When In Doubt, Refer It Out


Tough Business Decisions

When Should You Refer Out Business?


While we often write  about buying or selling a home, we also enjoy sharing information pertaining to business practices. Today, we are going to discuss the idea of not working with a client.

The idea of not working with someone seems to go against conventional wisdom.  After all, if a business doesn’t make a profit, they won’t be in business. However, there are times when a professional is faced with a major dilemma: do they work with a client who they can’t properly service, or refer it to another professional?

Sometimes it’s very cut and dry, while other times it can be a tough decision, especially for real estate agents.


The key thing here is to know what your strengths are, and understand what you cannot do.  After all, no one can do everything.  For example, a foot doctor won’t do open heart surgery, a real estate attorney is not going to represent someone in a criminal case, and a real estate agent shouldn’t take on a client who wants to buy or sell in areas they do not service.

In the case of an agent, we realize it can be tough because it means turning down a commission, which is how we get compensated.  However,  a good agent will do it because they know it’s best for the client.


A friend of ours referred someone to us who wanted to buy in an area that we didn’t service. So what did we do?

With the buyer’s permission, we referred them to a great agent who knew that area like the back of her hand. They ended up finding a home in just a few weeks and are thrilled. The person who referred the buyer to us was happy too, because we took care of her friend.  Although we didn’t personally work with the buyers, we did put them in very good hands, and everyone ended up winning.


When posed with the above scenario, many agents struggle.  Some agents  will take any business, for a variety of reasons.  Some are simply very competitive and want all the business they can get their hands on.  Others really need the business, especially in today’s tough economy,  and then there are those that feel obligated and don’t like to say “no”.

At the end of the day, each agent has to make that business decision.

As for us, we believe in a simple principal—look out for what is best for the client. By doing that, the decisions made on a day to day basis really aren’t that difficult.


About The Author

The above information pertaining to Cleveland Real Estate News was provided by Dan Schuman of The Schuman Team Howard Hanna Real Estate Services.  Dan is an Accredited Luxury Home Specialist and can be reached at 216-346-3235 or via email,  danschuman@howardhanna.com.

We service the following Cleveland area suburbs: Bainbridge, Bay Village, Beachwood, Bentleyville, Chagrin Falls, Cleveland Heights, Gates Mills, Highland Heights, Hunting Valley, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Mayfield Heights, Mayfield Village, Moreland Hills, Oakwood Village, Orange, Pepper Pike, Shaker Heights, Solon, South Euclid, University Heights, Westlake, Woodmere.

When In Doubt, Refer It Out is the property of The Schuman Team and may not be duplicated or used without their written consent. ©August,2011

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