It seems many professions have the stereotypical sets of wheels. If playing to this stereotype, it would seem engineers have boring sedans, accountants seek the cheapest car available, and large property owners all drive pickups.
But what about real estate agents? As one who has worked with an abundance of them in my brief lifespan, let’s determine if this profession succumbs to a stereotype. I’m sticking to first names for the duration.
In 1998, I moved from Jefferson City to Cape Girardeau just prior to getting married.
The first agent was Birdie. Birdie had been in real estate long enough to have listed the property on which Buckingham Palace was later built. However, her chariot was a nearly new Cadillac Deville. With its 4.6 liter Northstar V8, she drove like her butt was on fire. Mrs. Jason and I had a singular interaction with her; Birdie’s ignoring my repeated demands to stop and empty my bladder helped seal her fate.
The agent we would use to purchase our house was Patty. An agent new to the area, she had recently moved to Cape Girardeau from somewhere around Los Angeles. She had brought her Blazer along and it still had California plates upon our initial meeting.
We used Patty’s services again nearly three years later when we sold the house. By then she was driving a Buick Regal.
In 2001, we moved 440 miles northwest from Cape Girardeau to St. Joseph. On our first day there, we met Nan. Her Mercedes was the first one I experienced. A true wheel-dealer, Nan lamented about having purchased the Mercedes.
It seems her previous steed was a Ford Bronco. Nan said it’s ability to go anywhere in any type of weather was something her Mercedes could only dream about doing.
From what she jokingly told us, we wore her out on real estate. Upon purchasing our house (only the 75th she showed us), Nan and her husband moved a half-hour south to Kansas City. When we departed St. Joseph in 2006, she had just re-entered the real estate world.
By then, Nan’s Mercedes was long gone, replaced with a Jeep Grand Cherokee.
Heading 190 miles east to Hannibal, our first excursion was with Beth. For the life of me, I cannot remember what she drove. Upon her making a few snide and sarcastic remarks, we told the broker to find us another agent.
John was quite good. His Ford F-150 also has the highest standard deviation of this group.
Trimmed out with a moonroof, leather seats, and an automatic on the floor, John’s F-150 was equipped unlike any pickup I had ever ridden in. A few years after purchasing our house, we entertained the idea of buying something with acreage. John showed us a few and he still had the F-150.
At some point John started his own realty company and he asked Becky to show us a few parcels. Having driven an early Prius, I was impressed how far Toyota had advanced their hybrid technology in the interim and how well it was applied to the Camry. It was nearly the exact same shade of tan as John’s F-150.
In 2011, my employer was restructuring and I took a job in Jefferson City. This is where the number of agents truly flourishes.
The first agent we had on the selling end in Hannibal was Margaret. She didn’t last real long. After advertising our house in several publications for $30,000 more than our asking price and subsequently taking no ownership of it by blaming the secretary, we unceremoniously fired her. I only saw her white Avalon once.
After Margaret departed, we swapped brokers and were offered Jacki. The embodiment of the ditzy blond stereotype, Jacki drove a dark blue Buick Enclave. Her sloth and unresponsiveness resulted in Mrs. Jason and I introducing her to greener pastures.
Jan is a real estate goddess. When we first starting doing business with Jan, she was driving a Nissan Murano.
Soon thereafter the Nissan disappeared for a Mercedes GL. I first saw the Mercedes when Jan stopped by one day while we were checking on the house. The outside temperature was about zero degrees Fahrenheit and Jan had only a thin jacket. When I inquired, she said from her living in Alaska for over thirty years she generally didn’t even wear a jacket until it was ten degrees Fahrenheit.
Jan was successful in getting our house sold.
When we moved to Jefferson City, our first agent was Marcelle. Marcelle was a decent agent and was worried about how much longer her 2002 Camry would last. At the time it had 120,000 miles and was starting to give her a few intermittent electrical troubles.
On more than one occasion she had to borrow her mother’s Mercedes E55 due to the Camry acting up (Marcelle’s mother had retired from real estate). An illegal shenanigan by the head of Marcelle’s team was what prompted us to take our business elsewhere.
Alan seemed to drive a different vehicle every time we saw him. At first it was a Highlander hybrid.
The Highlander was interspersed with a Suburban that belonged to his son.
After showing me a house best redecorated with five gallons of gasoline and a torch, Alan told me of some “wonderful” property he had listed. For four times the typical price per acre for this area, I could have whatever piece I wanted but it did require a ten acre minimum purchase. Knowing the property was a glorified ravine, I compared the price to bovine fecal matter, adding there was absolutely nothing to warrant that type of entrance fee.
He immediately feigned an illness and we never saw him or his Highlander again.
Moving on from Alan, Susie had recently relocated to Jefferson City. She was a very good agent, having once been one of the top ten producing agents in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. Sadly, our relationship was short lived as she was diagnosed with cancer and subsequently refocused her efforts.
Mrs. Jason rode in her Cadillac, but I did not.
Our next agent was Donna. When we first met her, she was driving a blue Ford Fusion.
Other times she was driving a red Ford Fiesta. Donna’s tenure was also short as she didn’t provide comparison prices or copies of signed paperwork despite repeated requests to do so. She must have skipped that part of real estate school.
Shopping around yet again brought us to Julie. With vanity plates advertising her profession, the headlights on Julie’s Lexus were phenomenally cloudy for its age. Julie was another short lived agent as the last house she showed us was one in which she couldn’t be bothered to even get out of her Lexus.
After Mrs. Jason and I critiqued her motivation and integrity, we bid Julie adieu.
This is a repeat; calling Jan the Real Estate Goddess for advice upon divesting ourselves of Julie, we realized Jan’s real estate license was good for the entire state, so we worked with her to purchase the house we wanted. Her husband also owns a Mercedes SUV – whichever one is rated at around 400 horsepower.
Thus my questions: What have your real estate agents driven? Where were you at the time? And, do you think there is an accurate automotive stereotype for different professions?
Thanks to Jim Klein for inspiring this question.