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In Which One Agent's Plans Go Awry In East Hampton

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Since the housing market has refused to bounce back to its pre-bubble glory, agents are required to go the extra mile to make sure their listings are seen by the right people. One such agent writes in to share a tale of doing just that, only to find her efforts thwarted by fickle technology.

From: Cathy Dransfield (Associate Broker, Senior Vice President at Saunders)
Subject: The Open House/Cocktail Party That Wasn't

I have this beautiful property that I wanted as many brokers as possible to see...unfortunately, now that we have at least 20 photos on each listing, brokers (me included!) most often don't visit the home unless they have a specific customer for it.

Knowing that even offering lunch doesn't get a good turn-out anymore, I thought: Why not do a cocktail party between 3 and 5, with wine and cheese? Maybe that will work. I then emailed the entire brokerage community several times, asking others who had exclusives in the immediate area to join in with their own open houses at the same time. I was thrilled to see the great response: 14 other brokers would open their exclusives too!

This whole process took a couple of weeks, but response was great, and by Wednesday, I was excited! I bought a beautiful platter of cheeses, and my co-exclusive colleague (Don Gleasner with Corcoran) bought red and white wines.

At 2:45, I pulled up to the elegant electric gates, which had always worked flawlessly...and they DID NOT open!! My colleague arrived and tried but to no avail...we each called the homeowners, and for the first time EVER, they were not answering their phones! Now, cars filled with brokers were starting to arrive...we had to turn them all away, so they went to the other 14 homes, spread the word that the "host house" was unavailable, and we did not get any more attempts to visit. My colleague and I poured each other a glass of wine from his trunk. The homeowners called back and sent electricians over and at 5...the gates opened.

Are you an agent or broker with a Tale From The Front you feel sharing? Email us. Anonymity is guaranteed, unless you say otherwise.