January 1, 2009

Closed, Archived Post for All Realtors and Mortgage Brokers Suck,

The shakedown, the scam. That's what paying 6% real estate commission is, a scam. These Realtors, along with the National Association of Realtors must be exposed for what they are: scammers, legal con artist, thanks to idiot politicians.
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  1. Advice on AppraisalsJanuary 02, 2009

    Zillow is not always high. I'd say they are pretty much all over the board. I have owned a number of properties all over the valley over the last couple of years. Sometimes Zillow is spot on, sometimes they are way high, and sometimes they are ridiculously low (even for this market). Normal crummy appraisers will usually show up, take some measurements, and be gone within 15 minutes. They then run comps, which takes about 10 minutes, and there is your appraisal. Good appraisers will be much more detailed in inspecting your home for things such as condition, upgrades, actual lot size, etc. They will then run extensive comps using more than the required number houses for a valid appraisal. Market conditions definitely must be taken into consideration, but usually isn't. Only then will you come up with a true appraisal. The real estate market has been explosive over the last few years, then went to a standstill, and at devaluation and trending downward. Appraisers found that the faster they worked, the faster they could quickly get your $300-$400 and move on to the next one. Work was so easy to come by that they are now lazy. I've always felt that inspectors should work hand in hand with the appraisers to come up with a true market price. There are a million appraisers out there, choose carefully. Get recommendations and check credentials. Good luck!

  2. screw realtorsJanuary 02, 2009

    If u r gonna use a realtor pay them a flat fee and make sure they have a track record of high sales.

    say ur house is worth 500 t0 550,000 dollars just pay a flat fee of $1,500.
    They aren't even worth that.

    sell it urself, called a dsbo!

  3. re, screw realtors -
    Are you serious? Charging a flat seller's agent fee of $1500 on a house that you claim is a minimum $550K? Sure, realtors may be hurting from this market deflation, but even I - who have no real estate experience - am doubtful anyone would take that commission. $1500 out of $550,000 is a 0.0027% sales commission. Even desperate souls would be hard pressed to take on your claim when there are hundreds trying to be sold right now.

  4. phoenix / scottsdale arizonaJanuary 02, 2009

    screw realtors / RE: Looking For....

    I am a Realtor and would never do that! I can't think of one that would no matter how hard up they were. I can't believe someone like yourself (I know you have a brain!) would even ask that. It is not our fault that people bought when the market was at it's highest and then took out a second and now want to sell and still make a huge profit! People think we don't do anything, but that is not true. I just got done re-painting, putting up new blinds, outdoor lights, fixing the carpet, hanging new ceiling fans and other cosmetic things to a house in Buckeye to make it more marketable. That would have cost the owner $$$$$$$. Get over it and pay the normal commission 6%. Your house will sell! It's all about the staging! I pay around $500.00 of my own money for virtual tours, flyers, and mailers.

  5. a realtor knows more than youJanuary 02, 2009

    re,RE:looking for

    HAHAHA,Get real dude..you expect a realtor to sell your 1/2 million dollar house for a fee equivelent of a bag of popcorn??? N offense Homie but PULL YOUR HEAD OUT OF YOUR BUTT.. Or maybe get Juan Pablo Julio Escobar Montoya to sell it for you..he is waiting in Any givin Home Depot parking lot

  6. 6% Solution To Not Using Real Estate AgentsJanuary 02, 2009

    Sell it yourself

    they are all losers

  7. Uptown, NYCJanuary 02, 2009

    re, 6% Solution To Not Using a Real Estate Agents

    The New York Times had this article back in Feb 2007. It made sense then and makes more sense now -

    Stan and Gloria Wakefield are no fools. They built their three-bedroom house 12 years ago in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., an oceanside resort community dotted with golf courses and picturesque inland waterways. The real estate market in the area, near Jacksonville, took off and the house, overlooking lagoons, rose in value to nearly $1 million. "This house has appreciated almost obscenely, " said Mr. Wakefield, a retired naval intelligence officer.

