THE FUTURE OF REAL ESTATE
WELCOME TO BARON & CHESTNEY REAL ESTATE! WELCOME TO THE FUTURE OF REAL ESTATE!
ASK YOURSELF THIS! In a real estate market where home prices have doubled or even tripled in the last ten years, have you ever asked yourself a very powerful question: How come the same 6% realtor commission that I was charged to sell my home 10 years ago, when my home was worth $300,000, is STILL the same 6% real estate commission NOW, when my home is worth $900,000? In other words, whereas you paid $18,000 to sell your home 10 years ago, WHY does it now cost you $54,000 to sell your home? Have the prices of newspaper and magazine realty ads tripled in the last 10 years? Have realtor MLS fees tripled in the last 10 years? Is it any harder to sell a $900,000 home than a $300,000 home, when that is the going market price in the neighborhood? Have we had massive inflation in the last 10 years? The answer, of course, to all of these questions, is a resounding NO! This sort of analysis has given birth to the concept of discount commission real estate brokerage and caused it to gain popularity.
Every once in a while, a new concept, system, or invention comes along that revolutionizes the way things are done. This can be an invention, like the automobile, that changed transportation forever. It can be a new system, like the assembly line, which changed the way goods were produced. It can be a new concept, like electronic stock trading as opposed to the old telephone method, which revolutionized our entire stock market trading system. Usually, these new ideas are slow to be accepted. The inventors are at first ridiculed, and their competitors will try very hard to prevent their success. As Robert F. Kennedy said, "Progress is a nice word -- but change is its motivator -- and change has its enemies!".
However, over time, the new ideas, if they hold merit, will eventually take root, gain popularity with the people, and eventually bring about widespread change. As Victor Hugo said, "One can resist hordes of invading armies -- however, it is impossible to hold back a single idea whose time has finally come!". Indeed, the time has finally come for an idea that is revolutionizing the real estate industry as we know it -- the concept is that of DISCOUNT REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE. This idea is the real estate wave of the future -- and it is an idea that has been rapidly spreading across the U.S. from the east coast, moving westward. It is an idea whose time has indeed come, and it has come to the San Francisco Bay Area real estate market in the form of Baron & Chestney Real Estate, a full service, discount commission real estate company that is staffed by discount realtors who are also discount real estate brokers.
SO, WHAT IS DISCOUNT REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE? The term is a general phrase that refers to any type of real estate commission structure other than the tired old 6% "rule of thumb" realtor commission. Remember, the 6% commission is a rule of thumb -- it is NOT a law. By California law, the real estate commission is NEGOTIABLE. In fact, any real estate agent or real estate broker who tells you that 6% real estate commissions are the law is BREAKING THE LAW! The old 6% rule of thumb is rapidly becoming a dinosaur -- it is headed towards extinction -- as are the real estate agents, real estate brokers, realtors, and real estate companies that promote it. It has, after all, NEVER been popular with home sellers or home buyers, anyway! However, they were previously unaware that they had a choice... Indeed, they DO have a choice -- and YES, not just when selling a home, but also even when PURCHASING a home! Knowledgeable consumers are using our discount real estate services already, and saving THOUSANDS of dollars, whether selling or buying a home -- and yes, very often even a brand new home, directly from a builder. Home buyers, visit our BUYERS SAVE THOUSANDS section to read about how we save you money on THE PURCHASE OF A HOME, by getting you a generous home buyer rebate through our home buyer's cash rebate program!
SO, HOW DOES THAT CRAZY 6% RULE STICK AROUND?! Some consumers understand how the realtor commission structure works, but they still pay the realty commission begrudgingly, because they are unaware that they have a better option. Many others simply fail to notice the tens of thousands more in real estate commission dollars that are escaping out "the back door" of the deal. The realtor commissions are paid through escrow, so the home owner (seller) never physically sees or feels those dollars coming out of his/her wallet or purse. Amazingly, most people, though very knowledgeable about some areas of their finances, just don't seem to understand how the real estate commission and real estate sales process works. Hence, while they know how to clip coupons for a few cents, go to a sale to save a few dollars, or haggle on the price of a car for a hundred dollars, they will allow TENS OF THOUSANDS of dollars in real estate commissions to fly out of their pockets and into the pockets of a greedy real estate agent from one of the big 6% national real estate chains. WHY is this happening?! Why are real estate consumers not educating themselves about what is most likely the largest purchase and/or sale of their lives?!
