Sometimes a person just can’t help being a bit naughty. I think there was something in the air today as it seemed everyone was being somewhat on edge and bordering on just plain weird. It appeared nearly with all the phone calls I received today when people were asking about rentals. Phone etiquette is definitely out the window most of the time with the rental callers. From people coughing in the phone, children screaming in the background, carrying on another conversation while speaking to me, and the unbelievably fractured English and unfinished sentences. What makes me laugh to myself sometimes is when people leave a message about wanting to know if our office has rentals available, they ask to be called back but forget to leave a number. Whomever started the substitution of “have” for “got, really are due for a tongue lashing. It is becoming so widespread that I even catch myself saying it sometimes. Of course after saying it, I head for the nearest restroom and wash my mouth out with soap. One question that I heard too many times over the phone over the years is, “Do you guys got any houses for rent?” Another question that’s right behind that one is, “Do you guys have any houses on rent to own?” Over all the years of selling real estate, I have almost never heard of anyone providing rent to own housing. I’m almost afraid to ask how it works.
I happened upon a person today that came up to me and asked me how business has been. This particular gentleman was a seller who had me out to his house more than once going over things regarding getting his home ready to sell. After the second visit, I simply told him to let me know when he would be ready to list. I nearly fell off my chair when I discovered he listed his home with another agent without even making a courtesy call. Well, today he mentioned that his home was sold and would be moving out of the area. I congratulated him but as I was walking away, I turned back and said, “Some day we will have to have a chat about what I did wrong.” He looked at me rather strangely and suddenly I could see the lightbulb going off. With reddened face he said, “You didn’t do nothing wrong.” While slowly walking away, I smiled and said, “Yes I did because you just double negated.” I know it sounds a bit harsh, but sometimes people do create their own Freudian slips. The next time you hear the word “got” used improperly and double negating, I’m confident you’ll think of me and smile.