How Do Justify Your High Commission?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Tutas Towne Realty, Inc and Garden Views Realty, LLC BK607690

bb and tlwHi folks. In this day and age of easy access to information, what do you do that justifies your high commission?Why would the consumer want to hire you and pay your fee, when they can find all the information they need on the Internet? What can you say to justify your commission?

Well folks I am here to tell you, you best be prepared to answer these questions. And you best have a better answer prepared than your 25 step marketing plan and access to the MLS. This will not cut it in this day of disintermediation and discount, web based, Real Estate Companies. If all you can bring to the table is your marketing plan you will find yourself either out of business or drastically reducing your commission to be able to compete in this market.

So, what do we do? Well, here's what I do. I build value in something that the consumer cannot access over the Internet"Broker Bryant, that's pretty vague, can you expand upon that?" Of course. I thought you would never ask.

First, all people want to feel good about themselves and the decisions they make. You can provide that. You can help people decipher all the information that they have available. You can help them apply this information to their situation. Together, you and the consumer can come up with a game plan that will help solve their problem. You can be a trusted adviser.

Secondly, you can be a calming force. Selling or purchasing a home can be one of the most stressful things a person ever goes through. You can remain calm and help them through this. This can be achieved by constantcommunication and by constantly being there for them when they need to be reminded of why they are selling or buying. When the going gets tough, you can be there for them. You can let them vent their frustrations on you without taking offense. When they are all done you can help them to return their focus on the end result.

Thirdly, you can be their friend. You can have honest and sincere, care and concern about their situation. You can lead them down the right path without placing your commission in first position. You can make them and their situation be important to you. This cannot be faked.It must be genuine care and concern. Folks can, tell the difference.

My point here, is to understand that folks' emotional needs cannot be satisfied over the Internet. As Realtors, we need to position ourselves, to be the one person, that will take the time to make sure that their emotional needs are met.

If you can achieve this, I can assure you, that your business will take off and your services will be in high demand. And the consumer will be more than willing to pay the price for this kind of service. Quit trying to sell them something that they can get over the Internet for less money.

What say you?

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***I am NOT an Attorney nor do I play one on TV. Click the button below for my Bio.

The BIO for Bryant Tutas


 Tutas Towne Realty, Inc handles Florida real estate sales, Florida short sales, Florida strategic short sales, Florida pre-foreclosure sales, Florida foreclosures in Kissimmee Florida Short Sales, Davenport Florida Short Sales, Haines City Florida Short Sales, Poinciana Florida Short Sales, Solivita Florida Short Sales,  Orlando Florida Short Sales, Celebration Florida Short Sales, Windermere Florida Short Sales. Serving all of Polk, Osceola and Orange Counties Florida. Florida Short Sale Broker. Short Sale Florida.

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Comments (46)

Joy Daniels
Joy Daniels Real Estate Group, Ltd. - Harrisburg, PA

Sounds like you may have had a client questioning you - we charge upfront fees when we list homes - these are great reasons to add to the list! :)  THANK YOU!

Dec 04, 2011 01:23 AM
Alan May
Jameson Sotheby's International Realty - Evanston, IL
A moving experience!

Who says that my commission is "high"?  Sometimes the sellers are high.  Oft-times the buyers are high.  Ocassionally, the listing price is high.  But my commission, very reasonable for the very full service that I provide.

Dec 04, 2011 01:29 AM
Judith Sinnard
SMARTePLANS; Houston, Texas - Houston, TX

BB, I am in the unique position sometimes where the Seller "spills their guts" about the OTHER listing agents they interviewed who did not get the job. The chatty-Kathy client just lets it rip. If I had to put a percentage to it .. I'd say close to 90% of the "complaint" is that the agent did not CONNECT to them (the Seller). There is (apparently) a lot of chest-thumping about being a top producer, about knowing the neighborhood, about being affiliated with a big-box firm, and boring them to tears with charts and graphs .... the Sellers are not listening to any of this as they basically consider it all made-up crap. What they are waiting to hear is specific information of how hiring them will BENEFIT the SELLER in THEIR present situation, does this agent have "the right stuff" for THEM  --- all the other stuff is in the past as far as they are concerned. "Arrogance" and "...they talked past me instead of TO me..." are reocurring themes I hear onsite as I'm processing their house and they are bending my ear.  Your post is spot on and agents would do well to LISTEN, ABSORB and IMPLEMENT what you are saying.

Dec 04, 2011 01:47 AM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Bryant, today real estate agents have to provide value added services to get the job done. Most people don't mind paying as long as they know you are doing a good job.

Dec 04, 2011 02:02 AM
Renée Donohue~Home Photography
Savvy Home Pix - Allegan, MI
Western Michigan Real Estate Photographer

It's quite easy for me.  I am extremely transparent on the front end so I don't waste time.  I don't fib about pricing or market conditions.  I give them a NET SHEET which includes commission prior to even setting an appointment.  I show them my marketing prior to setting an appointment.  I share my qualifications with them prior to setting an appointment.

When I have a listing appointment it is pretty much a "sure thing".

Dec 04, 2011 02:15 AM
Bryan Robertson
Los Altos, CA

For the listings I take, I get this sort of question all the time.  For me, I bring two major things to the table that sellers don't have; experience and networking.

My experience is based on what to look for and know about when selling or buying homes in our area.  That knowledge can't be taken from a bunch of reports or a little light reading online.  It could save my clients a lot of headaches down the line.  Spotting construction flaws, knowing about fault lines, grading, zoning laws, and many other things will make the difference for them.

