#BeTheSherpa: Alyssa Hellman and the real estate clients who weren’t there

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Adwerx CEO Jed Carlson put a client’s toughest question to real estate agents: “Why do I need you?” His answer was that agents are like Sherpas: they reduce the risk of the transaction, they help carry the load and they comfort the client along the way. With this mindset, no amount of technology or automation can ever disrupt the role of a real estate agent. “Be the Sherpa,” he said.

We asked leading real estate agents to share a particular moment when they got to #BeTheSherpa.


Alyssa Hellman Go school #bethesherpa adwerx

Before Alyssa Hellman became Director at The Go School in Raleigh, North Carolina, she was an active real estate agent in the Washington, DC area. Her energy and direct approach won her a loyal following of clients.

Then one day, a new lead came in. It came from a little further afield than her stomping grounds. The buyers were in Hawaii.

“It was the sort of lead that most agents would have ignored,” admitted Alyssa Hellman. Because who wants to work with buyers from that far way? But she wanted to learn more before turning it  down.

And learn she did. The buyers were a recently married couple and both were active in the military. They hadn’t spoken to a lender yet. Oh, and there was one more complication.

“They said they would be conducting their entire purchase remotely,” Alyssa said. You heard that right: the entire purchase.

This meant that Alyssa Hellman would have to take them through the process using as many technology tools as possible, including Dropbox and Docusign. She did virtual showings via FaceTime and held many a video conference. She verified financing information via phone and email with the lender.

“Sure, I was skeptical. But after talking to my buyers, I could see that this purchase and move was extremely important. And it was super-stressful for them because they couldn’t be here in person.” Which makes perfect sense, considering real estate transactions are stressful even when buyers are physically present.

“I needed to be hands-on and ensure that my transaction team — including inspectors and lenders — was also hands-on. We all had to be strong and clear communicators to ease this transition for them.”

Alyssa had her doubts. There were moments where her skepticism had her thinking, “This can’t be real!” But these buyers were relying on her to help explain the steps and guide the way as they made this important life transition.

And there isn’t an app for that. While the tools Alyssa Hellman used enabled her to provide above-and-beyond service for buyers who weren’t even in her state, much less her time zone, none of that technology could have replaced her or supplanted the role she played in the real estate transaction.

She was their Sherpa: reducing the risk, carrying the load and comforting the client along the way. Even if Hawaii is a lot more pleasant a place than Mt. Everest. Read more stories of agents as Sherpas here.

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