Margaret Rome's Blog


Level Of Tolerance How's Yours?


After reading Patricia Feager's post yesterday, it puts into perspective just how much each of us do to get a property to closing.

And we do this making our clients feel like they are the only one we are working with.

We handle professional duties, follow up with agents, inspectors, contractors, title attorneys, lenders, clients and even family members of our clients. We do this while in meetings, on the phone, on appointments, emailing, texting, watching the eclipse and while working on several transactions.

Many agents have assistants, partners and even entire teams to help.  But we all know that sometimes we are the only one that can deal with a specific and immediate situation.


Many of my sellers are classic clients, older, dealing with multiple challenges or an illness of a family member. This is in addition to the stress of moving.

 REALTORS® need to have a high level of tolerance to take care of each situation no matter how small it may be.

With so much stress on buyers and sellers... theirs IS the ONLY problem.

They should not be hearing about your unexpected out of town company, your computer glitch, your emergency dental visit or any other crisis that has nothing to do with them.

As an agent, you must have a high level of tolerance to make each special client feel they are the only one! 

    How is your level of tolerance?


Margaret Rome 410-530-2400

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Author of Real Estate the Rome Way



Comment balloon 51 commentsMargaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400 • August 21 2017 04:49PM


Good evening Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland ,What a great post..yes our clients don't want to hear about our issues in a's all about it should be!

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899) over 3 years ago

Dorie Dillard And our clients should not hear about our issues. I have been in the middle of deep challenges and when a client calls and asks if I have time...I answer..."always time for you."

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 3 years ago


The focus definitely needs to be on the client and their issues and concerns, despite whatever is going on in our lives, unless it's a family emergency.


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (eXp Realty of California, Inc.) over 3 years ago

Hi Margaret... I don't think of it as "tolerance." For some reason that word always has a bit of a negative connotation for me. I think of it as "patience" and one thing I've always said is that the real estate profession has taught me a level of patience I never thought I was capable of as an inherently an impatient person. I have learned to hide that aspect of myself... I know I'm not very patient, but if you ask any of my clients, they will tell you I am the most patient person they've ever met.

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (Coldwell Banker Realty) over 3 years ago

Nina Hollander As an RN, I had patience. My level of tolerance is something else. Is different and may affect how I respond. I  think you have just minspired my next post. 

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 3 years ago

I think my ability to handle stress, has come from the patience cultivated after 35 years as a real estate professional.  I agree with you, tolerance is an important factor.

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) over 3 years ago

Margaret so so true and keeping whatever is going on with us personally out of the equation is so important. We've been working with multiple estate situations and they sometimes take an extraordinary amount of finesse working with everyone involved all while making it 'appear' smooth and seamless and getting it to closing. Really good post!

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten CRS CRB, Phoenix Broker, 602-380-4886 (HomeSmart Real Estate BR030809000) over 3 years ago

I agree.  My wife gets annoyed when she sees me being more patient with my clients than I am with her.

Posted by Tim Maitski, Truth, Excellence and a Good Deal (Atlanta Communities Real Estate Brokerage) over 3 years ago

A true professional never blames something on a problem with the computer or someone else but rather deals with the issues... keeps the client interst above all else!

Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) over 3 years ago

Yes tolerance is important but of course up to a point. When ego or abuse gets too great it is OK not to tolerate and hopefully we have the foresight to know when to cut and run.

Posted by Joe Pryor, REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties (The Virtual Real Estate Team) over 3 years ago

Very wise and true. 

Posted by Ruth Grainger-Starr, providing AWESOME real estate adventures (Grainger Realty) over 3 years ago

I agree with Nina Hollander that "patience" is the right word for this attitude.

The word "tolerance" has been totally abused in our present political environment.

Posted by John Mosier, Prescott's Patriot Agent 928 533-8142 (Realty ONE Group Mountain Desert) over 3 years ago

Congratulations on your feature recognition. This is good reading for those who are considering a career in real estate.

Posted by Roy Kelley (Realty Group Referrals) over 3 years ago

If one does not have a lot of tolerance, then one will certainly get it after being in real estate for a few years. You're right that clients don't want to hear about our stresses - and they particularly don't want to hear excuses.

Posted by Margaret Goss, Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate (Baird & Warner Real Estate) over 3 years ago

Taking the time to listen, emphathize and solve (if it is solvable) is what makes our clients feel valued.  If not, steps one and two with a helping of, "I'm on your side," goes a long way.

