Real Estate, A Look Back at 10 Years

Dena Stevens Realtor Abetter Realty & Investment

Dena Stevens Realtor Abetter Realty & Investment

Ten years in real estate, that just occurred to me. I got my real estate license in May of 2004. In some ways it’s a long time in other ways I have a long way to go and much to learn. The night I started real estate school the instructor said “No two deals are the same” Now I don’t consider myself an “know it all” but at the time I thought, of course they are not the same but they can’t be all that dissimilar either. We’re selling roofs, walls, dirt and doors. Sure in different sizes and colors, different but the same.

What I’ve learned and experienced in the last 10 years:

  • Friends and Family will support you but rarely work with you. They don’t want you knowing their business.
  • People are surprising in soooo many ways
  • “Buyers are liars and Sellers are worse” makes a funny bumper sticker but it’s rarely true
  • I prefer working as a listing agent but I’ve made most of paychecks with buyers
  • I’ve had buyers and sellers die before, during and after a transaction
  • CYA – always
  • Take too many pictures of a property you can always edit
  • I had a buyer call himself an “a$$ – hole” and he mean it, and it was true he was
  • The best person to promote me is me
  • I’ve walked into houses where people were naked, showering, sleeping and possibly dead on a few occasions. Yes, I had an appointment to be there, they knew I was showing
  • First Fridays, Chamber of Commerce meetings, Home & Garden Shows and Fundraisers are part of my job
  • My name tag isn’t to promote myself as much as it’s to make you more comfortable when you can’t remember my name or why you know me
  • Old school agents still know how to get it done and are my best defense
  • I’ve hit with my car: a few deer, a couple of dogs, a bunch of rabbits and prairie dogs, I’ve narrowly missed at least 2 Elk. Snakes don’t count
  • If the seller has to come down a little and the buyer has to come up a little in price that’s probably the right price
  • I’ve laughed, cried, smiled, gotten angry and frustratied with some clients. Most I will remember fondly and a very few I never want to think about again.
  • I’ve been given handmade blankets, flowers, flowering plants, offers of vacations,mugs,wine, jewelry, chocolates, been taken to brunch, lunch and dinner by thankful clients.
  • I’ve helped numerous first time home buyers and helped a few families saying goodbye to a loved one.
  • I’ve learned that real “investors” rarely announce themselves as such
  • In 10 years I’ve learned that I’m awesome at networking
  • Selling the community is as important if not more important than selling the property
  • Find a builder who can actually build a house from the ground up, can do it well, with referrals and promises to pay you on a signed piece of  paper.
  • Keep past and present clients in your phone, you just never know how, when or where you might need them or they need you.
  • Take more classes than are required and in subjects you don’t think you’ll need or have interest in.
  • Don’t be afraid of referring clients to other agents. What goes around comes around
  • Study other agents good and bad, learn from them
  • Ask for the sale. Rarely do people to this in sales and it’s difficult for people to say no to your face
  • Attend open houses, hold open houses, go on tour even if you think it’s a waste of time – it’s not a waste of time, it’s your job
  • Keep these things in the trunk of your car including survey tape, scissors, hammers, screw drivers, screws, name riders, copy of your current listings, open house signs and flags, flashlights, 9V batteries, scotch tape, duct tape, a notebook, a level, a marble or ball, insect repellant, measuring tape, electronic measuring device,
  • Leave good tips and leave your business card for waiters
  • I always send a postcard after I’ve met somebody the first time, but I’ve never gotten a deal that way
  • If a gate is closed when you get there close it after you’ve gone through, if the gate is open leave it that way
  • Tell somebody where you’re going, agents disappear every year
  • Use all the free resources you can
  • Be consistent, Be grateful, Be respectful
  • Talk to the neighbors, they are full of information and will appreciate you going to them
  • Do what others won’t and be good at it
  • Read the book “21 Things My Broker Never Told Me”
  • If you’re going to be on a “team” make sure the job gets done, that nothing is missed. And that it’s your responsibility not somebody elses.
  • Return every phone call,text message and email by the end of the day
  • Learn how to use your smartphone
  • Run water and the garbage disposal, flush the toilets, open window, in houses that smell
  • Make sure your seller doesn’t give you his only house key – he’ll lock himself out as soon as you’re out of town
  • I’ve sold property for or to people while they were living in Croatia, France, Canada and Norway.

This will be a growing list, my learning is not complete. As the world turns real estate and related industries are changing. Real Estate is rarely boring.

About Dena Stevens (719) 369.9087

Putting the ‘real’ into REALTOR since 2004

Ask about vacant land, ranch land or residential properties.

Loyalty and devotion are things buyers and sellers expect from their Realtor as well as the fiduciary responsibility of due diligence. Dena is a certified Ecobroker, focused on sustainability, energy efficiency and the environment and is a Certified Sales Professional from the Association of Home Builders.

Specialties: A client once said “you put the ‘real’ into REALTOR” to me. I took it as a complement and I’ve been using it ever since, I’m a no nonsense kind of person. I’ve been helping people buy and sell real estate since 2004.
Associate Broker
Certified Sales Professional (CSP)
Short Sale Foreclosure Resource (SFR)

The Fair Housing Act is a federal act in the United States intended to protect the buyer or renter of a dwelling from seller or landlord discrimination. Its primary prohibition makes it unlawful to refuse to sell, rent to, or negotiate with any person because of that person’s inclusion in a protected class.

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2 Responses to Real Estate, A Look Back at 10 Years

  1. Betty Jung says:

    Super nice post Dena. Congrats on 10 years.

  2. Congratulations, Dena! You hung in there through the good and bad times. Now you are someone others can learn from. I’ll want you as my realtor if I ever buy in your neck of the woods.