My networking is another thing.  I connect with agents from all over.  That networks gets my clients access to people they might not have.

At the the end of the day, if I can get the home sold, it's worth it.

Dec 04, 2011 02:16 AM
Eric Michael
Remerica Integrity, Realtors®, Northville, MI - Livonia, MI
Metro Detroit Real Estate Professional 734.564.1519

The people who want to beat you up on commission usually aren't the kind of people I'd like to work with. If that's the biggest concern with selling their home, I'm sure it's gonna be quite overpriced, too. That being said, with the low median home prices around here, and the short sales, commission is mostly a non-issue.

Dec 04, 2011 02:40 AM
Mike McCann - Nebraska Farm Land Broker
Mike McCann - Broker, Mach1 Realty Farmland Broker-Auctioneer Serving Rural Nebraska - Kearney, NE
Farm Land For Sale 308-627-3700 or 800-241-3940

I agree that the internet allows others to infringe on your "turf".  But how can they show up on short notice when the lights are left on or the offer has a short time frame or the inspector or appraiser needs let in?

I agree that you need to be prepared for all of the questions!

Dec 04, 2011 03:23 AM
Greg Nino
RE/MAX Compass - Houston, TX
Houston, Texas

I use fear to demand my high fees and make them feel lucky to have me. ;)

Dec 04, 2011 04:17 AM
Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

Our ORRA Realtor association put together a list of 100+ services that a Realtor provides.  I don't normally walk around with that list in hand, but do make sure to mention some of those items.  I also make sure to tell people that I pay for all the advertising and marketing upfront and don't get paid at all unless they close.  If they really make a stink about it, I will offer them the flat fee MLS listing and put it in MLS for a flat rate and let them handle everything else.

Dec 04, 2011 06:08 AM
Bryant Tutas
Tutas Towne Realty, Inc and Garden Views Realty, LLC - Winter Garden, FL
Selling Florida one home at a time

Hey guys. Thanks for stopping by. I actually wrote this article in 2007. There were a lot of debates going on at the time about what we did to justify our commission. A lot of agents try to justify by itemizing all the things the do. My stance is that that won't work.

It's the intangibles that we do that build value.

Rarely do sellers or buyers question me about commission. I build value from the get go.

Dec 04, 2011 09:46 AM
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

BB - You're so right that it's the intangibles that are important, and it is the best way to build value.

Dec 04, 2011 11:55 AM
Steve Warrene
Your Town Realty - Lower Burrell, PA
Pittsburgh Real Estate Investment Specialists

Bryant, I basically tell them that I am the "voice of reasoning".  Dealing with everything for them physically, mentally, emotionally and leaving them in a stress free situation.  Talking to them on a regular bases is important.

Dec 04, 2011 01:26 PM
Yvonne Burdette-Van Camp
To Buy and Sell Real Estate, see me at Southwest Missouri Realty - Springfield, MO
"Home"work, I have the Answers!

Nicely spoken and shared.   I have bookmarked this one, because this is how I do business, but I can explain it better, now that I know I need to...Thanks!

Dec 04, 2011 01:39 PM
Luis Iniguez
Option One Real Estate - Fontana, CA
Search Inland Empire Homes For Sale - Short Sale Agent

Bryant,you have to make your clients feel like you the real estate guru.  Make them know that you provide value added service to get the job done.


Dec 04, 2011 02:19 PM
Joan Valverde
HomeSmart - Colorado Springs, CO
GRI,CDPE,CNE,MRP,SRES Colo Sprgs, Blk Forest, Monu

Bryant, very good points made here.  Very often what we help these folks do, is one of the biggest decisions they make in their lives.  SOO very important to be a good Realtor, and friend to our clients!

Dec 04, 2011 03:02 PM
Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-939-2727
Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty - Love our Great City - Love our Clients! Buckhead - Midtown - Westside - Atlanta, GA
Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers

Bryant -
Interesting how the same issues are always current - you can re-post from years ago and the same questions are being asked about commission.
Have a happy day -

Dec 04, 2011 04:53 PM
Z - Bel Air, MD

Great post, Bryant - the only thing I take issue with is the word "High" with commission!

An agent's commission is not high if:

1. The seller fully understands that they are likely to be compensating TWO agents/brokerages.

2. The agent delivers on their promise to communicate, advocate, and negotiate effectively.

3. The agent is fiercely honest in regards to pricing, condition, and marketability.

4. The agent go above and beyond the "usual" methods.

5. The agent GETS THE JOB DONE!


And the most important thing, agents: DO YOU BELIEVE YOU'RE WORTH IT? WOULD YOU HIRE YOU?

Thanks again for the inspiration!

Dec 04, 2011 11:55 PM
Cheryl Dukes . . . . . Intown Atlanta
Solid Source Realty, Inc. - Atlanta, GA

Good Realtors do a lot of work to earn their commissions. Buyers and sellers only care about that, if they are provided with excellent service, knowlege and results. It's about working smarter; not harder and providing clients with more than they expect, so that they don't even question well-deserved fees. There are many different ways to accomplish this. Thanks for sharing your great ideas.

Dec 05, 2011 03:06 AM
Former Agent
None - Adak, AK

Ha!!  My clients "pay" me a far lower hourly rate as a Realtor than they would have paid me as a practicing attorney.  :)

Dec 06, 2011 04:46 AM