All posts by Keith Thompson

The emotional side of real estate

In commercial real estate (especially hotels) there are some who think it is all about numbers, yield, return on investment etc. I am here to tell you it is not. Sure, numbers and financial history are important, but it is much more emotional than people think.

For the seller, it is often difficult. If the offers come in low, he is dealing with why everyone thinks his baby is ugly and how that makes him feel. If the offers come in high, he may be tempted so say to himself, “if it is worth that much now, just think what it could be worth in the future.” The buyer is dealing with a completely different set of emotions such as, “will other people think I have paid too much?” Is this really the hotel I want to own long term?” “What if I make a mistake or miss something?”

The third hotel I ever sold was a little independent hotel in Ellijay Georgia. I had zero training on the emotional/ human side of the real estate business. I had to just make it up as I went. We had the hotel listed and got an offer at the asking price. I just knew that if I called the seller and told him about the offer he would think, “since the buyer offered the asking price, I’ll just increase my price.”  I needed to keep that from happening. I decided to go see him and explain to him that it wasn’t just the buyer paying the asking price, rather it was the months of working with the buyer and earning his trust, that enabled me to guide the buyer. It wasn’t the property; it was the relationship that resulted in a full price cash offer. Big difference. The seller understood what I was trying to say and agreed to go forward with the sale at the offered price.

That was my first introduction into the mind set of sellers and buyers and it has helped me through all these years. Buyers buy what they want, not what they need. Sellers sell what they want to sell, not what they need to sell. How they “feel” about the sale or the buy, drives every decision. Yes, it is a numbers games but just like when you buy a house or a car, the most important factor is when you visualize yourself living in that house or driving that car. It is the same with hotel sellers and buyers, they need to visualize the deal in order to move forward. Understanding the emotional/ human side of selling and buying is probably the greatest thing a broker could ever learn. Much of life’s decisions come down to how you feel about it, and this is certainly true with hotel sales. KT

Waiting

Sometimes in life, waiting can be the hardest thing to do. When answers, results and decisions that will affect your life are forthcoming, but not here now, it is tough to wait. We as adults want to fix things and do it by this afternoon but there are many situations that you can’t fix and just must wait.

Waiting is hard. Waiting can take a toil on your mind, body, and spirit. Below are several examples to make my point. (1) You are an NFL quarterback and are doing great. Your team didn’t win the Super Bowel last year but did well. You are working hard to prepare for the next season and full of hope. Then, your team drafts a new quarterback to take your place. (2)  You are at a company and things are going well and you are excited about the future and then, they hire someone to fill your exact role. (3) You have a health issue and went to see the doctor and they performed all the lab work, but you don’t have the result yet. You are replaying the look on your doctor’s face and trying as best you can to interpret the meaning. Lastly, (4) Something is wrong with your child, or they have lost their way. You do all you can but at some point, all you can do is pray and believe that God will take care of them.

Waiting is hard but there are times when we all are at the mercy of the answers, results, and decisions.

For those who do not have a relationship with the Lord, it is especially tough. For those who do have a relationship with the Lord, it is also tough, but you do have a source for comfort and rest. Several scriptures that capture what I am saying are listed below.

Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.”

Psalm 56:3 says, When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.”

Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Matthew 11:28-30 says, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

Finally, Romans 8:31 says. “If God is for us, who can be against us.”

So, in summary: when you are troubled, stand up and brush yourself off, wash you face and go get after life because after all, the God of the universe has your back. KT

What would I do?

I was speaking with some folks this week that are about to make a big decision. Instead of telling them all the things wrong with what they are contemplating, I stepped back and ask myself, what would I do if I was them?

When we ask that question, it is amazing the shift in perspective that takes place. I saw the same scenario in a totally different light. In that perspective you see things that we never talk about such as ego, pride, self-fulfillment and of course, greed.

I have mentioned this before in my blogs, that if every employee took just a moment and thought like an owner, it would change how you see yourself and will certainly change how others see you. Think about the changes you would make and write them down and the next time your boss asked how you are doing, answer- I am doing great and if you are interested, I have some ideas if you would like to hear them. I promise you there is not anyone else that will do this, and it will get your boss’s attention. His most likely answer will be, “sure why don’t we meet at xyz.”

The opposite of that is what most people do. They tell the boss everything that is wrong. Trust me, he or she wants to hear something good and wants people to give them their ideas and wants people who think outside of the employee box. KT

The greatest lesson you ever learned

If you were asked to name the greatest lesson you ever learned, it would probably come from something you learned while going through a difficult period. The up moments in life are great but we seldom learn as much as we do when we go through a tough spot.

When you preserver through something and come out of the other side, it makes an impression you will remember for the rest of your life. I told a guy one time that when dealing with a move or change in life, its not the questions we ask that are the most important. It’s the questions we don’t know to ask that often make the difference.

I had this guy one time that wanted to open a retail fish store that only sold exotic fish. He asked if I would sit down with him to look at his business plan. After we added tax, rent, insurance, lose carry, cash needs, replacement costs etc., I asked him how many fish he would have to sell a day to cash flow. He did the math and realized his idea would never work. I have wished many times that I had consulted someone before some of my decisions. Well, such is life.

If you are going through a tough period, try to make yourself see it one day at a time. I find if you adopt this mind set it will help you get through today and tomorrow and the day after that etc. It will also help you realize it as a season of life instead of your whole life.  KT

Yesterday ended last night

I would love to take credit for this quote, but I can’t. It came from a little Zig Ziglar quote pamphlet my brother-in-law Ted Phillips gave be several years ago. Yesterday, I was thumbing though it and saw this little saying and it spoke to me.

All of us have yesterdays we would love to forget. Most of those we cannot change. Some we may be able to fix, but most are just there. Every day is a new decision on what that day will look like and how much of yesterday’s baggage we will carry into it. There are serious yesterday issues we all deal with but for an easy example, let’s take food. Just because you may have eaten the wrong thing yesterday doesn’t mean you have to do the same thing today. Every morning we have a new choice – what will I make of today and how this day will impact my tomorrows?

Yesterday is gone and we can’t go back, today is here and tomorrow may never come. Proverbs 27:1 says, “do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.” Clean out your backpack filled with your yesterdays and decide to stop carrying the past with you. Life will be much sweeter, love will be much easier, forgiveness will come much quicker, rest and peace will be much more enjoyable. Yesterday ended last night. KT