Two Types of Top Producer Realtors® for You to Chose
Yep. This is another little secret of the industry that Realtors are not supposed to talk about.
I recently attended a seminar (read "a sales pitch") where I was told we were going to hear the recent success story of a Realtor from outside of Texas, who was doing some unique things in helping clients buy and sell Real Estate. The summary of the event sounded intriguing, so I attended. When I got to the event, although the agent was at the presentation, she was hardly allowed to speak about her experience and it turned out to be a big pitch on going to work at this local brokerage. She was not even allowed to answer questions directed to her! Total bait and switch promise--which leads me to the point of this posting. I should have known better before I went to the event, but I did I realize once again something about our industry. Our local market is quickly turning to one of two different models for doing business. I believe we are moving toward models that give clients two kinds of REALTORS to work with. Two uniquely different business models from which to choose.
At this point, many people may think that the two business models are: (1) Listing agent vs (2) Buyers agent. Well, no. That is not where this is heading. And I will say here, most experienced agents are working with a balance of both buyers and sellers to keep pulse on both sides of the market.
So, is this about being an Agent vs a Broker? No. That is a difference in labels--not customer service levels. Generally speaking, having a broker title is the difference of an exam and a couple of classes--very little more. Brokers have a little higher bar to clear today than a intermediate agent, and most experienced Realtors will clear that bar after two years in the business. So, what is a broker? A broker is simply the person who is held accountable for other agents in their organization (he/she is the one who can oversee other agents in the brokerage). This is the title of a supervisor, not a sign of vast experience. In fact, many agents have a great deal more experience with clients and deals than their supervising broker. Many of us fall into that category.
So what are these two different business models that are emerging in our market today? I am glad you asked. The two kinds of Realtor business models that you can choose to work with today seem to increasingly be one of these two models:
1) Delegated authority agent.
2) Dedicated agent engagement.
The first one is an office manager whose name is on the business and meets with clients (briefly) in his/her office and then turns the client over to an extended team of part time or junior members to "manage". These extended team members are given expert titles which may or may not be fitting to their actual experience. The underlying promise is that the named head agent will be watching every move and monitoring every event for dozens of clients at a time.
The second dominate model that is still found in many organizations is that of the Dedicated REALTOR who works with the client from day one of the search, until the closing day--sharing their experience and knowledge with the client. It is easy to tell the difference between these two models. The simplest test is to ask "Whose personal cell phone is given out to the client on day one?" If it is an office number or an assistant's phone number that you are calling on Sunday afternoon or texting at 7pm Wednesday evening with a question, then you are most likely working with a team that is modeled after a Delegated Authority. And if you are talking every day with the named REALTOR, have his/her personal cell phone and are getting your information directly from that individual (not through his team members or assistants), then you are most likely experiencing a dedicated agent engagement model. In other words, you don't have to go through the gate-keepers to talk to the person you thought you had hired as a Realtor. You just call him.
I don't think it is hard to figure out the advantage of one model vs the other. The question clients have to ask and answer is, "Would you rather work with someone who works for a 'top producer', or would you rather work directly with a 'top producer'"?