My Plan to Change the Real Estate Industry Forever! (Sounds Humble, Right?)

By
Real Estate Broker with Austin Texas Homes, LLC 453249

For the past several years, I have had an idea that I think would help to level the playing field a bit for real estate agents in any market.  I have shared this with many of my personal clients, but never publicly...until now.

Consider this: When you are working with buyer clients, and they are interested in making an offer on a property, you then contact the listing agent to let them know, right?  You might request a seller's disclosure, or a survey, or both, along with asking a few other questions.

How many times have you heard one of these phrases from a listing agent at that point:

"We have another offer coming."

OR

"I am expecting at least one other offer."

OR

"I just got another offer.  I will present yours and theirs at the same time."

At this point, you have no proof that any other offers exist, correct?  You must depend on the ethics and honesty of the other agent.  Let's face it - this is awkward sometimes.  I can't even count the number of times that I later figured out that the listing agent was CLEARLY lying about other offers.  In fact, there is one guy here in Austin who is notorious for saying one of the above phrases EVERY time that he gets an offer in hand, so much so that I was able to tell my clients not to even give it a second thought.  Sad commentary, huh?

 

But how could we solve this, you ask?

Simply put, I think we need a third-party clearinghouse service for offers.  Nothing horribly complex, just a service to track whether a specific property has any current offers in place. 

I think it would be amazing to be able to log in to a simple website, look up a property and see a field with "OFFERS" and perhaps just a number there.  If you see a "0", you would know that the property is fully unencumbered and available.  If you see a number, you can use this to help your clients make the strongest offer that they are comfortable making.

Since there are over 1 million Realtors now (I think), NAR is collecting a ton of money at this point.  This seems like the type of service that should already be included in our dues, in my humble opinion.  At least then I would begin to feel like I was getting some actual value for that payment.

The only objection I can think of from listing agents would be the amount of time involved if you have to register each offer with the service.  I understand this, since it couldn't just be a simple email or text message.  Instead, some valid proof would have to be provided to the third-party service involved. 

Think about this - we could even be heralded for creating new jobs for the staffers of this newly created company!  Real estate heroes!  Additionally, our integrity index with the public would go WAY up, since we would be demonstrating to the world how honest and accountable we now are as an industry, at least with regard to price negotiations.

You would never again have to hear a client say, "I wonder if we could have gotten it for less.  Maybe we offered too much.  I wonder if they even HAD any other offers on the table."

It's just an idea, but I think it has real merit

Thanks for reading! 

UPDATED: After reading some of the comments below, I'm not sure if this would be the perfect method or not, but I do sincerely think a better system could be implemented, giving all of us a leg up in the respect department with consumers. 

A couple of ideas: As Alan May mentioned in his comment, he would be comfortable knowing that the broker in charge had reviewed the offer situation and that the buyer's agent's broker could confirm that directly, including allowing for some extra questions that could be posed.  

I am starting to think that if a third party system of any sort were implemented, the offers should go DIRECTLY to that service first, eliminating the gamesmanship completely (fake offers, etc.).  Keep in mind that this wouldn't create ANY extra work for agents, but everyone would be on a level playing field. 

 My RSS feed is http://activerain.com/jasoncrouch/rss.

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Re-Bloggged 3 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Liz Loadholt 02/28/2009 02:34 PM
  2. Bruce Brockmeier 02/28/2009 06:52 PM
  3. Roland Woodworth 02/28/2009 11:54 PM
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Topic:
Real Estate Best Practices
Location:
Texas Travis County Austin
Groups:
"Whacked"!!!
Dedicated Bloggers
Realtors®
Club Chaos
Texas Real Estate
Tags:
working with buyers
clients
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thirdparty clearinghouse
integrity
negotiations

Comments 197 New Comment

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Rainer
399,478
Terry Miller
Miller Homes Group and Tyler Apartment Locator
Miller Homes Group

Great idea. Just a few months back I had a Realtor shop my offer to another Realtor who had showed the home. Guess what it was my BUYERS REP!

March 04, 2009 07:22 PM
Rainer
42,711
Sharon Richards
Kirsten Realty Tampa Florida

Jason - What about the way they do it in Toronto?  Did you read the post from Sylvie Conde - What are the rules for ensuring your offer gets to the seller? 

March 05, 2009 12:04 AM
Anonymous
Anonymous

Interesting idea, Jason.

Seems to me that a necessary precursor would be the unified MLS system that people have been begging for, for years.  That would provide a central repository of listings, with updates, that could be searched.

The "police patrol" could then ride on top of that database.

... Robin

March 06, 2009 11:26 AM
Rainmaker
223,305
Lake County Home Pros
Homes for Sale Mount Dora Realtor
CB Camelot Realty / Lake County Home Pros 352-636-6579

Jason,

A real popular one in the REO market is:  We have multiple full price offers, but are still waiting for an answer from the negotiator or asset manager.

Ray

March 07, 2009 05:11 PM
Rainmaker
333,543
Navona Hart
Real Estate Agent, Farmville Virginia Homes & Land
Real Living Cornerstone

Okay, so I ddin't read all 198 comments, but I came here because of your today featured blog post and I wanted to comment on this!  I hate it when I am told we just got another offer, uggggh.  So I would be on your bandwagon to change real estate.  I could be the Virginia anchor of the movement. 

January 31, 2011 09:00 PM
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Jason Crouch

Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
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I write about humorous stories, family, things that are interesting to me, and the Austin real estate market.

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