A few years back at a local Chamber of Commerce event I listened to an author who had written the book “People Over Profit” by Dale Partridge. After the lecture, it inspired me to read the book. The quick summary is about valuing people over profit or your employees over profit of your company. I agree with many of the opinions and directions in the book. However, the book immediately made me think not of employees over profit, but of clients over profit especially in the real estate industry.
The real estate industry is rampant with greed and unfortunately lack of true professional representatives. All real estate representatives should strive to provide knowledge to empower their client to make an educated decision through market data. Consideration of the commission or fee should never be placed over the client’s best interest. They should be a fiduciary.
All real estate agents should look up the definition and understand fiduciary. Unfortunately, many perceive they have the best interest of the client without fully understanding how the actions they make affect their fiduciary responsibility. This is evident from the interactions with agents and the repetitive responses that reflect getting the deal done compared to a decision in their client’s best interest. Some classic examples are; disclosing a lower price their client will accept or not cooperating with other brokers or not immediately exposing the property to the market to achieve the most interest and hopefully the highest price for their client.
This lack of true professionalism is bred deep in our industry from years past and continues today. The focus appears to be centered on how many connections and calls can be made instead of understanding the market and educating one’s self on value of the asset. Instead they focus on closing the deal and padding their pocket.
This mindset and practice will lead to the industry’s disruption with technologies and the demise of many real estate representatives, and I can’t wait. The few that provide a service and focus on perfecting themselves to become knowledgeable professionals will easily mold to the new demand.
Fiduciary – the highest legal duty of one party to another, requires being bound ethically to act in the client’s best interests.
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