Birmingham Real Estate: You've Got Options: This Is A Public Service Announcement So LISTEN Up

This Is A Public Service Announcement So LISTEN Up

This Is A Public Service Announcement So LISTEN Up!

This message is for buyers and sellers across the country (the globe even).  It is not written with malice but rather with an intent to bring about an understanding.  If this message resounds with just one buyer OR one seller in each municipality across the country, this message will have been well worth my writing it. 

My name is Charita Cadenhead and I'm a real estate agent in Birmingham, Alabama.  I am also a member of the largest real estate network (I believe) in the world.  That network is called ActiveRain.  ActiveRain is a blogging platform where real estate agents and other real estate industry pros gather to share knowledge and experiences among ourselves and most importantly provide you, the consumer with information that you'll need when making a decision to buy or sell a home.  This message is the result of reading the many post lately on ActiveRain whereby agents are experiencing consumers who insist up establishing the worth of an agent's time as ZERO.

If you have a real estate question, the answer can be found on ActiveRain.  We, industry professionals, gather on ActiveRan daily in an effort to develop our craft so that we can continuously and consistently serve you to the nth degree.  It's important to us that we do a superior job of helping you with your housing needs.

But here's the kicker, in order for us to serve you best, there actually has to be a housing need.  What am I talking about you might ask.  You see one thing about people in the real estate industry, they either love the business to death or hate it and get out.  But no matter how much we love what we do, we actually do what we do for money. There I've said it.  I work for money.  And guess what else.  I'm not ashamed to say it.

We're  sure that many of you (the consuming public) reading this post actually work for a living.  We also know that as easy and pleasurable as our work may seem, we do what we do so that we can get paid.  We consider being a real estate agent to be an honorable way to make a living and I, for one, am not ashamed to say that I expect to be paid for work that I do.  For example, if we are touring homes with you, we are actually working.  And as a result of that work we expect to be paid. But if you are not really interest in buying a house, then we've literally worked for nothing.

Oh we're  going to work our patooties off to help you find that home that you've dreamed of for as long as you can remember.  So it's important to us that we are looking for the purpose of you making a purchase and not for fun or to kill a Sunday.  You see we can't feed our families, pay our mortgages, send our kids to college, keep the light, gas, power and water on in our homes by killing a Sunday with you touring homes JUST FOR FUN.  Oh and let's not even talk about how I need to work for living so I can put gas in my vehicle so that I can help legititmate homebuyers to find a home for themselves and their families.

I know it may sound like I'm being selfish or a BITCH (excuse me that just slipped), but since my income is drawn in part from showing homes, I'd like it to culminate with a happy family that I've helped find a new home or a family whom I have helped sell a home.   The paycheck is actually icing on the cake.  But hey, what can I say?  Me and my ActiveRain friends we like icing and cake.

Agents this is a PUBLIC post.  When making comments (if you chose to do so), please be cognizant of that.


Origin of BDAMB from Bham (The Back Door Ambassador Series)

BDAMB Gains Access Through Front Door

Charita Cadenhead, Your Metropolitan Birmingham, Alabama Real Estate Broker of Choice

Got a question about Metropolitan Birmingham real estate? Just ask Charita. Need a good Realtor(R) to help you find a new home or sell the one you already own?  Just shoot me an email.  In need of a rental property?  Subscribe to be notified whenever we list a new or home for sale.

Charita H. Cadenhead, Realtor®
Keller Williams Realty Metro North
Gardendale, AL 35071
Search for properties at Charita Cadenhead's website
(205) 527-1112 - cell
(800) 496-7431 - Fax

One thing about being in real estate:  I can't hide even if I tried. Charita Cadenhead:  I'm Everywhere You Want to Be!

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Comment balloon 36 commentsCharita Cadenhead • March 25 2011 07:00AM


Charita * I went on a rental property presentation on Tuesday and after spending a hour advising the homeowners how they could save THOUSANDS of dollar$, they wanted me to reduce my management fee....I WANTED to say to not let my manicured fingernails fool them, I WORK for a living!!!

Posted by Wallace S. Gibson, CPM, LandlordWhisperer (Gibson Management Group, Ltd.) over 8 years ago

Very true - the part of our job that can be fun is not whole job either.  Many times people wonder what I do all week or during the day before we start looking at properties.  Believe me I'm busy!  It is fun but it is still a job and a good real estate agent expects to and does earn a living at it.

Posted by Tni LeBlanc, Realtor®, J.D., Tenacious Tni (805) 878-9879 (Mint Properties, Lic. #01871795) over 8 years ago

Well Charita why don't you tell us what you really think? 

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty) over 8 years ago

Hello Charita, If I were in the market for a new home, I would certainly hire you to show me homes in the area! You come across as down to earth and realistic!

Posted by Clark Cook, Marketing Homes For Sale In Fayetteville NC Area (1st Choice Realty of Fayetteville, LLC) over 8 years ago

Good for you Charita, tell it like it is!