SMOKE AND MIRRORS: The big name national chain 6% realtors want you to believe that it is very difficult to sell your home. They want you to think that you need their services to do it. This is simply not the case. You have a legal right to sell your home by yourself, if you wish. There are plenty of drawbacks to selling your own home, however -- legal liability, lack of market exposure, a lot of work, buyers thinking you are cutting corners, and as a result making lowball offers, etc. SO, an intermediate solution was started several years ago -- this is the "help you to sell your home" or "assist you to sell your home" (also known jokingly as "HOPE you sell you home" or "ATTEMPT to sell your home", because of their often disappointing results) type of services. You get some of the advantages of the big name 6% real estate company services, and some savings by doing much of the work yourself. You still don't escape the stigma of having home buyers think you are cutting corners and being stingy -- the "for sale" signs are embarrassing, and they use words like "help", "assist", "with owner", etc. Home buyers can see right through these strategies-- in fact, they feel that if you are saving real estate commission costs, they should offer you less for your home! Although we would rather see you use a "help you to sell it" service rather than pay one of the big name 6% real estate companies, you no longer have to do EITHER! Long ago, you could either sell it yourself or use a 6% realtor service. A few years back, you got the new "help you to sell it" option. NOW, you have a MUCH BETTER CHOICE: FULL SERVICE DISCOUNT COMMISSION REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE -- THE REAL ESTATE WAVE OF THE FUTURE -- right here in the San Francisco Bay Area -- through Baron & Chestney Real Estate!
SO, WHAT IS FULL SERVICE DISCOUNT REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE? This means that you get all the fancy full service that the big name 6% company's realtors offer you, BUT at the PRICE that the "help you to sell it" real estate company offers you, AND WITHOUT all the work and trouble that the "sell it yourself" method offers you. In other words, you get your home listed on the real estate MLS (multiple listing service), you get open houses done for you, real estate broker tours done for you, realtor advertisements run for you (magazines, newspapers, internet), your home listing gets posted on the realty websites, you get realtor signs, fliers, brochures, lockboxes, mailers, etc, etc -- everything that you want. BUT, you pay much, much less for it. How much less? TENS OF THOUSANDS of dollars less! (For full details, please visit our Sellers Save THOUSANDS section). SO, the obvious question is, But how can you do that?!
Real Estate BROKERS vs. Real Estate AGENTS -- ELIMINATE THE MIDDLEMAN/MIDDLEWOMAN: Are you familiar with the concept of wholesale pricing? Sure you are! You shop at Costco and Home Depot, right? Costco vs. Safeway is wholesale vs. retail pricing. Home Depot vs. Ace Hardware is wholesale vs. retail pricing. OK -- for all the naysayers -- is the quality different? NO! If you buy PinkBunny Batteries at Safeway for $5.99 vs. at Costco for $3.99, you have just thrown money away ($2) on the SAME brand name item. So, whoever said "you get what you pay for" simply does NOT know where to shop! A real estate AGENT is simply a MIDDLEMAN or MIDDLEWOMAN who unnecessarily inflates the cost of the real estate commission that you pay to sell your home. Every real estate commission must be paid first to a real estate BROKER, who then shares or splits it with the real estate AGENTS, who are nothing more than their EMPLOYEES. Every real estate company or real estate office must have a real estate BROKER, who then HIRES real estate AGENTS. Real estate AGENTS ARE SALES EMPLOYEES OF A real estate BROKER, by law, and by definition. SO, why not deal DIRECTLY with the real estate broker, and save money? EXACTLY -- and that's how discount real estate brokerage works. 99% of the realtors that you deal with are only real estate AGENTS. At Baron & Chestney, we DO NOT EMPLOY REAL ESTATE AGENTS. WE ARE ALL REAL ESTATE BROKERS. You deal directly, or "wholesale", with a Baron & Chestney real estate BROKER, and you therefore save yourself THOUSANDS in realtor commissions!
SO, WHAT IS A REALTOR? People incorrectly use the generic term "realtor" to refer to anyone in the real estate business. A Realtor is a real estate agent or a real estate broker who is a member of the National Association of Realtors -- a trade group which subscribes to a higher code of ethical and professional standards in all real estate dealings. All Realtors are either real estate agents or real estate brokers, while only some real estate agents and some real estate brokers are Realtors. The important thing to remember is that ALL real estate agents must work for real estate brokers. Therefore, it is important to know who you are dealing with -- you should try to work directly with a DISCOUNT BROKER who is also a DISCOUNT REALTOR, in order to give yourself the greatest degree of professional knowledge and expertise, as well as the greatest savings at the same time. The experience, educational, and training requirements for a real estate broker are far more stringent than they are for a real estate agent -- that's why all agents must place their real estate license with a broker -- all of their activities must be supervised, overseen, and approved by their broker. This is because they have not yet achieved the level of education, knowledge, experience, and/or expertise to earn a broker's license. So, why not just deal with the boss directly, instead of dealing with their middleman/middlewoman employees who simply mark up the end cost to you?! Well, now, you CAN! All Baron & Chestney real estate brokers are ALSO Realtors.
