In Calgary there is a standard of practice where Realtors leave behind a business card after they have shown a home. I have declined to do this pretty much since I started my career. There’s a couple of reasons why I don’t but first let me go over why other Realtors do.
I think other agents like showing Realtors to leave their card because it alerts the seller that an agent has been through the home, so the seller can then be assured that they didn’t leave the home for no reason, and that the showing is indeed over. I think other agents may also like to use the cards to do follow-up with showing agents to get feedback on what the showing agent, and their client, thought of the listed property. Other than those reasons, I just can’t see why agents leave their cards in the properties they show.
First of all, if an agent wants to see whether or not a showing has been completed, all they need to do is log on to the Supra iBox site for a detailed description of which agent was in, when they entered, and when they left. They can relay this information to their sellers, or they can do like I do, and let their sellers know that not every showing goes through, and there will be times of disappointment when people say they will show and they don’t. There is nothing one can do about that fact, whether a card is left or not. Better to prepare sellers for it, rather than phoning the no-show agent to rail at them for not showing up because we have an angry seller on our hands. As a courtesy to the sellers, I always leave the lobby light on so they know I have been through, unless it’s vacant.
Agents who use the cards for follow-up are, I think, really missing out on great feedback. First of all, they will miss agents, such as myself, who don’t leave cards or who have forgotten to leave a card. Next, because they aren’t getting their showing data from the Supra iBox site, they won’t know who showed it when. Did the showing agent show during the daylight or nighttime? Did they stay for 2 minutes or an hour? All of these details will give a good seller’s agent ammunition for probing questions that they can ask for 5 star feedback.
As a seller’s agent I don’t like cards being left because they clutter up my client’s counter, and they remind my client of just how many people have rejected their home, which for many of them can feel like a personal rejection. Now there is a time and place to let the client know that their home is not selling (when you have to sit them down for a price reduction) but I show them the amount of showings on a graph or chart, which seems to put an air of business around the amount of failed showings.
Lastly, is that it’s just a plain waste of paper and resources. Trust me, I’m no tree-hugger, but it really does seem like a waste to me, because in the age of technology, there just isn’t a need for it anymore. I actually hardly ever use business cards anymore at all. If people want my personal info, I’ll just show them a QR code to scan into their smart phone, or I’ll take their e-mail address and send them an Outlook contact card. When I get asked for a business card, 9 times out of 10, I don’t have one on me…which is something my husband gets on my case about all the time, which is ironic because he’s the techno-geek who figured all of this stuff out in the first place, which effectively sandboxed the practice of using business cards.
And that’s all I have to say about that.