What I'm Seeing Now

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I Made A New Friend

I have the bad habit of arriving everywhere early.  To me it isn't a bad habit, but it does seem to rub others the wrong way!

Arriving early to an inspection in a high-rise building, I was told to go on in and directly to the apartment.  After making my way through the security gauntlet, I went to the unit I was to inspect.

I was met at the door by an elderly woman, who somewhat reluctantly allowed me inside.  After all, she did not know me from Adam.  Visibly nervous, she began chatting and tried to portray a very happy mood.  I think she wanted me to know she was a nice person so I would be less tempted to do her in...  Her discomfort was understandable.  I have a pleasant manner and it put her somewhat at ease.  And I have some practiced jokes that let my silly, off-the-wall humor come out.  Then came the question:

"Do you inspect everything in the house?"

"Yes, I do."

"Even my closet?  Do you inspect my clothes closet?"

"Yes, I do."

"Goodness!  Why in the world do you need to go in my closet?!  How long will you be in there?"

"Oh, not long ...  (two, three ...) "unless your clothes fit."

You need to understand, while I like floral prints and dark blue with small, white polka dots, her blouse would hardly have fit over my head.  She was very small.

She gasped!  Her eyes got huge!  She was shocked!  Then, slowly, a smile creased her face, she pointed and shook her finger at me and said, "I liiiiyyyke yooouuu!"

After that she was my good buddy.

My clients arrived some time later.  We had a nice visit.  It was an easy inspection.  After I was done working on my report, and as we were finishing, she brought us out a plate of cookies. 

Very, very cool -- I got cookies out of the deal!

My recommendation:  Arrive early.  Get let inside.  Say something outrageous.  Disarm them with humor!  And eat your cookies...  And try to make a new friend.

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 15 commentsJay Markanich • April 22 2009 08:10PM

Comments

Great story, thanks for sharing it!   I, too, am always early to everything...it does annoy some people, but I believe you can use just about any situation to your advantage.  I've never gotten cookies though...lucky you.

Posted by Kellie Fitzgerald (Kellie Fitzgerald - Chiricahua Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Thanks Kellie!  You can't go wrong with cookies...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

And you didn't share the cookies with us on active rain and I thought you were our friend. "I am on a diet....

Posted by Russ Ravary ~ Metro Detroit Realtor call (248) 310-6239, Michigan homes for sale ~ yesmyrealtor@gmail.com (Real Estate One) over 9 years ago

Jay, you definitely have gotten on someones good side if they bring out the cookies.

Posted by Jack Gilleland (Home Inspection and Investor Services, Clayton) over 9 years ago

Jay, I use the same approach----always advantageous to make friends wherever you can.

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 9 years ago

Russ - you would have been welcome to some!  Where were you?

Jack - like I said, good buddies.

Charlie - there are realtors who do not use me for home inspections because I kid around with the clients...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

I follow a very similar routine. It seems we make people nervous. It must be all that looking, poking and writing we do.

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 9 years ago

James - I try not to poke the clients.  I guess I do poke at them verbally.  Oh, you meant around in the house...

Imagine if we wore suits with badges!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

We don't need no stinkin' badges!

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 9 years ago

When performing an inspection with a female client, and it's just the two of us, I find it's very useful to somehow make them feel comfortable. Like you said they don't know us from Adam and you can't blame then for being somewhat nervous.

I'm sure that friendly smile of yours must help too.

Posted by Vince Santos, Southeast Michigan Home Inspector (StepByStep Home Services LC) over 9 years ago

James - one of my favorite lines!  Did you know that Mel Brooks took that from another movie?

Vince - thank you and you are right.  And it just takes a minute.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

Wasn't that from the Treasure of the Sierra Madre with Humphrey Bogart.

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 9 years ago

James - I honestly don't remember!  But I know that Mel Brooks uses lines in his movies from many other movies!  That makes them all the funnier.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

I think I've actually heard that one in person. It never gets old.

Posted by Jay's Son over 9 years ago

Too true...  sonshine.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 9 years ago

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