We all watch and do nothing as our industry is destroyed.

Real Estate Agent with DeLex Realty

Over the past years, I have had the unique opportunity to be both an investor and a Realtor, a seller, a buyer and a client of various real estate agents. I wish I could say my experience has been a positive one, something that gives me hope for the industry, but I cannot and keep a straight face. The fact is, I was given a ton of false promise and extraordinarily little action.

My experience: As a seller I tried approximately 14 different agents of those one did a fair to good job and the rest failed to offer me anything more than a listing on the MLS.  Most made big promises, marketing was the biggest and none of them really delivered (several never even installed signage). To be honest post and prey (and yes, prey is what I meant) was what I was given in return for my commission payments.

You may ask why I do not list myself, to be honest it is just time. I am mostly a real estate investor; I wanted to hire those with recent experience in selling properties on the retail market and I was willing to pay for the services. Ultimately, what I found is none, absolutely zero of them, did anything to help my property sell for more money or sell faster.

As a buyer, I was just sent links to multiple properties no matter if they fit my needs or not. I did not ask to be inundated with properties but rather actually wanted the agents to find properties that fit my specific requirements. I told them that I have access to the MLS system and if I wanted to explore the entire MLS inventory I would have on my own. Several times I was called by agents telling me I need to drop what I was doing and run out to a perfect property before it was gone, I would and to my dismay, 90% of the time it was far from what I asked for a more troubling the agent had never even gone to look before wasting my time.

More troubling than the lack of marketing was the lack of negotiation ability. I ended up negotiating my own deals often. They tried extremely hard to look professional, drove high end cars, wore nice clothes but lacked what I needed as a buyer or seller, business skills.

My conclusion after a few years was simple, this industry will be taken over by computers. For the life of me I do not understand why Brokers are not required to apprentice agents like the construction industry requires. Real Estate Agents are dealing with the exact same values, the same property but without the oversight and training the contractor receives. The are trusted by the client they have the skills, professionalism and education required but the reality is very few do and even fewer receive a fraction of oversight the highly qualified contractor does.

My experience has led me to believe, the client would be equally as well served by simply finding a house on the internet, submitting an offer directly unless we make drastic changes to this industry, changes that are desperately needed. The only question is, will the industry change before someone at Google figures that out as well?

Posted by

James (Jim) Lord




Comments (4)

Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Nice to see you back Jim feels like over a year or two since you were on the platform, Endre

May 23, 2021 11:23 PM
Jim Lord
DeLex Realty - Phoenix, AZ

Thank you! It has been some time. I have been slammed with my investment side of our business. I saw an article the other day about how agents will be replaced and thought of this so I figured it was a good way to start trying to write things again. Thanks again!

May 24, 2021 07:05 AM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Jim, interesting results, but know I have worked with co-oping agents that do NOTHING on the other side of the deal!  

May 24, 2021 07:50 AM
Jim Lord

I have had that as well. Nothing is worse than when you get to do all the work. 

May 24, 2021 10:52 AM
Steve Schultz
KW Smart Lakeland - Lakeland, FL

Hi Jim, thank you for your post. I feel your pain. It's your sort of experience that led me to real estate. I consistently fail to understand why so many agents do not get that they are primarily in the customer service business. As you point out, by failing to provide good customer service, poor agents are harming the system. Precisely as you point out, it makes the customer think, "Why should I use an agent when I can get the same if not better results online on my own?" I'm about to read your follow-up post to see what you propose as solutions. Thanks for sharing -- this is something all agents need to understand!

-- Steve

May 24, 2021 08:48 AM
Jim Lord

Thanks Steve. I think the industry really needs to require an appreniticeship. I have been in business my entire life and it is hard to do business with someone who's only experience was a cashier at the dollar store. There is nothing wrong with being a cashier but you should have some busienss skills before you handle a $500K transaction. If we do nothing, we will be replaced, I am certain. 

May 24, 2021 10:52 AM