What did Consumer Reports say about choosing a real estate broker? | BuySelfRealty.com


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What did Consumer Reports say about choosing a real estate broker?

Consumer Reports has weighed in on real estate commissions, and the results point directly to using a flat fee listing broker, which is no surprise to me. The articles appear in their September 2008 issue. Consumer Reports is perhaps the best known and longest running consumer advocacy organization, which is described as "No brand is more widely recognized and trusted than Consumer Reports. Since 1936, [it] has delivered thorough consumer product recommendations, while maintaining a reputation for objectivity and accuracy. In this age of public skepticism [CR] has maintained its lofty status, a testimony to the organization's strict standards and steely integrity."
Here are some quotes from Consumer Reports exhaustive study found:
"We found that paying an agent a lower commission rarely had any effect on the sales price,"
People who paid a higher commission rate "were more likely to say they had regrets about the selling process."
As a flat fee broker, this finding doesn't surprise me, and I have always doubted any study that says otherwise.
"Sellers who used [Independent companies (those not affiliated with major brands)] were just as satisfied", according to the report.
"Sellers who paid commission rates 3 percent or lower were just as satisfied with their brokers' performance as those who paid 6 percent or more..." Consumer reports announced -- and there were no statistically meaningful differences among rated companies in customer satisfaction. When we compare our customers ratings, we have consistently achieved higher satisfaction rates than the average rates reported by the National Association of Realtors.
10-25% of traditional agents still don't advertise their listings on the internet." This one shocks me, but I suppose it does reflect that there are many agents still working today, charging the same commissions and providing the same service they did when they learned the business in the seventies and eighties. I have heard Realtor Association staff express frustrations about the number of agents that still don''t have an email address that they check regularly, but this one still surprises me.
In all, 9,141 responses were received from those who sold or tried to sell a home using real estate agents from 2004-07.
I'm glad to see another consumer advocacy organization has realized that there are better options than the full priced, traditional agent.