This question has been asked many times. Real estate constantly polls as one of the most untrustworthy professions in the country. Have you ever heard the phrase “trust me I’m a real estate agent?” While this all sounds a little cliché the reality is that the general public has very little trust for real estate agents.
They tend to drive flashy cars, wear suits (some cheap, some not) and are always just a little bit late for every appointment to the frustration of buyers, tenants, vendors and landlords. So does this perception that real estate agents are untrustworthy, incompetent and overpaid really have merit?
The last comprehensive survey of the public put Doctors, Solicitors, Dentists, Pharmacists, School Teachers and even Accountants all well ahead of Real Estate Agents – the big question is why is this consistently the case? I believe the answer lies in the entry requirements to the profession which only require a 3 day course to become a certified agent. Could you imagine a 3 day crass course in Medicine and you could then operate on unsuspecting patients?
There would be enormous public outrage and the course would be banned in a flash. So why has Real Estate been allowed to offer such crash courses to the profession which bring completely unsuitable people into the industry with absolutely no idea what they are doing? The answer lies with the pressure groups that our Government actually listen to like the Real Estate Institute – they make a small fortune from memberships and training. They have self interest at heart when directing policy and have been allowed to influence decisions for far too long.
There are no base requirements to be a real estate agent. Your English can be disgraceful, as can your people skills. You don’t need to have completed high school and there are no checks in place to see if you even attended school. At Marquette Turner we believe that there is only one way to change the perception of the industry and that is through formal education. My fellow Directors are all studying a Masters degree or a Doctorate and we believe that will change the real estate landscape over the next 20 years. So next time you are deciding which agent is best to sell your home it might be worth asking them what formal qualifications they have. Ask them what formal negotiation and marketing training they have completed – after all you are entrusting your greatest asset to them and you have a right to know that you have chosen the best person for the job.
We have posted two parts of the five part expose of the “Real Estate Cartel in Australia”. This is a must read and the third part will be published in next week’s E Mag. You can catch up on the previous exposes by clicking on the links below.