Acuity’s Services Customer Team met again with real estate expert Peter Haase, owner of Keller Williams in Sheboygan, WI, to talk about how he is handling the changes that have come along with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Acuity: What is the biggest change that has impacted your business?
Peter Haase: The biggest change is just not being able to have as much contact with the people we are working with. We are huge on communication. In the past, that often came in the form of meeting people at our office, at a home we were touring, or even at their home we were looking at. We have had to transition from that while still maintaining our main focus of making sure everyone is communicated with in a way that works for them.
Acuity: What measures have you taken to make customers feel safer during this time?
Peter Haase: We practice social distancing of at least six feet, depending on everyone's comfort level, when we are going through houses or listing houses. We offer things to put on their shoes and gloves. We also recommend people wear masks. The other thing that has really helped out is using virtual tours and the technology we have to show houses in a way that we can help people identify if they are going to be interested in a house, and that way we can cut down on the number of people going in and out.
Acuity: That makes sense—great idea! In what ways have social media and digital channels affected your communication?
Peter Haase: Most of our meetings are now held on the Zoom app, which makes it nice and easy to communicate. I think it is quite convenient for everyone involved, because I know when I must go places, packing up my kids and everything, that turns into an hour. I can do a Zoom call and everything is taken care of in 15 minutes.
Acuity: Definitely! So, what does a return to work look like for your business and the employees at your business?
Peter Haase: That is a great question, and I think it is something we are going to be looking at each and every day to determine the safest and most appropriate way to do it. You know, I think it is really identifying the ways, for the time being, that we can keep social distancing while also making sure we are having a great transaction, whether you are buying or selling your house. I think it is important to keep leaning on the technology available to us, which is simple and easy to use, that provides a ton of value.
Acuity: In what other ways have you had to pivot or innovate during this time?
Peter Haase: You know, we have had this technology around for quite a while in ways to meet with one another. It is really about finding ways to not only use it, but to make sure everyone—all our clients—are able to use it in a way they are comfortable with, without getting frustrated, and there is a lot of value there. I think that is really the number one thing, and it is coming from contribution. At this point, I haven't been doing a whole lot of marketing, advertising, or selling, because I am really just taking the time to reach out to all the people in my life and see how I can help them. For some people, that has nothing to do with real estate. That is perfectly fine, because it is my goal to work with them for their life. I really focus on lifelong relationships, and that comes from just helping one another.
Acuity: Those are great insights. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. We featured you in a couple other Q&A blogs as well. Can you tell us where we can find information on your business?
Peter Haase: Our website can be found here. You can look for houses there. Also, if you are wondering what your house might be worth, I have a page where you can enter the address, and it will give you a rough value. Additionally, you can contact me about the results.