Our Story (So Far)

Knock-Knock.ca isn’t a website name that fits into the traditional model of a real estate team. Most agents pick websites that you can associate with the business. Words like “real estate”, “edmonton”, “professional” and “expert” are what people expect, and usually find in their website names. So when you see www.knock-knock.ca hanging on your neighbours front lawn, you’re bound to scratch your head and mutter a “huh?”

So here’s a little insight into who we are, why we chose this domain, and why it has become an overnight success in the Edmonton real estate market.


To understand how we got here, you should probably know where we were, and a little about John; the guy who started it all.

John was partnered in a moderately successful real estate team. They worked hard, but just as importantly they always kept the clients’ best interests first. The team’s ethics were above reproach, and they commanded a great deal of respect from clients and competitors alike. Together with his team, John was involved in about 60 or so transactions per year. That’s a lot, given that the average is about 5 or 6 transactions per year for most agents.

But he wasn’t happy. He came into the real estate business with the dream of creating something different. Something lasting. Something he could be proud of. Yes, he was proud of the service he was providing to his clients. But he knew they could do better.

In order to make the drastic changes that he wanted, John had to walk away from the comfortable safety of his current position. His changes needed to be made at the foundation level, and the only way to do that was to start all over.

So he did. With a lot of fear in his stomach, he walked away from 8 years worth of hard work…

The Target

“Nice Agents for Nice People” – That is the guiding belief that drove this change, and is the underlying belief that guides us through the development of this new business model.

“Nice Agents”… When we meet with and talk with clients, other agents, and most anybody; we are nice. There’s no need for our egos to get in the way. We aren’t better than they are, and there’s really no benefit to being rude. That just pisses people off! So we’re not going to do it that way. Besides, we like being nice!

While “Nice Realtors for Nice People” sounds like a catchy little phrase; it really is the foundation of how we think and how we’ll behave.

The Reformation

In creating this new approach, John knew that he couldn’t do it alone. The workload was intimidating; he could see weeks (maybe months!) of late nights away from his family. And that didn’t include the time he had to dedicate to actually selling homes! A break from traditional real estate practices of this magnitude wouldn’t be easy; he knew this. The industry would mock him, resist him, and fight him on it; he also knew this.

But this was the right thing to do. He DEFINITELY knew this!

He’d need advice from someone who had taken their own step away from the norm, and was successful at it. Someone who understood John’s dream… and could be a sounding board for helping to make it a reality. Someone with a monstrous amount of real estate experience.

Walter Sanford has the distinction of being the most successful real estate agent in the history of the planet. But it’s not his tremendous real estate experience and success that has drawn us to him; it’s that he has twice changed the definition of “realtor” and moved our industry forward like no other individual has ever done. In the early 1980’s he created the concept of “personal marketing”. Before then Realtors were corporate employees and weren’t even allowed to advertise individually. He changed all that. Then in the 1990’s he invented idea of a “real estate team”. Walter is the man John was after; he didn’t step out of the box. He leapt out!

The State of the Union

5 years after John started this team, we’re blown away by the successes we’ve seen and the great response from both the public and our colleagues. We’ve seen people relax, open up, and understand that the real estate business can be handled with class and respect.

We have not only achieved the goals John set forward 5 years ago, we’ve grown beyond them and beyond his wildest dreams at the time. But that’s the great thing about dreams… you can keep having new ones!

Here’s Where We Are Today

1. We are focused on being “Nice Realtors for Nice People”. We want to get along with clients and colleagues alike. We find friendly conversations to be far more effective and productive than fights are. The results are showing; not only are the public responding to us… but many agents are excited to be doing business with us. They WANT to show our listings, and they WANT to present our offers to their clients. WOW!

We are nice agents.

2. We work for our clients, and market their homes. The days of “personal marketing” have passed. ┬áThe days of giant billboards proclaiming “I’m #1!” are dead and gone. They just don’t work anymore. What does work is providing exception service and skills to our clients, and showing them that we are the best at what we do. We don’t have to tell you that we’re #1… our results speak for themselves.

We market your home, not ourselves.

3. Gone are the days of being afraid to tell you the real price for your home. You know what we mean… quoting a price that the market won’t support because we don’t want to offend you; or worse being afraid that you won’t hire us if we don’t over-value your home. The truth is the truth; and that’s what you’ll get fro us. We’ll help you to make the home worth as much as possible; but we’ll never “blow sunshine up your skirt”. Lying isn’t nice.

We provide sound advice.

4. We are dedicated to finding better ways to market your property. Just because something used to work, doesn’t mean it still works. For example, open houses. They used to work by just putting out some signs and sitting in the living room. That’s not the case anymore. So we created the “Killer Open House” which is a fantastic spin on a traditional marketing system. It generates more traffic and gives us real value for kicking you out of your home for a few hours.

We are eternal students.

What The Future Holds

What’s next? What do we have in the works for further changes? Watch and see… this is just the tip of the iceberg!