Have you noticed lately everywhere you look another commercial is advertising how they can help you select the best real estate agents? I sure have. Everyone from Glenn Beck, Dave Ramsey, Sean Hannity, Homelight, Zillow, and on and on and on. It doesn’t stop. So why are all these companies and celebrities springing up and throwing in their two cents about real estate agents? Because it’s lucrative.
Picking Best Real Estate Agents Dangerous Business
Do these companies really pick the best real estate agents? Probably not. Over the years we’ve been approached by nearly all of them. What they don’t tell you in the ads is that the agents selected pay either a hefty monthly fee to be recommended or a hefty referral fee on the transaction. This is money that could be used to market a seller’s property instead of being spent to secure a listing lead. If a listing agent pays 30-40% off the top to these referral companies, they lose money unless they don’t spend much to begin with. And if they don’t spend much money marketing the seller’s home, are they the best?
If you’re an agent who spends a lot to market homes, why would you take listings guaranteed to lose the agent money? Some would say marketing doesn’t sell homes, the MLS does and price does. I can tell you that we just sold one of our listings for full price cash directly from a newspaper ad. In fact, we’ve sold 7 homes in the past 10 days and many came from advertising. Advertising still works, and it always will. The question is, as a seller, do you prefer an agent that pays to advertise your home or pays to advertise their name?
Some people ask, is it legal for people who are not agents to advertise who they say best agents are and collect advertising fees or referral fees? That’s a tricky question. Many of these people setup a real estate company in another state so they can legally collect a real estate commission referral. Others just charge a monthly fee for TV or radio time. Some would say recommending a real estate service requires a license, even if only in advertising. We’ll stay out of the legal realm as we don’t know that answer. This article focuses on the practicalities.
The Ellis Team at Keller Williams is proud that we were voted Best Real Estate Team in SW Florida by News Press readers. In full disclosure, we paid some advertising to announce that fact. We are proud that we were voted best. We don’t pay the newspaper a referral fee to be listed. They are a trusted partner and they help us advertise our homes for sale, both in print and online.
Are These Paid Recommendations Really Accurate?
The next time you turn on the TV or the radio, pay attention to how many services are advertising how to pick the best real estate agent. I bet you’ll be astonished. Then ask yourself, why are they taking up valuable airtime for this? Follow the money. It’s always the money. Hey, this is America. We’ve got no problem with people paying to stand out. We’ve paid to stand out over the years ourselves in various ways. The real question is, are they truly recommending the best, or recommending the agents they can get to pay to be on their service?
Our team has a list of handymen, plumbers, electricians, roofers, pool companies, inspectors, etc. that we recommend to our clients. We don’t recommend them because they pay to be on our list. We do so because they’ve proven to us they give good service to our clients. Isn’t that what a recommended list should be?
Call the SW Florida Real Estate Experts
If you’d like to talk to us about selling your home, call Brett or Sande at 239-489-4042 Ext 4 if you’d like to get a preliminary value of your home go to www.SWFLhomevalues.com Or, if you’d just like to search the MLS like a pro and see what’s available, check out www.LeeCountyOnline.com Either way, we’d love to talk to you about your real estate needs and help you accomplish your goals.