4 Comments

As a broker, my experiences and opinions are a mixed bag. Sometimes I represent myself, sometimes I hire a “realtor” to represent me. Sometimes I represent my friends/family, sometimes I suggest they hire a different realtor. Sometimes, I want to recommend that my friends/family represent themselves…. But that last option isn’t viable if the listing is held by a realtor.

Some questions to consider and hopefully respond to:

1) what industry do you hire an agent/representative that is paid for by the opposing party?

2) “Realtor” is a trademarked word reserved by agents that are a never of the NAR. The NAR is very influential. As an independent broker, I get subpar treatment from listing agents. I definitely get noses turned up at my because I don’t use Showtime. There is no question sellers have missed out on opportunities.

3) Why would/does the listing agent get full commission if a buyer represents themself?

4) Why are there not financial incentives for buyers agents to be paid on lowering the price or bettering terms? More showings = more time… more time = less ROI. the best intentions will have bias to the money trail.

5) Commercial deals are even worse, but we wont get too sidetracked! :)

I definitely know and respect good agents a brokers and use them often…but i think there is little question or debate that realtors natural and trained bias is to keep everything in the NAR arena for self preservation. I am not even suggesting changing anything, but the conversation is worthwhile for improvement.

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First, as an agent, I'm triggered :) second and more important, I'm glad to hear you love your real estate agent friends, so I hope that love will extend to allowing me to push back on this at least a little.

I believe that you are allowing your perosnal experiences in life, business, and particularly negotiation color your experience. The vast majority of people have no experience in contracts, contract negotiation, or the process of a home sale, much less the ability to effectively market a home, much less correctly price it for market conditions. You were very fortunate in the timing your sales and purchases to be in a climbing market and I'm not surprised to hear that your were very successful, you should note that you were successful mostly due to the market, sorry. It's as equally true that agents were successful in sales during the same period, myself included, for the same reasons. That does not equate to success across the board and certainly not success for all people. Did you know that the owner of zillow couldn't sell his own home himself? I would also argue that while this process may have been great for your family, with independent representation it would be fair to argue the buyers of your homes may have gotten a better deal.

The challenge with requiring buyers to pay for their own representation is that the savings required for downpayment is the single biggest challenge to purchases in any market. I believe that is the silver lining to Sitzer-Burnett, borrowers can now finance into the home, the cost of their representation, this actually doens't change the process of a home transaction, with or without agents, it only changes the column the cost for the service is accounted from the seller to the buyer, which is more accurate. I'm the first to state that agents are paid well, and I also believe that I provide great service, with transparency and integrity. There are pros and amatuers in every business so I won't apologize for other independent contractors only state that it is very important who you choose for representation.

One final thought to consider, given that your final sale price was $15k over the estimates provided by the agents interviewed, I'm curious what percentage that is of your total sale price? The reason I ask that since 2020 homes on the MLS have sold on average around 105% of the listing price, I would argue due to maximum exposure to the market and equal representation in the best interest of both parties. Did you get 5% over your asking price, if so great, I'm happy for you, if not maybe you didn't get the savings you thought.

Thanks for allowing me to stand up for my craft, you are an entreprenuer that I respect and a person that I admire, so please understand I mean no disrespect, but I do believe in my chosen profession and in my ability to negotiate win-win scenarios. I also have found that when a hard line around cost is drawn, it only hurts all parties. In agreeing to work with a great professional, you could potentially have had a faster, more profitable sale, with less of your time involvement, and the buyer's would have had a more positive purchase experience with peace of mind after closing, knowing that they were set up for success in a home they love. That's the view point I strive for with each my clients and customers.

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author

Thanks so much for the comment! I’m thinking about your comment more before responding. I like to let it sit with me for a while so I can fully hear what you’re teaching me.

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founding

Wow! impressive you went through all that hassle, reading contracts, dealing with all the roadblocks. VERY nice of you to refund the sellers earnest money down. You sure have me thinking..... Sometimes it's funny in life that I notice I'll do some work to save pennies/dollars, but when it comes to large purchases/sales (home maintenance stuff) I've been doing single bids lately and on the last one I'm really kicking myself. Thinking about it on the home buying/selling is taking that idea to a whole new level.

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