I've been in the real estate business for more than a decade. I have worked for a broker who would not allow any adjustments to commissions, and broker's who let me charge whatever I wanted. One broker I worked for actually had a discount listing option and I admit that I used it a few times. So, I preface by saying that in some very rare cases, it may be necessary to have such an option available. However, my theory about commissions is that the clients could care less..as long as they get what they want and are happy with the services they received from you.
Yesterday on the way home from a closing, my client said to me " I know you don't make alot of money on this, and I just want to thank you for everything you have done for me. I appreciate it so much. And, give me another business card. I want to give it to my new neighbors who just put their house up for sale by owner. I'm going to tell them how great you are."
We never discussed how much money I made on the deal in literal terms. But of course the commission paid to my company was on the HUD 1 statement. And in spite of this she still felt that the services she received outweighed the compensation I would receive.
We have agents running around trying to "list the masses" and thinking that making a little money on many listings will be better than making a decent commission on just one. You know these people. We call them the 'here's your sign & good luck' agents. If you're like me, you have probably listed a home that expired after the 'here's your sign & good luck' didn't produce a buyer. These agents are missing the whole point.
What is the point? The point is that it's not how many buyers and sellers you get, it's how many you keep.
Do you breeze through their lives, rushing and giving them only half the professionalism they deserve leaving them with a bad attitude when they see your commission on the HUD1 at the closing?
Do they feel like you 'got too much of their money' for what little you did?
Do they express opinions to others that 'realtors make too much money for nothing'?
Do they ask for more cards and thank you and refer you to their friends, family and co-workers?
Do they call you when their mother needs to sell her home?
Do they remember your name in 5 years when they are ready to move again?
Referrals, repeat business, clients for life....I'll take that over instant gratification anytime.