Posted by Donald Reich (Prudential Centennial) over 8 years ago

Hi Charita.  Super post.  Yes, I've heard many times that customers just want to tour homes "just for fun."  That really inconsiderate of the realtor's time not to mention the listing agent or the family that needs to vacate the home for the showing.  I wish people would be more considerate.  If they are serious buyers that's one thing, but window shopping is something else.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) over 8 years ago

Touring homes just for fun is what virtual tours are for. I they really want to get adventurous they might try hopping around to a few open houses on their own or model home tours. I am certainly not opposed to this type of "fun." Just leave me out of it so I can actually WORK. Point well-taken.

Posted by Keisha Hosea-, Real Estate Solutions For Real People (KASI Homes ) over 8 years ago

Charita...CHEERS FOR YOU!  I do love this business, no, I have a passion for the business, even after all these years!  I work for the love of getting something done - helping people solve their real estate problems (list & sell).  I work for the satisfaction of making things happen.  I love marketing!  My list of "loves" for my job could go on and on, but here is a biggie....I love to eat and live comfortably as do all of my clients.  Yes, I love getting that pay check and knowing that I am well paid for the many times 24/7 hours.  Go, Charita, this is excellent!

Posted by Barbara Hensley, Homes for Sale in Rockwall County, Texas (RE/MAX Properties) over 8 years ago

Charita, I don't work two jobs "just for fun".  My time is the most precious commodity I have, and trying to avoid the time wasters who aren't ready to actually DO something in the near future is the biggest challenge.  I love to help, will answer questions, give you my best advice, but if you're not REALLY going to buy a home, don't ask me to show you one...or ten....or twenty.  Let me help someone who can actually use the help instead.  Bill the Engineer/REALTOR(R)

Posted by Liz and Bill Spear, RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton) (RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 over 8 years ago


You go girl.  You have a way with words here.  So Listen UP!!

Posted by Cindy Edwards, CRS, GRI, PMN - Northeast Tennessee - 423-677-6677 (RE/MAX Checkmate) over 8 years ago

I know Wallace.  Sometimes the things that we hear are literally "jaw dropping."

Oh Tni I haven't even tapped on the "back office" work that we do.  Compared to showing homes, that's where the rubber really meets the road.

You know James I thought about that but I thought I'd hold back a little:-).

Thanks Clark but fortunately this time it's not necessarily about me as it is about US as a collective unit speaking out against consumers diminishing our efforts.

And then some Donald.

It's a trickle down effect Debbie that effects many people.  You are oh so right.

Keisha open houses are a great way to test the waters with regard to finding out what's available in the market and it doesn't involve necessarily consuming the time of others.

Val the dreaded tax return is very telling and many times the tax return makes us wonder why we do this for a living at all.  That's where the love part comes in at.  Love for the business not the money.  The money is the necessity that keeps us in business and pays our bills.

Cheers for us all Barbara.  This post is a national voice not a singular one.  I think we have the greatest jobs in the world because we get to do what we absolutely love and get paid for it.  Do you know how many people wake up in the morning and dread getting out of bed to go to a job that they hate?  Oh My God!

Bill you know better than most that every minute that you spend in this business is cherish (particular because of the limitations on your time).  But the best part is that you can balance that time so that it does not affect the qualify of your service.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Thanks Cindy.  I hope somebody's listening.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Glad you got that off your chest!  And kudos to you!  I too work hard and am always amazed how so many people think this is a fluffy job and easy.  They have NO idea!  It was great meeting you via the phone the other day.  And by the way, you are super sweet to send me a treat!  What a cool surprise!  THANK YOU!

Posted by Paula McDonald, Granbury, TX 936-203-0279 (Beam & Branch Realty) over 8 years ago

I do not work this business for the money....I do it because I have nothing else better to do with my life....I would work this for free day in and day out....Oops....NOT... I answered that way because I thought today was April Fools Day.....LOL...A post that tells it like it is....thank-you...

Posted by Dennis Duvernay Broker/Owner (Hillview Realty) over 8 years ago

Isn't that the truth Paula.  If they got a glimpse at the behind the scenes work we do...... I'm just sayin'.  Ditto on the phone meet and you are very welcome.

Dennis your comments remind me of a song I heard by Sugarland last night:  Uh oh, uh oh, uh oh.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

I actually had a buyer recently (during the close) ask me if I was paid enough, ready to write me a check.  I was so stunned...that has never happened to me before.  I assured her I was paid enough and that she was delightful to work nice for her to offer though!

Posted by Cindy Marchant, "Cindy in Indy" , Realtor, Fishers Real Estate (Keller Williams Indy NE 317-290-7775 over 8 years ago

Charita ~ Wasn't that a fun American Idol show last night!

The subject of "being" a Realtor is no different than "being" a Doctor ~ He diagnoses you by checking your symptoms ~ we diagnose a client by checking their criteria ~ hold on a minute, this sounds like an awesome blog coming into my head ~

What I honestly want to say is we work and work hard to help our clients either buy or sell a home. We need the public to know what we do we are passionate about ~ those who are in the Real Estate Market Now are in it for the Long Haul ~ TRUST ME WE ARE ~

Posted by Karen Baker, Professional Help with Rapid Responses... (Sunset Beach and Beyond Realty) over 8 years ago

Wow Cindy.  What a compliment. Can we clone her?

