destroy any hope of getting them to that point.  Understanding and alternative solutions can go a long way in such a situation to advance your cause. 

Our Advice: There is emotion for both sides in a real estate transaction.  It is amazing how much more you get being nice, firm yet nice in a transaction.  If one party likes the other they often affirm it with niceties along the way.  If you are a jerk you'll never know that they would have given you the riding mower, but instead gave it to the neighbor instead of you.    Being nice isn't being "soft", it's being honest, and polite.  You can negotiate the price without being offensive.  Remember, it isn't the biggest jerk that wins, it is he who gets the best outcome.  The real winner allows for wins by both sides, each party getting that which is most important to them.  It isn't always about the price. 

Be clear about your goals and you will be able to handle anything that comes your way.  If you encounter unsavory behavior along the way keep in mind the age old question, "Does the end justify the means?"  It should or you might wish to stand back and evaluate the benefits of continuing in the offensive situation with a jerk. 

When it comes to choosing professionals to assist you with your real estate needs... Experience is Priceless!  Lisa Wetzel & Jim Valentine, CDPE, SFR, RE/MAX Realty Affiliates, 775-781-5472.,


Lisa Wetzel and Jim Valentine are the authors of this blog.  Lisa, Jim  and Jessie are experts in Carson Valley , Carson City and the tri-county area of Douglas County , Carson City and Lyon County.  Call our team anytime at 775-781-5472 or 775-781-3704.  To Search for Homes go to: Carson Valley Listing Book  or visit our website at or

Comment balloon 6 commentsLisa Wetzel • April 26 2011 10:50AM


Fabulous post Lisa. How have I never seen you before? i've written several blogs with variations (or examples) of just this type of thing. Really like the way you've presented the material. Suggesting and subscribing. As Steven Tyler says 'I Don't Want to Miss a Thing".

Posted by Karen Crowson, Your Agent for Change (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) over 9 years ago

Hello Lisa:


This is well said. I agree that negotiations don't have to be adversarialto be successful. Buyers and Sellers actually want the same thing......a successful transaction.  They may approach it with different perspective, but They are looking for "a meeting of the minds".  I have suggested.

Posted by Brian Rugg, Sun City TX Real Estate - Georgetown, TX Real Est (Rugg Realty LLC Sun City Texas 512-818-6700) over 9 years ago

Thanks Karen ... what a compliment!  I'm very happy you enjoyed the post.  I've been a bit preoccupied the past few weeks becoming a Grandma again for the first time in 10 years!  I'm on the road back!  Thanks for your subscription and suggestion!

Posted by Lisa Wetzel, CDPE, SFR (RE/MAX Realty Affiliates) over 9 years ago

Sometimes you just have to take a deep breath and roll with the situation.  Sometimes you have to suggest to your clients to do the same, even though it takes a lot of willpower.

Posted by Jeff Craig, Greensboro Area Real Estate Photography (Hang Me Up Photos) over 9 years ago

Brian, I always feel that ... once the deal is struck ... we are all on the same side making it happen.  sometime ... usually with agents who are, "working their deal", they seem to have nothing better to do that get in my face!  Thanks for your comment.

Jeff, I agree, will power and patience are sometimes the best qualities to have.

Posted by Lisa Wetzel, CDPE, SFR (RE/MAX Realty Affiliates) over 9 years ago

Agents who act  like toddlers do little to advance their client's position.

Posted by Doug Rogers, Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent (Bayou Properties) over 9 years ago