I Sell Really Expensive Real Estate, To Really Rich People, Who Have No Taste
That’s what he said. About 9 years ago now. On behalf of himself and the culture of his team and brokerage.
I wish I had more confidence at the time. … to verbally school him. Give him a good Moonstruck Cher – ‘ snap-out-of-it ‘ – slap.
I did shake my head… internally at least. Afraid to show any outward head-shaking at risk of losing the referrals I was so motivated to schmooze him and his team for – literal gatekeepers as they were.
But it was that… shaking my head. With my thought bubble percolating, saying ‘ Wait, what did you just say? ‘.
You’re the director of Real Estate for an exclusive gated luxury estate community.
A licensed California Real Estate Broker.
Heading the sales and cultural development of one of the finest gated communities in the country.
And you just said this?
You don’t even know me.
Is this your culture? Is this how your team approaches building relationships with your sales inquiries? The very same people who are going to create a community here? Moms and Dads with kids and parents and extended family. Looking forward to creating a base camp to embrace their friend circles from all around the country and in so many cases, the world. Once escrow is closed do you, individually and as a team, view the very people you represented in a very high net worth purchase, with the same disdain?
And … yuck.
As someone who has worked with affluent clients for 30 years now, in places all over the United States West and beyond, and most commonly behind strong, fortified gates with security systems… yah. They’re wealthy. ‘ Rich ‘ as you state, using your judgmental word.
Because of their wealth, their needs are unique. Going way beyond the standing seam shed roofs and walls of glass, the pivot doors and disappearing walls, all the latest trends in furniture, finishes, kitchen appliances, bathroom fixtures and features. That’s the easy stuff.
These folks need…
Safety… for their children, their families, and their pets.
Inspiration… reflecting back to them the rewards that they have worked so hard to accomplish and to secure throughout their lives, letting them know ‘ they’ve made it ‘ . And, in your special role, ‘ we’re here for you ‘. And in the community you’re responsible for delivering, that they can live freely… without concern. Of judgment… of all things.
Supply and demand, with a specific eye toward building product that is commensurate with your audience, results in high asset value. What you’re calling ‘ really expensive real estate ‘ . And in hindsight your goal, so clear now, was never to serve your clients… your community. No. It was always to maximize return. Your return. In a now most stunning way. But not in a stunning way that speaks to the special relationship you hold with these very unique residents. No. Just stunning in how you and your team have truly taken true advantage of the rich people with no taste.
And taste… ? Wow. Really? Btw, I’ve seen your home. You’re not one to speak to taste.
Taste is subjective. And from that unique – specifically individualized in this setting, subjective place, doors and opportunities open for so many creative people. From architects to designers to builders. Every homeowner finds their tribe… their culture of design and building experts. The ones who’s vision and skill set aligns with their own. And together, as a collaborative team, they build. Build to deliver something greater than any of them could have imagined on the front side.
Classic timber homes.
Mountain modern estates.
A-frame retro family compounds.
Contemporary massings of volumes and shapes.
… whatever it is.
Taste? No taste? Wrong perspective.
Ability? Liquidity? Intent?… yes. That’s what they have.
And with that foundation to pivot from, they create opportunity for all of us – you, with your combined 5% commission on a $ 10M home [ that’s $ 500,000.00 dollars to you in commission btw], the architect with a contract worth around $ 150k, the interior designer with a fee-based contract worth around $ 75k and a sell-through contract that can range from $ 500k to $ 1.5M, the builder who will manage a $ 10M or higher build. And alllllllllllllllll the folks who surround us. From Title and Escrow officers, inspectors, township who is able to collect all the taxes and use them to build a better broader community, to the AutoCAD drafters, interior design interns, stone fabricators and electricians and plumbers and framers and roofers and hvac installers and audio visual experts and landscapers…. And on and on and on.
Providing all of us, and our families, and our communities, not just unheard of creative opportunities, but a higher standard of living from the revenue we service that these special people hand to us, creating ever more opportunities within our homes and our neighborhoods.
Your very unique position that you have white-knuckled beyond compare to exclude outside real estate professionals from the confines of your walls, to refer no one in the interior design trade while you pander to us to advertise in your community publication and rape each of us for the cost of our goods to stage your listings with the promise of future lucrative work, and to brown nose your way into your clients’ lives with your underlying disdain for their very core and what they’ve handed over to you… gross.
You’ve used and abused any number of regional folks in the interior design trades. You’ve aligned yourself with any number of architects and builders and developers and investors to take more than your licensed 5%, making back-room deals for greater your personal financial gain. You’ve mandated a culture of secrecy and silence within your ranks and behind your guarded walls. Not to protect the privacy and safety of your residents with their children and their families, but to safeguard the questionable practices you keep in place for income generation. Gross.
Here we are 9 years later. And your cultural statement still stands.
“ I sell really expensive real estate. To really rich people. Who have no taste. “ If only they knew…