If you want to be known for outstanding customer service, it’s vital to demonstrate an appreciation for diversity. No two clients are the same, so the more you learn about different cultural traditions and beliefs that may affect how your clients approach real estate, the better you’ll be able to meet – and exceed – their needs.
This is a major reason why RE/MAX works closely with multicultural organizations such as AREAA – the Asian Real Estate Association of America.
Here are three cultural insights from John Yen Wong, AREAA National Founding Chairman and Emeritus, to keep in mind when working with Asian-Pacific buyers or sellers:
Asian culture is a high-context culture
In a low-context culture, which is prevalent in the United States, relationships are easy to form and short in duration. Clients decide more quickly to hire you as an agent and don’t expect much follow-up once the transaction is done (though a good agent knows it’s important to maintain relationships).
Clients from an Asian-Pacific background may be more accustomed to a high-context culture. They’ll want to get to know you personally before trusting you as a business partner. Once you’re in their trusted circle, the relationship will be ongoing.
Numbers are more than a minor detail
In Chinese, word for the number eight is similar to the word for wealth; the word for the number four is similar to the word for death. Don’t be surprised if an Asian client doesn’t want to look at a house with the number four in the address.
Of course, superstition around numbers is something many cultures share. “I’ve rarely been to a hotel where there’s a 13th floor,” Wong points out.
Family and the arts are largely valued
The opinion of elders is widely respected in Asian-Pacific culture. For example, a Millennial client may have a stipulation that a parent (or aunt, or uncle) reviews a property before they decide to put in an offer.
Arts are also highly valued. If a client mentions that their child has a musical recital, for example, they’ll appreciate you taking an interest and starting a larger conversation.
Ready to dive deeper into Asian-Pacific culture? Watch the video below from RE/MAX University and AREAA.
You may also be interested in: Who is the Typical AREAA Member?