    What the Wakefields did next should scare real estate agents everywhere.
    They decided to put their house on the market this year, and concluded that the house would sell itself. So why pay a real estate agent a 6 percent commission? They tried negotiating a lower commission with prospective agents, who stood to make about $60,000, but the best they could get was 4.5 percent - and 5.5 percent if the agent had to share the commission with a buyer's agent.
    They chose instead to list their property with one of the many real estate services that are challenging conventional brokerage firms, in this case, Assist2sell.com, an agency that charges a flat fee instead of a commission.

    The Wakefields had an offer within six days and sold their home for $985,000, paying a $10,000 fee to Assist2sell and $14,775 to the agent who brought in the buyer, for a savings of about $30,000 over a conventional broker.
    "Enough to pay off the boat," a 26-foot pocket cruiser, Mr. Wakefield said.

    This is subversive stuff. Homeowners across the United States are figuring out that they do not need to pay what agents demand and they may not need an agent at all. At the same time, technology is giving consumers tools to nearly circumvent the agent. If enough people try it, agents are at risk of losing a good portion of their commissions - $100 billion last year.

    So, agents are doing whatever they can to keep home sellers from paying less.
    Anyone who wants to know how to outfox them first has to understand where they derive their power: information. They know the market - or presume to know it - and help set the price of your house. They serve as the go-between and, again presumably, know how far you can push the other side. (Note, however, that agents don't always push for the best price. Steven D. Levitt, co-author of "Freakonomics," and Chad Syverson, both University of Chicago economists, found that real estate agents have an incentive to persuade their clients to sell their houses too cheaply and too quickly because a few thousand dollars more in price won't yield them a significantly higher commission.)

    But more than anything else, agents control access to the Multiple Listing Service, where all the houses for sale in a community are listed. The M.L.S. is the most powerful tool in real estate because it informs the widest pool of buyers that a home is for sale. Not open houses, not fliers, not big ads in the newspaper. "The M.L.S. is king," says Brett Weinstein, an Oakland, Calif., discount broker who prefers to be called "a full-service reduced-fee agent."

    The M.L.S. is also a tool that agents use to protect their commissions. The problem for agents is that some of their colleagues are offering to list houses for a small flat fee, sometimes for less than $500. You sell it yourself, though you would be obligated to pay a 3 percent commission to any agent who brought you a buyer - in essence paying that agent for all the Sundays spent showing other houses to clients who never bought anything. That half-price deal is dangerous enough for a full-commission firm. But it gets worse.

    In every community there are agents who open the M.L.S. to the public on the Internet (erealty.com has a fairly comprehensive list, or you can go directly to realtor.com, the Web site of the National Association of Realtors). They do it as a service to clients who want to buy a house - 70 percent of homebuyers now peruse listings on the Internet, the association's most recent survey says - as well as to cut their costs of showing clients the paper listings. Some even rebate part of their commission to buyers who do their own research on prospective homes.

    But some buyers just freeload. (The Internet has a way of encouraging this behavior.) They can search the M.L.S. for a house with no brokerage firm listed, meaning it's being sold by the owner, and then work out a no-commission deal directly with that owner. So you can see where this is headed. If agents want to protect their commissions, they have to restrict access to the M.L.S. to sellers who are working with them, not going it alone.

    Local realty groups have tried suing agents or brokerage firms that put "for sale by owner" listings in the M.L.S., accusing them of copyright infringement. Those agents have countersued, charging restraint of trade. Then two years ago, the Realtors association found what it thought was a better solution. It passed rules that essentially allowed a local M.L.S. service to block access to the listing service to any brokerage firm who discounted commissions or who posted listings for homeowners who intended to sell their own houses. The antitrust division of the Justice Department cried foul. This month it sued the Realtors' trade group, asserting that the rules stifled competition and hurt consumers.
    The Realtors changed the rules just as the federal case was filed. But J. Bruce McDonald, deputy assistant attorney general, said that the group's policies continued to discriminate against innovative brokers and "stifle competition at the expense of home buyers and sellers."

    In a news release, the Realtors association said it was "at a loss to understand" the Justice Department's legal action. "Many of the changes incorporated in the new policy are in direct response to concerns they have raised over the course of the two-year investigation," it said.

