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Writer Finds NYC Brokerage’s Handbook, Reveals Agents’ ‘Dirty Secrets’

What happens when a New York brokerage’s handbook for its employees lands in the hands of a writer? You guessed it—the details are going to get published.

A report first published by The Guardian let readers in on the contents of the training manual, which was found by writer James Ball in his new apartment, and include advice on anything from the dress code (“You cannot climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure”) to bedside manners.

“It confirms almost every suspicion you’ve ever said about the overly friendly guy guiding you through one of the biggest decisions you'll make,” the report said.

The report went on to elaborate on some of the manual’s tips for putting up advertisements—misleading ones, at that.

“If you’ve ever struggled to find an actual one-bed apartment, rather than a studio, in any major city, you’ll know that distinguishing the two in the online listings is a challenge,” the report said.

It added, “That’s not an accident – this company tells its new agents “for all studios ads put 'One bedroom' in the box and then specify that apartment is a studio, or alcove in the title of body of the ad.”

The next series of tips covered sales pitches and a whole lot of small talk to get the client in the realtor’s office even if the property or the landlord is virtually non-existing. “Worry about the apartment later, just get the clients into the office,” it said in the manual, according to the report.

The manual is also rich with tips on “handling any misgivings” clients may have about a property.

For example, if the client feels an apartment is tiny, the manual offers a ready reply for that such as “All apartments are basically four walls,” and “Most people are not going to be home that much to begin with.”

The manual also encourages agents to move in for the kill at the end of a property tour. “Explain to them that unfortunately in this tight market, apartments can be gone within 20 minutes, and they do not have the luxury of taking time to think about it,” a line from the manual reads.

And if clients are feeling more than friendly, agents can of course date them, but should keep in mind to collect the rent and the broker’s fee first before taking them to bed, according to the manual.

Resorting to dishonest tricks is common amongst realtors, especially during challenging times, but agents can avoid them if they are not so much pressured to make a sale, and more importantly, if they have the right tools to finding clients easier.

New real estate technologies, like those offered by digital media company RealBiz Media Group, Inc. (OTCQB: RBIZ), for example, are known for building an agent or broker’s personal brand so that they can capture leads easier.

Its platforms, Microvideo App and Nestbuilder Agent (offered on, are centered on the creation of virtual tours and informative videos about agents, properties, and communities, which provide potential clients a “what you see is what you get” sense of whom they are dealing with and the properties that could be their next home.

In addition, the platforms are first-timer friendly and complete with social media integration, analytics tools that help agents track leads, and SEO tools to improve their online visibility and that of their listings.

In today’s real estate market, using online real estate marketing technologies like those developed by RealBiz Media can give agents a competitive edge. Currently, over 350,000 agents have reported using Nestbuilder Agent to market their listings.

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