Goofus & Gallant Listing Agents

When I was growing up I would read “Highlights for Children” when in the waiting room of the doctor’s office. The one part I’ve always remembered was Goofus & Gallant which showed the wrong way to behave (Goofus) and the right way to behave (Gallant). Goofus would play in an area and leave a mess. Gallant would pick up after himself. Goofus was rude. Gallant had manners. Recent experiences in the Loop and surrounding neighborhoods have led me to believe that I have found good examples of listing agents who exemplify Goofus and Gallant. Before describing these agents, let me say that neither is associated with my broker, Baird & Warner. Let me also mention that as different as these listing agents are, they have one thing in common. They specialize in selling condos in the building they live in.

Let’s start with the Gallant listing agent. When I called her to schedule a showing of one of her listings, she was polite and professional. She was also a good listing agent in that she mentioned that she had two other condos for sale in the building in the same price range that she would be happy to show us. She was on time for the showings. She made an effort to get feedback from me for her sellers. When there were price reductions, she let me know about them. The Gallant listing agent clearly works hard for her sellers.

When I called Goofus listing agent to schedule a showing of one of his listings, I was told that he would meet us in the lobby, but several minutes after the agreed upon time, he still hadn’t shown up. I called his office only to learn that he wouldn’t be there and that I should get the key from the desk. After seeing the condo, my buyer had several questions. I sent Goofus an email with the questions on a Saturday. The following Thursday he still hadn’t replied. I called him and he said that he didn’t get my email because he was at his in-laws the day I sent it?! He then informed me that the condo was now under contract. If he hadn’t blown off my email, he might have had multiple offers on the condo and thus gotten his seller a higher price.

My buyer liked the building so I searched the listings again and found 2 more condos priced slightly higher. Guess who the listing agent was! Yes, Goofus! Yet, he hadn’t said a word to me about the other 2 listings even though he knew that I had a buyer with a serious interest in the building.

My buyer bought one of the other condos. During the closing I was talking with the seller’s attorney and learned that when he told Goofus that the closing would be in Buffalo Grove (both attorneys were in the suburbs), Goofus replied, “I’m not going to the suburbs for a closing!” Goofus was true to his word. He didn’t show up for the closing. Further discussion with the seller’s attorney revealed that Goofus had been also been bad about responding to his communications.

Recommend this on Google


Fran Bailey Fran Bailey is a Realtor who has been quoted in numerous Chicago and national publications. To schedule showings for any listings, get a free market analysis for your home or to contact Fran email her at or call 773.793.4516. Learn More


  1. Diane Scholten says

    Fran -

    I too read Highlights (my mom subscribed for us) but had forgotten about Goofus and Gallant. You make great points about the importance of being client-centric – thanks for the vivid way of describing it!

  2. says

    I am a Realtor in Florida and wanted to let you know that I run into the same problem here all the time. I’ll call an office for showing instructions and they will tell me to call the agent. Three or four days later when they return my call it is too late.
    I get to homes and they give me the wrong codes or there is no box. A few times I have lucked out and the back doors have been open.
    You can’t sell property if you don’t let people show it. There are Realtors who do not treat it as a career. To me that is a disservice to their clients.
    South Florida Homes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>