    The Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission have successfully fought state real estate boards that tried to limit consumer choices by imposing service requirements or forbidding commission rebates, but the fight goes on. Realtors have lobbied for and won state laws that prohibit commission rebates to buyers and require minimum levels of service, like requiring that an agent handle all negotiations or house showings. Federal regulators can't fight that.
    Aaron Farmer, a discount real estate broker in Austin, Tex., has battled local and state realty boards to offer cheaper services. The Justice Department and the F.T.C. intervened to help him. Nevertheless, he has had to raise his fees to $700 from $600 because of the minimum service levels required by a law recently passed by the Texas Legislature. (Eight states have enacted such laws, accepting the real estate industry's argument that they are needed to protect consumers.) "All of these fights are over the M.L.S.," he said. "They don't want price wars."

    But price wars are coming. No doubt about that. Here are a few suggestions on how to take advantage of the changing environment to sell your home with minimum services from - and fees to - a broker:

    Set the price
    Being a nosy neighbor is still the best way to know the market. Walk though every open house and find out later what the house sold for.
    For the shy or decorous, technology offers an alternative. Homesmartreports.com will give you a sales analysis of your home based on prices for comparable homes in the immediate neighborhood. The $25 report is far more useful than cheaper versions from Domania.com (free) or Equifax.com ($7) because it gives you greater confidence that its high and low estimates are accurate by indicating the strength of your local market and by noting anomalies like a high number of foreclosures or house-flippings, where homes are bought with the idea of fixing them up and quickly reselling them. Homesmartreports plans to offer a service for home buyers, too, that would provide an unlimited number of reports over a 30-day or 90-day period so you can get a better idea of how much to offer for a house.

    Get listed
    Some of the new sales services try to sidestep the M.L.S. As listings proliferate openly on the Web, the M.L.S. may one day be less important. But for now, in all but the hottest markets, it pays to get into the M.L.S.
    Almost every community has a discount broker who will charge $300 to $800 just to type the information about your house into the local M.L.S. (Some will also take pictures of the house to run with the listing.)

    There is one caveat: If you list there, you may be obligated to pay a commission to the buyer's agent, which is usually set at 3 percent. You can, however, build that commission into the price of the home, so the buyer actually pays it. Or, if the housing market is particularly hot in your area, you may be able to write into the contract that the buyer is responsible for paying his agent's commission.

    Hand off the annoying stuff
    For many sellers, the hardest part is all the details: staging the home for showings, holding the showings and handling all the paperwork and the negotiations. Many discount brokers offer an à la carte menu of services, which can quickly add up to more than a set commission. Paperwork is not that hard to do if your discount broker gives you all the preprinted forms. (You can probably foist some of that work on the buyer's agent, who is really working for you anyway.) Alternatively, go with a sales service that for a higher fee of about 1 percent of the selling price will handle everything. But these services often don't include an M.L.S. listing. As for stagings and showings, watch a few shows on the cable channel HGTV, like "Sell This House," to learn how decluttering or putting on a fresh coat of paint will raise the value of your home.

  8. Buying a HouseJanuary 02, 2009

    I'm a real estate agent...

    It's a good time to buy a house **IF** you plan to live in it for 4 or 5 years or more and you take your time and get a good deal. There is no hurry to buy.

    Phoenix AZ is loaded with foreclosed and pre-foreclosures.

  9. buying a house in phx azJanuary 02, 2009

    I went to see this house located on N 10th st, 85014.
    What a dump, I have seen double-wide trailers look better than that piece o' shit.
    And they are asking....get this.....$405,000....reduced they say!
    Please tell me this is a joke...please, please!!!
    How can we be so f**king disconnected from reality??

  10. Buying A House Now versus WaitingJanuary 02, 2009

    Only a REALTOR or Mortgage Broker would say buy now.

    The fact is home repros are up nationwide. Scottsdale has a high foreclosure rate coming.

    The market is depressed, there are probably 70,000 + homes on the market in the Phoenix Valley and this will rise.

