The role of a REALTOR in today's market

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Evergreen Olympic Realty, Olympia WA


I’m sharing this newest review from my first-time homebuyer clients because they were born connected to the internet and found out rather quickly the internet didn’t have all the information they wanted and needed. 







When they reached out to me by email, I knew it probably took a lot of courage for them to do so.  And then I made them actually come into my office and meet me in person! (I know – so mean, right?! LOL!) But joking aside, they did admit they didn’t know what to do next after looking at homes online and going to open houses on the weekends.




They knew they probably couldn’t do this on their own but they didn’t know what my role was, either. 




They are not alone.  Most consumers don’t know what REALTORS do. This was very evident this week when we had a change to one of our rules in our MLS and some local journalists took this as an opportunity to slight agents. This type of snub isn’t new, but in a market where homes are selling quickly, many were quick to comment that they could have done everything themselves and they could have done it much better, cheaper and faster than any agent.




This is our fault. It is our fault that consumers believe this because we as agents have not taken the time to explain what we do nor what our role is in the current market.  This is why home buyers think all we do is just open the doors and as listing agents, we just stick a sign in the yard. 




We have not updated our message to our clients. 




Real estate has changed.  As a REALTOR, I’m no longer the gatekeeper of information.  Information is readily available to anyone with an internet connection. My job is no longer finding the house for my buyers but is arming my clients with the decades of my knowledge and experience I’ve gained so they can make the best decisions for them. 




And my knowledge and experience have been hard-earned over decades of working in real estate every day and encountering different issues, situations and pitfalls. This background that I come to the table with and pass along to my clients is not something consumers can simply get online.




My role is now firmly seated as a guide and a distiller of all the information available to consumers. The information is there but consumers may not know what it means and how it is applied to their transaction.  This is where I come in and provide my expertise.




Consumers have many options in their real estate journey, and who they choose to work with makes a difference.  It's up to us as REALTORS to let them know our role in today's market.     

Posted by


Francine Viola, Realtor
In Tune with your Real Estate Needs


Serving Buyers and Sellers in Olympia, Tumwater, Lacey and Thurston County, WA

Coldwell Banker Evergreen Olympic Realty, Inc.  |  Olympia, WA


Cell:      (360) 359-0689






Comments (20)

Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Francine, congratulations, and know you guided your clients through the transaction professionally.   

Oct 03, 2019 04:24 PM
Francine Viola

Thanks Joan Cox - I was very happy to have worked with them!

Oct 04, 2019 09:12 AM
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

Francine Viola 
What a great post --- and so accurate! 
For our Clients, this is the biggest investment in their lives!
You give them the confidence to move ahead.
All the best - Lynn

Oct 03, 2019 08:20 PM
Francine Viola

Thanks Lynn B. Friedman - we all have to work to get the message out that we aren't just door-openers for our buyer-clients. Thanks for stopping by!

Oct 04, 2019 09:13 AM
Adam Feinberg
Elegran - Manhattan, NY
NYC Condo, Co-op, and Townhouse specialist

While there are occassional and small sales techniques that I apply- I am really not a salesperson. My role is far more consulative in nature. Prior to working in real estate, I worked in financial services- which included management consulting. My role, in both careers is advisory work. I can list page after page of examples of this, though I think many successful agents understand this all too well, even if the public doesn't until they work with a quality agent.

Oct 03, 2019 09:44 PM
Francine Viola

Absolutely Adam Feinberg - we are definitely consultants and trusted advisors - I agree!

Oct 04, 2019 09:15 AM
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

The Internet is our primary resource for information, however, it may not be accurate or comprehensive and does require inordinate amount of time, research and analysis that may not be conclusive. So, depending on the task or item, it is probably best to employ an expert to  help achieve your goals and objectives. 

Oct 03, 2019 10:17 PM
Francine Viola

Hi Kimo Jarrett - I agree and hope consumers understand the internet isn't the end-all.

Oct 04, 2019 09:17 AM
Sham Reddy CRS
H E R Realty, Dayton, OH - Dayton, OH

Great advice! Thanks for sharing!

Consumers have many options in their real estate journey, and who they choose to work with makes a difference.  It's up to us as REALTORS to let them know our role in today's market. 

Oct 04, 2019 04:40 AM
Francine Viola

Thanks @ShamSham Reddy CRS!

Oct 04, 2019 09:18 AM
Gordon Crawford
Gordon Crawford Home Selling Team - Morristown, NJ
Your Morris County Specialist!

Excellent post Francine!  Like you, my years of experience are invaluable to my clients.  There aren’t maybe situations I haven’t seen or know how to fix them. 

Oct 04, 2019 04:47 AM
Francine Viola

Hi Gordon Crawford - I totally agree. The years of experience we have is invaluable for our clients.

Oct 04, 2019 09:20 AM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker, eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Yes, it is up to us to make sure we are communicating our value.

Oct 04, 2019 06:24 AM
Francine Viola

Hi Kat Palmiotti - If we can all get this message out to our clients, sphere, local public - it will help our entire industry.

