I've been working in the Real Estate world for many years. I started out managing over 330 rental properties for a small realty company, then moved on to an office manager position for a different brokerage and eventually worked my way into the marketing department about 5 years ago.
I have an immense amount of respect for real estate agents and the many hats they wear throughout a single transaction and I can honestly say, this job path is not for the weak! While there are MANY scenarios that I could discuss, I'd like to share with you one of the most prominent issues that the real estate industry consistently contends with.
Outsiders to the industry envision the life of a realtor much like the "Million Dollar Listing" agents. They get a one hour glimpse of this fantasy world and BOOM, they've made a $350K commission after showing 3 properties.
I'm here to tell you, this is not standard procedure.
"What are you doing to earn 3% commission?"
" Why can't you work for a lower commission?"
"My house sold for full price in just a few days, I think you may have priced it wrong"
"Since you're just driving around all day long, can you meet me at 8pm to show me a home?"
...and the list goes on, and on, and on....
Agents tend to get a lot of flack. What you don't know, is what's happening behind the scenes and the single, most disrespectful action I see happening all too frequently; certain buyers having absolutely zero respect for an agent's time. Afterall, agent's are just driving around in their cars all day long, listening to music with the top down, right?
I truly believe that the majority of people searching for a home or selling a home have no idea that an agent doesn't get paid until they get you to the closing table. And here's something else that may be news to most people...agents also don't keep that entire commission check, not even close. That commission check gets split into many, many buckets (ex: main brokerage, the company they're working for, mls fees, taxes, etc.)
I could go on and on defending agents and the misconceptions they deal with on a daily basis but my main point in this particular blog is to express how agents spend a LOT of time staying ahead of the market, researching properties, showing properties, researching school districts and neighborhoods, mapping out your work/school locations in comparison to your home, negotiating and connecting the dots from the beginning of a transaction through the end and when a buyer or seller completely disregards the time that they've put into helping them, it's deflating.
Agents work very hard and they have families, just like the rest of us. Have they chosen this field of work? Absolutely, however, when they've set up a babysitter to watch their kids for an afternoon and re-arranged their schedule to help you, only to find out that you went to look at a property with another agent and have decided to purchase that property, just know, that you've completely wasted their time. They could've spent that time helping another person or family find their next home or they could've spent time with their own family.
Written by Kelly Hawkins
Hermes Realty Group
Keller Williams Realty