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Why use an Agent? I’m pretty smart and I can find stuff on the internet.

June 1, 2008


I love this question because it’s an opportunity to teach folks that they don’t even know what they don’t know.

Here’s a great example that came up for me this week; I am also a writer and I was reading a fellow writer’s blog. She just got a movie deal for one of her books and she was so excited. Here’s what she wrote:

So we gave them two months. About a month later, I get a call from my lit-agent saying, really, more squeeing, that we’re expecting an offer from The Weinstein Company! This was huge news because, beyond the obvious, Meryl was once Harvey Weinstein’s right-hand gal, and the fact that they were reteaming on something meant they really wanted to get this done.

So I squeeed and squeeed and waited by my email for more details…and waited….and waited….and finally, like a week and a half later or something, we got the offer. I jumped up and down and squeeed some more and would have immediately accepted (because I am a writer, not an agent) but my agent is savvier than I am and prepared a counter-offer. (See, this is why agents are good things. Very good things. Because I would have squeeed forever and happily cashed whatever sum of money they shoved at me and called it a day.)

When you find the right property, you, my client, get so excited – dreaming about where you’re going to put your cute little armoire – that the details of the deal become secondary – at least that’s my experience in the last 20 years of helping people.

I am the same way! I remember when I had an accident on an outside terrace. The table we were sitting at blew over and my left hand was crushed. I required emergency surgery and had pins in my fingers then physical therapy. When I went to get re-imbursement, I had no idea what to ask for. So, I hired an attorney who charges 30% of the settlement. I thought, I am smart, I negotiate all day long, maybe I can save myself 30% of something. I thought about it overnight and hired him the next day. I had thought maybe I could get my expenses plus $20K ish for the hassle. My attorney negotiated a settlement of expenses plus $75K. After all was said and done – I more than doubled my money by hiring the attorney.

Now, I am not saying I’ll make you double what your property is worth when I sell it but, I know that the value I bring to the table – in all areas of the deal, not just the money – far outweighs the fee I receive.

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