ONWARD TO THE FUTURE: SO, now that we have explained these new ideas, as well as the old misconceptions about the real estate industry, where do we go from here? The answer is that we continue to progress towards the future of the real estate industry. With Baron & Chestney Real Estate, that future has already arrived, right here in the San Francisco Bay Area. However, as Robert Kennedy said, change has its enemies. Change is slow -- even change for the better. Our competitors hope that it will be VERY slow, and they hope that consumers will remain largely ignorant and not bother to look for options or choices. After all, that sort of consumer mentality (not even thinking to shop for a discount or think about alternatives) has helped the old 6% commission national realty chains get very fat and very happy on the countless billions of extra dollars that uninformed and unsuspecting consumers have essentially simply given away to them over the years. Those dollars were a huge part of their home's equity -- and they just gave it away without even thinking! This is exactly what our 6% commission competitors are banking on -- no pun intended -- the fact that most people do NOT think! However, as Victor Hugo said, nothing can hold back a new idea. At Baron & Chestney Real Estate, our clients are the SMART ones -- those who DO think. Eventually, though, discount realtors will completely reshape the real estate industry as we know it. Even those who are a little slow to mentally upload new ideas will start to "get it". Also, any real estate firm, agent, or broker who refuses to embrace the changes will be left behind like a person who does not accept computers as a part of life in today's world. Eventually, those who do not join us in crossing this bridge to the future of real estate will not make it to the other side -- either because they are unable to change (high overhead and rigid corporate structure of agent/broker commission splits make it impossible to remain pofitable under a new discount real estate commission system), or because they are unwilling to change (greed? stubbornness? stupidity? your guess is as good as ours!). In either case, we haven't seen too many dinosaurs walking around lately -- and soon, we won't see too many "real estate dinosaurs" walking around, either! The market, and smarter consumers who demand more, will doom them to extinction. Couldn't happen fast enough, if you ask us...
FINAL THOUGHTS: Remember, the real estate industry is driven by ONE thing: the real estate market. The market is driven by supply of and demand for homes, tempered by interest rates. No real estate agent, real estate broker, or real estate company drives the real estate market -- you, the consumers, do. Homes are not sold by smoke and mirrors. Nor is it rocket science. One old real estate "dinosaur" recently said to a prospective client, when trying to defend his obsolete 6% commission structure, "Would you look for a deal on a heart surgeon, for heaven's sake?" While we appreciate the analogy presented by this old "Realestatus Agentus Obsoletus", we beg to differ -- and, while we'd love to claim that we are as hard to replace as heart surgeons, or brain surgeons, we're NOT. We're more on the par of a good travel agent -- there is a right way and a wrong way to book your vacations -- however, no lives are being jeopardized here! If you choose the right travel agent, your trip will go smoothly, and everything will be handled professionally -- and at a great price. You'll get a better rate on the same airline, a discount rate at the same hotel, and a total package cost that can be much less than if you do it yourself. If you use the wrong travel agent, you may end up paying a lot more for the same exact services and amenities. Why would anyone pay more for the same thing?! The same applies with regards to real estate services. Better yet, with Baron & Chestney, you pay less, and get MORE -- you will always get a seasoned, experienced, knowledgeable real estate BROKER working for you -- not some rookie sales agent!
Just as the Costco and Home Depot business models were originally laughed at, despite the fact that both companies are now HUGELY successful, expect to see the same pattern in the real estate industry. Move over, "Realestateus Agentus Obsoletus" -- Baron & Chestney Real Estate is at the forefront of the new wave of the real estate industry, bringing FULL SERVICE DISCOUNT COMMISION REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE to the SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA and leading the charge to banish the 6% real estate commission structure to extinction once and for all. While our competitors may at first resist the discount real estate revolution, resistance is futile -- because as consumers embrace us, we continue to grow and expand. Fortunately, consumers drive the real estate market -- NOT dinosaurs!
As JOHN F. Kennedy said, "Change is the law of life. Those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future". Welcome to the future of real estate. Welcome to Baron & Chestney Real Estate!
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