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I don’t know him very well, but I know that he knows his stuff -- his profession. Over coffee, he told me about that stuff. His family has been in the business for a couple generations. He has worked in many different capacities within his industry. Formerly an employee, he now lives the great American dream, and great American gamble, of running his own small business. He knows both the local market and the national forces at play. He knows what things cost and why they do. His reputation is everything; his service is his best marketing. I picked his brain for an hour, asking lots of questions, and left feeling a little more educated and a little more equipped.

I have her cell phone number. I used it recently when I was working into the wee hours on a timely and challenging situation. She knew me well enough to know that when my number popped up after 9 p.m. (let’s just say I am not a night owl), it must be important. She answered. She knows me, and I know her. That deal, it did not even involve her, but I knew she would be happy to take my question and help however she could. That’s the kind of professional she is. That is the kind of person she is.

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These two, and others on this short list, are the ones whom I call upon to help me help you. I can ask them any question, big or small, and get a timely, honest and thorough answer. These two, and their like, will get my business, and I will happily refer them to others as well. They know what they know and what they don’t know. They know their businesses, and they know that I know mine. They, and others on my short list, know that how you do life is how you do business. I, of course, call it real life, real estate.

One question I forgot to ask my new acquaintance was his price. We savvy professionals know that answer anyway. His, hers, and may I say a great REALTOR’S® is, no question: priceless.

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L Magazine editor

Mark Schwaninger is L magazine and Neighborhood Extra editor.

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