So You Are Showing A House. . . . Wearing THAT?By
Fashion has become a term that means many things, it covers everything from your personal style to what is hot (and what is not) to the creation of one of a kind works of art. Very word evokes mental images of razor thin, pouty lipped beauties strutting down the runway in scandalously daring couture. . . But in this case, that’s not the particular application of the term I am thinking of, sorry! I’m focusing on the meaning of the term that applies to appropriate clothing choices for the properties you are selling. And why? Believe me I know the one involving the models is more fun, but in a sale, like it or not, what you wear can be just a vital as what you say.
So many times I have met with a Realtor and been made uncomfortable by what they were wearing. I realize that sounds silly, but think about it. When I show up to look at a farm, I dress to go out and look at the farm. So when the agent showing it comes to the appointment in 4 inch stilettos and a power suit, I immediately feel like an idiot in my T-shirt, jeans and battered old boots. It also raises some questions as to how knowledgeable the Realtor is about the property and how serious they are about selling it. The reverse of this situation hold true as well. If I am looking at upscale homes, and dress nicely for the occasion, and the Realtor shows up in a grubby T-shirt, worn out old jeans and flip flops, it makes me feel overdressed and uncomfortable and leaves me with quite a few concerns. To avoid either situation there are a few simple guidelines that will help you avoid awkward situation such as these and let you focus on the client and the home. Let’s have a look shall we?
1. Dress Appropriately For The Appointment. If you are showing a farm, jeans and boots might be a good idea. When showing upscale homes it is probably a good idea to wear nice slacks and a nice shirt. Just use common sense on this one and you will to fine.
2. Don’t Over Dress Or “Character” Dress. There is nothing worse then going to a ranch and being met by a Realtor wearing chaps. Unless you are actually riding a horse and wear them on a regular basis, leave them to the rodeo pros! The same goes for other specialty properties, just be yourself and let you knowledge and professionalism shine through. The same goes for commercial properties, just because it is a bowling ally does not mean you need to wear your “Bowling Champion of 1998″ shirt.
3. Dress Your Age. Guys, there is no reason to ever wear cutoff’s or muscle T’s to a showing, you are not twelve. And Ladies, leave the sparkles and hair bows to the twelve year olds as well.
4. When In Doubt, Cover It Up! I’m not saying wear a bag over your head or dress like a monk but dressing too sexy is also a problem. There are somethings that should never be worn to a showing, such as mini skirts, tube tops, super baggy jeans and low cut shirts, save it for date night or the club! Too much cleavage or leg showing is distracting and leaves clients wondering if you are serious about your job. And this goes for guys too! Cutoff shorts or unbuttoned shirts are a definite no, no. In other words, if you feel uncomfortable, your client probably is too.
5. Have Good Hygiene. For the love of all the clients in the world, wear deodorant! I assure you there there are few things worse than getting stuck in a small house with a smelly Realtor. Good hygiene habits make a world of difference. If you have an appointment after lunch, take a few seconds to brush your teeth, or at least pop a mint. You client will thank you! And be careful with perfume and cologne, a little goes a long way and while it might be a pleasant smell to you, a cloying cloud of scent can drive away potential buyers. Remember that some people are allergic and it can cost you a sale.
6. Be Prepared. Yes I know that is the Boy Scout’s motto, but it does apply. I would suggest keeping a small bag in your vehicle with travel size necessities, one at the office might be a good idea too. Some of the things you might want to include are a toothbrush and toothpaste, a comb, antiperspirant or deodorant, lip balm, hand sanitizer, wet wipes (these are essential in many situations), mints or gum and Band-Aids. You can tailor it to your individual needs and have everything right at your fingertips in an emergency. Ideally the bag should be small enough to fit under the seat or in the glove box.
7. Hairstyles. I realize that this is a very personal subject, but there are some things you should consider when showing clients listings. An incredibly over done hairstyle might put clients off because they think you will be hard to work with. And just as doing too much, doing nothing with your hair can send signals to clients that you don’t care about how you look, and therefore nothing else either. Remember this, it is important for you to be comfortable with yourself. Just think twice before shaving your head, please?
The best Realtor is one that is confident in their appearance and happy with who they are, clients pick up on this and respond to it. Dressing appropriately for a job is a huge part of sales success. When was the last time you saw Donald Trump wear flip flops to the office? Seriously! So while that sad, grubby t-shirt full of holes may in fact be your “lucky listing” shirt, do the world a favor and keep it in your desk or the trunk of your car. You clients (and probably your boss as well) will thank you!