The average real estate agent in the United States sold about 4 homes in 2015. 4 homes.
We all learned in elementary school how to compute an average. Average is meant to point out a level that is typical, a mid point between extremes. However the average of 4 home sales a year points out an extreme issue in the real estate industry.
States, like where I live, have little barriers for entry and low to no minimum standard of production for agent accountability. This is allowing many part time or half-hearted people to enter the real estate business damaging the integrity of the profession.
My wife and I enjoyed an Irish Concert the other night with our children at one of the local churches. We sat awed by the talent of all the musicians, but one stood out the most. She played an amazing fiddle. The ease of her stance, genuine facial expression, the grace flowing from her fingers created music with passion and expertise. I dare say she picked up the bow of that fiddle more than 4 times a year! Constant practice, experience and performance after performance built her confidence, strength, stamina and ability. Don’t you want that much expertise in a professional selling your most valued asset?
As the housing market “seems” to improve, numerous companies recruit and hire unambitious or low to no producing agents. Many of these agents have no monthly overhead, paying a split to the company only if they sell something. The split with a company may start out as a 50/50 where the company reaps a benefit of 50% of the overall commission. Obviously, a company can benefit from a surplus of low producing agents.
Sometimes lines are blurred, making it difficult for a buyer or seller to distinguish between an agent doing it on the side or one whom is a professional and has made it their lively hood. Many companies even invest in various marketing ploys painting a picture of high visibility and traction for homes on the market, when in reality, it is an umbrella for those not willing to invest their fulltime. Most marketing relies on the actual real estate professional.
When considering to buy or sell a home make sure you ask poignant, direct questions to the agent you are hiring. Do not be distracted by slick marketing materials. Focus on the agent’s personal track record, specific marketing plan, and ask for references or look on sites like Zillow.com for reviews and sales histories.
Here are some great questions to have on the tip of your tongue.
How many homes have you sold?
How much money do you spend personally in marketing?
How much money will you, yourself make on selling my home?
Hire the AGENT first, as they are walking through today’s obstacle course of home buying or selling. Top agents year after year invest heavily in their business and clients. Success leaves clues.
RE/MAX Essential was birthed from a vision of gathering professionals looking to grow, share and lead the industry. We have created a culture within RE/MAX Essential that celebrates and encourages personal business growth. If you are an agent looking to expand your business, improve your professional skills or break some new ground in production numbers – we are interested in you. We are always looking for highly motivated professionals.