More Opinion News

This past week, readers reacted with outrage to the article about how National Association of Realtors top employees and board members are compensated. Several people suggested that NAR’s top brass gets paid too much ...
I’ve been really, really busy with a project I’m getting ready to announce/roll out (speaking of which, if you’re an association executive or association leadership, I’d like to chat with you) but I couldn’t help but chime in on a minor storm in a teapot that Inman brewed up recently. I speak of the article called “Where NAR Spends Its Money: Employee Compensation” in which Inman dug through the Form 990 that the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has to file as a non-profit organization ...
You turn on the television and see another mortgage ad from a big-budgeted national mortgage company telling consumers they only need to push a button to get a home loan. That might be a great message for a homeowner considering a refinance, but if a homebuyer seeks a loan from an online or toll-free lender in today’s market, it can be a disaster. ...
Where are your ethics?
by Sue Benson
Let's talk about ethics for a moment. It’s time for some confessions. I’m going to be honest. Hold on to your seats. OK, are you ready? This is it: I swear. I mean to say, I have a potty mouth, and sometimes I swear like a sailor. But that’s not all. I know, what else could there be ...
Once information is out of the bottle, it is like a genie; it is not going back in. The proliferation of content marks the first wave of innovation in the sector. Now, we are seeing the emergence of models taking this a step further by leveraging technology and improved information flow to facilitate transactions in different ways. Let me briefly walk you through the evolution as I see it and what I see coming next ...
So your tech failed you -- figure it out
by Teresa Boardman
I can’t call myself a digital native because that term is reserved for people who are the same age as my adult children. I’ll just say that I have had internet access in my home since the 1980s, and I fully appreciate the difference between a 300 baud dial-up modem and a 1,400 baud dial-up modem because that is all we had back then. Technical problems and issues are as old as the technology, and often, I have had to be my own tech support ...
If you are a real estate agent or mortgage lender in Texas, you may have some great opportunities to grow your business in the future while helping the state’s growing Hispanic population become homeowners ...
Anyone who has read Seattle Bubble for any length of time knows that I am not exactly Zillow’s biggest fan (to put it lightly). However, I like to keep an open mind. Therefore, I’m happy to present a point-counterpoint on the topic of Zillow’s value in the real estate marketplace. ...
5 things your assistant is afraid to tell you
by Christy Belt Grossman
As a consultant and educator of real estate assistants around the country, I have a unique vantage point. Not only do I have the opportunity to engage with many bright, successful wizards behind the screen, but I also get to do so as an insider. You see, I’ve been in their shoes for over 20 years. So when I work with them and teach classes for them, they often open up to me in a way they don’t to the agents they work for ...
“The House that Jack Built” was an antique British poem I heard countless times growing up. The point of the poem was less about home construction and more about connectedness. “This is the woman who milked the cow with the crumpled horn, that tossed the dog, that worried the cat, that killed the rat, that ate the cheese, that lay in the house that Jack built.” ...
I have been thinking about agent reviews again because they have been in the news, well not in the national news or anything but in the real estate news. According to industry experts, real estate agents are supposed to embrace agent reviews without regard to where they are housed or how they are designed ...
Are large brokerages the industry's Sirens?
by Mike Biundo Jr.
In ancient Greek mythology, Odysseus was the king of Ithaca, and the Sirens were alluring creatures that drew in unknowing sailors with their inviting music, which caused them to crash on the rocky shores of their island ...
It's been industry practice, although one not always adhered to, for buyer agents to provide feedback on a listing after touring it with an interested buyer. Smart home monitoring devices may creep into ethics violations if used to secretly glean knowledge. If we're always compromising privacy for information, where does that leave us ...
Back in the day, I penned many articles about affordable housing. In 1987, I heard about the Governor of Massachusetts, Michael Dukakis, committing to an aggressive affordable housing plan -- rare words for any Presidential candidate to utter, even then. Even more rare today ...
I just love the question: should I use my brokerage's technology? I see agents who are held hostage by email addresses and domain names that they do not own and held by the belief that it's the technology they use and probably pay for through the real estate company that keeps them in business ...
Why would anyone want to become an agent?
by Mike Biundo Jr.
There are over 1.1 million Realtors in the United States. So why in the world would anyone want to become a real estate agent in this over-saturated, ultra-competitive, seasoned agent-dominated world ...
When will we look in the mirror? When will the public's opinion of us as buffoons finally spur action from within? When will we stop calling ourselves professionals and actually take steps to be professionals? If you are not fully invested, this is not your profession -- this is a hobby. And your hobby has been and continues to smother those of us who are true professional agents ...
Anyone in the mortgage industry will tell you that the market has evolved significantly since 2008, but these evolutions haven't been explained well to consumers. Frankly, the industry could learn a lot from how 'The Big Short' manages to explain the various financial tools used to perpetrate the crisis. That’s where mortgage brokers' real response should be: not in being overly defensive or pushing blame elsewhere, but in using this opportunity to explain their business. ...
What has innovation done for you lately?
by Creed Smith
What does five years’ of very hard work and investing $1 million of my own cash to create my version of innovation for the real estate industry get me? The chance to sell Realogy on my stuff in 100 words or less. Do you want to see how I dazzled them? ...
Profitability at real estate brokerages is declining, and this downward trend will continue indefinitely; to survive, brokerages must stay hyper-focused on recruiting, recruiting and recruiting. In successfully recruiting the right agents, culture, technology and marketing support trump commission splits ...

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