Posted by Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker, Bristow, VA (Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA) over 3 years ago

Hi Margaret I do see that a high level of tolerance is needed in real estate biz. I was on the sidelines for years and listened to the stories Anna would tell. Unbelievable at times yet true. Calm and steady wins the race.

Posted by Gary 'Banana' Houghtaling, Phoenix Real Estate Agent (Phoenix Property Shoppe) over 3 years ago

The REALTOR group had a slogan "We're REALTORS, you have a life, we let you lead it." And while the seller, buyer is off at a little league game, church social or family reunion, the guy or gal with the R is rolling up sleeves and getting it done behind the scenes. Makes it look like the real estate peddler has not time for his own life but we do whatever it takes.

Posted by Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573, Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY) over 3 years ago

I find that the more years I put into this career, the more relaxed and confident I am.  When it comes to tolerance and addressing issues, I feel like I've faced most of the types of problems that can come up.  So now when the same problem arises, I usually feel comfortable handling it because I've done it before!

Posted by Lee Keadle, Keadle Real Estate Group (Carolina One Real Estate) over 3 years ago

Good afternoon, Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland love this post....

"With so much stress on buyers and sellers... theirs IS the ONLY problem." 

this says it all....

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty - Retired ) over 3 years ago

I do not share my personal problems with my clients. I make them feel they are the only clients  I have.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 3 years ago

I agree Margaret.  We must make each client feel like they are the only client. There's a big worry in our industry about automation and other disruptive forces that are changing the industry.  The best solution to that is to be more human, compassionate and caring and provide top notch service that no cut rate, automated vendor could ever hope to provide.  Best wishes to you.

Posted by Jerry Murphy, CRS, SRES, Anthem, Phoenix, and Scottsdale AZ Real Estate (Long Realty West Valley) over 3 years ago

Hi Margaret - That's a lesson that Mary & I learned long ago. We do have the advantage of extending our tolerance, since we have different reactions to different situations - sometimes one or the other of us is just the better choice.

Posted by Dick Greenberg, Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate (New Paradigm Partners LLC) over 3 years ago

So.  How effective can you get at Not Tolerating It ?

Make it a Great Day.

Posted by Scott Thompson, Commerical Finance - Blue Springs, MO (Columbia Mortgage Plus) over 3 years ago

Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland - We just can't forget what we are there for: to do a job! And to do it well, we need to find out information from the client. Often we get too much of it. We need to insure that we don't get sucked into their problems because then we can't do our job dispassionately. "Tolerance" can still be meted out without us going overboard.

Posted by Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®, Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea over 3 years ago

     Sure, we sell houses.  But we sell them to human beings.  It's the personal things that we have to accept, work around, work with, and tolerate.

Posted by Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate, Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker (Fred Griffin Real Estate) over 3 years ago

Patience is a virtue... AS Agents/Brokers/Professionals WE ALL need to remember that buying/selling a property is the MOST EXPENSIVE purchase that our folks will make.  Many will be stressed.  WE should be the ones to remain calm, cool, and collected.

Posted by Pam Guthrie, Seaside Realty Co. Owner/Broker In Charge, REALTOR (Seaside Realty Company) over 3 years ago

Meditation can really help with this part of it. Rome wasn't built in a day and neither was our tolerance.

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) over 3 years ago

Margaret, you are so right. This is a constantly moving business with many moving parts, and a lot patience, and sometimes compassion, goes a long way.

Posted by Mike Cooper, GRI, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro (Cornerstone Business Group Inc) over 3 years ago

Good point Margaret, it is all about the clients. Unless I have something anecdotal and cute or funny to say (about myself) I try to jut listen.

Posted by Dana Basiliere, Making deals "Happen" (Rossi & Riina Real Estate) over 3 years ago

Oh, I love this post and completely agree - it IS all about them and if you don't have the tolerance, get out of the kitchen!  WAIT, that's not how the saying goes...


Seriously, Margaret, I love it when clients hear the attorney say something like, "Good to see you again today!" or "See you tomorrow!" They always say something like, "And here I thought we were your only clients!" I WANT them to feel that way and know that whatever they need, I'm here for them.

Happy Tuesday, Margaret! 


Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, The right Charlotte REALTOR! ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) over 3 years ago

Working on those need to part their old home to go to nursing home is difficult. The condition of the home is often subpar.

