Wednesday, February 16, 2011


We interviewed three successful New York brokers about the importance of etiquette for buyers and sellers.

We began by asking about use of the bathroom. A good friend of ours learned from his broker that a potential buyer had used his bathroom and left solid evidence. Our brokers understand that when nature calls, you have to answer but do the right thing and clean up. "Never had an experience with Number 2," said Mitch Davie of Mitchell Davie LLC. "But I do allow clients to use the bathroom."

Speaking of nature, if you’re selling make sure you know when there’s a showing. One broker and buyer walked in on the sellers while they were extremely busy in the bedroom!

Be careful how you treat doormen and other building staff. "Buyers don't understand. The deal starts the minute the door opens and there's a meet and greet," pointed out Andrew Phillips, EVP, Associate Broker at Halstead Properties.

One couple treated the doorman so poorly; the seller took a little less money from nicer people. Pets have clout too; one deal was a no-go because a buyer was mean to the seller’s dog.

All agree there’s little to do about looky loos, people who look without any intention of buying. Open houses are one thing but otherwise they waste brokers' time. By the way, brokers have 24 hours in their day too. Lateness isn't acceptable and not being apologetic is atrocious. "Consequently, much time is spent on phones making excuses  for why one is late," said Davie

“Be honest about what you can really afford and if your circumstances change, tell your broker,” advises Audrey Edwards, VP, Director and Associate Broker of Brown Harris Stevens. “Why be embarrassed later?”

“I also think it’s in poor taste when a buyer wants to know why someone is selling and where are they going. It’s immaterial,” Edwards adds.

"It’s also in bad form to be critical of the seller’s taste," said Phillips. "The art of the deal has nothing to do with the art."

And speaking of the art of the deal, Yvonne thought it would be interesting to get Donald Trumps’ take on etiquette. It was a long shot. A receptionist, without saying a word transferred Yvonne to a recording that offered an address and a fax. A looky loo would have received better treatment. We're just saying.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


We’ve been in the process of going through our blog’s own facelift. Not that anything was sagging; we just wanted to freshen up a bit. Some of you thought Yvette and I were actually going under the knife. We didn’t. But welcome to our new look and what could be a better time than now to talk about facelift etiquette.

We started with our resident socialite, “Joy”. We asked her what goes on with facelifts amongst friends and acquaintances.
• If you’re close to someone who has had work, they’ll usually tell you. No matter what, you must say they look great. She pointed out that there’s a lot pain and time involved, so keep it positive.
• If it’s an acquaintance and you see them one day and it’s noticeable that they’ve had work done, and look great, just say, “You look amazing.” If they ‘fess up to knife work, ask them their doctor’s name. (Don’t be surprised if some don’t share information.)
• If the work didn’t work out, don’t say anything, certainly not negative, but don’t be dishonest and say something positive – say nothing.

We also talked to Dr. John Decorato, a plastic surgeon who had some tips on expectations.
• Trust that your surgeon is trying to obtain the best possible results.
• Be realistic, results are not immediately visible.
• It is not appropriate to bring celebrity photos (People actually do this.) and ask for replication of certain features.
• Bring photos of yourself 10, 15 and 20 years earlier, it’s helpful. Ideally, a facelift will make you look refreshed, more youthful not different.

Hope this helps. Now, we have a question and be honest, it will probably be the first and last time you’ll be asked for your opinion on a facelift. What do you think of ours?