    Every indicator says foreclosures will be rampant through October of this year before leveling out.

    At least 20% of the homes on the market are vacant, this is due to investors.

    The current average home is down in value by at least 15% some by 50% or more from two years ago.

    Homes 4 Sale are often on the market for at least 6-months or more.

    Starter Homes or lower priced homes, basically anything under $250,000 are available.

    New Homes by a builder that are SPEC homes, basically name your own deal and price.

    Showing or doing poorly are homes from 300,000 to 750,000 dollar range

    Also Townhomes and Condos are in the gutter.

    Don't be fooled by any damn Realtor Hype.

    They just want that commission.

    Figure out where in the valley you want to live, how far is your commute, if any, etc.

    Watch out for property taxes and HOA fees here.

    Shop till you drop.

    Go to open houses.

    Visit New sales Offices by Builders, week days are best time to go.

    Most Importantly LOOK for FSBOs (For Sale by Owner)

    NEVER sign a Buyer Broker Agreement with a realtor.

  11. Good News for people in ChicagoJanuary 07, 2009

    Real estate power broker dead of apparent suicide...

    CHICAGO, Illinois - One of Chicago's most well-known real estate moguls appears to have shot himself to death, police said.
    Steven Good was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot Monday, police said.
    The body of Steven L. Good was found in his Jaguar on Monday. The car was spotted in a parking lot of a wildlife preserve in Kane County, Illinois, just outside Chicago, authorities said.
    No note was found, and police say they do not know how long the 52-year-old had been in the vehicle.
    Good was the chairman and chief executive officer of Sheldon Good & Co., a major U.S. real estate auction company.
    The death comes amid great turmoil in the country's real estate industry. In his role as chairman of the Realtors Commercial Alliance Committee, Good commented on tough conditions last month at a business conference.

  12. re, Chicago Real Estate Power Broker Dead...

    Yes that is good news, now that still leaves over two million Realtors nationwide to go.

    May they all have the same fate.

  13. Thanks for the Blog follow at:
    The Patton Doctrine

    I have used a few Realtors in my time.
    I can say without hesitation, consultation, or reservation they were ALL bad!

  14. Bill from ChicagoJanuary 10, 2009

    Great BLOG.
    I agree the only good Realtor is a dead one!

  15. I found your blog by following another.
    Please follow my new blog, I am all ready following yours. Thanks.

    Sex Toy Types

    What I learned from this blog is NEVER use a Realtor. Thankx 4 the info!

  16. I agree I have never met a Realtor, Banker, Insurance Salesman, or Mortgage Broker that is worth a pot to piss in.

  17. I am a real estate agent in Austin, Texas, not a Realtor. When I first entered real estate I strongly desired to be in residential real estate, but that would require that I become a Realtor. Personally I have my reasons for not wanting to be a Realtor: anti-trust, non-competition clauses between Realtors (as set by NAR), binding arbitration, ridiculous fees to name a few issues. Thus my decision to not be a Realtor effectively blocks me from acting as a representative of homeowners in the eyes of homeowners - if they don't get MLS they don't hire the agent. Also the local board, like many Realtor boards, prohibits non-members from advertising on their MLS. However, I can list a house on numerous other websites and databases that are not the MLS, which get national coverage, and that I would argue is better than local. Yes real estate is changing and as a real estate agent set for the future I can't wait. As for my fee that is actually totally negotiable from commission to hourly rate. With a graduate education and dedication to my clients I do earn my pay.

    Now to answer a question for some:

    Would I ever become a Realtor?

    Yes, but not willingly or happily and most likely out of necessity.

    I've blogged about the compelled Realtor membership before. I really resent and do not like being required to join a non-government organization just to do business in my profession. Last time I checked surveyors and engineers did not have to do join such organizations or effectively make their licenses useless in certain sectors of their respective industries.

  18. re: sell your own house!!!!

