ActiveRain continues to amaze me with the power of the community and Google juice of the blogging platform.
As someone who spends A LOT of time with real estate agents & real estate brokers, I dread when a relative or my parents ask for real estate advice or a referral for a real estate agent. "Why?" you ask. My parents can be very tough customers. I want any agent or broker to be prepared for the experience.
Last summer, my mother & father decided to relocate from New Jersey to the East Bay of San Francisco. My sister lives in San Francisco and I live in Seattle. We both have young kids. My parents are retired and want to spend more time with their grandkids and they also want to get out of the snow on the East Coast.
Of course, my mother asked me for referrals for East Bay real estate agents who will work through short sales & foreclosures. They had actually been in touch with several agents in the Bay Area. The agents that they had contacted did not want to work short sales.
So, what did I do? I turned to ActiveRain. Because my mother was interested in short sales, I typed "Walnut Creek Short Sales" into the search bar at the top of ActiveRain. One real estate agent named Doug Anderson was religious about providing market report blog posts on a near weekly basis on the East Bay - Walnut Creek, Danville, Blackhawk, Dublin, Pleasanton. He talked consistently about short sales in the market reports. I provided my mom with Doug's contact information and the names of two or three other agents from ActiveRain. (As a side note, if you are not actively blogging on ActiveRain, i.e. writing at least twice a month, most consumers are unlikely to take you seriously and you will not generate too many agent-to-agent referrals.)
My parents spoke with each of the agents. They developed a very good relationship with Doug. Doug was very patient with their cross country home search and all the issues that go along with relocation, retirement and downsizing. They started to work with Doug actively right as the real estate market was accelerating in the Bay Area. I believe my parents put three or four offers on homes, bidding 10-15% OVER the asking price. They were outbid on every one. (The Bay Area is crazy right now.)
In the end, they bought a house with Doug in Pleasanton, CA and they close on March 22nd!
It's been an incredible experience seeing the world of ActiveRain from a consumer point of view.
Doug - thank you for taking care of my parents!
And thank you ActiveRain for connecting my parents with Doug!