Time zones are one of those things that are certainly easy enough to calculate, but they can still make your head spin when you start to think about them.
For example, as I’m writing this at 7:30 on a Friday morning here in California, my clients in Australia have long since gone to bed at 12:30 having crossed into the wee hours of their Saturday morning. And at this same moment, one of my investors in Portugal is in the middle of the workday at 3:30 in his Friday afternoon—each of us simultaneously living out a completely different part of the day.
Such comparative reference points in time provide a useful reminder of the differences of context for parties to any interaction—including those in a real estate transaction—as a microcosm of each one’s greater experience of their life. And when you connect with people remotely, whether via a phone call or on WhatsApp or in a Zoom meeting, each person’s background noise or screen gives further glimpses into that individual’s vantage point for the discussion at hand, making Global Connections in Modern Real Estate surprisingly nuanced.
Through it all, I still marvel at the different states that can coexist in the same shared moment.
Of course, such differences in time and space are just the tip of the iceberg when you consider the variety of situations and states of mind any given party may be transitioning into or out of, both before and after the interaction, against the larger backdrop of their personal storyline. Perhaps they are having a good day or a bad day outside of the discussion they are having with you. Perhaps they like you, or perhaps they don’t.
But with a heightened awareness of where each person you are dealing with is coming from and where they want to end up you can have a better chance to connect with them for a deeper impact and, quite often, a better outcome.
Beyond the time and space of the moment, the real estate transaction generally coincides with important junctures in the lives of those involved, giving the parties dramatically different experiences of what is, at least on its surface, the same event. A grieving seller might be saying goodbye to their parent’s home, while the young couple buying it awaits the arrival of their first child. One established business might be selling their location because they outgrew it while another is selling theirs because the partners ended up embroiled in a bitter lawsuit and dissolution.
At its core, the transaction represents a medium of change for the parties, and the property becomes a juncture between what came before and what lies ahead, sometimes illustrated with dramatic effect such as when one building is torn down and another takes its place.
Through it all, I still marvel at the different states that can coexist in the same shared moment, and this wonderment often occurs by pondering something as simple as the unique zone of time and space that every one of us occupies.