Last week I posted on what the future of the real estate agent looks like. In a nutshell: lower commissions, as it should be. Well, apparently one Portland realtor didn't like my vision of the future because he called and left me a message letting me know what he thought of my post.
I wish I had been there to get this call because it could have been an interesting conversation. His tone started out very friendly and civil but some of the things he had to say were a bit insulting. He did not identify himself in the voicemail but from caller ID and a simple Google search I was able to figure out who he was.
So I called him back the next day to get a clearer picture of where he was coming from but he hung up on me and then didn't answer when I called him back the second time. Maybe if you live in Portland and get a call from an Italian guy (and he wouldn't know I'm only 1/2 Italian) in Chicago you get scared. I dunno. But I did leave him a voicemail in which I explained that I would be happy to talk to him because I love hearing different viewpoints. Thus far I haven't heard back from him.
I was tempted to post the audio file of the voicemail but decided that would be in poor taste and I also rejected the idea of identifying him, even though we're not direct competitors. Nevertheless, I can tell you what he had to say once he got past a very pleasant introduction.
"It's guys like me that are bringing the whole thing down...and I'm shooting myself in the foot". Well, if he's talking about bringing commissions down (and that's most likely what he was talking about) then, yes, that's exactly what I'm doing. That's the whole point. They're too high and it's better to be ahead of the curve than behind it. That's not shooting yourself in the foot. It's good business.
He then got insulting when he made a couple of assertions, the details of which I will spare you, to the effect that he was better than me but he didn't really provide any supporting evidence for that claim. Of course, with me working in the Chicago area and him in Portland I don't see how he is in any position to judge my capabilities. However, I will point out that, at the very least, I'm more familiar with the antitrust laws than he is. You see...he actually broke the law by calling me to complain about my pricing.
He also accused me of insulting other brokers in that previous post but if you check you will clearly see that no brokers were harmed in the production of that post.
He then ended his speech with the old cliche that "the discount probably comes with a discount in knowledge." Yes, this is what realtors would like to believe and they certainly want the public to believe it's true but there is absolutely no evidence to support that claim. There are legions of incompetent full commission real estate agents out there just as there are many very capable discount real estate agents. As with my comparison of Fidelity Investments and RBC Wealth Management in last week's post you can often get better service AND a lower cost.
Interestingly, this is the first time in 8 years that I have picked up on any resentment from another realtor regarding my business model - and you will notice it did not come from a Chicago broker. When I started the business I was prepared for a barrage of industry backlash that never materialized. On some level I was a bit disappointed because I thought it would be fun to deal with but on another level I think it speaks well of the Chicago real estate industry. It's a competitive marketplace that accommodates alternative business models.
#RealEstate #Realtors #RealEstateAgents #RealEstateCommissions
Gary Lucido is the President of Lucid Realty, the Chicago area's full service discount real estate brokerage. If you want to keep up to date on the Chicago real estate market, get an insider's view of the seamy underbelly of the real estate industry, or you just think he's the next Kurt Vonnegut you can Subscribe to Getting Real by Email using the form below. Please be sure to verify your email address when you receive the verification notice.