You heard right - Parents says the housing crisis is to blame on real estate agents!
Quotes from the Parent's Magazine Article:
"In recent years, many home buyers have gotten in over their head because they let a real-estate agent tell them how much house they could afford. In some cases - unscrupulous professionals urged buyers to take on loans they couldn't handle."
When did I, as a Realtor, become responsible for qualifying people for a mortgage, verifying their income, assets, liabilities, credit score, and ability to repay, and selecting their loan program? I thought that was why I got them to talk to banks and Lenders, who you know, actually DO tell them how much house they can afford?
I don't see where a real estate agent caused these folks to get in over their head! They come to us, we get a pre-approval, they say they want to look in X to X price range and as long as the pre-approval supports that and they say they like that payment, we find them a home. We do not talk buyers into more than they could afford, we sell them a home they qualified for with a mortgage professional!
Even worse, to me. The sentence directly following this is a lovely quote from one of our NAR leaders:
"Now more than ever, you need to figure it all out yourself." says PeggyAnn McConnochie, a vice-president of the National Association of Realtors.
So here we have an article saying we're to blame for the mortgage crisis, and it appears, by virtue of the fact that she gave a statement not denying this, that our own NAR thinks it's Realtors fault? And tells them not to trust us, but to figure it out on their own? Thanks NAR!
This isn't the only place the article slams us.... Further on:
"Because shopping for a house is a tough job, you need to enlist the help of a real-estate agent." (well that's not bad, right? Just wait a few more sentences in...)
"Whomever you choose, understand that an agent's interest is in closing a deal and collecting her commission - not necessarily getting you the best price on a house."
Could Parents say it any more clearly
The agent, though you need her, is going to screw you royally.
Last time I checked, our code of ethics, and our Buyer Agency agreements clearly state that we are working for the best interest of our buyers. If I don't get my buyer's the best price that I can for them on a home, I'm not doing my job correctly!
The article starts out with the typical rhetoric that the housing market sucks and the world is ending. I started reading it with just the normal 'yes, but it's all local' mindset. But then I got a sucker punch with the fact that blame got laid squarely on the shoulders of real-estate agents!! Then a round-house when a quote from dear NAR shows up to support that! I barely felt the knee-kick later when they decided we were all commission eating scum and would screw our clients over a few bucks!
I would encourage anyone who reads the article (I am trying desperately to find a copy of it online) in the June Parents magazine, page 91, by Julia Lawlor, to please send in a rebuttal to firstname.lastname@example.org and by golly, send one to NAR too. I'd love an explanation of their statement in this article. Infocentral@realtors.org
Please, if anyone can find a link to the article, I'd be most grateful. Otherwise - run out and borrow/buy the June Parents, folks! On 2nd thought - don't buy it, I don't want them rewarded for this shameful behaviour! Go to the bookstore and browse it! Although they might not have the June's out yet....