Sellers need to ask themselves do these sites actually benefit them? Since referral sites need referral fees to survive it stands to reason that they will only give leads to agents willing to pay. It makes sense that the more an agent uses a particular referral site, the more business they will send that agent’s way. And although they claim to offer a “Free Service”, the agent may pass on the cost to you, through their commission structure.
A referral site simply adds a middleman to the sales process without adding any real value for the seller. The right agent for you may not be willing to pay their fee, therefore you will be paired with an agent by default, not necessarily the best agent for your needs.
The sites don’t provide any assurances about the accuracy of their information, about the agent’s competence or an agent’s sales performance. They in fact, encourage consumers to exercise care and independently verify the details they are provided with but isn’t this what the service is supposed to be doing for you? Wasn’t this the reason why you contacted them in the first place? You could end up with the least experienced agent selling one of your most valuable assets.
Let’s also think about this for a minute… Why would a top real estate agent need to engage these referral sites? The answer is they wouldn’t. Good agents generate plenty of work to keep themselves busy. They don’t need to pay for ‘leads’ or pay a hefty fee to get your contact information.
So don’t rely on real estate agent referral sites to find the agent who will meet your needs, they could end up doing the exact opposite. The best way to find an agent right for you, is to go out and find them yourself. Ask your family, friends and neighbours, check out their website and social media presence. Interview 3-4 agents to see who is the best fit for you.
And finally a warning about commission – you often get what you pay for! So trust your gut, don’t go with the agent just because they have the lowest commission, but with the one you feel most comfortable with and the one you feel will work hardest for you.