It was a great show Karen (full of surprises). Boy you guys are going to have me singing all day.  Dennis with "Uh oh, uh oh, uh oh" and you with "we work hard for the money."  We are absolutely no in it for a minute Karen.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Looking at homes for fun and amusement.  How much are they willing to pay for the fun?  Like an amusement park or county fair, charge an admission fee plus a fee for each ride (showing). 


Posted by Mel Ahrens, MBA, Kelly Right Real Estate, Customized Choices for your Real Estate Needs (Kelly Right Real Estate) over 8 years ago

Mel or at least each tank of gas (which ain't cheap ya know).

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Hi Charita. We love what we do for a living. Oh yes, I would certainly want to get paid for my services too.  Our time is very valuable and we aren't hourly wage earners. It's FUN working with buyers who are Ready, Willing, and Able. We are not "Tour Guides", but we are self employed professionals offering our services to the consumer. 

Posted by Jerry Newman, Texas REALTOR, San Antonio Military Relocation (Brown Realty, 210-789-4216, over 8 years ago

Self employed professionals Jerry who spend our TIME helping ready, willing and able buyers.   That is key.  That is the formula.  Without that formula, we literally work for free.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

We got another opportunity to say no today.  Wanted to look on Sunday because they're "in town" but refuses to get prequalified first.  NO...NO...NO.  FIRST I need to know you're capable of buying, THEN we'll show homes.

Posted by Liz and Bill Spear, RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton) (RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 over 8 years ago

Bliz that is EXACTLY what I'm talking about.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Charita, I had to wait a while for my screen to stop steaming up before I could respond to you.  Great job!

Posted by Joe Kenny, Better Than Your Average Joe (Realty Executive Midwest) over 8 years ago

No not me this time Joe.  It's just straight talk.  I read a post yesterday about an agent that had been showing homes to someone who was going to be ready to buy for another several months. Apparently there were some mixed messages.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Open houses are the perfect way to see homes for fun and entertainment. But if you want to sit in my car, you have to be serious and you have to be qualified. There is a process and, like any professional business person, it has to be followed in order to net the best results.

Posted by Craig Rutman, Raleigh, Cary, Apex area Realtor (Helping people in transition) over 8 years ago

I LOVE I feel much better now. Actually let me clarify, I love having the money to pay my bills and feed my family, if that makes me a bad person, I guess I am a bad person. BTW I had to get my car inspected the other day, and when presented with the bill I asked the mechanic since he had a smile on his face and clearly enjoyed his job if he could take less money than the bill asked for....I am hoping the surgeon sees things different than the mechanic when he gives me the bill for removing this wrench from my butt.....

Posted by Gerry Michaels, GettysburgGerry Social Meida (Glasswork Media Arts) over 8 years ago

Serious and qualified Craig. Funny how those 2 things a synonymous.  It the perfect recipe for serious homebuyers.

Boy Gerry you're on fire today.  That wrench surgery "ain't no joke."

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Charita, it is what it is.  I don't think the consumers will work for free and let someone uses them to work but won't get paid for it either.  Why would they think it is right to spend our time, our gas in our car, have no intention to buy or buy from that agent.  It is selfish and very inconsiderate.  Like Craig said, if they want to look at houses for fun, go to open house, they are opened for public to view.

Posted by Rita Fong, Realtor - Marion Arkansas Homes for Sale (RE/MAX REAL ESTATE TODAY, Executive Broker 901-488-9590 ) over 8 years ago

Indeed Rita.  I guess Rita that you have some who care and others who just don't.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

Charita: What a great post and well said. The thought that Realtor's don't really have a job is not true. Because it's FUN for me doesn't mean it's not a JOB.  

Posted by Donna Paul, Long Island Home Specialist,All About Real Estate (Keller Williams Realty Gold Coast) over 8 years ago

Charita....this was an excellent post.  MOST buyers I run into understand that & they are quick to thank me for my time & some have checked in to make sure I get paid.  Everyone has to work for a living & most people understand that I think; some just need to be reminded of it.  We are just lucky to be doing a job we love to do.

Posted by Christine Smith, Exclusive Buyer Agent & Attorney, Canton, MA (Buyers Brokers Only LLC - over 8 years ago

Thanks Donna.  Oh let's not even get on the "real job" thing.  That's a whole other post:-).

Christine aren't we among the most luckiest people in the world.  All because we look forward to doing what we do on a daily basis.  WOW!

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago

You go girl! 

Posted by Marilyn Boudreaux, Lake Charles LA Century 21 Realtor (Marilyn Boudreaux, Century 21 Mike D. Bono & Co.'s) over 8 years ago

Gotta stand for something Marilyn.

Posted by Charita Cadenhead, Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama) (Keller Williams Realty) over 8 years ago