I am not a toaster

By
Real Estate Agent with Tomson Burnham, llc Licensed in the State of Oregon

 

You asked.

We gave you what you wanted, but the power of the dark side was just too great for the wanna be Darth-Vader-Home-Seller.

It isn't a big secret that real estate agents have really low entry standards into a profession that helps people spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a purchase.  I swear going to toaster selling training is often more intense than the classes that real estate agents have to do to sell homes to people.

We're special that way.

Consumers know this not-so-well-hidden industry secret, and so you do what you should do.  Try and figure out which agents to use and which ones to avoid.  We all know that even though entry standards are inadequate, there are exceptional real estate agents in this industry.  Since our industry seems reluctant to make it harder to join the club, some of us try and educate consumers.  I know several agents that spend time on consumer forums trying to help consumers wade through the real estate industry.  I'd like to think that we succeed in getting consumers to ask good questions and interview agents.

toasterBuying a new toaster on Amazon?  You'll know which ones burn your toast, which ones give you crisp perfection along with poached eggs, and those that will emblazon a smiley face on your toast.   You have the wisdom of several others to guide you with this intensely important $20 purchase. Let's face it.  Starting off your day with burnt toast is a precursor to Armageddon.  Toast matters.

Stumbling through the mire of agents, consumers screamed for real estate agent ratings.  Since we won't clean up our own muck, you need a way to get through it yourself.  I get that.   The problem is that some consumers get that too well.  Real estate agents have been balking at participating in online reviews because we don't want to demean ourselves to well...being like a toaster.  Which agents will burn you, which agents will pop up for you, and which ones go the extra mile for that smiley faced surprise at the end. Both you and I know that consumers can make or break someones success as a real estate agent with just a click of a star.

Enter the power grab.

I recently heard about a real estate agent, who is a really great agent by the way, who was threatened during a listing appointment with this..."If you don't cut your fee, I will write a bad review for you online."

Really? I mean really?

Online transparency is supposed to make it easier, a way for consumers to decide they like or dislike something from the ease of their comfy leather chair with, hopefully if you read your Amazon reviews, perfect toast with a nice homemade strawberry jam. It isn't supposed to be a way to force people into bending to your will with threats.

I think online reviews are good for the real estate industry because it places some power back in the hands of consumers, but dear consumers, you are welcome to love me or hate me.  Don't try and extort me.

I am not a toaster.

 

This was originally published on the Get Real Estate Blog.

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  1. Miriam Bernstein, CRS 02/01/2011 08:01 PM
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Rainmaker
255,168
Melina Tomson
Principal Broker/Owner, M.S.
Tomson Burnham, llc Licensed in the State of Oregon

Steve I actually think the opposite.  The real value of real estate agents is in their wealth of knowledge...assuming the agent takes time to amass knowledge.  No consumer has been in as many houses as I have.  They just can't have the same knowledge base that I do.  That knowledge has value to a consumer.  The thing is that consumers don't want paper pushers and door openers.  Agents that have shifted to an advisory role seem to be doing well in my area.  Agents that stay old school door openers aren't doing well because they don't bring anything to the table.

Susan-I'm not sure how a criminal background check equates to competance.  We are dealing with hundreds of thousands of dollars here.  Training agents in basic land use law, land sales contracts, trust deeds, zoning, etc should all be part of our training before we get thrown out to consumers. 

 

Thanks all for comments.

February 02, 2011 08:00 PM
Rainmaker
646,601
William James Walton Sr.
Greater Waterbury Real Estate
WEICHERT, REALTORS® - Briotti Group

Oh, Melina! Who knew that you had the power to force Paul out of his self-imposed exile???

I suppose we don't want to drag him back kicking and screaming along the way.

And you are most definitely not a toaster. A nice gas oven, perhaps, but never a toaster ;-)

February 02, 2011 09:26 PM
Rainmaker
296,423
Ryan Hukill - Edmond
Realtor
ShowMeOKC Team of Paradigm AdvantEdge

I too am in support of online reviews and think they're long overdue, but any person who would stoop to a threat or action as you've mentioned here is dispicable.

I'd certainly take a walk, and even if that scumbag wrote such a review, it would be overshadowed by all of the positive reviews that my real clients have written. The average consumer is smart enough to see through that BS.

Additionally, my attorney would have some fun running the scumbag through the wringer and taking more than the measly amount he might have saved in real estate commission.

February 08, 2011 12:13 AM
Rainer
2,905
Susan Mortenson
Susan Mortenson
Coldwell Banker Santa Rosa

Melina,

I was responding to your statement, "low entry standards." Once a person has gained a license, it would be up to principal brokers to weed out the incompetent agents.

As for competence, I've known many--yes, many--attorneys who were shockingly incompetent.  To this list I can add doctors, engineers, architects....and the list goes on.

I don't respond for argument's sake, but you've thrown out some black and white words to describe my profession. (Some might say condescending and harsh words.)  Again, I'll assert, I've met far more good agents than bad ones.

 

 

February 08, 2011 03:37 PM
Rainmaker
255,168
Melina Tomson
Principal Broker/Owner, M.S.
Tomson Burnham, llc Licensed in the State of Oregon

Susan this is my profession too.  I am the owner of the brokerage.    You are welcome to think that the real estate entry standards are adequate.  We will just have to disagree on that.  I personally think they are horrendous for the huge purchase price of homes.  I'm not the only one who thinks that we are missing the boat here.  1000 Watt Consulting has the same opinion that I do.  Most agents aren't good. 

It's okay that you and I disagree on that.

February 08, 2011 08:57 PM
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Rainmaker
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Melina Tomson

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Neighborhood real estate at its best delivered to you by a Principal Broker licensed in the state of Oregon. Get a peek into my inner data geek with my extensive Salem Oregon real estate trending graphs, or stick around to see if my sarcastic wit rears its ugly head. Either way, read, hopefully enjoy and find it helpful, then you know the drill...call/email/tweet me for help with your real estate needs.