(It Isn't Who You Might Think)


Hello, everyone! It is so glorious down here right now that I cannot imagine why everyone doesn’t live in Atlanta. (FYI, I know a great agent if you’re looking to move!) My mood is as sunny as the skies and the low humidity is keeping my hair in check. It’s just perfect. I hope wherever you live, spring is treating you just as kindly.

This week, we’re going to cover one of my favorite topics, which is competition. My take on competition is a little different than most—maybe that’s because my perspective comes from someone who was always picked last on the playground. So let’s get to it!

Other cities may be in black and white, but Atlanta is in screaming color. Photo by Christopher Alvarenga on Unsplash


Competition Is Healthy

The thing about having competition is, it keeps us on our toes. Competition is necessary for growth—and it’s what keeps us from slipping into stagnation. That’s why I have been closely following what’s been going on with Mauricio Umansky and Jason Haber’s new group, the American Real Estate Association (AREA).

What’s particularly interesting about this NAR alternative is that there are no fees to join yet and that membership is optional. In an interview with HousingWire, Haber said, “For too long our industry mandated mandated agents join a trade association. We think this is an outdated and a misguided model that breeds agent discontent. Attorneys are not mandated to join the American Bar Association. Doctors are not mandated to join the American Medical Association. So why should agents have this requirement?”

Per the article, their first big advocacy push is getting the powers that be to revise lending guidelines so that the buyers’ agent comp can be rolled into the loan. So stay tuned, y’all—I’m sure there’s lots more to come!


That’s How You Get the Girl Listing

I’ve had competition on my mind ever since I sat on a panel last week when someone asked me the question, “Why do you think you’ve had such success in real estate?”

I responded that I’ve had such success because I truly believe I’m the best real estate agent. I don’t say this with arrogance, and trust me, this is a real mindset shift from being the kid who was always the last one picked on the playground.

The truth is, I feel bad when sellers don’t list with me. And I don’t feel bad because it’s a loss for me. I feel bad for them because I know no one is going to work as hard as I would have worked for them. No, ma’am. No one is going to do the job that I’d have done for them. So when I think about competition, the person who I’m perpetually pitted against is myself. I always want to go in there and do even better than the time before. As for whatever agent is around me? I have blinders on, focusing only on what I can do.

Now, I have been in listing presentation situations where I’ve gone against the actual top agents in Atlanta. I’ve gone against the number one, the top five, the top ten. And do y’all know what I do differently when I’m faced with such talented competition? Not a damn thing. I walk into every meeting knowing the right price, avatar, and strategy because that’s how I prepare myself.

There was one situation where my seller was a high-powered executive who was used to giving feedback as part of his processes. For the first time in my career, he sat me down to tell me why he picked me over my competition and oh, my stars, was that intimidating! His reasons were that I was faster to respond, I was better prepared, I’d identified who his buyer would be, I wasn’t afraid to tell him about the struggles he might face, and I had been in every one of the comps I’d pulled. He also told me that my weakness was that in being with Christie’s (this was a while ago), I didn’t have the same international exposure that the competition at Sotheby’s had, but it was still enough to win his business.

I had set myself apart because I didn’t immediately go for the home tour when I got there. Instead, I sat down with my potential seller and I wanted to find out everything about him so I could best understand how to serve him. I wanted to know his motivation, his timing, his goals. Before I got there, I went through his LinkedIn profile. I have the Crystal Knows extension so I was able to do a DISC assessment on my potential seller, which breaks down personality types by Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness, because you never want to give the big beauty pageant presentation to Mr. or Ms. PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Because I’d done my homework and gotten a bead on who my seller was, I knew the right way to present the information I had.

I’d also done a deep dive into the comps. I pored over the parcel map, the taxes, the photos. More importantly, I’d talked to every agent who’d listed and sold a home in the area so I knew all about the comps.

My process is, before any listing appointment, I gather every bit of intel available because the MLS can only tell you so much. I’ll call every agent who’s recently sold in the neighborhood. I’ll ring them up and say, “Hi, this is Glennda. Do you have a second to tell me about your sale because I have a client who’s interested in this market.” (Granted, they’re interested as a seller and not a buyer, but still.) Then I’ll say, “What can you tell me about this sale that I won’t see in the MLS?”

For example, not long ago, there were two almost identical homes on the market. One was in a better school district. But the one that sold was in the school district that wasn’t quite as good and I wanted to find out why. The buyers were a young married couple, likely with kids on the mind, so I was curious as to why they’d opt for the lesser school district. That other agent told me the buyer had political aspirations, so he had to be in the city of Marietta. So I understood why the “better” of the two homes didn’t sell and that was useful info for me to have.

A quick aside here—if you’re so competitive you refuse to have friendly conversations with other agents to gather information, you’re doing yourself a disservice. I am still so impressed by the baby agent who called me up with questions a few months ago and then used that data to pitch a whole bunch of new listings. (I can’t be mad because she was doing exactly what I preach!)

I know plenty of agents who delight in going head to head with other agents, who use the other person’s success to spur them every forward. If that works for you, great! Keep going. (Even better, if you have a TV show about it, I will watch it.) But I don’t have that gene. I don’t have a real estate nemesis. For me, the competition I feel always comes from within. It’s always going to be the case of needing to better myself. And that works just fine, too.


Getting the seller on the same page as the comparables can be difficult… they’re always going to cling to the highest sale, that I can pro… See more


Meet Kala Laos!

I am very excited to share my conversation with the impressive mover and shaker Kala Laos! She’s the Founder and CEO of Zoodealio, and an Arizona real estate agent and broker. We have a heart-to-heart about what’s impacting the quality of real estate agents and it’s not to be missed!

Thank you, Kala!


How to Level the Playing Field

I got an interesting question on AskGlennda that dovetails into this week’s discussion. My reader asked:

“Glennda, my market is incredibly competitive—how do I set myself apart as an agent?”

I’d be lying if I were to say the market isn’t crazy competitive. Your marketing material and targeting can only go so far.

The way you set yourself up for true success is by creating raving fans. You create raving fans by always learning and growing. (We’ll cover this in another newsletter soon.) It’s not enough for you to go through the motions and make your buyer or seller happy—you need to work hard enough that they become your biggest advocate. For example, the executive I mentioned earlier found me because his daughter’s best friend had a positive experience with me years before. If you drill down on being your greatest self in every transaction, your raving fans will do your marketing for you.


It’s All from Within

No one can challenge you harder than you challenge yourself.”

Glennda Baker


I have a fabulous new listing to share with y’all! It’s a hot property and it’s going to go fast, as it’s the lowest-price listing in Country Club of the South. The home has recently undergone a total reno (OMS, that closet!), but what makes it extra special is that it’s like it was ripped from the pages of Golf Digest. It’s located on the 16th fairway and the landscaping is just so lush and green with Georgia pines and azaleas everywhere. It’s perfect, private, and spacious—and priced to move!

Join the homes.com family now!