Posted by Sam Shueh, mba, cdpe, reopro, pe ( (408) 425-1601) over 3 years ago

Remember when "the buck stops here" was coined and practiced? I want my clients to know that they can always count on me to help find solutions and make their lives a bit less stressful. They and their needs are most important.

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) over 3 years ago

Dear Margaret,

My threshhold starts to rise steeply at more than 12 different client groups in one weekend. Just had that & was a little frazzled after. A slowish Tuesday let me catch up with myself & get paperwork in order.

Posted by Dörte Engel, ABC - Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton & rest of Maryland (RE/MAX Leading Edge) over 3 years ago

Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland - I tell my clients, I am paid fot the stress I take away from!

Indeed so true...

"REALTORS® need to have a high level of tolerance to take care of each situation no matter how small it may be."

Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) over 3 years ago

Praful Thakkar I love this comment and may be borrowing it.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 3 years ago

Isn't the primary reason you should be hired is to get the job done and on time?However, in this industry, some moving parts are beyond your control unless you get complete control of the transaction from your client.

So, persuade your clients to do just one stop, no stress, no excuses, no issues or concerns from their loan package to real estate closing by working smarter not harder and selecting you in submitting all the documentation and information completely and accurately to avoid any delays in closing the transaction.

Now, it's in your hands completely and if your team is superior, you'll perform without any adverse incidents or delays and celebrate another successful win without any stress to you or your clients. 

Posted by Kimo Jarrett, Pro Lifestyle Solutions (WikiWiki Realty) over 3 years ago

Well said - and I know that you have had a plate full of your own distractions over the last few years - and I know that you have soldiered on with grace, still caring for your clients. 

Posted by Lise Howe, Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC (Keller Williams Capital Properties) over 3 years ago

I would place my tolerence level right up there at super hero status.  I may be having the worst day on a personal level or in biz but I never let my clients see me sweat.


Posted by Ron Tissier, Defining Homes. Defining Lifestyles. (Chapman Hall Premier Realtors (404) 580-9069) over 3 years ago

Learning how to navigate through the different personalities is wise and a good investment for personal and professional reasons. They should teach it in school

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 3 years ago

Thanks Margaret for helping is understand our focus should be on the consumer.

I tell myself all the time: "It is not about me, it is about you."

Posted by John Wiley, Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA over 3 years ago

Good morning, Margaret. We have to be like a bartender. Listen a lot, speak a little, and let the product sell itself.  Cheers!

Posted by Nathan Gesner, Broker / Property Manager (American West Realty and Management) over 3 years ago

It depends on the day. Vacations help, Lol!

Posted by Paul McFadden, Pest Control, Seattle, WA. (Paratex) over 3 years ago

I'm pretty mellow and have a high tolerance level.  

Posted by Melissa Jackson, Helping You Make The Right Move (Century 21 Alliance Properties) over 3 years ago

I have a high level of tolerance but when abuse gets too high I'm gone. Just did this yesterday and even willing to refund for the appraisal. You have to work awfully hard to get me to this place.

Posted by Joe Pryor, REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties (The Virtual Real Estate Team) over 3 years ago

Joe Pryor Good comment. Enjoyed our conversation today. Thanks for sharing your wisdom and your GREAT  core values.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 3 years ago

Good question!  I received a call this morning from an agent in Tucson who had referred a buyer to me.  She called to thank me for calling my buyers' mother to describe the house he's buying and how it's perfect for him.  Sometimes those little touches make everyone's day.  I learned that her cousin had been killed in a recent car accident and the mother was having a rough day, but my call brightened her day.  Had no idea!   Great post Margaret and a reminder to others that we need to be mindful of always being present for our clients who need us!

Posted by Jan Green, HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN (Value Added Service, 602-620-2699) over 3 years ago

Jan Green Kudos to you for just being special and going above and beyond. You make us all proud.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 3 years ago

When I started in R/E about 8 years ago, I had a higher tolerance rate as I was still learning the Market and there was a chance I'd get paid for that learning time!

Posted by Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Broker/Owner, email: / cell: 334-494-7846 (Travis Realty) about 3 years ago

Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Associate Broker Are you still getting paid for that learning time?

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) about 3 years ago

HI Margaret,
Agents need a high level of tolerance AND patience, don't they?

Posted by Carol Williams, Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager (Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals.) almost 3 years ago

Carol Williams We sure do!

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 3 years ago