In my opinion there should be greater capacity for agents to represent a buyer or a seller completely. If you talk about providing value to both the purchaser and the vendor, a professional agent representing either side will undoubtedly raise our service levels. That’s why I believe buyer’s advisory is going to become a bigger part of our business going forward.
I think real estate has a bad reputation because of the very structure of the business. If we look at other professionals, like a lawyer for example; a lawyer is paid to represent one side.
Real estate agents are forced to sit in the middle. We’re paid to represent the seller but we have a duty of care to the buyer. And, by the very structure of the industry, we’re put in a very difficult position to keep people happy.
There are a lot of areas that we are exposed to as an industry. Perhaps we’d be better protected if we had buyer and seller advisories across the board. I think this would, over the long-term, result in a greater respect for our industry in terms of how an agent represents a client. The whole avenue we’re going down of ‘the cheap option’ just means people aren’t getting true value and will be even more dissatisfied with our industry.
Consumers today are demanding extraordinary customer experiences. They want more than they’ve ever got before, and they want it faster. As an industry we need to look at how we position ourselves to meet these rising expectations and ensure we can continue to deliver into the future. The fact is, we should be known as advisors to our communities.
Anyone who doesn’t believe their customer service levels need to rise, I suggest they listen to their clients more. I’m very aware that we need to lift our game as a whole. Times are changing, our customers are changing, we need to change too.