    I have sold 5 houses in the last 8 years. (job moves me a lot) I sold 3 of them on my own, sign in the yard, word of mouth, etc. Got the asking price, (which was a tad under market at the time) all 3 times. Cost to me on each sale was $0.00 on two, and $325.00 on one.
    The two I sold with a Realtor cost me 8k plus fees for one, and a tad over 24k for the last one. Both times with realtors, "my" agent ended up working for the buyer. I am of the opinion that all realtors and realty companies are a bunch of thieves, that make an incredible amount of money for basically doing nothing. After this last escapade with monetary loss, I will NEVER use a realtor to sell again, so long as I live.
    It is just too bad we are not allowed to sue them for breach of contract when they play both sides of the sale with impunity.

  19. Latest reports show that Foreclosures are up 20% and pre sales are up 11% from this same time last year.

    Soon you will be able to buy a home for less than an electric car.

  20. Some of them "suck," but a much larger number of them blow.

  21. Facts NOT Reported in the NewsFebruary 09, 2009

    Arizona - A portion of the empty homes are because of illegals.

    An illegal can steal youre social security and other information and use it to buy a home with minimal down under all those finance programs that were available.
    Then totally with draw equity in cash send that back home to mexico or el salvador or whatever shithole and then build a nice la casa grande for free when they bailout of the USA.
    Not to mention all the credit card fraud for cash and probably even file for disability and collect a fricken disability check.
    Meanwhile we american citizens lose our rights more and more on a daily basis.
    I cant even get the state of AZ to give me unemployment that i have payed into for 12 yrs and never used once.
    Now I need it, but i bet an illegal would get it faster than me. Ya notice most of the cuts from the stimulus package were projects for the poor. I thought the Democrats were in favor of free stuff for the poor, oh well guess not.

  22. I am now a mortgage originator, working through a mortgage broker. Prior to this, I worked as a wholesale account executive with several prominent mortgage lenders, including Bear Stearns, Wells Fargo, and Chase. Prior to THAT, I worked as an exclusive buyer's agent in real estate. SO - In GENERAL - I agree with the statement A LARGE MAJORITY of REALTORS, MORTGAGE BROKERS, AND LENDERS DO, INDEED, SUCK. However, I would say there are a very small number of people in all of these sectors that make an effort to serve the best interests buyers, sellers, and borrowers.
    That being said, the real estate and mortgage industries have evolved to become so institutionally corrupt, and legislatively corrupted, that an ingrained legitimacy of self-righteousness breeds and perpetuates only self-serving interests.
    Realtors rarely, if ever, advocate on behalf of anyone but themselves and their commissions. Mortgage Brokers promote low teaser rates to gain an application, only to play a shell game with fees and/or rates later in the process. And lenders have essentially morons taking loan applications, without a regard for advising a client about how the mortgage can actually improve their financial situation.
    Indeed, it is difficult to find good people in this business, but there are some good people out there.

  23. wow! that's greed...reign supreme

  24. I think people should state which realtors they have had bad experience with be professional about it though like "hey I wouldn't use them", so that others do not get the same treatment. Me for instance I used Greg Hawthorn, in Roseville, CA and I would not recommend him.
    Times are tough but relators, brokers and lenders are looking out for themselves.

  25. Learned my mistake and won't do it againFebruary 24, 2009

    RE: the post above:
    I think this is a great blog. Kudos to whomever started it. People should let out there experiences and comments. As for realtors I would not recommend/
    or ever never use A. Giaouris again, she worked at Prudential in California when I was in the market looking, I learned a lot from that mistake with that agent. I will never let a realtor take advantage of me again same with the brokers. I have also encountered more realtors, brokers througout the years while buying property and learning about their dirty tricks. It's all about greed folks and these people are full of it.
    I learned about real estate over the years and I am very successful now. I know not everyone can learn the business, just do not rush and find people through friends and their experiences with realtors and learn as you go. So really not all realtors suck.... just most. Good luck to you all.

    By the way I thought the person Anonymous dated Feb. 12 2009 summed it up. Great post/comment.

    This one made me laugh too!:
    "God Of Bacon said...
    Some of them "suck," but a much larger number of them blow."

  26. Realtors,lenders,and banks are scum. Putting people and family on the streets. Yes, it is all greed. They don't want just a couple of pieces of the pie they want it all.




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