Oct 04, 2019 09:21 AM
Ron Tissier
Chapman Hall Premier Realtors (404) 580-9069 - Atlanta, GA
Defining Homes. Defining Lifestyles.

Congrats on the excellent client review Francine Viola!

I'll add that NAR should be providing this same message to the public on a daily basis and in support of its members.


Oct 04, 2019 06:25 AM
Francine Viola

Hi Ron Tissier - I couldn't agree more.  I like the "This is who we R" campaign but they could do more with that.

Oct 04, 2019 09:22 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Francince - life teaches many lessons and that's definitely true for first time home buyers who see the reasons behind real estate.  Congratulations on the closed transaction and the good client review.  

Oct 04, 2019 07:17 AM
Francine Viola

Thanks Michael Jacobs!

Oct 04, 2019 09:24 AM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

The role of a tour guide is what it boils down to....

Oct 04, 2019 07:21 AM
Francine Viola

You got it - I agree, Richie Alan Naggar 

Oct 04, 2019 09:24 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Good Morning Francine,  Great blog and so true, there is so much more then just looking at homes.  Can I reblog this sometime?


Oct 04, 2019 08:00 AM
Francine Viola

Hi Will Hamm - thanks and yes, feel free to reblog - I'd appreciate it!

Oct 04, 2019 09:26 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

What a nice testimonial, Francine, and well deserved.

I don’t care that we are not the gatekeepers of the information - I like the role of consulting, guiding, educating and counseling and helping buyers and sellers wade through the wealth of information online and understanding what it all means, and correcting it where needed.

It’s clear your buyers appreciated all that you did far more than they expected they would.


Oct 04, 2019 10:27 AM
Francine Viola

HI Jeff Dowler, CRS - I just learned that it's okay to let go of my "gatekeeper" mentality.  It just took me a while to figure out that it was ok to do so! :-)

Oct 07, 2019 07:32 AM
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Thank you for expressing it so well. "My role is now firmly seated as a guide and a distiller of all the information available to consumers. The information is there but consumers may not know what it means and how it is applied to their transaction.  This is where I come in and provide my expertise."

Oct 04, 2019 11:57 AM
Francine Viola

Hi Jill Sackler - thanks! I appreciate you stopping by!

Oct 07, 2019 07:31 AM
Tom Bailey
Margaret Rudd & Associates Inc. - Oak Island, NC

Francine, you hit the nail on the head with this one. So many buyers and sellers think they can do this themselves, until they try. I tell every client that I don't sell homes. I tell them my job is to be their trusted Real Estate advisor. I tell them I am in charge of the process, and they are in charge of ALL DECISIONS 

Oct 04, 2019 12:17 PM
Francine Viola

HI Tom Bailey - I'm with you on this! 

Oct 07, 2019 07:31 AM
Liane Thomas, Top Listing Agent
Professional Realty Services® - Corona, CA
Bringing you Home!

You are so right! The way we do business has changed. I was sitting down with homebuyers last weekend who are in their mid 20's. I started talking to them about the old days when we flipped through a book to figure out what houses to see. They thought I was joking!

Oct 04, 2019 12:41 PM
Francine Viola

Hi Liane Thomas -Top Listing Agent - LOL!  I know, right?!  It's even hard for me to believe we did that!

Oct 07, 2019 07:30 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Francine Viola - Congratulations on an excellent blog post! The testimonial your first-time homebuyers gave you is a keeper! On the day they agreed to meet you at the office you had a meeting of the minds and I'm willing to bet you made them feel comfortable answering all their questions and getting to know them better. What you did for them is something no one gets from looking at the Internet. I agree with you, it took a lot of courage for them to reach out to you, meet you at your office, and reach out to you by email. I think this is a perfect example of, "you had them with "Hello..." From there you gained their trust. 

I really enjoyed reading what you wrote and wish you an abundance of happiness and success.  Congratulations on the FEATURE!

Oct 04, 2019 03:24 PM
Francine Viola

Hi Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP - thank you so much.  I just love your comments and posts!  Good to see you!

Oct 07, 2019 07:30 AM
Mimi Foster
Falcon Property Solutions - Colorado Springs, CO
Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor

Excellent outlook and post. It has certainly changed in the past few decades, but the need for a good, experienced Realtor has not changed. Congrats on the Featured Post.

Oct 05, 2019 06:57 PM
Francine Viola

Thanks, Mimi Foster - it seems like real estate is changing at a faster rate than ever.  It will be an interesting future!

Oct 07, 2019 07:29 AM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

Anybody can learn anything, but an expert but an expert will save you some time hugely

Oct 12, 2019 08:52 PM
Abby Stiller
REMAX Realty Group - Cape Coral, FL
Professional Bilingual Realtor (239) 284-8637

Congrats on the excellent review you just received from your clients Francine Viola  you made good points on our role as a Realtors and definitely we need to explain everything what we do to our clients. 

Oct 13, 2019 11:40 AM