Today got me thinking or made me boiling mad - sometimes it is the same thing

By
Real Estate Agent with Bruce Taylor Inc, Realty

Okay. I read a letter to the editor today.

It was in response to an article dated Feb 4 regarding home buyers' debt likely tops value. The response starts off with - Remember who Realtors work for.

The writer then quotes zillow.com about how many home bought since 2006 have an 80 percent chance of being worthless than what the owne owes. Probably very true.

But the next paragraph goes like this - Who should you blame? Yourself (meaning buyers). You probably listened to Realtors who weren't necessarily working for you.

He then talks about how we Realtors talk up homes are a great investment - Act now before you get priced out.

He even says watch the Realtor blogs and other assorted Realtor apologists go postal on me for saying that.

He then talks about his history as  mortgage broker and he even had his real estate license. He was seeing transactions that no longer made economic sense - so he left the mortgage business. There was no logic to home values rising 25 to 30 percent (maybe because the houses in some areas were undervalued for years) year after year (my area maybe 2004 through 2005) while wages were increasing 2 or 3 percent.

it is his experience tells me the majority of Realtors (thats right he said the majority) are most interested in two entries on the HUD-1 , the purchase price and real estate commission.  He then asks who pays the commsision -the seller does. ( I for one don't understand how that came about but I would love to see the buyer truly pay for my services and the seller pay his agent for his services but that maybe an argument for another day).

I know this is long but there is more:

He also states that Realtors point to the concept of single agency but all that comes down to is that Realtors know they can serve two masters as long as they disclose it in writing. But as a practical matter, Realtors work for the party that pays their commsission. So listen to Realtors - many are very helpful to buyers every day. But keep your antennas up. They probably aren't really working for you.

Then he signs his letter.

So there it is my friends and fellow Realtors. We are the problem as this one person points out. Have we ever heard this before? The leap to such wrong conclusions is constant. This coming from a person who was in a business that one can get a license with no final test in one weekend in the State of Florida. Who as a mortgage broker did you work for sir? Were you in your 10 years in the business for the buyer, or for the mortgage company? You did indicate you attended hundreds of closings? Good for you - but let me ask were you there for the buyer or to make sure your fees and commissions were paid by making sure the closing was completed?

Okay I am angry. I am even p.oed. I know the majority of Realtors care about getting the deal done. And wait a minute we liked to get paid for the many hours of service and help we provide to the deal. I know the majority of people who work in the mortgage business are there for the deal and guess what, they also like to get paid.

I joined the Real Estate business because I wanted too.I like many deals work - I would like a whole lot more these days. Buyers listen to me because I empower them to make the best deal possible for themselves. The buying and selling of houses is not about me. The majority of Realtors feel that way. The majority of Realtors prove everyday why they bring value to the deal.

I don't know maybe I am too grumpy or too sensitive in my old age. 

Please my fellow Realtors - fight this crappy attitude out there. Prove everyday even in these times that you bring value. That although you may represent the buyer and that (which the gentleman in the letter doesn't understand) the commission is a pledge of compensation from the listing broker based on a deal made with the seller that guess what how many times have we Realtors adjusted our commissions to make the deal. If you meet someone like this - Educate them.

Whoever reads this blog - thank you for taking the time.

Comments (6)

South Austin Real Estate Blog
Sky Realty South Austin - Austin, TX

HI David, its good sometime to Vent, this former mortgage broker is way to generalizing the whole economic mess.  As I recall, a buyer could only buy a house of the amount the LENDER qualified him/her for.  Now whose to blame? 

I do not practice dual agency, I think it represents NO ONE.  yes there are times that Dual Agency is needed, such as in a small community where there are few Realtors.  That is just MY OPINION. :)

Feb 22, 2009 10:11 AM
Christine Bohn
RE/MAX Professionals - Gainesville, FL
The Bohn Team, Gainesville FL

David:  I read every word.  I feel your pain and anger.  There are many "Realtors" that do give our profession a bad name.  Perhaps that writer had a horrible agent. I personally love to work as a single agent.  The best designation I earned was the ABR.  Even in this market, I counsel my clients.   In the supreme/psycho seller market, MY buyers were screaming at me to write contracts on the hood of my car (over full price - just to get the deal).  I agree we need to educate our "CLIENTS" and help them understand the value we bring to the table for their best interests - not our own.  

Feb 22, 2009 10:12 AM
Charles Stallions
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services - Pensacola, FL
800-309-3414 - Pensacola, Pace or Gulf Breeze, Fl.

Unfortunately a lot of people in general just see the fat commission we make, they don't see the hours and hours of schooling and education that we have to keep up with. When you add in the fact of how much a sale cost you see we don't make that much.

Feb 22, 2009 10:30 AM
David Kimpton
Bruce Taylor Inc, Realty - Safety Harbor, FL

Hey Gail. Thanks for the comment. I will be in North Austin in Early April. My daughter lives in Cedar Park.

Florida changed the law here to make all Real Estate agents transaction agents and now we have to get a signed formed only when we want to be a single agent and have it writing. It was confusing supposedly to the consumer especially when they wanted to buy a property  that was within the same company their agent worked in and then we had to get a form signed that changed it from a single agency to transaction agency.

But I agree with you Gail. I am not the one lending the money. So even though the writer said he worked for conventional lenders (no sub prime) they also lent a lot of money based on the opinion of a appraiser who did not live in my area.

Thanks for the comments Christine.

I guess I just never cared about the agency so much as if there is a good deal done then we all represented the consumers.

Yes this gentleman is looking for someone to blame probably for something he did. It couldn't possibly be just the consumer, it had to be us Realtors because the majority of us are just there for the money.

Thanks for your time, my fellow Realtors - I am starting to feel better.

Feb 22, 2009 10:31 AM
Lora "Leah" Stern 914-772-4528
Coldwell Banker, 170 N Main Street, New City NY 10956 - New City, NY
Real Estate Salesperson

I don't think the general public knows exactly what a real estate deal entails and it's probably our own faults as we're doing a lousy job of educating them.  Even my own closest friends (the wives of Real Estate attorneys) want to know exactly what I spend all my time doing.  They're oblivious to anything other than "showing" homes.  They have no idea that we're the one's that oversee the whole purchase process which includes negotiating, inpsections, appraisals, walk thru's, etc.  And most of the public thinks that the full 6% commission goes into our pocket for doing almost nothing.  We really need to do a better job of educating!

Feb 22, 2009 10:42 AM
Ron Bridges
ERA Wilder Realty, Inc. - Sumter, SC

Another case of someone that has only bits and pieces of the story but is a self proclaimed expert.  Just have to continue to educate those that we can and leave the rest to feel the way they do.  I have a feeling they will always be here.

Feb 22, 2009 12:43 PM